The internet has made the world a smaller place and hence, web platforms have gained immense prominence, especially in the past few months during the pandemic. For Pankaj Tripathi, too, the advent of OTT has been a great boon, not only as an actor but it has also helped people back home in his village in Bihar to finally see his work from the comfort of their homes.
“The contribution of OTT is huge to my career. In terms of reach, it’s huge. Even people in my village watch my shows. The cinema hall is 26 kilometers away from my village and it was not possible for them to catch all my films. But thanks to OTT, people are watching at my village. OTT ka nahut yogdaan hai mere career mein,” shares Tripathi.
The actor says that because of this, his various characters on the web are also garnering much recognition, quite literally.
“They are so popular that people call me by my character names wherever I go. At the airports, the CISF people also smile at me and call me my screen names,” he shares with a laugh.
Tripathi started doing OTT when it was still gaining momentum in the country, and he has been part of shows such as Scared Games, Mirzapur and Criminal Justice. However, unlike many others, he doesn’t blame it on the lack of opportunities in films.
“For me, the story is important, not the platform, I don’t care where my work is showcased. Before films, I used to do TV. For me there is no difference. The best part about OTT is that we have a lot of time and you can go into the depths of the character. Not just we actors but also writers and makers. That scope in cinema is far less that way. OTT has changed things a lot,” he points out.
While OTT ruled the entertainment world amid the pandemic, cinemas have also resumed operations last month. Tripathi, however, feels it will take a while for people to get back to theatres in large numbers.
“Till corona reaches a certain control there is an issue about people going to theatres. Until a concrete solution is there, it will be difficult for live stage shows and theatres. Community viewing is still going to be something difficult,” he concludes.