Netflix Unveils Original Indian Films by PeeCee, Madhuri & Anushka
Media giant Netflix is set to increase its original Indian content in the coming months. It announced a host of new films, which will include projects produced by Priyanka Chopra, Anushka Sharma and Madhuri Dixit, at its See What’s Next event in Singapore. At the event, the company’s Chief Creative Officer Ted Sarandos stated that India holds a key position in the streaming service’s future plans.
Among the first of these films to premiere on the platform is Rajma Chawal, which stars Rishi Kapoor who plays a widow who tries to reconnect with his son. Directed by Leena Yadav, it is slated to release on 30 November.
Priyanka Chopra and mother Madhu Chopra have produced Firebrand, a Marathi film about a successful lawyer, played by Usha Jadhav, who is a victim of sexual assault. She tackles tough cases professionally and battles with intimacy issues in her private life. The film also stars Girish Kulkarni as her husband along with Sachin Khedekar and Rajeshwari Sachdev.
Madhuri Dixit will also produce a Marathi film called 15th August. Set in a chawl, it is a satirical take on the struggles of middle class India.
Anushka Sharma and Karnesh Sharma’s Clean Slate Films will produce period film Bulbul. In it, protagonist Satya returns to India to find that his brother’s child bride Bulbul is now a lady of the palace. But their ancestral village is plagued by mysterious deaths and hauntings. He must uncover the truth to resolve these strange goings on.
Also under production is Chopsticks, featuring Abhay Deol and Mithila Palkar. The story follows a girl who seeks out a con artist to help her recover her stolen car from a Mumbai gangster. Manav Kaul, Neena Gupta and Divya Dutta will be seen in Music Teacher.
Hotel Mumbai, which is a portrayal of the 26/11 terror attacks in the city, will be released as a Netflix Original in 2019. Directed by Anthony Maras, the film stars an ensemble international cast that includes Dev Patel, Armie Hammer and Jason Isaacs.
Other films announced include Upstarts, a story of three college graduates from small town India who find themselves caught up in the frenzy of startup culture; and Cobalt Blue, an adaptation of the eponymous novel by Sachin Kundalkar about a sister and brother who fall in love with the same man.
Post the success of Sacred Games, Netflix has announced that six new Indian web series are on the cards.
Simran Sethi, Creative Executive for India named Typewriter, created by Kahaani director Sujoy Ghosh among the titles in the pipeline. The series is set in Goa and is about a haunted house.
Prayaag Akbar’s novel Leila will also see a six-part screen adaptation directed by Deepa Mehta with Huma Qureshi and Sanjay Suri among the cast.
Shah Rukh Khan made a video announcement unveiling glimpses of Bard of Blood, which is being produced by Red Chillies Entertainment. The espionage thriller is based on a book by Bilal Siddiqui and stars Emraan Hashmi.
The event also saw the reveal of the teaser for Selection Day, a series based on a book of the same name by Aravind Adiga. Produced by Anil Kapoor Film Company and Seven Stories Ltd, it is a coming-of-age drama about two brothers who are raised by their strict father to be star cricket players.
Another big project that was revealed at the event is a spin-off of the popular film series Baahubali. Producer Prasad Devineni mentioned that it will be a prequel to both films and explore that backstories of characters from the story as well as introduce new ones.
Speaking about the upcoming original Indian content that Netflix has in the works, CCO Ted Sarandos stated, “This line-up cuts across genres from horror to fantasy and in locations from Leh to Mumbai. The breadth of stories with its local settings and complex characters is incredible and we can’t wait for people to discover and fall in love with them.”