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COVID-19 filming: Bollywood producer on shooting in the UAE

TAB 200624 Gaurang Doshi-1592999310463
Bollywood producer Gaurang Doshi.
Image Credit: Supplied

Bollywood producer Gaurang Doshi, who is gearing up to shoot his two ambitious Hindi web series in the UAE next month, will beef up safety measures to ensure that filming in post Covid-19 times in the UAE is safe and smooth.

“For safety purposes of actors and cast, I will charter private flights for all of them. They will leave their homes in Mumbai and reach the UAE directly through my chartered flights. They won’t be in contact with other passengers minimising contact with other passengers … At this point, a strong script and safety is on top of my priority,” said Doshi in an exclusive interview with Gulf News.

At least 140 crew members are expected to fly into the UAE next month to film R Madhavan’s murder mystery ‘7th Sense’ and another espionage thriller series.

Directed by Karan Darra, R Madhavan’s ‘7th Sense’ features a starry ensemble including actors Ronit Roy, Chunky Pandey, Tanuj Virwani, Aashim Gulati, Sana Saeed, Ahsaas Channa, Dibyendu Bhattacharya, Sajjad Delafrooz and Manuj Sharma.

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R Madhavan.
Image Credit: IANS

The first two seasons of this series will be shot here in this region and the cast is expected to fly into the UAE as soon as all the permissions are in place.

“All our meetings, casting and script readings were done via zoom due to the coronavirus. I have always believed that the show must go on … Even though the COVID-19 calamity was unexpected, we as producers need to change with the times. Now casting talents through virtual meetings and brainstorming story ideas have become the new normal,” said Doshi.

Apart from R Madhavan’s thriller, Doshi will also work on another espionage drama featuring Prakash Raj, Jimmy Shergill, Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub, Tanuj Virwani, Vijay Raaz, Tannishtha Chatterjee, Kabir Singh, Sana Saeed, Manu Rishi and Tanvi Azmi. Both are scheduled to film here with R Madhavan’s thriller series to be filmed first.

“We are waiting for all the permissions to be sorted out … I have even kept aside a few days for the cast or crew to exercise quarantine if God forbid anything happens. We will play by the rules of this country and follow them strictly. We will make sure that everyone is safe and sound. I have always believed that where there is a will, there is a way,” said Doshi.

The Bollywood producer, who is now working on the sequel of ‘Aankhen’ with Amitabh Bachchan in the lead, believes that the show must go on — no matter what.

“Entertainment can never be shut down or go out of style as long as producers and actors are willing to change with the times … My series are filled with talented actors and a very strong script. I am involved as a producer from the first frame to the last. If you have a strong script and you can film safely, then all’s good,” said Doshi. He has joined hands with Emirati businessman Suhail Mohammad Al Zarooni to get his shows on the road.

“He is helping me with everything required and I am truly happy and grateful for that. We want to film in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and all over the UAE … Truth be told, every place in this country makes for a beautiful shot. We can’t wait to get started.”


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