Since Netflix launched in India in January 2016, it has become one of the fastest growing markets for the service providers. With the on-going Digital revolution, we see more and more players getting in the web space, exploring the medium and bringing better content. In India, Netflix, so far, has produced seven original films, most popular of them being Love Per Square Foot and Lust Stories.
Now, in a first-ever such a big announcement in India, Netflix has gone on record to announce that they will be coming up with 10 more original movies in India on the web platform, scheduled to release sometime between April to December 2020.
The company has partnered with the best of Bollywood industry filmmakers and producers including Karan Johar’s Dharma Productions, Shah Rukh Khan’s Red Chillies Entertainment, and Ronnie Screwvala’s RSVP for the movies. One of the films would be Ghost Stories, an anthology of 4 short horror stories directed by Lust Stories directors, Karan Johar, Zoya Akhtar, Anurag Kashyap, and Dibakar Bannerjee.
Farah Khan, Main Hoon Na director too have been approached to produce Mrs. Serial Killer, a murder mystery. Another film Yeh Ballet by Sooni Taraporewala based on a story of two boys who discover ballet is being developed. A movie named Kaali Khuhi, based on female infanticide in India too will be directed by Terrie Samundra. A few other names include House Arrest (story of a man trapped in his own fears and doubts), Serious Men (an adaptation of Manu Joseph’s novel of the same name), Gulity among others.
Srishti Behl Arya, Director of International Original Film, India, Netflix who was hired last May, in an official statement to media said,
“When Netflix launched in India, we changed the way Indian audiences enjoy their films. Given our diversity, history and culture, India is home to powerful stories waiting to be told to audiences around the world. The depth of talent and vision of our creators is enabling us to create films our members will love. We want to be a home for India’s finest filmmakers where their stories travel to more people than ever before.”
“We have a rich storytelling culture in India. Our film industry is over 100 years old, and we have made about 45,000 films till now. We are a film hungry audience. Our focus is to follow our creative instinct to bring the best stories from the most interesting storytellers.”
Netflix’s global audience is projected to cross a big 150 million this quarter making it the most watched streaming service worldwide. Out of which, most users are being tapped in from Asia especially. Michael Spiegelman, Vice President of Global Product Innovation at Netflix in a conversation with YourStory revealed that Netflix has apparently scaled up its investment in the country on a much higher pace than others and is now bearing the fruit. He said,
“In fact, it’s been the fastest investment we have ever made in any country since we launched. This really reflects the richness of content creators we can draw on – the best of Indian storytellers to create high-quality original series and movies.”
Adding to that, he also talked about how the number of Mobile App downloads in India has exponentially risen, cheering them to work on their Mobile app better. He added,
“In general, operating in India has encouraged us to take a very mobile-focused approach to design an experience that makes viewing on the phone just as good as watching on a Smart TV,”
Sharing the specifics and data with the media, Netflix company disclosed that Indians spend the most time on the streaming service, enjoying watching movies, so much so, that it was revealed that 70% Indians watch about at least one movie every week.
“The number of films watched per month/per member in India has grown 50% since January 2018,”
Karan Johar, popular Bollywood director, and producer too will be associated with the movies coming up on Netflix soon. Talking about the exploration of web space to its fullest, he was quoted as saying,
“Digital platforms are being acknowledged and utilised in a way that has never been seen before. These platforms have empowered writers to write better cinema,”
His company Dharma Production’s digital content arm Dharmatic will make Guilty for Netflix. About that, he said,
“I see Netflix as a long term partner. While the true celebration of a film is when you watch it in a cinema hall, I think both theatres and digital platforms will co-exist in India,”
Everyone related to Cinema, be it its producer or consumer has admitted to the fact that with digital platforms, the content from various parts of the country has been made easily available, not leaving the viewers with limited language or genre options.
Sultan actor and NH 10 producer, Anushka Sharma who would be producing Bulbul with Netflix next added that the digitization of content has brought in a whole new variety of content to its audience. Though she believes that cinema industry and TV, both are coming to terms with the new age Digital revolution, there is also a need to revamp old ways. She said,
“There is variety, quality and depth to entertainment. Audiences have adapted to this change easily. I do feel there is a place for theatrical and there is a growing relevance for OTT [over the top or digital streaming] platforms,”
Netflix cemented a very strong base of the Indian web series with Sacred Games starring Saif Ali Kha, Radhika Apte, and Nawazuddin Siddiqui and it was a huge hit. The series will return with its second season very soon.
We are really excited about the upcoming Indian content on Netflix, are you? Tell us in the comments down below.