by Kathy Gibson
Published on EST
Welcome to one of our big 2023 and beyond previews here at What’s on Netflix. In this post, we’ll provide you with a comprehensive rundown of all the Indian movies and TV shows in development set to release on Netflix globally throughout 2023 and beyond.
Netflix India is as busy as ever, with dozens of scripted and unscripted shows and movies lined up for 2023 and beyond.
The fates of a number of previously released series still hang in the balance, but there are tons of new shows in the pipeline.
Here are all the Indian Original series and movies we hope to see in 2023 or beyond:
Trial By Fire
In 1997, a fire inside a South Delhi movie theater killed 59 people and injured 100 more. The series Trial By Fire is based on a book of the same name by Neelam and Shekhar Krishnamoorthy — parents who lost two children in the blaze. Director Prashant Nair uses a non-linear style to tell the story of the parents’ pursuit of justice in the decades that followed the tragedy. Trial By Fire debuts on Netflix on January 13, 2023.
The wait for Baahubali: Before the Beginning continues. Shortly after we published an update on the series in our 2022 preview of new Indian Netflix Original shows and movies, news broke that boutique production house Bombay Fables had taken over the project. Then entertainment and gossip site Pinkvilla reported that the series had been shelved entirely. Finally, on January 27, reporter Naman Ramachandran clarified in Variety that Baahubali: Before the Beginning was not cancelled but was being reevaluated. We’ve heard crickets since then.
Picture: Netflix India / Twitter
In an interview with The Indian Express over the summer, Choona star Jimmy Shergill said that he anticipated the comedy heist series set in the world of Uttar Pradesh politics would release on Netflix sometime in 2022. That didn’t happen, but at least the show sounds almost ready to go.
Class is an Indian adaptation of the popular Netflix Original Spanish series Elite. The new show is directed by Ashim Ahluwalia, whose feature films have debuted at Cannes and the Toronto International Film Festival. Here’s how Netflix describes the social issue drama:
“Sparks fly at New Delhi’s upscale Hampton International, when three new students from a starkly different background challenge the existing dynamics at this elite enclave.”
At long last, the Excel Entertainment series Dabba Cartel looks set to move forward. PeepingMoon reports that Shonali Bose has been tapped to direct the show Variety describes as “a story of five housewives who run a high stakes secret cartel,” with Shabana Azmi signed for one of the lead roles. Since filming has yet to begin, a 2023 release may be a long shot, but we’ll keep our fingers crossed.
For Your Eyes Only
Another Bombay Fables production, the espionage thriller For Your Eyes Only (which has no association with the 1981 James Bond movie of the same name) is written by Gaurav Shukla and Bhavesh Mandalia, who previously collaborated on the comedy Angrezi Medium. For Your Eyes Only — which stars Pratik Gandhi and Kritika Kamra — commenced shooting on October 1.
Hit-makers Raj & DK entered into a multi-year partnership with Netflix, the first product of which is the comedy thriller Guns & Gulaabs. Filming on the new series — which stars Rajkummar Rao, Dulquer Salmaan, and Adarsh Gourav — wrapped in April. Per Netflix:
“Inspired by the misfits of the world, Guns & Gulaabs is a story that depicts love and innocence, set in a world of crime. The series is set to uniquely blend the romance of the 90s with a crime thriller while effortlessly lacing it in humour.”
Picture: Getty Images
Director Sanjay Leela Bhansali never does anything halfway, so all eyes are on his first streaming series, Heeramandi. Every casting rumor generates news coverage (will the show star Rekha? Mumtaz? Fardeen Khan?), with a reliable report confirming Richa Chadha, Aditi Rao Hydari, Manisha Koirala, and Sonakshi Sinha as the series’ leading ladies. Bhansali’s tale of courtesans in pre-Independence Lahore is bound to be lavish, with expensive sets and elaborate dance numbers. We’re really looking forward to this one.
IRL: In Real Love
Netflix partnered with Tinder to aid in the process of casting the streamer’s new reality dating series IRL: In Real Love. The show — hosted by Gauahar Khan and Rannvijay Singha — follows four singles as they meet potential partners online and in real life. Netflix debuted a first look of the series in August when it announced its slate of upcoming reality programming:
Though Netflix hasn’t officially announced it, a second edition of the anthology Lust Stories is in production.
The three previous entries in the franchise — Bombay Talkies, Lust Stories, and Ghost Stories — all featured short films by directors Anurag Kashyap, Zoya Akhtar, Dibakar Banerjee, and Karan Johar. Those filmmakers are out, with four new directors at the helm. Here’s what we know about the segments of Lust Stories 2 so far:
Pinkvilla reports that Netflix hopes to release the anthology on a Friday near Valentine’s Day.
