Oni

TV Family Comedy

This show asks the question; how do two sides at war find peace? 

A spunky Indian teenager builds a peace sanctuary between two feuding families, her own Indian family and her boyfriend’s Pakistani family next door to encourage cooperation between them, but her dreams for peace get foiled by the boyfriend’s surly father. 

Comparables

This show has a potential viewer base of 762 million Indians with 20% of them being kids. There are also 100 million more Indian households expected to come online.

Plus, millions more in the US.

https://www.livemint.com/industry/media/tv-records-762-million-viewers-per-week-in-2019-despite-nto-barc-study-11584735703190.html

Oni Pulka Nirmaan is a high school student in Canton, MI. Her Indian family is feuding with her boyfriend’s Pakistani family next door and it’s ruining their relationship.

So, she builds a peace sanctuary between the two houses to encourage cooperation and ethnic understanding.

Oni’s vision for this sanctuary is a safe place where people meet to create an open dialogue about their religious, social and political views. But, this approach further escalates tensions with her over-protective parents.

Her insecure boyfriend.

And the comically crazy antics of her boyfriend’s father. 

Each episode explores how Oni navigates this widening divide of cultures as her character arc transforms her into a peace prize recipient and a motivational speaker for a major auto company.

And launching her own clothing brand.

Oni’s quest to display her inner reflection of high hopes and dreams for her family and the loving support of her boyfriend are the driving forces for this show.

And, at the end of the first season, the reward for the viewer will be more than just laughs. It will reveal how marginalizing people – Indians, Pakistanis, or otherwise – is harmful to us all, and we can strengthen the current state of family in America by treating all people fairly. 

The sharp ensemble cast is buoyed by fast-paced dialogue combined with physical humor and visual gags. Quick-witted and farcical, each story line involves satirical takes on historical events, news stories, and pop culture references.

And each character gets the A+ three-dimensional treatment like Oni with B and C stories the audience can connect to as well.

Cast

ONI. Feisty. No-nonsense individual. Treats everything like a mission. She’s cool under pressure. Oni is also an ebullient troublemaker with a smile that reminds you the best things in life are free.

RANVEER PULKA NIRMAAN. Oni’s father. Born in Mumbai. Runs a hospital in the US. He has a powerful vision for his family to build an empire in America. Obsessed with red. Always hot. Snores so loud he sleeps in a separate room.

QUEEN ARJUN PULKA NIRMAAN. Oni’s mother. Also born in Mumbai. She has a huge social media following with a deep desire to launch her own fashion brand. Takes a photo of herself every day. Large feet. Wears headgear at night.

PARVEZ VASUDEV. Lead singer in a band. Super charming. His relationship with Oni is sweet. Everyone he meets is instantly his new best friend. Extremely loyal. Addicted to texting. Makes jokes when he’s nervous.

BOB VASUDEV. Parvez’s dad. Watches the neighborhood like he’s a security guard. And he was at Ranveer’s hospital. He got fired for stealing supplies (he didn’t do it). When Ranveer fired him this “betrayal” created the source of distrust between the two families. He carries an old-fashioned notebook around and is always scribbling things down.

If you’re a showrunner, please ignore these episodes.

We will do things your way 🙂

Peace Sanctuary

PILOT EPISODE: Oni buys a plot of land between two feuding families – her own Indian family and a Pakistani one next door – to build a “peace sanctuary” on it. But she uses her mother’s stolen credit card to make the down payment. This fraud pushes her dream further away.

EPISODE 2: Oni hits a series of snags leading up to constructing the peace sanctuary. The land is zoned residential. So, Oni organizes a charity car wash to raise money for the legal fees to have the land re-zoned.

EPISODE 3: Oni’s fame is increasing because of her humanitarian efforts. But the land cannot be re-zoned. So, she creates the peace sanctuary as a “gazeebo” to meet city ordinances.

EPISODE 4: Oni organizes construction of the sanctuary with donated goods. But her work and school life are suffering because of her dedication to the sanctuary.

EPISODE 5: Oni lunches a successful marketing campaign for “Queen Arjun Clothing” on behalf of her mother to fund the project. But this added responsibility adds tension to her already difficult life – her work and school life are failing.

