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Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hotstar – the top 5 OTT Power Players!

From Netflix to Hotstar, we look at the top five leading OTT platforms, which have unleashed a change in consumption of content

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Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hotstar, Eros Now, ALT Balaji are the top OTT Platforms in India

The past few years have seen OTT platforms mushrooming in dozens, and with a few more in the pipeline, it seems the invasion of Indian drawing rooms has truly begun. The streaming platforms have surely and certainly created a dent in the traditional viewing pattern of the average Indian. If Amazon Prime and ALT Balaji are offering their content for less than Rs 150 a month, it is nothing short of a revolution in the domain of entertainment.

But amidst the barrage of OTT platforms, it’s the quality of the content that remains the differentiating factor. Abhishek Srivastava lists the top five leading OTT platforms which have unleashed a change.

Netflix India

When it comes to content, Netflix remains the numero uno leader of the Indian market. It must be noted here that the streaming giant reached the shores of this country much before, but took its own sweet time to acclimatize itself to the Indian palate. When the initial research got over, they came up with their first offering in the form of Sacred Games.

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Saif Ali Khan and Radhika Apte in a still from Netflix’s Sacred Games Season 1

The series, helmed by Anurag Kashyap and Vikramaditya Motwane, proved to be a game-changer and created a grammar for other platforms. The success of Sacred Games was soon followed by the supernatural thriller Ghoul, which further cemented their reputation that when it comes to content, the word ‘compromise’ simply does not exist in the dictionary of the Netflix mandarins.

The gap between their launches clearly indicates that the streaming platform is here for the long haul. Their recent success story has been the gritty Delhi Crime, and their victory is reflective in the fact that the series, loosely based on the infamous Nirbhaya case, did not receive a single negative review across publications. With films like Love Per Square Foot and Once Again, their strategy is clear that riveting content is sacrosanct.

Amazon Prime Video

Amazon India was the first to ride the crest of the OTT wave in the country when it announced that 15 top filmmakers of the country would be making content for the platform. The announcement was made more than two years ago in Dec 2016, when leading filmmakers of the country gathered under one platform at a five-star hotel.

The association included production houses like Excel Entertainment (Farhan Akhtar), Equinox Features (Ram Madhvani), Abundantia Entertainment (Vikram Malhotra), AIB, OML, Phantom Films (Anurag Kashyap, Vikramaditya Motwane, Vikas Bahl & Madhu Mantena), D2R films (DK & Raj Nidimoru), Raapchik Films (Raj Kumar Gupta), Pritish Nandy Communication (Pritish Nandy), and Fission Features (Asif Kapadia) among others, but barring Excel Entertainment, PNC, Abundantia and OML, the content of the other production houses is yet to see the light of day.

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Cast of Amazon Prime Video’s Made In Heaven Season 1

After the exit of Nitesh Kripalani, the big boss at Amazon Video, things went for a toss and it took a while for the streaming platform to get their house in order. With Inside Edge, they started their journey, and with Breathe, Mirzapur and the more recent Made in Heaven, they communicated to everyone that they are determined to make up for lost time.

Hotstar India

Disney considers Hotstar India a jewel in their crown when it comes to their Indian operations. The merger of Fox with the biggest entertainment company of the world, ensured that Hotstar India would now be governed by Disney management. Though Hotstar India remains the oldest and the biggest in terms of subscribers, somehow it was sports more than the original programming which drove the platform.

It was primarily foreign content acquired from HBO, Disney, Hulu and Showtime which ensured that viewers had their quota of entertainment. Local content was just not on their radar. But the strides Netflix and Amazon have made in the past few months have forced Hotstar to change their strategy.

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Poster of Hotstar Specials’ Criminal Justice

The recent launch of Hotstar Specials is an indicator of the heat they have been feeling because of the onslaught of desi content by videshi giants. Roar of the Lion (helmed by Kabir Khan) and Criminal Justice (Tigmanshu Dhulia as the show runner) prove that they too are ready for the competition. Up next will be Shekhar Kapur’s special for the platform.