Another anthology in the works is Mindscapes: a collection of ten short stories by prolific writer M.T. Vasudevan Nair. Netflix’s first Malayalam anthology brings together a powerful lineup that includes Mammootty in a film directed by Lijo Jose Pellissery and Mohanlal in director Priyadarshan’s remake of the 1970 movie Olavum Theeravum.
Queen of the Hill
Another bit of news from the PeepingMoon report about Dabba Cartel is that Excel’s other new series — Queen of the Hill — has also found a director: Karan Anshuman, who directed the Excel Entertainment series Inside Edge and Mirzapur for Amazon Prime and Rana Naidu for Netflix (see below). As with Dabba Cartel, a 2023 release date for this series about powerful women in 1960s Mumbai might be too ambitious.
The official Indian adaptation of the Showtime crime series Ray Donovan — which stars real-life nephew and uncle Rana and Venkatesh Daggubati — is getting closer to a release. Netflix India tweeted that filming wrapped at the end of May, and the streamer shared a teaser video for the series at its Tudum event in September.
Filmmaker Hansal Mehta’s first collaboration with Netflix is based on the book Behind the Bars in Byculla: My Days in Prison by Jigna Vora. In the series Scoop, Karishma Tanna plays a crime journalist jailed for the murder of another reporter. Mehta posted some behind the scenes photos from the set to Instagram in conjunction with the September Tudum event.
The reality series Social Currency wrapped filming more than a year ago, but we only got a first glimpse of the show in Netflix’s August reality programming video. Based on information at the show’s IMDb page, the eight influencers trapped in a villa and tasked with building new social media profiles from scratch are Ruhi Singh, Mridul Madhok, Bhavin Bhanushali, Vagmita Singh, Parth Laghate, Aakash Mehta, Rowhi Rai, and Sakshi Chopra.
Talented writer-director Abhishek Chaubey has contributed to two Netflix Original anthologies before, but Soup is his first series for the streaming service. The dark comedy has an amazing cast, with Lust Stories 2 director Konkona Sen Sharma playing an aspiring chef and Manoj Bajpayee as her suspicious husband. If the teaser is any indication, Soup is going to be wild.
Untitled Indian Airlines Flight 814 series
Netflix has been developing a series about the 1999 hijacking of Indian Airlines Flight 814 for a couple of years. Action director Kabir Khan was previously attached to the project, but now the reins have been handed to social issue drama specialist Anubhav Sinha. According to reporting by PeepingMoon.com, the series — which is being written by Jamtara – Sabka Number Ayega scribe Trishant Srivastava — should commence shooting in early 2023.
Mumbai Mafia: Police vs The Underworld
The true crime documentary Mumbai Mafia: Police vs The Underworld is the first Original Film out of the gate in 2023. According to Netflix, the movie “documents the battle for the future of Mumbai which raged through the 1990s, fought on the city’s streets between the police and organised crime. The gritty, grimy true to life depiction showcases the chase between the D-Company and the Ecounter [sic] Squad through extortion, racketeering, drugs and finally terrorism.” Mumbai Mafia: Police vs The Underworld debuts on Netflix January 6, 2023.
Mission Majnu was originally intended for a theatrical release, but Netflix picked up the period spy thriller in part to capitalize on the popularity of its stars: Sidharth Malhotra and Rashmika Mandanna, in her first leading role in a Hindi film after much success in South Indian cinema. Malhotra plays an intelligence officer who goes undercover in Pakistan to expose nuclear secrets in the 1970s.
Mission Majnu debuts on Netflix on January 20, 2023.
Ever since director Zoya Akhtar’s musical adaptation of Archie comics was announced in November 2021, all eyes have been on the film’s cast, which was purported to include some newcomers from famous families. Early in 2022, Netflix confirmed many of the rumors in a video introducing the cast, which includes: Agastya Nanda (Amitabh Bachchan’s grandson), Suhana Khan (Shah Rukh Khan’s daughter), Khushi Kapoor (Sridevi’s daughter), Dot., Mihir Ahuja, Vedang Raina and Yuvraj Menda. Filming wrapped on December 16, so we’re getting closer to seeing just what these newbies can do.
Anushka Sharma’s first film after her maternity break is Chakda ‘Xpress. The sports biopic required rigorous training and shooting in both England and India — sacrifices Sharma says she was willing to make in order to do justice to the cricket legend who inspired the film: Jhulan Goswami. Sharma says of the film: “it will be an eye-opener into the world of women’s cricket. At a time when Jhulan decided to become a cricketer and make her country proud on the global stage, it was very tough for women to even think of playing the sport. This film is a dramatic retelling of several instances that shaped her life and also women’s cricket.” Behind the scenes footage released by Netflix in August certainly looks intriguing.
