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Deepika Padukone's 'Gehraiyaan' to test Indian audiences' readiness for mature content on OTT

'Shershaah' and 'Laxmii' were made for audiences aged 6-60. 'Gehraiyaan' is different - and it's letting audiences know that.

January 30, 2022 / 10:06 PM IST
Siddhant Chaturvedi and Deepika Padukone in Shakun Batra's 'Gehraiyaan'.

Siddhant Chaturvedi and Deepika Padukone in Shakun Batra's 'Gehraiyaan'.

2021's biggest hit on OTT was Shershaah, the Sidharth Malhotra starrer that worked across all segments of audiences and became one of the most loved films of the last year. Prior to that in 2020 it was Akshay Kumar's Laxmii that scored a huge record, not just with its opening day viewership but also its subsequent run. The common factor between these two films? They were both as commercial as they come, and were made for family viewing with audiences ranging from 6 to 60.

Gehraiyaan, releasing February 11 on Amazon Prime Video, differs from these films in one key respect - it is set to test readiness amongst Indian audiences when it comes to watching mature content on OTT.

Of course, there is an ocean out there when it comes to such content. What makes Gehraiyaan a truly important step for Bollywood as well as its loyal audience, is that this is the first time that a superstar is anchoring a film with such intimate scenes and a major production house backing it.

With Deepika Padukone in the film, there is a definite a familiarity factor amongst audiences across the country. On the other hand, Karan Johar and his Dharma Productions are known for their largely 'universal audience' outing, cases in point being last year's Shershaah and Gunjan Saxena - The Kargil Girl, a year before that. In the case of Gehraiyaan, both the production house and top actress are experimenting. (The film has three production companies associated with it: Dharma Productions, Viacom18 Studios and Jouska Films.)