Eros Now

It’s been a while for Eros Now, since they started offering content through their platform, but their lackluster content has not really helped them in getting to the next level. Smoke, Metro Park and Flip have been their big ticket, but none of them could manage an audience.

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Ranveer Shorey in Eros Now Original Flip

Even the presence of seasoned actors like Jim Sarbh, Kalki Koechlin, Neil Bhoopalam and Gulshan Devaiah could not save the below par script of Smoke. The streaming platform has an uphill task ahead of them with three of the major players – Netflix, Amazon and Hotstar upping the ante.

ALT Balaji

ALT Balaji it seems, is in the volume game. When the platform launched Bose and The Test Case, the message was loud and clear – good content remains their only prerogative. But with the passage of time, quality somehow has taken a backseat for the streaming platform, and instead, volume seems to have become their mantra.

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Poster of ALT Balaji’s Ragini MMS Returns

When offerings like Haq Se, Home, and Class of 2017 came, the platform then resorted to the cheap gimmick of offering sleaze to their viewers, and thus came series like Gandi Baat, XXX, Dev DD and Ragini MMS Returns. Though none of their offerings could repeat the magic of Bose, the platform is still on the lookout for their next tent pole.

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Chiranjeevi on Sye Raa Narasimha Reddy: This story has all kind of emotions suitable to a commercial film!

The periodic film, Sye Raa Narasimha Reddy has created a huge buzz since its trailer launch which was launched recently, and received very well by the viewers owing to the brilliant visuals, breath-taking performances and an iconic cast.

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Dr Chiranjeevi

The periodic film, Sye Raa Narasimha Reddy has created a huge buzz since its trailer launch which was launched recently, and received very well by the viewers owing to the brilliant visuals, breath-taking performances and an iconic cast. Evidently a lot of hard work and efforts by the makers of the film has been put in creating the SyeRaa world and it reflects from its trailer itself.

The film’s narrative celebrates the glory of the unsung hero, Sye Raa Narasimha Reddy whose contribution towards the Indian freedom struggle hasn’t been much highlighted. It’s an untold story which has been executed in the grandest manner possible and has captured the fighter in its full glory.

Talking about the same, the Megastar Dr. Chiranjeevi shares, “So in the textbooks, we are reading about great heroes that fought against the British for the freedom, but this story was not told anywhere. Nobody knows about this story. This story has all kind of emotions suitable to a commercial film. That was I was tempted to that.”

Trailer of Sye Raa Narsimha Reddy:

Not just Chiranjeevi, but Bollywood actress Tamannaah also has due respect for the freedom fighter. Sharing her views upon the same, Tamannnaah shares, “SyeRaa is a story people should know about, it’s about a hero that people don’t know about and should know about the freedom fight that we had.”

After gaining such valuable knowledge about the first Indian freedom fighter, Sye Raa Narasimha Reddy, the fans definitely eagerly awaiting the film so that they can experience the pride on Narsimha Reddy’s contribution to the Indian freedom struggle against the British Rule.

Also read: The greatest starcast of Sye Raa Narasimha Reddy graced the teaser launch event with their presence

The period drama is based on the life of freedom fighter Uyyalawada Narasimha Reddy who fought in what is known to be the first war of Independence against the British Rule in India. The movie features an ensemble cast of Shri Amitabh Bachchan, Dr. Chiranjeevi, Kichcha Sudeep, Vijay Sethupathi, Jagapathi Babu, Ravi Kishan, Nayanthara, Tamannaah and Niharika. For more updates from Bollywood and show business keep reading CineBlitz.

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Vivek Oberoi is making a film on the successful Balakot attack led by the Indian Air Force!

The Balakot Attack was one of the well planned and executed attacks by the Indian Air Force (IAF) where a lot of terrorists were eliminated in one go, deep inside Pakistan. This event spooked Pakistan.

