Four More Shots Please, an Amazon Prime Original, about four imperfect women and one perfect friendship, was released on January 25, 2019. On the sidelines of it’s trailer launch, writers -Devika Bhagat & Ishita Moitra and director – Anu Menon, shared insights behind the series.
Introducing – Anjana, Damini, Umang, and Siddhi. The characters are played by Kirti Kulhari, Sayani Gupta, Bani J & Maanvi Gagroo respectively.
They're stilettos in a world of flats. #FourMoreShotsPlease streaming now on @primevideoin: https://t.co/O7PMGgyYwi@sayanigupta #KirtiKulhari @bani_j @maanvigagroo @prateikbabbar @neilbhoopalam @Lisaraniray @milindrunning pic.twitter.com/GYny06719k
— Four More Shots Please (@4moreshotspls) January 24, 2019
Commenting on the insight behind the show, Vijay Subramaniam, Director and Head, Content, Amazon Prime Video, India, said, “Four More Shots Please was a story I wish I could have told earlier but I’m glad it’s happening now.”
He added that the platform tries to create stories that resonate with each and every one. “Every show should have a unique fingerprint, a story that’ll connect with not just the urban folks but will be inspiring enough for anyone to lean in and watch and that’s how this show was born and the driving insight was, whose favorite show is this going to be and we were very clear about whose it will be, we loved the idea and went about developing it.”
Social Samosa asked the writers and director that OTT Platforms don’t have censorship norms that are as stringent as theatrical cinema, is that something that attracts writers and directors towards OTT and not television or theatric cinema?
— Four More Shots Please (@4moreshotspls) January 25, 2019
“The freedom to tell stories authentically is a high. You’re not constantly thinking, if I say this it’ll get chopped off, so you’re concentrating on telling the story and you’re not second-guessing anybody, and for the creative person that’s the greatest thing, like you’re not thinking about Friday and it’s collections. You’re just like, these are the characters and this the journey that you’ll go on, so your commitment is only to the stories and the character,” Menon shares.
Devika Bhagat believes that it’s important to have that creative freedom because you can say things the way they are, specifically about Four More Shots Please where the creators are not talking about abuses or nudity. “That’s not really essential to tell a story as long as it’s natural but being able to refer to vagina, sexuality or periods without it being censored is what attracts us, yes”, she says.
Moitra added, “Also being able to add layers to a character over seasons as opposed to 120 something minutes in a movie is liberating, you can run the viewers through an entire range of emotions.”
The story-line of the series is women-centric and involves the men around them but the cast and most of the crew including the writers, the conceptualizers and the DOP are women. When asked, that Bollywood has recently been coming out with stories that have female protagonists, is it the same for OTT too?
Menon shares, “How female characters are positioned is very important; female characters should not just fulfill the hero’s journey or play victims fighting against patriarchy and I think women should just tell stories about themselves, with or without men. It’s a very basic outlook in the society, that women are only seen in the context of men, but it’s slowly changing with OTT platforms as well, it’s trickling that way.”
The concept of this show was created by Rohita and Ishita. When asked about the writing process, Bhagat stated, “There was a general idea of what kind of characters there would be, so you start with the characters first, who are these women, what do they want, their past, present and future, then we mould the beginning, middle and end of the season and then further break it down to the beginning, middle and end of an episode”. Ishita said, “My job is to tell the story as realistically as possible, I always know my specifics but sometimes you just start writing and the character starts speaking to you.”
Also Read: Interview: Biggest takeaway is being customer-centric: Vijay Subramaniam, Amazon Prime Video, India
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The show’s USP would be the way the characters are portrayed i.e. the females being shown as they are, without fabricating or sugarcoating them. Prime Videos India has been marketing the show actively. The OTT platform released branded content in association with Terribly Tiny Tales (TTT) and leveraged the cast’s social media feeds as well.
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Rupali Jeganathan (@missbookthief) from Chennai writes a #Collaboration [ conversation ] on #FourMoreShotsPlease Here’s to your real forevers. To your wingwomen, to the wind beneath your wings. With Amazon Prime Video's (@primevideoin) latest original, Four More Shots Please (@4moreshotspls), we raise a toast to fun, freedom, and friendship. And we celebrate the ones who not only pick out outfits for you but also take a thousand photos with you. The ones who nurse your heartbreaks and also prepare you for your first date. Here’s to your squad. Visit http://bit.ly/4MoreShotsPlease (link in bio) to watch #FourMoreShotsPlease