Amazon Orders Indian World War II Series

Jose Mandojana
Amazon Studios vp Roy Price

Based on historical figure Subhash Chandra Bose's Indian National Army, the original project will be helmed by Bollywood director Kabir Khan and will add to the streamer's extensive upcoming local offerings.

Amazon is expanding its Indian content offerings worldwide. The e-commerce and streaming video giant on Tuesday unveiled its latest original series with the working title The Forgotten Army.

Set during World War II and based on true events, the project will revolve around historical Indian figure Subhash Chandra Bose and his Indian National Army, which was forged out of Britain's defeat in Singapore during World War II while India was still under British colonial rule.

The series, which will be streamed worldwide, is set to go into production by the end of the year and will be directed by Bollywood helmer Kabir Khan. His credits include such hits as 2015's Bajrangi Bhaijaan and the upcoming Tubelight, which is set against the backdrop of the 1962 India-China war and stars Bollywood actor Salman Khan and Chinese actress Zhu Zhu.

As part of its India launch in December, Amazon Prime Video unveiled 18 Indian originals, which are at various stages of production. “Our aim is to build a compelling lineup of Indian shows, working with the greatest talents from the industry,” said Amazon Prime Video head of global content Roy Price, adding that the association with Khan "is one of the many such partnerships that India will see."

Said Khan: "I am excited to make this truly international series, which has a scale and reach far greater than any Hindi film."

Amazon's push into local programming as part of the company's global growth strategy was reiterated by Price at last week's MIPTV event, where he said in a keynote that "we’re trying to replicate the Amazon Studios mentality from L.A. around the world, growing teams in India, Tokyo and London as regional development hubs to lead an international originals effort."

Meanwhile, rival Netflix has so far only announced one Indian original, Sacred Games, which is currently in production.

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