VFX A ghost in the jungle : Fenil Sherdiwala announces India's first superhero web series 'Vetaal' -

A ghost in the jungle : Fenil Sherdiwala announces India’s first superhero web series ‘Vetaal’

As the web series concept in India gathers momentum, Fenil comics are set to bring a new dimension to it. They are launching India’s first ever webseries based on a comics superhero. It is a suspense thriller superhero series named ‘Vetaal’. The series is based on the mythological character of the same name however it has been adapted keeping the current generation in mind.

Fenil Sherdiwala, the writer of the series, aims to ambush the hegemony which the superhero characters of the West have held in this domain. He wishes to create the trend of screen adaptation of comics followed by the likes of Batman,Superman,Spiderman. In our exclusive interview, the ever energetic and creative, Fenil Sherdiwala gave us a gist of the show and what the audience can expect from India’s first superhero-based web series, Vetaal.

Can you brief us about the plot of ‘Vetaal’?

Vetaal is Fenil Comics’ horror story. Unlike the superheroes we have seen in Marvel and DC comics, we have used Indian mythology as our base and developed the superhero. It is a horror story but not set in the conventional way. It has an element of suspense to it to keep the audience hooked.

What is your inspiration behind creating the Vetaal character?

When you use the word “horror”, a ghost is the first thing that strikes our mind. However, I researched to find out that the Sanskrit equivalent of ghost is Vetaal. And having watched a lot of horror stories before, I wanted to bring a new angle to the horror segment altogether.

You are the writer of this series whilst also playing the lead. Is this your first time you are appearing in a central role?

Yes, this is the first time I am playing a lead. However, as a supporting cast, I’ve done two 70mm movies which will be released later this year.

What compelled you take up the lead role?

Actually my team itself asked me to do the lead role as they felt I can do justice to it. Then when I auditioned for the role, the audition team were unanimous in their vote to cast me as Vetaal.

How many episodes have you shot thus far?

Till now, we have finished shooting for the first episode only and it is being edited right now. We have scheduled the shoot for the second episode on 1 July, 2017.


How has been your experience  till now ?

It has been a time consuming process. We required 35 VFX shots to finish the first episode. Lightening and stuff is a time consuming process in the VFX pipeline. So it took a lot of time. However, it has been above satisfactory so far.

When are you planning to launch the web series? And when will its trailer be out?

We are planning to launch it this Diwali, whereas the trailer will be out one month before that. We will release a teaser first and then the trailer.

What is so special about Ahwa and Dang that you chose to shoot some your scenes there? What is the main location of your shooting?

It has some dense jungle which gives a scenery that is quite similar to our actual location which is Purna wildlife sanctuary. It meets all our requirements and also I visit it quite often.

Any challenges you faced while shooting at those locations?

Yes, there were a lot of power shortages. Whenever we reached late, we had problems in setting things up.

Who are the other major characters we will get to see in this series?

The series comprises of two main characters – Suraj and Kiran. But since this is a suspense show, so I can’t really disclose anything much about them.


How did you go about the casting?

We roped in a few actors from the Gujarati film industry, whilst we also had contacts with a few others in the industry who have played a few roles before. So we hired them as well.

How big is your team right now?

The lead team has only four people since the story revolves around those four. But talking  about our technical team, it has eight members in it and a separate supporting team as well.

On what budget is this series being made?

Our budget is very shoestring, although we haven’t calculated the exact figures.

How do you think will the current generation connect with it?

The current generation loves to enjoy new concepts and prefers watching webseries these days.Fenil Comics already has a large fanbase, so they are apprised with our web series and are anxiously awaiting its launch. And as you know US, UK are already well versed with web series so we expect our show to get covered in their news stories. We also intend to broadcast it to as many as 45 countries.

India’s attempt at birthing its own version of a superhero thus far has not been very promising. For example, the movie A Flying Jatt was a debacle. How do you think the superhero concept of Vetaal will be able to break that trend?

Firstly, they were movies. Movies are a one time thing. People watch it and then forget it. Movies like Krish, Flying Jatt are not adapted from any comics.However in a series like ours, every episode has a suspense building up to its climax which will be revealed only in the following episode. This keeps the audience hooked to our show. Also, Vetaal is India’s first web series based on a superhero.

Do you plan to make a sequel in future?

Although season two is under consideration, we would first see how the maiden season goes and only then go ahead with its production.

Animationxpress wishes Fenil Sherdiwala and his whole team of Vetaal a great success.We hope it creates new trends in the comics and live action field. Stay in touch with us for more updates about the Vetaal series!