#StarryTalks: “I believe that I am a writer first,” says producer Siddharth Kumar Tewary

Writer, director, and producer Siddharth Kumar Tewary is popular for bringing well-researched shows on television. He has played with several genres but there wouldn’t be a denial in saying that no-one does mythology better than Siddharth. Recently, the much hardworking producer completed a successful run of 200 episodes of his famous show Porus and will be launching his next magnum opus show ‘RadhaKrishn‘ today on Star Bharat.

Siddharth opened up on several aspects of the show in a recent interview, here are the Excerpts:

Tell us about the show RadhaKrishn. What is about the show that makes it different from all other shows that have been made on the life of Lord Krishna?

We’re attempting the first ever mythological love story depicting the epic saga of Radha and Krishna on television. Our first promo depicts the premise in just 2 sentences ‘Jag karta hai prem, prem pane ke liye; inhone kiya prem, prem samjhane ke liye.’   The idea is to show the Indian culture, how we wore our colors, and to depict the world that has caught our fancy and imagination. Along with a deep message of love, we have recorded 20 new soulful tracks, a mix of romantic melodies and Ras Leela tunes that are imperative in narrating the traditional story of Krishna as described in the Hindi scriptures.

You wear multiple hats of a writer, director, and producer. Does that make executing your ideas easier or makes it difficult for you to balance all the roles perfectly

I believe that I am a writer first! Before starting out on my own, I worked in the marketing department of a channel, later progressing to the programming side. I had a story to tell!  You can always write and direct for others but as a producer, you have the power to create and bring that story to life that you believe in and see it through.

I enjoy writing the most as it makes me feel liberated but at the same time being a producer is a plus point because that helps me tell a story the way I want.  Hence for me, it all goes hand in hand and works well in synergy.

You are known as King of Mythology on Indian television. What is about the genre that appeals to you the most? What kind of research do you do to be able to show the accuracy in depicting the mythological characters, events? 

Mythology as a genre purely stems from creative decisions. Numbers were never the driving force. I began my journey with a story that was close to my heart, Amber Dhara…I later wanted to break the clutter and create premium content. India is a culturally rich country and for Indians mythology and history are an integral part of our culture.  The idea is to show the Indian culture, how we wore our colors, our world and how we used to be. India was a first world nation and we had prosperity. We were not only culturally rich but also a rich nation and that is what we, as content creators, are depicting through our stories and shows on television.

When you do the research, it is done specifically to the subject as well as the time period and specific year. RadhaKrishn is the result of a long process. We sowed the seeds 2 years ago but it wasn’t easy. I have traveled extensively with my team to the remotest areas of India which the scriptures speak of and heard their stories.  Furthermore, we also set up a research team under the guidance of Dr. Kanan who’s earlier penned a book based on the life of Lord Krishna. We’re exploring and learning every day.

 Don’t you ever feel scared of getting typecast in one particular genre?

We have a very deep history. I would call it history rather than mythology because as a nation we celebrate Diwali as well as Navratri. We have a very deep-rooted culture and its these stories which are relevant for every generation, regardless of how old they are. Another important aspect is that the whole family can sit together and watch these stories. The objective is to watch something, be entertained as well as learn something. So, as you entertain people, you also give them thoughts on how to live life. It’s very appealing from the content point of view.

I have written as well as produced shows, and while our recent content may have been mythological and historical based, we as a production house have dabbled with all the genres out there.  My first story was Amber Dhara, a story based on the lives of conjoined twins. Agle Janam Mohe Bitiya Hi Kijo was a novel concept and garnered positive feedback for its progressive content. I’ll always produce content I feel for irrespective of the genre & try to do with the same conviction as I have done for many other shows.

How has Netflix, Amazon Prime etc. impacted television viewership & TRP? With so much content & variety available on these live streaming platforms, what makes the audience come back to TV? Do you ever plan to create a show for these platforms? 

It’s very interesting to see how all these platforms are coexisting. Also, these platforms aren’t limited to the Indian border as they have content which a global audience can enjoy.  I think its a great time for content as there’s an audience out there for all types of content. Language is no more a boundary. We would also love to create content for different platforms but its too early to speak about it right now.

We wish him abundant success for this new venture.