Siddharth Roy Kapur has been on cloud nine ever since his production venture ‘Rocket Boys’ went on to become such a massive success all over. The show’s second season was released this week, and it has also been garnering an equally good response. As per reports, both seasons were shot simultaneously, and therefore the continuity of the story also shows brilliantly.
Talking to Prateek Sur, Siddharth Roy Kapur opens up about where the idea of making a series on the lives of Dr Homi J. Bhabha and Dr Vikram Sarabhai came from, how the series gives patriotism a different meaning, how the word-of-mouth publicity helped the show become such a success and whether or not we will get to see a season 3 of ‘Rocket Boys’. Excerpts:
‘Rocket Boys’ has become a massive success over the years. How did the germ of the idea generate? Who came up with it?
It started with a young writer Abhay Koranne, who came to us with the story of Dr Homi J. Bhabha and Dr Vikram Sarabhai and the wonderfully intertwined relationship between these two great men. The way their personal and professional lives intersected in such a dramatic and compelling way, and the impact they had on young India made the story even more intriguing. We instantly fell in love with the idea and that's when we decided that this was a story we had to tell the world.
The first season was promoted very subtly. However, the word-of-mouth was so good that the show went on to become a huge success. Was it always a conscious decision to not go overboard with the big promotion of ‘Rocket Boys’?
The Sony Liv team did a great job of making sure that the communication was targeted at the audience that they wanted to reach. And in my opinion, the best testimonial for any creative work is when the conversation about the show starts brewing amongst the audience, with one person suggesting it to another to watch. I'm glad ‘Rocket Boys’ has become as popular amongst audiences around the world as it has, and that is as much a testament to the Sony Liv team, as much as it is to us making them a great show.
Where does the story head this season? Tell us a bit about this new season. What’s in store?
It's a very dramatic and very intense season. The new season is set between 1964 and 1974 when we lost our first prime minister, the only leader Independent India had ever known till then. Soon, Homi Bhabha and Vikram Sarabhai find themselves in a new political reality, having to navigate new leaders and new challenges, all amidst the ongoing dynamic of their complex personal lives.
We have seen patriotism being shown in numerous war films or spy films, but ‘Rocket Boys’ sort of brought a different flavour of patriotism which audiences had not seen before. Was that one of the reasons why you picked up this show to produce?
At some level, it is important for us to tell stories about heroes who are not from the conventional worlds of sports, films and politics. We must celebrate the heroes of modern India and those who've built our country. And this really gave us an opportunity to tell the story of Homi Bhabha and Vikram Sarabhai, who everyone might have read about in their history books, without knowing that there is so much more that we don't know about these great men who built so many great institutions in India that allow us to today be at par with the developed world. So, to start with, it was about telling the story of these two men. But obviously, the subliminal feeling was that it's important to tell the story of national heroes who have been unsung in the past.
Will we see a 'Rocket Boys 3'?
That's something that I think the team at Sony Liv, Roy Kapur Films, and Emmay Entertainment will sit and discuss after we release season 2. We'd love for the franchise to continue, but no concrete plans as of now.
What else can we see coming from your stable in the coming months?
We've got ‘Pippa’ and ‘Woh Ladki Hai Kahaan?’ which will be released in the course of the year. We've also got ‘Bas Karo Aunty’, to be released on Disney Plus Hotstar soon, along with lots of other movies and series in active development.