EPISODE 6: Oni’s sanctuary is starting to thrive, but her personal life is a wreck. She gets fired from work, expelled from school, and Parvez breaks up with her.

EPISODE 7: Oni gets approached by a corporation to lead a motivational speaking group for them regarding peace. This is her first major step in reinventing her life for the good of all. But it turns out, the company that has no real interest in her mission. They just want to exploit her image (and concept) for advertising purposes.

EPISODE 8: Oni spearheads the efforts to expand the “Queen Arjun Clothing” brand. She leads a retreat for a burned-out executive who gets totally transformed for the better by learning that his impatience is hurting his company.

EPISODE 9: Oni is invited to appear on a major talk show. Oni puts her mom in charge of running her clothing business. Oni has a new boyfriend.

EPISODE 10: Oni has an awakening and creates a company to further realize her peaceful mission. She treats all the skeptics with kindness, and things work out great with everyone except her new boyfriend.

EPISODE 11: Oni’s new boyfriend steals her secret plans to advance his own career. Everybody wants Oni to stand up for herself and attack this guy on social media. But Oni decides to test karma. Oni holds her ground (and silence) because she believes it will become obvious that this other guy stole her idea when he can’t do the work himself.

EPISODE 12: Oni can bypass an entire year of high school and go directly to college because of her humanitarian efforts. But she wants to stay in high school to learn what they have to teach. But she’s really staying because she misses Parvez.

EPISODE 13: FINALE – Oni is at the apex of her fame when she holds a press conference and shocks the world when she announces that she’s going to marry Parvez.

Peace Festival

Oni is ready to marry Parvez. But Parvez’s dad kidnaps his own son and hides him. Everyone thinks this is fine except Oni.

Did their forbidden love just get juicier?

Oni and Parvez finally reunite. They do not get legally get married. They have a private “commitment ceremony.”

Oni skips her senior year of high school and goes right college. But it’s a community college in her neighborhood that she can walk to. This keeps her at home with her parents. And it keeps her close to Parvez.

And the peace sanctuary has taken on a broader scope.

Oni’s Peace Festival.

Music. People. Food. You get the idea.

But she’s still struggling with getting the world to live in peace. And this struggle is reflected in the two families at odds with each other. But the bond she shares with Parvez is strong enough to bridge that gap until —

Parvez falls in love with a Pakastani girl that everyone approves of.

He dumps Oni.

Now the metaphor for world peace plays out amidst promises that are broken in Oni’s life. Bitterness and resentment set in. Peace between Oni and Parvez becomes impossible.

Her emotional journey becomes ours. It’s based on her inner wound of betrayal with the man she loves. And it’s this struggle that is the source of comedy.

But her plans for a peace festival remain true.

And her efforts to balance heartache and happiness is why we root for her.

The festival launches but her deepest fears are realized.

It’s a failure. Worse than a failure. Riots break out. Her relationship with Parvez is done. And the community college credits do not count towards a degree at the 4-year college she really wants to go to.

Her search for the secret to peace continues.

Peace is Within

Oni’s life is a nightmare of trying to bend the world to her will. Peace is in everybody’s best interest. Yet, no one sees it. And her relationships are strained especially with her mother.

And will she ever get over the heartbreak of Parvez?

Her father teaches her how to meditate. But instead of welcoming it as mind-freeing technique, Oni views it as her father trying to assert more control. This added tension in the household finally reaches a breaking point.

Oni has lost control of her life.

Turns out, these control issues have always been there. They manifested as her wanting a better world for everyone instead of embracing the hard work of improving herself.

Oni changes her goals to focus more inward on personal development. But she feels like a quitter with the peace sanctuary. Her emotional journey leads to this truth —

She cannot change the world. She can only change her view of it. And she will share this message from inside the shelter.

Those who wish to follow will follow. Those who don’t will not.

This transcendent character arc is where the comedy comes from.

And this is precisely why we are rooting for her.

Every person has struggles with success or identity or purpose. Now we see ourselves in her. And we can also see that if Oni doesn’t change her worldview, she will lose her mind.

Oni switches majors in college from marketing to psychology and has a new goal to become a therapist. She develops a spiritual vibe and leads people through a troubled world with peace in her heart.

emaildavidsanto@gmail.com

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