Last year, entertainment found new ways and mediums to spread their wings. Netflix came on board in January 2016 and changed the view of entertainment, as we knew it. Among Indian providers Hotstar, Voot and Eros Now — the concept of original content is yet to surface. Mid-year, Ekta Kapoor announced her new digital platform, Alt Balaji, and TVF, who have been ripping the digital space with Permanent Roommates and Pitchers last year, came out with a new series, Tripling. Amazon Prime has just joined the market as competition to Netflix and has signed up with Bollywood and television directors to create original content for the web. Here’s what you can expect this year.
Irrfan Khan will be seen in Netflix’s Tokyo Trials where he plays a judge from Calcutta. The series is based on the trial that took place in 1946 post World War II. Eleven judges from all over the world were called to Tokyo to decide the fate of 28 Pacific war criminals.
After Daredevil, Luke Cage and Jessica Jones, Marvel is all set to start the new year with Iron Fist and The Punisher. However, the highlight is that they are also putting together an ensemble series titled Defenders. Netflix will have its own Avenger series.
Nimrat Kaur’s untitled series
Alt Balaji’s first is set against the backdrop of the Indian Army. Directed by Nagesh Kukunoor, this digital series stars Nimrat Kaur. She will be playing the role of the first woman preparing to be inducted in a combat role in the Army. It is created by Ekta Kapoor and Samar Khan. The shoot will start in mid-January. We are looking forward to seeing Nimrat play an army officer, especially with her army background, and the return of Nagesh in an off-beat space.
Their second show, Romil and Jugal, is based on William Shakespeare’s classic Romeo and Juliet with a twist. It’s a love story between two boys. Romil hails from a Punjabi family and Jugal plays the character of a Tamil Brahmin. Nupur Asthana, who previously directed the YRF film Bewakoofiyan is helming the project.
Ekta has teamed up with Ken Ghosh for another version of Devdas, albeit, Dev DD. This series will see a female take on the Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay classic set in modern times. It traces the story of the young and rebellious Devika, and her journey through life with love, passion, heartbreak, sex, self-destruction and redemption.
Rent Dot Con
Directed by Ruchir Arun, Rent Dot Con, is a comedy set in Mumbai, in the mould of Delhi Belly but told with a contemporary context. Present by Pocket Aces’ Dice Media, the makers are also coming back with the season two of Mithila Palkar and Dhruv Sehgal’s Little Things Season 2 in 2017.
Girl in the City
Mithila Palkar, aka Meera Sehgal, will be back on Bindass, this March with Season 2 of Girl in the City. After being forced to go back to Dehradun, she breaks out of her mould and convinces her parents to finally let her go.
The Man in the High Castle
The first season of The Man In The High Castle became a rage. Seeing the response, the makers are bringing season 2. Besides this, Amazon has also teamed up with Indian directors to create original content. Neerja fame director Ram Madhvani is now teaming up with Prasoon Joshi and Sunil Doshi to make a series on Bodhi Dharma — Master of Shaolin.
R Madhavan and Amit Sadh of Sultan fame are coming together for a series titled Breathe. Ritesh Sidhwani and Farhan Akhtar are doing three projects titled, Powerplay, based on IPL matches, Mirzapur and the third one in collaboration with Zoya Akhtar and Reema Kagti.
TVF gave some excellent content last year. For 2017, they’ve planned to release three to four original shows. The first will be Bisht Please with Nidhi Bisht as the lead and is directed by Biswapati Sarkar, who wrote Pitchers and Permanent Roommates. BP is the story of an average girl with an average job and daily struggles. The show is touted as India’s first female character driven show on web.
Desi TV shows
Dil Se Dil Tak
The show starring Siddharth Shukla, Rashami Desai and Jasmin Bhasin talks about surrogacy. It will mark the return of the popular actors on Colors.
Sony TV is back trying to experiment more with period shows. The daily soap stars Raza Murad, Siddharth Nigam and Pallavi Joshi
Ek Vivah Aisa Bhi
This is the story of a young girl who lives with two mothers-in-law. The show also marks the return of popular actor Tasneem Sheikh along with Himani Shivapuri on &TV.
Woh… Apna Sa
Zee TV will have Sudeep Sahir, Ridhi Dogra, who is coming back to daily soaps in a lead role after almost three years, and Disha Parmar
Har Mard Ka Dard
Life OK plans to concentrate on male oriented shows. The show starring Faisal Rashid and Jinal Belani is all about men trying to understand what women want.
After Suit’s mid-season finale saw Mike’s release from prison and Jessica’s exit from the firm, the show is all set to come back on TV with its latest episodes on Comedy Central.
All new show, Emerald City will premiere in US and India on Colors Infinity. Based on the book, Land of Oz by L. Frank Baum, it’s a dark and edgy version of The Wizard of Oz.
Put on your thinking caps because Sherlock season 4 is premiering on AXN. Sherlock will return to London prematurely from his forced exile and will reunite with Doctor John Watson and Mary. Together they would try to stop Moriarty, who seems to have returned from the dead.
Emmy and Golden Globe winners Paul Giamatti and Damian Lewis star in a complex drama about power politics in the world of New York high finance for the second season of Billions in February.
Claire Danes is back on Star World as CIA officer Carrie Mathison on Homeland season 6. Showrunner Alex Gansa announced that the season opens with a potential romantic relationship between Carrie Mathison (Claire Danes) and Peter Quinn (Rupert Friend)
Justice League; November 17
DC Comics is back with a superhero film with Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Flash, Cyborg in tow to fight the war of good vs evil.
The Fate of the Furious; April 14
After the success of the seventh Fast & Furious, they are back again with the eighth film starring Vin Diesel, Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham. Rumours suggest that the franchise will go upto ten.
Thor: Ragnarok; November 3
Marvel is back with the third film in the Thor series starring Chris Hemsworth and Tom Hiddleston. Hulk aka Mark Ruffalo will be making a special appearance in the film, too.
The film is based on a man who lost his family when he was five and how he tries to find them through Google Earth. The Dev Patel starrer was released worldwide in 2016; but not in Indian theatres.
Spider-Man: Homecoming; July 5
After a brief glimpse of the new Spiderman in The Civil War, Marvel is back with another Spiderman movie which has Tony Stark aka Robert Downey Jr playing a cameo.
Wonder Woman; June 2
This will be a prequel to the story of Wonder Woman and how she helps bring an end to World War I; by DC Comics
Fifty Shades Darker; February 10
Based on EL James’ second book with the same name, the film will follow Ana and Christian’s dark love story.
The Lego Batman Movie; February 10
This is a sequel to the computer-animated comedy superhero film. The first Lego movie was an unexpected hit.
Beauty and the Beast; March 17
The Disney film starring Emma Watson and Dan Stevens doesn’t digress much from Disney’s animated Beauty and the Beast by Linda Woolverton.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.2; May 5
The story starts two months after the first film; Guardians of the Galaxy travel throughout the cosmos, whilst struggling to keep their newfound family united.
Dunkirk; July 21
It’s a Christopher Nolan film that is based on the Dunkirk evacuation set during the Second World War. It’s one of the most anticipated movie of the year