Rahul Gangwani Illustration

Filmfare Digital Editor – Rahul Gangwani

Today the digital editor of India’s most prestigious media house, Rahul Gangwani is one of the pioneers behind Filmfare’s gigantic digital success. From being a true Filmfare fanboy to being part of creating the biggest entertainment online platform from scratch, Rahul’s journey has been exciting as it is inspiring for newcomers in the industry.

Rahul Gangwani Image

Hailing from the city of Nagpur, Rahul grew up in a family of Bollywood enthusiasts. He was always surrounded by conversations of the film industry, and his love for cinema peaked when his grandfather encouraged in him the habit of reading and he picked up Filmfare. He distinctly recalls deciding to work with Filmfare one day at the young age of 15. 

Pursuing Bachelors of Science in media communications, advertising, and journalism from the International School of Business and Media in Pune, he recalls his convocation ceremony that had just ended and the first thing he did right after was submit his resume to Filmfare. Within ten days, he’d been accepted for an internshipRahul Gangwani

Looking back, he deems himself extremely lucky for the timely opportunity. With the 2011 Filmfare Awards approaching, the intern got his first experience on the field assisting for the ceremony along with group sourcing for an upcoming cover shoot with veteran actress Madhuri Dixit. He believes he couldn’t have received a better start to his career.

Started off as a media intern writing online content for Filmfare.com, he was promoted to a trainee within three months, and within the next three he was titled the multimedia executive at Filmfare. He credits the ongoing support from his senior team as an important factor in his growth since he was put forth to create all forms of content – from photoshoots and cover stories to online features and interviews. He was learning all round the clock that helped greatly expand his skills and gain exposure.

Today the digital editor for Filmfare, Rahul is renowned for building Filmfare’s online platform from scratch. He iterates the digital era flourishing in India back in 2011 where everybody had begun their online ventures. Filmfare too decided to take on the wave, and from working two stories a day, today they publish over forty stories every day. From about 13,000 followers on Facebook a decade ago, they’ve come to 5.3 million today. A decade of hard work and grit, and today Filmfare is the leading entertainment portal in India – thanks to Rahul and the whole team’s unwavering effort.

But as someone who’s seen media shift from print to digital, the editor reveals that witnessing it has been challenging, yet rewarding. People often question him about working with the same company for years, but he’s always felt grateful to have found his place within such a niche brand. He has also never felt stagnant in his work since they’re always brewing something refreshing. He mentions his talk show that was introduced during lockdown, titled “10 Minutes of Happiness” where celebrities discussed their reasons for staying happy and hopeful in the times of a pandemic. Sonam Kapoor, Kartik Aryan, and Janhvi Kapoor were some of the much-awaited guests on the show.

Rahul Gangwani

Tracing 10 years of his exciting journey, Rahul unveils Jitesh Pillai – Editor, Filmfare, and Anuradha Choudhary – Executive Editor, Filmfare, as his journey’s “heart and spine”. He explains how they offered him the freedom to experiment with his creativity and supported him in every new achievement. He was able to learn from them how to lead a team in the most efficiently. Growing and building the platform together, he considers the duo his family today.

Rahul Gangwani

Not only is he the digital editor, he is also the senior assistant editor for the print magazine. Digitally, he is responsible for everything that goes online – whether it’s on the website or their social media like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and more. Thankfully, he has an extremely creative and dedicated team that makes his job easier. For the print, arranging the cover shoot is his crucial role which includes setting the theme, creating content with celebrities on location, bringing multiple celebrities on board, and organizing the eponymous events and ceremonies Filmfare hosts.

Rahul Gangwani

While Rahul is an optimist who enjoys meeting new people who exude creativity and inspire him every day, the downside, he believes, is the impending responsibility that comes along with leading such a well-known industrial name. Being a legacy brand, breaking out news to their audience is deemed more legitimate than other entertainment sources, so they have to make sure every news is authentic, factual, and delivered punctually. There is credibility to Filmfare, and with that comes responsibilities that the editor seeks to be the most nerve-wracking. On a personal note, he has to be on his feet 24/7. There are no fixed working hours for him, disrupting his work-life balance.

Rahul Gangwani

Rahul shares that his biggest achievement at Filmfare is being able to raise their social media along with their print that no other entertainment magazine has been able to do so far. On a personal level, he has had many interns under him who have continued to work with him, or either moved on to flourish in their own careers, but watching them reach their height of success is Rahul’s another big achievement. The strong relationships he has built with his interns is what he finds uplifting. His team is his support system, and he’s proud of having them to count on too.

Rahul Gangwani

His advice for aspiring editors is you need to have an open mind. You need to unlearn many things because every day comes with new challenges and if we stick to only what we have learnt, it’s not always going to pan out very well. You don’t have to necessarily follow the conventional path. Be adaptive to things around you. Don’t lose your soul and essence. Never take your job or position title too seriously. It’s just a job and if you take it as anything more, you will end up losing the fun out of your job.

Rahul Gangwani

Throughout the pandemic  work had increased twofold for the editor. His workaholic schedule would be 12 hours a day, but since everything became digital, his working hours raised eventually. Financial setbacks were a given, and since they’re an event-based company it inevitably affected him, but next year seems hopeful for him.

His simple mantra to success is being happy. If your heart says it’s happy, you’re successful. It doesn’t matter what you’re earning because if you’re not happy, you’re not truly successful.

With the sky his only limit, Rahul is a reminder to thousands that all it takes to achieve your dreams is unwavering passion and hard work.

 

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