Netflix Bets On Yash Raj Films To Bring The Masala To India Gameplan

Streaming giant Netflix has inked a multi-year creative partnership with film studio Yash Raj Films (YRF) to produce films and series that will cater to audiences both in India and globally.

What Happened: The partnership will aim to create unique stories that will resonate with Indian and global audiences. The alliance will kickstart with a four-part thriller series titled The Railway Men, dedicated to the those involved in the 1984 Bhopal gas tragedy. It will also mark the debut production of YRF Entertainment, the streaming production division of the studio.

The series’ star cast includes R. Madhavan, Kay Kay Menon, Divyenndu Sharma, and Babil Khan. It will also mark the directorial debut of Shiv Rawail, who has previously been an assistant director for Yash Raj Films.

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The second project under this partnership is Maharaj, a period drama set in the 1800s that will revolve around a journalist who challenges a strong societal figure, unveiling incidents that shake the foundations of society.

Why It Matters: This collaboration aligns with Netflix’s strategy to amplify its presence in the Indian market by delivering localised content.

“This partnership will certainly push YRF as a storyteller to new audiences and allow them to consume Indian stories in their own languages too,” Akshaye Widhani, CEO of Yash Raj Films said in a press release.

“From Kabhi Kabhie to Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, War to Pathaan, their (Yash Raj Films’) signature stories have been part of our lives and continue to fuel the zeitgeist. Together, we are confident that we can entertain the world with quality films and series like never before," said Monika Shergill, vice president of Content at Netflix India.

The partnership could potentially boost Netflix’s subscriber base in India and help it compete for market share in a highly competitive streaming market that involves the likes of Disney+ Hotstar, Amazon Prime Video JioCinema and Sony Liv, among others. It could also serve YRF’s objective of reaching global audiences with its compelling narratives, marking a significant milestone in the globalization of Indian cinema.

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