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Hotstar Specials – The new wave of Indian originals

By: Sirish Rao

It’s been a month since the new premium channel Hotstar specials has been launched. This is a new premium service where fresh original Indian content is being produced and aired on its platform. The creation of content has been increasing with Netflix and Amazon, but now Hotstar is taking it to a new level with fresh Indian orginals with each of its new webseries.

Hotstar has tied up with one production studio Applause Entertainment which has released a range of web series online and has more shows on its sleeves to release in the next few months . The 3 shows currently running online are Criminal Justice, City of Dreams and recently released Hostages. All the 3 shows which were released, had a great beginning.

Criminal Justice the first of the 3 to release was an instant hit. Within the first 10 days people were raving about the show’s concept and the casting. Actors like Pankaj Tripathi, Jackie Shroff and Vikrant Massey were getting special praise from certain PR platforms in the online media. The authenticity with which Vikrant’s character was portrayed on screen had a deep impact to the overall show.

The transition from an innocent boy to the charismatic badass with arough and tuff attitude was phenomenal.

The next series to go on air was City of Dreams a show which is personally close to me since I was part of the team. City of dreams a story about how a family that has strong hold over the political throne in Mumbai is faced with internal family issues as to who is more powerful to take over from the earlier generation. Coming to the casting of this show. Since the shoot and storyline was Mumbai based Nagesh Kukunoor wanted the actors to feel their characters and be real. He therefore chose Marathi actors. The main female lead was played by Priya Bapat. She has come a long way from acting as a college girl in Munnabhai to now.

The kind of films she has done in the Marathi film industry has given her the courage to explore other mediums in this competitive world. So for her this was one big step in her acting career. This series has opened up her career path to a new direction. She has been praised by many PR agencies locally and nationally.

Another actor who has come back into the limelight due to this webseries is Ejaz Khan. He portrayed the role of Inspector Wasim Khan. He used to be a popular face on one of the leading TV channels back in the heir days. This has helped him resurrect his career to say the least. . With Hostages just released a week back, things are looking bright for the production house associated with it. It’s very happy situation for producers right now. Episodes are being finished in 5 hours flat. Normally to gauge the interest one will watch an episode or 2 but such is the content that audiences are always asking for more, it is never enough.

Even in Hostages the actors are a few films old, someone like a Parvin Dabbas who’s last few films were Khosla Ka Ghosla, My Name is Khan to name a few but Hotstar Specials is giving these actors a platform to showcase their talent and also extends their visibility as an actor to far more larger fan base and wider reach.

With three shows down on their roster, Hotstar Specials is looking to go for the kill with more shows. This has inspired filmmakers like us to make interesting content which not only helps the content creators but also opens up the market for new innovations in our own field With Hotstar being the no 1 OTT player in India as of today, the content being produced has dramatically improved.

Hotstar Specials with its entry has helped Indian content creators a platform to produce fresh original content for our audiences. This has given young talented filmmakers who otherwise don’t get a chance to show their skills a place to showcase their creativity. Going forward more and more actors are looking at the web to showcase their talent and increase their fan base.

Many Television actors are opting for web for two reasons. One its less time consuming in terms of shooting schedules and second is the content is progressive and to the current trend. All in all it’s a win win situation for all and this is definitely the start of something much more bigger to come in the next few years. Stay tuned to some exciting content being created.



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