Puneeth Rajkumar-backed PRK Productions is coming up with LAW this week, followed by French Biriyani on July 24; the actor says OTT is a platform for those who want to experiment with cinema and film releases
The next two weeks, two Kannada films will be released directly on Amazon Prime Video. Incidentally, both these films — LAW, starring Ragini Prajwal and directed by Raghu Samarth, and French Biriyani directed by Pannaga Bharana and featuring Danish Sait in the lead — is backed by Puneeth Rajkumar’s PRK Productions. With these two films, Puneeth’s wife, Ashwini, turns producer. Although these films were made for a theatrical release, the ongoing pandemic has resulted in Law and French Biriyani taking the digital route.
How does Puneeth, who comes from the legendary Rajkumar family that has produced not just important actors but producers too, and has always celebrated cinema in theatres, see the ongoing wave of digital releases?
"Digital has strengthened its presence over the past three to four years. Also, from our industry, I am not the first who is taking this route. Having said that, I am sure that despite various new avenues coming up, the celebration of watching films in theatres will never go down. However, at this point of time, we had something to offer, and there was this platform like Amazon Prime Video, which was ready to facilitate a direct-to-OTT release of both Law and French Biriyani," says Puneeth, who is also glad that the entire country will get to watch both these films.
Puneeth opines that OTT platforms are a good option for filmmakers who want to experiment with their content. "I am looking forward to getting feedback about Law and French Biriyani," says the Powerstar, who is thankful to Amazon Prime Video, for taking up these Kannada films "We will have more projects coming up for all," he says.
According to Puneeth, there is nothing specific about the kind of films that will work in OTT or theatre. "We all believe in good cinema. Since we are into films, it is our job to update ourselves, as well as on what’s happening on the technology front. It is just that the streaming platform gives an option for people to select and watch," says the actor and producer, who cites an example of going to theatres is like dining out, which can’t be done every day.
"One doesn’t like to venture out and eat all the three meals daily and prefer to cook and eat at home. But there are times, you want to dine out once in a while. With time, cinema viewing experience might change, but theatres have their charm, and it’s here to stay and celebrate. On OTT, we can watch movies or series anytime, anywhere and at our convenience in the comfort of their homes."
Ashwini, who makes her debut as the producer with Law, is also incharge of listening to the stories that come in the way of PRK productions. "I am glad Ragini is getting introduced through this film. Her husband Prajwal Devaraj is a good friend of mine. There is his father, Devaraj, who has earned a good name in the industry. We are happy to introduce one more actor from that family," he says.
"French Biriyani came through Danish, whom we are all extremely fond of," says Puneeth. "He came up with this concept with Pannaga Bharana, who is also known to us. We have associated with his father, TS Nagabharana. It was a pleasure to have the two of them coming together along with Sal Yusuf, Pitoh Ghosh from Mumbai and Disha Madan. We are more than happy to see Rangayana Raghu being part of French Biriyani," he says.
Puneeth wants to ensure that PRK Productions is synonymous with good content. "It is more teamwork, with just two to three of us coming together and picking the script. Once that’s done, I have very little involvement in terms of star cast. I leave it to the director to use their creativity and bring to the screen their visualisation. If people appreciate the films coming from our banner, we are happy to produce more," sign off Puneeth.