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Vivek Oberoi

Taking up the subject of the Balakot Attack, Vivek Oberoi is making a trilingual feature film in Hindi, Tamil, and Telugu depicting the true facts, story and bravery of the Indian Air Force and their quick thinking, strategic planning with a strong political willingness. To ensure that the makers will take help of the team who witnessed the true events that happened. The film will be shot in Jammu & Kashmir, Delhi and Agra and will be going on floor end of the year.

It will encapsulate a string of events that took place starting with the attack in Pulwama where 40 jawans were martyred, followed by India’s well documented air-strike behind the enemy lines in Balakot. As a result of this, the Indian Air force foiled off an attack by Pakistan on Indian soil but the bravery of Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman ensured that Pakistan’s plans were foiled. In the process, he ended up being in the enemy territory, but with the ingenious strategy of Indian Government and Indian Air Force, Wing Commander Abhinandan was released quickly and safely.

Also read: Vivek Oberoi reacts to the “Salman – Aishwarya” tweet controversy while taking a dig at Sonam Kapoor

Vivek Oberoi shared “As a proud Indian, a patriot and a member of the film fraternity, it’s my duty to highlight what our armed forces are truly capable of. This film is a powerful tool to underline the achievements of brave officers like Abhinandan, who went behind enemy lines and did what makes every Indian proud of them. The Balakot airstrike was one of the most well-planned attacks by the IAF. I followed everything in the news, right from the attack in Pulwama to the airstrike. There was a lot that was speculated and spoken about back then; this film will put all of that to rest, once and for all. I thank the IAF for trusting us with this story and we hope to do justice to it.”

 

The film will unfold a gripping story of events including the release of Wing Commander Abhinandan, Squadron leader Minty Agarwal and many unknown heroes of Indian Air Force. Amongst all these speculations and presumptions as to what had actually happened. For more updates from Bollywood and show business keep reading CineBlitz.

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Manisha Koirala and Sanjay Dutt come together after a decade for Prasthanam

Sanjay Dutt and Manisha Koirala will be sharing the screen space after a decade post working together in 2008 film Mehbooba.

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Prasthanam poster

Sanjay Dutt’s upcoming film Prasthanam is all set to release on September 20th, 2019. Produced by wife Maanayata, the film is will also feature Manisha Koirala, Jackie Shroff, Chunky Pandey, Ali Fazal. A remake of the south hit film by the same name, writing the Hindi version of Prasthanam was a challenge as the story needed a fresh spin. Speaking about the film, writer Farhad Samji says, “The original is a cult film, but it released nine years ago. Everything upgrades with time, so it was essential for us to make it palatable for today’s audience. However, the basic premise and characters have remained the same.”

Also read: Sanjay S Dutt Productions’ first Marathi venture Baba to be screened at Golden Globes!

Sanjay Dutt and Manisha Koirala will be sharing the screen space after a decade post working together in 2008 film Mehbooba. Samji further adds, ‘’ I have grown up watching these two brilliant actors, but in this film, you will see them as characters and not actors. There is turbulence in their relationship and the story revolves around how they overcome it. We usually categorise characters as the hero, heroine, villain, and comedian, but in Prasthanam, everyone is related to each other in certain ways. It’s the complexity of relationships which keeps us glued. As compared to Singham and Simmba, which given the genre, were the epitome of ‘commercial’ writing, Prasthanam falls in more real space and has plenty of drama to spice up the proceedings”.

Jackie Shroff will be seen playing a loyal guard to the family and will be in a different avatar for the first time. Directed by Deva Katta, Sanjay S Dutt’s presents, produced by Maanayata Dutt, Prasthanam stars Sanjay Dutt, Manisha Koirala, Jackie Shroff, Chunky Panday, Ali Fazal, Amyra Dastur & Satyajeet Dubey. The film releases on 20th September 2019. For more updates from Bollywood and show business keep reading CineBlitz.

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