ZEE5 has unveiled a content slate of 10 original productions and films for the global Bengali diaspora, starting in 2023. The platform plans to release a new web series every month, covering a range of genres including murder mysteries, crime dramas, psychological thrillers, and comedy and romance. The slate features collaborations with top storytellers from the region and popular stars of Bangla cinema. ZEE5 is expanding its subscription video on demand offerings to bring a variety of unique and emotional stories to its audience.
Talking about the focus on the Bengal market, Manish Kalra, Chief Business Officer, ZEE5 India said, “Bengal has been a hotbed of entertainment with both Bangla stories and talent making their presence felt on the global map. We at ZEE5 have received an overwhelming response to the titles released in the last two years from our Bangla viewers. Now it is time to expand our base in the Eastern market, connecting with the audience with more relatable stories and creating new opportunities for the talent ecosystem here. We have released a slate that shall enable viewers to watch their favorite stars in new avatars backed by intriguing plots and captivating storytelling. In addition to the Bengali slate, we have an extensive line-up of Hindi content and popular titles in other languages. I am hopeful audiences will enjoy their experience on ZEE5 as we continue to strive to bring extraordinary entertainment for them.”
Talking about the content slate for 2023, Samrat Ghosh, Chief Cluster Officer – East, Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd (ZEEL) said, “We are stoked to present the Bangla OTT viewer with a large and exclusive offering of 10 original titles and some of the best hand-picked movies from the market. We are working with the most prolific storytellers and actors who have proven not just their performance mettle in keeping the viewers hooked to what will happen next (Erpor Ki),but also earned widespread viewer love. Besides that, we have stories from different parts of West Bengal that reflect its cultural essence and the variedness of its landscape. We have stories that emerge from our Bangaliana but also reflect the challenges and the complexities of this new world we live in. We are confident that our content slate will excite the OTT Bangla viewer and address their need for pace, thrill and adventure. We look forward to their response to our bouquet of content offerings.”
Highlighting ZEE5’s content strategy, Punit Misra, President – Content and International Markets at Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd said, “Creating great content through in-depth understanding of our viewers and the cultural ethos of the many Bharats that constitute India has resulted in ZEE5’s consistent growth across languages. Our creative team has a distinctive approach to content design that we call #SoulToScreen where great viewer and cultural understanding meets inspired creativity, delivering delightful content experiences. Through partnerships with some of the finest content creators in the Bangla entertainment industry, we have been successful in curating a content slate that embodies the true cultural essence of today’s Bengal. Our content slate is reflective of the Bengali OTT viewers’ growing appetite for high-octane, edge-of-the-seat entertainment presented in a contemporary avatar that celebrates the new codes of ‘Bangaliana’. We hope that this labour of love of our team will be worthy of love & recommendations from viewers of Bangla OTT content globally.”
Presenting an entire spectrum of the thriller genre like never before, the extensive content line-up features murder-mystery Raktokarabi starring Raima Sen and Vikram Chatterjee, revolving around a Bengali joint family with an ocean of secrets. Shikarpur, featuring multiple national-award winning actor-director Kaushik Ganguly and Ankush Hazra, marking the latter’s first big fiction OTT debut, walks us through the journey of an underdog detective striving to gain the title of ‘Shikarpurer Sherlock’. Kantaye Kantaye is a series based on the detective novel ‘Shonar Kanta’ by Narayan Sanyal featuring national award-winning actress Ananya Chatterjee and will showcase Saswata Chatterjee in a never-seen-before avatar. Directed by Arindam Sil, Shabash Feluda is about Satyajit Ray’s ace detective Feluda solving a complex crime involving a murder and cross-border espionage featuring Parambrata Chatterjee and Ritwick Chakraborty in a Feluda franchise for the first time.
Chhotolok is another intriguing whodunnit human story which will keep viewers on tenterhooks. It is ace director Indranil Roychowdhury’s first OTT fiction series and features a stellar cast that includes Indrani Haldar, Priyanka Sarkar, Ushasi Ray and Gaurav Chakrabarty. While Abar Proloy will bring back the much-loved Proloy franchise by Raj Chakraborty, Swetkali, an edge-of-the-seat spooky thriller about cold-blooded murders revolving around an age-old goddess idol, will mark Oindrila’s OTT debut. Also on the line-up is legendary director Anjan Dutt’s Seven, a thriller showcasing the vices of human nature, starring the auteur himself. Completing the roster of originals are Teni Madhab Shil er Full Panjika, a quirky musical romantic thriller and Matsyanyay, which is a story about the scams of a family running a unique medicine business, coming from the house of Parambrata Chattopadhyay’s Roadshow Movies.