Year Ender: Titles that fared well on Netflix India in 2021

With the emergence and growing popularity of multiple digital platforms in India, the streaming giants are constantly entering new segments, rolling out various marketing strategies and experimenting with innovative content to grab the attention of the viewers. The OTT platforms kept releasing tempting offers on monthly/yearly plans and other initiatives to cater to the exact tastes of every customer.

As per a report in Screen Daily, Analysts at Media Partners Asia’s APOS India conference said that India’s OTT revenue will grow from its current level of $1.9 billion in 2021 to around $4.5 billion by 2026, while the total India video market, including pay-TV, will grow to $18.2 billion over the next five years.

Streaming powerhouse Netflix India reported 66 per cent growth in gross revenue for the fiscal year that ended on 31 March 2021. Recently, they slashed the subscription prices in India by 18-60 per cent as the company aims to reach more people.

Overall progress

The OTT giant saw tremendous success for stories across regional and local languages. Netflix’s Tamil anthology film Navarasa, helmed by Mani Ratnam and Jayendra Panchapakesan and the Dhanush starrer Jagame Thandhiram have been immensely loved.

In 2021, Martin Prakkat’s Nayattu (Malayalam), V. Vignarajan’s Andhaghaaram (Tamil), Netflix’s local anthologies Pitta Kathalu (Telugu) and Paava Kadhaigal (Tamil), Praveen Kandregula’s Cinema Bandi (Telugu) and Mandonne Ashwin’s Mandela (Tamil) were widely loved by the viewers. Netflix members have also discovered incredible stories from around the world including titles such as Lupin (French), Money Heist (Spanish), Red Notice (English) and Squid Game (Korean). Korean titles like Hellbound, The King: Eternal Monarch, Kingdom, It’s Okay to Not Be Okay, Sweet Home, Crash Landing on You, and Space Sweepers featured in the Top 10 row in India.

With Netflix, storytellers from every part of our country got the unprecedented opportunity to share their stories in the language of their choice – from Hindi to Tamil. These stories, aided by subtitles and dubs, found audiences across the world. As an example, stories on Netflix premiere in over 190 countries and transcend the barriers of language and geography by finding like-minded audiences around the world. Consumers in India enjoyed these stories irrespective of where they live, simply with an internet-connected device.

The Top 10 on Netflix is a good indicator of what people in India and around the world are enjoying. In March this year, Netflix announced its biggest slate in India yet with over 40 films, series, and documentaries, unscripted and stand-up acts. Since then, Netflix has also announced more upcoming stories such as Choona, Monica, O My Darling, Plan A Plan B, Heeramandi, Qala, and many more.

Some of the Indian shows that ruled Netflix are

  • Haseen Dillruba: The film has been in the ‘Top 10’ across films in 22 countries, including Brazil, Argentina, Australia and the UK.
  • Navarasa: The Tamil blockbuster was in the Top 10 in 10 countries including India, Malaysia, Sri Lanka. In its first week on Netflix, more than 40 per cent of the audience were from outside India.  
  • Jagame Thandhiram: This film has been in the Top 10 in 12 countries outside India and has been No.1 in seven countries, including India, Malaysia, and the UAE.
  • This year, at the 2021 International Emmy Awards, Nawazuddin Siddiqui was nominated for the ‘Best Performance’ by an actor for his role – Ayyan Mani in the Netflix film, Serious Men and Vir Das: For India was nominated in the comedy category.
  • At the Filmfare OTT Awards this year, Nawazuddin Siddiqui won the ‘Best Actor, Web Original Film (Male)’ for Serious Men along with Serious Men being the winner in ‘Best Film, Web Original’ category.
  • Ashutosh Rana also won for ‘Best Supporting Actor’, ‘Web Original Film (Male)’ for his movie Pagglait.

OTT giant Netflix’s goal is to find unique, authentic stories across genres, formats, and languages from all corners of the country and bring them to its members.

The global ‘Top 10’ list for non-English films included tiles like Comedy Premium League (Hindi comedy series), House of Secrets: The Burari Deaths (docuseries), The Disciple (Marathi film), Navarasa (Tamil film); Haseen Dillruba (Hindi film), Ray (Hindi series) along with several licensed films across languages, genres and formats. The audiences also watched their favourite shows including season two of Kota Factory and the finale of Little Things this year.

Here is Netflix’s upcoming program list for 2022

Upcoming series: Finding Anamika, Mismatched Season 2, Mai, Yeh Kaali Kaali Ankhein, Social Currency, IRL: In Real Love, Fabulous Lives of Bollywood Wives Season 2, Indian Predator, Choona, Decoupled, Season 2 of Masaba Masaba and Jamtara.

Upcoming Films: Khufiya, Minnal Murali, Plan A Plan B, Qala, Monica and O My Darling.

Netflix has recognized the family entertainment needs and has been streaming some of the amazing kids’ content. They are investing in best in class kids and family titles across genres from all over the world, including the immensely popular Indian animated series Mighty Little Bheem and the Academy award-nominated Over The Moon. About 60 per cent of Netflix’s members around the world choose to watch kids and family content every month. Additionally, the viewing of kids’ titles in India increased by more than 100 per cent in India in 2020 over 2019.

Some of the kids’ titles on Netflix are

·         Back to the Outback

·         Starbeam: Beaming in the New Year

·         Fast and Furious Spy Racers: S6

·         Hilda The Mountain King

·         World Party Presents: Math!

·         Mighty Little Bheem (Series)

·         Waffles and Mochi (Series)

·         Vivo (Film)

·         Wish Dragon (Film)

·         The Secret Life of Pets: 2 (Film)

·         Kung Fu Panda (Film)

·         Hotel Transylvania (Film)

·         Despicable Me (Film)

With shows like Squid Game (2021), Money Heist and Little Things, there has been a seismic shift in terms of quantity and quality of content. Brand marketers are leveraging in-trend OTT content to drive engagement on digital media. In order to stay ahead, most of the streaming platforms are now offering local content, rolling out low-cost mobile plans and other partnerships strategies.