'Made in Heaven 2': Director Reema Kagti Discusses the Intricacies of Filming Weddings and Action
Filming a wedding on screen holds a comparable level of "intensity" to shooting action sequences, according to director Reema Kagti, as she delves into the intricacies of the second season of her web series "Made in Heaven." The series chronicles the journey of two close friends who manage a wedding planning agency. The inaugural season of "Made in Heaven," which made its debut in 2019, garnered critical acclaim and even secured an International Emmy nomination for Mathur. Kagti, who characterizes the show as an "experimental" venture, remarked that the triumph of the first season heightened the team's expectations and challenges in crafting the subsequent installment. With nearly a year devoted to scripting the narrative of the follow-up season, the team worked diligently to bring their vision to fruition.
COVID-19 pandemic or not, the scale of production and number of actors on set made the process all the more demanding, Kagti said.
"Shooting (the show) was very challenging. 'Made in Heaven' is like a beast, so even without COVID-19, even season one, it had such a huge ensemble cast, every episode had a wedding. Shooting a wedding is like shooting action, it is pretty intense.
"When COVID-19 opened up, you could not have more than 50 people on set, but there is no day when you can shoot ‘Made in Heaven' with less than 50 people. The logistics, the number of locations, so many directors, and actors. Special mention to the production team, AD (assistant direction) team, this was a very wild beast to tame,” Kagti told PTI in an interview.
Set against the backdrop of quintessential Indian weddings, the Prime Video series follows wedding planners Karan Mehra (Arjun Mathur) and Tara Khanna (Sobhita Dhulipala) navigating the complexities of organising wedding ceremonies while their own lives unfold in unexpected ways.
The first season of "Made in Heaven", which premiered in 2019, received critical acclaim and an International Emmy nomination for Mathur.
Kagti, who described the show as an "experiment", said the success of season one added a lot of pressure on the team while creating the second chapter. The team spent around a year writing the story of the follow-up season, she added.
"When we wrote season one, it was a huge experiment because there wasn't stuff like this out there. We had no idea what it was going to do. Once, it came out and went down so well, that added a lot of pressure to writing. You want to up your game, you want to come up with something better." Season one explored themes of class divide, sexuality and acceptance. The new installment is directed by Kagti, Zoya Akhtar, Alankrita Shrivastava, Neeraj Ghaywan, and Nitya Mehra.
Fresh from the success of "Dahaad" -- another Prime Video series, Kagti said there was a "concerted effort" to make "Made in Heaven" season two not only bigger, but also deeper and dirtier in terms of themes, characters, and their graphs.
"We are carrying forward the same themes. We are seeing things through the lens of women in a patriarchal society. We are scratching the surface in terms of things that seem benign, but when you get into them, they range from not-so-benign to downright toxic. So, similar kind of themes but maybe we are going darker and dirtier," she explained.
“Made in Heaven 2” will see its ensemble cast, including Dhulipala, Mathur, Jim Sarbh, Kalki Koechlin, Shivani Raghuvanshi, and Shashank Arora reprise their roles. Mona Singh, Ishwak Singh and Trinetra Haldar are the new additions to the show.
Kagti's next directorial venture is "Supermen of Malegaon", based on 2012 comedy drama documentary of the same name. She also serves as a producer on “Kho Gaye Hum Kahan”, a coming-of-age story, and the Farhan Akhtar-directed “Jee Le Zaraa” road trip movie, featuring Priyanka Chopra Jonas, Katrina Kaif and Alia Bhatt.
"It has been a busy time at (production banner) Tiger Baby. We are also doing some documentary stuff. We are hoping 'Kho Gaye Hum Kahan' will come out soon. There's also a film that Zoya is doing. 'Supermen of Malegaon' is a film for Amazon. 'Jee Le Zara' will go on floors with the same cast,” she said.
Produced by Excel Media & Entertainment and Tiger Baby, "Made in Heaven" season two will start streaming on Prime Video from Thursday.