According to The Guardian, Netflix announced that it will produce its first original Indian series. The new show will center on the fictional underbelly of Mumbai and will be produced in Hindi and English for local audiences in an attempt to boost subscriptions.
The series is an adaptation Vikram Chandra’s best-selling Indian novel titled Sacred Games. According to a statement released by Netflix, the show will “delve into the financial capital’s intricate web of organised crime, corruption, politics and espionage that lie beneath India’s economic renaissance.” And Chandra added that he’s certain “all the colour and vitality and music of the fictional world I’ve lived with for so long will come fully alive on the large-scale canvas provided by Netflix.”
Production schedules and release dates have not been confirmed but the series could be a pivotal step towards gaining more Netflix subscribers in India, which has been a challenge for the popular streaming service. But Madhu Mantena (co-founder of Phantom Films), who is teaming up with Netflix to produce the series stated “we are extremely confident that together, we will create some exciting and groundbreaking television content.”
Currently, only a small section of Netflix’s vast library is available to Indian subscribers, even though a standard subscription costs 500 rupees ($7.50) which is really not that big of a difference compared to what subscribers pay in the US. In addition, there are many buffering issues across India because connectivity is weak.
Moreover, Netflix has to take into account the major market of pirated films and television shows in India. “The problem in India is that as soon as a new movie or TV show comes out, you can get a pirated version immediately online. It’s easy to stream or download movies online, and there’s not much regulation to stop people making copies of it. Even on the roadsides, they sell knock-off DVDs of new films. That will be a bigger problem for Netflix than any competing companies or lousy internet connections,” said Ishani Shukla, a Netflix subscriber.
As of now, the show has no confirmed title and will be available to stream globally to Netflix subscribers.