US online streaming service Netflix announced on Monday its first original Indian series will be based on Vikram Chandra’s acclaimed novel “Sacred Games”, which centres round the organised crime, corruption and politics of Mumbai.
Netflix has turned to original series to drive growth in markets around the world, producing hit series such as “Daredevil”, “House Of Cards” and “Narcos”.
“Sacred Games”, to be shot on location in India, will be produced by Netflix and India’s Phantom Films. The Hindi-English series will be available to Netflix subscribers globally.
We're excited to announce our first original series from India in partnership with @FuhSePhantom based on Vikram Chandra's Sacred Games!— Netflix India (@NetflixIndia) June 6, 2016
The series, set in India’s financial hub, will delve into Mumbai’s “intricate web of organised crime, corruption, politics and espionage that lie beneath India’s economic renaissance”. It will interweave the “lives of the privileged, the famous, the wretched and the bloodthirsty”.
“I’m confident that 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,” Chandra, a well-known TV anchor, said in a statement.
“Over the last few years, I’ve watched with great excitement and pleasure as Netflix has transformed narrative television with its ground-breaking, genre-bending shows,” he said.
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Madhu Mantena of Phantom Films said, “We are extremely confident that together we will create some exciting and groundbreaking television content from here on.”
Erik Barmack, vice president of international original series at Netflix, said Chandra’s novel will be brought to life with the best Indian and global film talent. “Sacred Games reinforces our commitment to bring the authenticity of local stories to Netflix members across 190 countries worldwide,” he said.
Netflix is the world’s leading internet video streaming service with more than 81 million subscribers in more than 190 countries who access some 125 million hours of TV shows and movies a day.
Phantom Films, formed by Vikas Bahl, Anurag Kashyap, Vikramaditya Motwane and Madhu Mantena in 2011, has been behind films such as “Lootera”, “Hasee Toh Phasee”, “Queen”, “NH10” and “Masaan”, which won the Fipresci Award in the Un certain Regard category at Cannes last year.
It has also partnered with Blumhouse Productions and Ivanhoe Pictures to produce horror films for the global market.
Last year, Netflix premiered its first Spanish language original series “Club de Cuervos” for viewers in Mexico, while “Marseille” starring Gerard Depardieu was its first original production in French. “Hibana”, which premiered this year, was its first production in Japanese and “Sacred Games” marks Netflix’s first foray into the South Asian market.
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