Netflix has dropped the trailer for its upcoming original web series, SHE, written and directed by renowned Bollywood filmmaker Imtiaz Ali, slated to be released on 20 March on the streaming platform.
The trailer is dark, gripping and piques the curiosity of the audience. SHE revolves around a female constable, Bhumika Pardesi (Aaditi Pohankar) who’s “sent on an undercover mission to bust an underworld gang, and rises above her own expectations to find power in the most unexpected ways.” The official synopsis goes like – An undercover assignment to expose a drug ring becomes a timid Mumbai constable’s road to empowerment as she realises her dormant sexuality’s potential. SHE also stars Vijay Verma of Gully Boy fame as a thief.
SHE comes from the makers of Andhadhun, Tamasha, and Jamtara – produced by Viacom18 Motion Pictures, Tipping Point and Ali. SHE is the third original content in the deal between Netflix and the digital content production arm of Indian media giant Viacom18 Studios (part of Viacom 18, a joint venture between Viacom and Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Industries’ Network 18 media company), Tipping Point, the first two being Jamtara: Sabka Number Aayega and Taj Mahal 1989.
Tipping Point was launched in 2018 to create web series and short films for Viacom18’s OTT platform VOOT and Reliance’s streamer Jio. It was subsequently expanded to cater to the likes of Amazon and Netflix. Viacom18 Studios COO Ajit Andhare told at Indian Television dot com’s The Content Hub 2020, “I see Tipping Point as ‘Revenge of Storytellers’ – who’s unable to tell stories. So the plethora of accumulated scripts, created in house that we are excited about, but never got made into films – found its way to Tipping Point. We started with a burst of short films and content where there are no rules, but an open space where one can experiment and breathe easy. We’re here to create a lot of independence away from conventional thinking of filmmaking, which can be disheartening at times.
We did Jamtara for Netflix which received a lot of love from the audience. It was directed by Soumendra Padhi, director of Budhiya Singh, which though failed at the box-office, was a good film with a lot of craft and even won a national Award… So, a story or talent can come from anywhere.”
Jamtara – Sabka Number Aayega tells the tale of conflicts that emerge from a small town in India which is identified as India’s phishing capital. The plot is intense with the storytelling and direction on point.
Taj Mahal 1989 on the other hand was a nostalgic exploration of love and longing set against the backdrop of the famous monument near Agra, in Uttar Pradesh. Andhare went on to reveal that,”Taj Mahal 1989 is doing so well that it’s the number one show on Netflix in India, ahead of Narcos. What can be better than this!”
There has been no star power to shoulder these projects as there’s not a single recognisable face in Jamtara or Taj Mahal 1989. But these are made with a lot of love, nuanced characters and powerful storytelling.
As Netflix India original film director Aashish Singh shared, “Good stories can be told from anywhere and everywhere. We want to discover more new stories and storytellers. We’re looking at a diverse slate of content and are creating content for every mood, while not overlooking content quality.”
Singh also added that at Netflix, they provide support and not supervision or interference to content creators and directors in the process of filmmaking. Thus, one has the liberty to create whatever they want and the way they want.
Recently, Netflix also released Yeh Ballet directed by Sooni Taraporevala that features two gifted but underprivileged Mumbai teens, who when gets discovered by an eccentric ballet master, face bigotry and disapproval as they pursue their dancing dreams. It has garnered positive responses from the audience and critics alike.
Seems like Netflix is leaving no stone unturned to churn out quality content for its consumers, to hold a strong position in the digital content racing game.