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Amazon-Netflix Battle In India Takes A New Level With These Upcoming Original Productions

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Netflix, the world’s leading internet entertainment service, has been investing their productive time and rolling some money for a few years now and are finally getting the desired results. Indian series have, in the last 5 years become one of the leading contenders in the number of viewers.

In the latest development to this story, a recent viewership report says Amazon Prime Videos are on the top of the list as Indian viewers prefer watching shows produced by Amazon over Netflix. But this doesn’t slow down both the digital streaming giants in India, as there are a number of series coming up on both the platforms.

Netflix has already announced a slate of three new Indian original series, across genres and themes ranging from drama to horror, and mystery. From this, it is clear that Amazon and Netflix are rolling into the entertainment business in the world’s second-most populous country, investing millions of dollars to make Indian series their next big growth market. Looking at the creative side, for Indian artists, the entry of Netflix and Amazon has opened new opportunities for storytelling and reaching a global audience.

Netflix

Sacred Games

Sacred Games is a  Hindi-English adaptation of Vikram Chandra’s 2006 novel based on Mumbai’s criminal underworld. The series will be produced in partnership with Phantom Films. All eight episodes are to be directed by Anurag Kashyap and Vikramaditya Motwane, who are the co-founders of Phantom Films. The series will see Saif Ali Khan as a cop from Mumbai while Nawazuddin Siddique essays the role of a crime lord Ganesh Gaitonde.

Lust Stories 

Netflix has released the trailer of Lust Stories, an anthology of four short films, directed by Zoya Akhtar, Karan Johar, Anurag Kashyap and Dibakar Banerjee. The films tell different stories but seem to have one common thread: A look at contemporary relationships from the perspective of women.

It is heartening to see these well-known filmmakers collaborate and use the popular streaming platform that Netflix provides to tell perhaps salacious but nuanced tales from the point of view of well-rounded female characters. At least that is what the trailer suggests.
The cast is stellar and it seems to be mildly based on the Netflix show on sex and relationships Easy. Radhika Apte, Manisha Koirala, Bhumi Pednekar, Neha Dhupia, Kiara Advani, Vicky Kaushal, Sanjay Kapoor, Jaideep Ahlawat, Akash Thosar and Neil Bhoopalam play pivotal roles in Lust Stories.

The Bard of Blood

This series is based on the 2015 crime-thriller novel of the same name written by Bilal Siddiqi. The Bard of Blood takes the audience on a thrilling journey from the power corridors of RAW to the war-torn terrain of Balochistan.

Selection Day

Set in Mumbai, Selection Day is a story of cricket and corruption which is based on the novel of the same name by Booker Prize-winning author Aravind Adiga.

In addition, there are three other series coming up on Netflix including Leila, Ghoul, and Crocodile.

Leila

From writer and executive producer Urmi Juvekar, based on a book by Prayaag Akbar, Leila tells the story of Shalini, a free-thinking woman in search of the daughter she lost upon her arrest 16 years earlier. Set in the near future, this inventive, boundary-breaking story centres around longing, faith, and loss.

Ghoul

A horror series based on Arabic folklore, Ghoul is set in a covert detention centre. Nida, a newly minted interrogator who turned in her own father as an anti-government activist, arrives at the centre to discover that some of the terrorists held there are not of this world. Written and directed by Patrick Graham, starring Radhika Apte and Manav Kaul, Ghoul is a unique and gripping series, with a supernatural twist.

Crocodile

Written by Binky Mendez, Crocodile is a mystery thriller series set in the seaside state of Goa. When her best friend goes missing, Mira sets out on her own investigation, uncovering secrets among her friends, romantic relationships, and community.

Amazon

Amazon has already released several original Indian series aimed at the mass market including a drama about professional cricket, a workplace sitcom, a musical reality show, a dating program and a slew of stand-up comedy specials all which have received a good number of reviews. Amazon Prime Video is set to launch 10 original shows in 2018 for India.

In a statement released by Amazon Prime Videos Director Vijay Subramaniam says, “Our goal is to win with Indian customers first.” He also added that  “We’re really looking to make sure that our stories and content selection are providing our customers in India with the best value at all times.”
Comicstan
Comicstan, a contest to find out the next stand-up comedian.
Made in Heaven
Directed and written by Bollywood director Zoya Akhtar, along with Reema Kagti, Made in Heaven is the story of two wedding planners. The initial shoot of the series has already stared in Delhi.
Four More Shots Please

4 More Shots Please, an Amazon Original in partnership with Pritish Nandy Communications, is about 4 women, a bar, unrelenting chatter, lives falling apart, dreams coming together and lots of men.

Mirzapur
This one is also directed by Zoya Akhtar, which will see Divyendu Sharma joining the cast which includes Ali Faizal, Vikrant Massey, Shweta Tripathi, Harshita Gaur, Pankaj Tripathi and Sheeba Chaddha. The series will be produced by Farhan Akhtar and Riteish Siddhwani.
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