‘Lagaan’ filmmaker Ashutosh Gowariker is venturing into television with upcoming show ‘Everest’, which is about a daughter’s determination to gain her father’s acceptance by climbing the highest mountain peak.
The director said his love for the medium lured him to sit on the producer’s chair and write the show. The Star Plus show has been co-directed by Glenn Baretto and Ankush Mohla.
“The main story is to climb the Everest. The different camps at various levels, the first frostbite, the high blood pressure and also the entry to the death zone,” Gowariker said in a group interview.
“We take it for granted that a male will conquer Everest. But through this show I am exploring the girl child issue, equal rights and how determination can help,” he said.
The director said being used to writing his movies, he found it hard to pen a story for television.
“As a film director I have spoiled myself. I wrote the story of ‘Everest’ and while finishing that I realised that I wanted to produce the show and I needed experts who could direct it.
Normally on television when you write a show, you write for a few episodes and then you wait for the audience’s reaction. Based on the reaction, you make changes and write the rest of the show. But for ‘Everest’ I had to write the entire show at one go,” he said.
The cast of the show is comparatively new apart from two big names Milind Gunanji and Rajat Kapoor. Gowariker said the main criteria for the actors to be a part of the show was their fitness regime.
“The first thing which I looked into was the age of the actors and their physical fitness. All of them had to go through an altitude test. Because physically you might be fit but mentally you may not be that strong in that higher altitude,” he said.
The shooting of the show took place in Nepal, Uttarakhand, Pokhran and Jaipur. It talks about the ambitions of climbing the Everest from a female perspective.
When asked about his favourite shows on Indian TV, Gowariker said he was a huge admirer of ‘Bigg Boss’.
“I love to watch television shows and don’t have any problem with the Saas-Bahu genre. But my favourite show is ‘Bigg Boss’. No one can take away the remote from my hand when it is on. What I like about the show is the changing personalities of the contestants every night. That creates a characterisation tool,” he said.