MUMBAI: If you have been a fan of digital shows then you must be aware of series like TVF Tripplings and It’s Not That Simple. Both the shows were a hit amongst the masses as well as the critics, giving the audience material for binge-watching. The man behind the two shows and many such projects is a multifaceted human being. Vaibhav Modi is a curator of 50 plus television shows, TVCs, and documentaries for over a decade. After holding headship ranks in various leading broadcasting networks and production houses, the man has created a niche in the new medium as well. His production house or shall we say his creative baby Victor Tango, in a short span of time has created its impact on the digital space along with the traditional medium as well. No one can describe Victor Tango better than its head honcho, as he aptly defines it an ‘outcome of a unique bunch of talented people.’
Over a lunch at a peaceful restaurant in Mumbai, Vaibhav spoke at length with bestarticles about his work, vision, and knack for several things and living multiple lives in just one go. Modi’s neat beard goes well with his deep voice and his persona. However, what shocks one the most is the ocean of talents this man possesses within himself. From writing novels to flying an airplane, his flair spectrum ranges from creativity to penning poems and lyrics. Point this out to him and he humbly refers to one of his favorite writers Richard Bach, stating, “If in one lifetime you are able to experience multiple facets of life, it is like having lived many lifetimes. And the only way to do so is to keep on learning. If at any given point in time, you are learning something new, you are growing and you are adding leaves to the book of your lives.”
Despite working on TV for a long time, Modi, who is at a settled phase currently, is not keen on joining the big leagues on the idiot box. “It’s not that we have not done TV. We already did Grilled last year. Television is opening for premium contents so we are eyeing for it. I do plan to take some of my formats to GEC as well. As for daily soap, it requires a certain kind of expertise to execute and there are masters of that who have been doing it for ages, so getting into that space is not my priority,” he said while devouring his food. However, if an idea is generated for a daily, Modi wouldn’t mind giving it a second thought.
Along with the idea of daily soaps, Modi is also in no mood to follow the fad of selling adult content on digital. Having done a good amount of work, Vaibhav believes that there’s no desperation of work for him. “For me, it’s not like I haven’t done anything on digital so let’s do something about these four youngsters who get laid and roll joints,” he aptly pointed out. “We come from a space where digital is opening up so now we can tell the stories which we believe in. I’m working with people who believe in content. So we have the confidence of people to work on good stuff and get noticed. We never felt the need of relying on easy sell,” he added.
As the conversation flows, the hobby pilot as he calls himself reveals that his priority will always be production and not direction. He believes that it is a bit of dichotomy to direct what you are producing. Elaborating further, he said, “Producing is like doing something well and also making profits. As a director, it becomes a bit of distraction. I enjoy directing but I think I’m a better producer than director.”
However, with great power of production, come great difficulties. While discussing the digital media, Vaibhav highlights the issues producers have to go through in the new age media. “Volumes are lower (on digital). You do eight-13 episodes. The amount of time I spend in seven-eight episodes for a web series, I would probably produce 60 episodes of a daily soap and that is because of the time it takes.” He reveals writing for digital shows takes time. “Unlike daily soaps, web series are not perishable on daily basis. One episode of daily soap airs and it’s gone; nobody is going to hold it against you. On the other hand, for web series, it is always going to be there. People can always re-watch it, so you have to be doubly sure of it. It’s written, produced and executed to the best possibilities,” he shared.
As we were about to finish our meals, the conversation inclined towards the future of Modi’s brainchild. For Victor Tango, this year is the year of consolidation. “We are trying to grow the quality and size,” he mentioned. The firm, whose name is a derivation from phonetic alphabets, is also in plans to be a one-stop destination for fiction and non-fiction shows. Their focus is also to own IP and spread their wings internationally.
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