Chor Nikal Ke Bhaga
Chor Nikal Ke Bhaga has a somewhat tumultuous development history. Yami Gautam and Sunny Kaushal ultimately wound up leading this tale of a diamond heist aboard an airplane that goes awry when the flight is hijacked.
Filming for the social issue dramedy Kathal wrapped up in May. Sanya Malhotra stars as a small-town police officer eager to prove herself by solving the case of a politician’s stolen jackfruits.
The new teaser that Netflix released for director Vishal Bhardwaj’s Khufiya — based on the espionage novel Escape to Nowhere by Amar Bhushan — shows exactly why Bhardwaj cast the incomparable Tabu as a spy on the hunt for a mole selling India’s secrets in this moody drama.
Nayanthara: Beyond the Fairy Tale
Nayanthara is such a box office powerhouse in South India that she was given the nickname “Lady Superstar.” It’s only fitting that she should get her own documentary. Nayanthara: Beyond the Fairy Tale covers her success and gives her fans a glimpse inside her marriage with filmmaker Vignesh Shivan.
After pandemic-related delays and other obligations — including Katrina Kaif’s marriage to Vicky Kaushal — Jogi director Ali Abbas Zafar is just about ready to begin production on the superhero film Super Soldier. Zafar told News 18 in September that he and Kaif “will soon sit together and discuss our schedules and will start working on it as soon as we are done with our other commitments.”
The Devotion of Suspect X adaptation
Netflix announced Typewriter director Sujoy Ghosh’s adaptation of Keigo Higashino’s mystery novel The Devotion of Suspect X back in March. The adaptation — which doesn’t have an official title yet — went to floors in May, with stars Kareena Kapoor Khan, Vijay Varma, and Jaideep Ahlawat shooting in Darjeeling. Per Variety: “The Devotion of Suspect X follows a single mother and her daughter who commit a crime and a neighbor who helps them cover it up amidst a police investigation.”
Untitled Laxman Utekar directorial
Stars Vicky Kaushal and Sara Ali Khan wrapped their still untitled movie for director Laxman Utekar and producer Dinesh Vijan back in January, and rumor has it that the film will premiere directly on Netflix and skip theaters. This makes some sense, as two other Vijan productions — 2022’s Dasvi and 2021’s Mimi (also directed by Utekar) — made their debuts on Netflix as well. However, neither of those movies is branded a Netflix Original in the United States.
The only series with the tag “It’s Official: Another Season Is Coming” tag on its landing page is the crime drama Yeh Kaali Kaali Ankhein. According to Bollywood Hungama, the show’s renewal came down to not just its popularity and critical reception, but also to the quality of the Season 2 script and the series’ comparatively low cost to produce.
Delhi Crime (Season 3)
Filmmaker Sudhanshu Saria told The Hindu that he started working on a script for Delhi Crime Season 3 back in spring of 2021.
Indian Matchmaking (Season 3)
Variety reports that the reality series Indian Matchmaking will return for a third season.
Jamtara – Sabka Number Ayega (Season 3)
Jamtara director Soumendra Padhi told MoneyControl.com: “It would be great to do season 3 but the response to season 2 will determine that.”
Masaba Masaba (Season 3)
In an interview with India Today, Masaba Masaba producer Ashvini Yarde said: “We have left the season  on a hook, so we definitely have a plot line in mind. So, let’s hope that it works so, we can have Season 3, 4 and 5.”
The Fabulous Lives of Bollywood Wives (Season 3)
A source close to The Fabulous Lives of Bollywood Wives told Bollywood Hungama that the reality series is already gearing up for Season 3.
Aranyak (Season 2)
Rumors surfaced in the fall that Netflix opted not to go forward with a second season of Aranyak due to concerns about script development and potential return on investment.
Mai: A Mother’s Rage (Season 2)
Director Anshai Lal told India Today in April that Mai has been picked up for a second season.
The Fame Game (Season 2)
The Fame Game is another show rumored to have been cancelled.
Other shows still in renewal limbo:
What Indian movies and series are you looking forward to in 2023? Let us know in the comments!
Kathy is our resident Bollywood expert here at What’s on Netflix. She has years of experience covering the genre and provides you here with monthly recaps of all the new Indian content on Netflix. You can find here on here main website, Access Bollywood. Resides in the United States.
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