We all wake up with dreams in our eyes! Then life happens… and our schemes of things are disrupted to accord to our pre-written destiny. The residual remains of our dreams haunts us thereafter, incessantly jolting us from our slumber reminding us that, ‘The chance was in the offing but got dismissed’. The TV series ‘Selection Day’ reminds us, ‘Choose who you become’.
The series streams on digital platform, Netflix. It is produced by Anil Kapoor, and directed by Karan Boolani. The cast involves an eclectic mix of experienced veteran actors and actresses like Ratna Pathak Shah and Mahesh Manjrekar and some newbies like Yash Dholye, Mohammed Samad, and Karanvir Malhotra who are all out proving their mettle. The well known faces include Shiv Pandit and Akshay Oberoi.
India’s ever-growing 1.3 billion is united by the fervour for cricket. People have their lives planned around the game in the hope of achieving athletic glory. Selection Day explores the lives of one such family that is based in a remote village in India. Mohan Kumar goes out on a limb to witness his sons become rising stars on the battlefield of cricket. He firmly believes that he has successfully explored the nuances of unmatched gaming skills coupled with the perfect athletic diet, that he has originally concocted to give rise to future cricketing stars who would get selected in the
under 19 Ranji Team in Mumbai.
According to producer and star actor Anil Kapoor, “I was simply lured by the plot! Somehow we managed to get the manuscript at the opportune moment. And the moment I read it, I knew that this is going to be one of my best works!” The plot conveys certain honest facts. What entices team Selection Day more is that the universe had literally placed them with the right set of people who ensure top-notch deliverance.
It might interest one to learn that the character Mohan Kumar (played by Rajesh Tailang) weds an athletic wife in order to see his own cricketing dreams unfold in the generation to follow. Rajesh adds, “The country pretty much works like an industry, churning out sportsmen by the horde. The important question is, do we ever stop and think from the perspective of what the individual really wants? For instance, Manju Kumar (played by Mohammed Samad) is not very keen about taking to cricket, but enjoys science more.” In spite of the dint of hard work that Mohan Kumar invests in the boys, he remains oblivious of the labyrinth of corruptive means that could impede the progressive growth of his boys. Not to overlook the corporate angle to the plot that could potentially destroy the future of Manju Kumar and Radha Krishnan. The characters interestingly toy with the layers of complexity as imbued by the prolific storyteller Aravind Adiga (writer of the book Selection Day).
“Very often parents impose their dreams on their children. However, we were very lucky that wasn’t the case for us. In fact our parents have gone to lengths to support our acting career,” states the young protagonist Yash Dhoyle, who plays the part of Radha Krishnan. Mohammed Samad seconds this statement and adds, “Things are beginning to change but the scale is miniscule. What we need is a sea of change!” These young prodigies hope to take to acting even in the future. Shiv Pandit, who plays the part of ‘God’ adds, “There is always an inner voice that guides us! And that voice is usually the right voice.” The ‘God’ played by Shiv Pandit represents Manju’s inner voice.
According to Karanvir Malhotra, “The digital medium indeed has some endless possibilities that can be explored by writers and budding actors like me. Since the platform is digital we go global at the bat of an eyelid” As Anil Kapoor states, “The digital platform has marked the advent of good times, and everyone looks positively towards the future. The vibe is upbeat! It also gives us an opportunity to show India in good light and rid off any pre-conceived notion.”
The excellence in cinematography and overall output is credited to director Karan Boolani, who states, “If the plot is good, and if the audience connects with the characters then the sky is the limit. The plot can certainly go beyond the book and explore unending dimensions to the chosen subject.”
Every actor present had one very important thing to state. They said that if anything is worked upon with absolute sincerity then things unfold very positively and more successfully. All episodes of Netflix TV series Selection Day are currently streaming.