Following the phenomenal success of the Saif Ali Khan-Nawazuddin Siddiqui starrer Sacred Games, Netflix has announced eleven new original films from India, with ten made by local filmmakers and the eleventh — Hotel Mumbai — a Hollywood film set in the country that has been acquired by the streaming service for the SAARC region.
According to a report in DNA India, the highlights include films produced by Shah Rukh Khan, Priyanka Chopra, Madhuri Dixit Nene and Anushka Sharma. Meanwhile, the films will feature several Bollywood A-list actors including Rishi Kapoor and Abhay Deol.
The new slate nearly doubles Netflix’s feature-length offerings from India, which counts Brahman Naman, Love Per Square Foot, Lust Stories, Brij Mohan Amar Rahe, Little Things and Sacred Games until now.
Here’s a list of films to look forward to:
Bard Of Blood
Set against the backdrop of the Indian subcontinent, the multilingual series will tell the story of an expelled spy, Kabir Anand, who is recalled from his new life as a Shakespeare professor in Panchgani to save his country and long-lost love. A combination of combat skills, intellectual background and personal circumstances propel Kabir to avenge the past and face his deadliest enemies. According to the makers, the series will involve “intricate, highly stylised action sequences never before seen on screen in India”.
Starring Emraan Hashmi in the lead and produced by Shah Rukh Khan’s Red Chillies, Bard of Blood is scheduled to release in 2019.
Firebrand, produced by Priyanka Chopra and mother Madhu Chopra’s Purple Pebble Pictures, is a Marathi film that follows a successful lawyer as she tackles difficult family cases, including one involving sexual assault, while also dealing with intimacy issues in her own marriage.
15th August, set in a Mumbai chawl, will be produced by Madhuri Dixit. The Marathi film will follow the course of a single day as its residents prepare for the flag-hoisting ceremony. It will highlight the struggles of middle-class India and how love sets us free.
Bulbul, produced by Anushka Sharma and Karnesh Sharma’s Clean Slate Films, is a period piece set in a vibrant atmosphere amidst age-old beliefs and superstitions.
Satya and his brother’s child bride, Bulbul, were inseparable until he was sent to England for his education. On his return, he finds Bulbul has been abandoned by his brother and now lives a solitary existence as the enigmatic lady-of-the-palace, dedicating herself to the welfare of the people. But their ancestral village is plagued by mysterious deaths and stories of a haunting by a woman who lives in the trees. Satya must find the truth behind the lore and save his village from the evil “chudail with the inverted feet”.
Chopsticks, starring Abhay Deol and Little Things star Mithila Palkar is currently under production. The film will be about an under-confident but talented girl, sidestepped at every stage of her life, who seeks out an enigmatic con to help recover her stolen car from a goat-loving, crazy Mumbai gangster. In the process, she finds her confidence.
Hotel Mumbai, directed by Anthony Marras and starring an ensemble international cast of Dev Patel, Armie Hammer and Jason Isaacs, will be released as a Netflix original in 2019. The film is about the 26/11 terror attacks in Mumbai.
Other films include Soni, Music Teacher, Upstarts, Cobalt Blue and Rajma Chawal, starring Rishi Kapoor.