As Netflix massively ramps up its operations in India - with quite a few successful, homegrown TV series and films having hit the service in the past year and a bunch on the way - 2019 is looking like a good year for desi binge watchers. Want to know what’s in store for you? We did the research for you; here are the best new Indian shows on Netflix.
If you’re a fan of Aravind Adiga’s novels, this one would be familiar territory for you. Based on his novel of the same name, Selection Day is produced by Anil Kapoor and and Anand Tucker, and tries to bring the country’s obsession with cricket to the small screen.
It’s a story of two boys whose strict father is obsessed with turning them into professional cricketers, even though neither of them is really up for it. They’re made to move to Mumbai from their village to realise “their” dreams where they have to go through quite a bit of hurdles before they begin working towards becoming what their father wants. It’s a story of parental pressure, cricket and moving from a village to a big city, which is all as Indian as it gets. It’s already on Netflix so you can start binging.
One of the many things going for Typewriter is the fact that it’s made by Sujoy Gosh, (Jhankaar Beats and Kahaani guy), so we’re pretty certain it’ll be good.
Set in a villa in Goa, it’s a horror story based on a group of wannabe ghost hunters who set out to find a real spirit after reading about it in a book. Of course, they have to first deal with the new family that just moved into the house, as well as their school lives and other young-boy things. Even though the exact details of the plot are still under wraps, so it’d be a fair assumption to make that they do find something in the house. To know exactly what, look for when it releases some time in mid 2019.
Baahubali: Before The Beginning
Say what you will about Baahubali: The Beginning, you can’t ignore it. Taking the Baahubali universe to its next step is the upcoming Netflix series Baahubali: Before The Beginning, with funding coming from the same studio that did the original.
It’s based on Anand Neelakantan's 2017 novel The Rise of Sivagami, which is also a novel written as a prequel to the original Baahubali movie. Netflix has made sure to keep conversations around it to the minimum, at least until the marketing really kicks off. It will be a 13-part series, and we’ll make sure to update you with the release dates.
The reason we’re the most excited for Leila is its concept, and the fact that one of the directors involved in its production is Deepa Mehta (along with Shankar Raman and Pawan Kumar), with some brilliant, critically-acclaimed works like the Fire, Earth and Water trilogy, as well as the film adaptation of Salman Rushdie’s Midnight Children accredited to her name.
The series is set in a post-apocalyptic, dystopian future with Delhi as its backdrop. It’s a story of a mother searching for her daughter, who was lost some 16 years ago. The series will be based on the novel of the same name by Prayaag Akbar.
Bard of Blood
Shahrukh Khan now has his eyes set on capturing the streaming market now. Produced by his Red Chillies Entertainment, Bard of Blood promises big production and a starry cast (the lead is played by Emraan Hashmi), as well as an interesting - if oft-repeated - plot.
A story of an ex spy who is called from his retirement as a Shakespeare professor in Panchgani to save his country from impending doom, the series would be set across scenic landscapes in India. By the looks of it, the enmity with Pakistan is also involved in some way, though as the full details of the project are currently under wraps, we’re not sure in what capacity. You can expect it on Netflix very soon, too, as it looks to be in the late stage of production.
Sacred Games: Season 2
For everyone who was mesmerised by the convoluted antics of the infamous gangster Gaitonde and his life-long love Cuckoo in the first season of Sacred Games, expect a lot more of the same - but better - in its second season slated for release in the summer of 2019. Arguably one of the biggest original successes for Netflix in the subcontinent in recent times, the reputation of this one may actually precede its arrival, though by the looks of it, it’s probably not going to disappoint.
Just like the original, it would be directed by Anurag Kashyap and Neeraj Ghaywan, and will feature Saif Ali Khan as the underconfident inspector Sartaj Singh, as well as Nawazuddin Siddiqui as the infamous don of Mumbai for its second iteration. Varun Grover will return as the lead writer for this one, too, and looking at how most of everything that he has worked on turned out to be critically-acclaimed as well as successful hits at the box office, we’re feeling as confident about this one as we did about the first. The full plot isn’t yet released, though looking at the ridiculously star-studded production team, we’d be looking out for it when it releases this year.
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