A HILLINGDON house and an Uxbridge director are playing a staring role in a new soap opera aimed at British Asians.
Weekday drama series Cloud 9 is filmed in and around a house in Tudor Way, Hillingdon, that has been converted into a television studio, as well as a house in Harrow, and the show is broadcast on satellite channel Zing TV.
The open-ended Picturegate Productions programme hit the screens on January 7 and revolves around the life of 24-year-old mummy’s boy Ajay Shah, whose wealthy parents want him to experience living by himself for six months.
In the first episode, Hindu Ajay moves into a shared flat occupied by jobless English slacker, Ben, and the same day falls for career-driven workaholic neighbour, Simran.
Archana Kanade, the business head of free-to-air channels at Zee Network, said: “Cloud 9 is a new initiative catering to the second and third generation British Asians aged 15 to 39.
“We found young British Asians couldn’t connect with the traditional Indian shows. It’s been on air for about two months and it’s had a very positive response.”
The launch cast totalled 13, but every month a new character or two is being added to swell the number and variety of residents of Cloud 9.
There are Indians, Pakistanis, Afghanis and Britons, as well as immigrants overstaying their visas to reflect culturally diverse, everyday life in the type of north-west London street the soap aims to mirror.
Composer and pioneer of Indian-R‘n’B fusion music, Rishi Rich, created the series’ theme music, while the show is directed by Uxbridge-based Gunjan Hazarika.
He said: “Cloud 9 is the story of a little town and the different residents from different walks of life who live there and how they continue the traditions from older times. There’s lots of drama and comedy. We call it a dram-com.”
Mr Hazarika said the team shoot scenes up to 14 hours a day, adding: “It’s really enjoyable. If you don’t have fun, you can’t work 14 hours a day.
? Cloud 9 is broadcast at 6.30pm weekdays on Zing TV.