Netflix today unveiled its expansion plans for Asia by announcing the launch of 17 new originals, including nine from India. Netflix chief executive Reed Hastings and chief content officer Ted Sarandos made the announcement during the See What’s Next: Asia event in Singapore.
Hastings said, “What we do is very special. We invest in stories and we commission some of the best stories around the world. And in particular with Asian filmmakers, storytellers from India, Korea, Singapore, Indonesia, Japan and everywhere throughout Asia, we are producing stories and sharing them. What happens when you share stories, it builds connections.”
The line-up of its made-in-Asia shows also includes “Baahubali: Before the Beginning”, “Bard of Blood” and an official adaptation of Salman Rushdie’s “Midnight Children”. The “Baahubali” prequel will star Smaran Sahu, Mrunal Thakur, Rahul Bose, Atul Kulkarni, Sahib Verma and Sunil Palwal, Hastings said.
Later, Simran Sethi, director, international originals, India spoke about another Indian original “Leila”, which has celebrated director Deepa Mehta and scriptwriter Urmi Juvekar onboard. He said, “Leila is an amazing story. It is from a novel by author Prayaag Akbar. We optioned the book because it is a very powerful story of a mother’s quest to find her daughter in dystopic future. It was very important for us to find amazing female filmmaker to tell this story. So we have got an amazing director in Deepa Mehta and Urmi Juvekar who is the showrunner. We are shooting in Delhi right now.” Leila will feature Huma Qureshi, Sidharth and Sanjay Suri.
The Indian subscribers of Netflix will soon get to watch two projects on the platform feature film Rajma Chawal and another original series Selection Day. Netflix is working with Sujoy Ghosh on a new original, “Typewriter”, a Goa-set horror thriller.