Lionsgate Play promises ‘High-Budget Premium Indian Originals’ in 2021

Lionsgate Play is now officially live. Three and a half weeks after a beta soft launch, the Hollywood studio is best known for John Wick and The Hunger Games has launched its app activities and revealed its plans for the Indian market. In addition to the American films and TV shows, Lionsgate will be delivering “high budget premium originals from India” from 2021 onwards. For this purpose, Lionsgate has teamed up with greats like Anil Kapoor, Mukesh Bhatt, Kunal Kohli and Akarsh Khurana studios like Endemol Shine. No details are currently available on Lionsgate Play’s Indian originals.

The originals will be “urban,” “nervous,” “a slice of life,” “weird” and “untold, provocative stories,” Rohit Jain, executive director of Lionsgate South Asia, told reporters on Wednesday during a virtual conference. Starz CEO and President Jeffrey A. Hirsch, who was also present at the Zoom call, stated that all Lionsgate Play Originals must have global appeal in order for them to be shipped outside of India. Starz, owned by Lionsgate, is a pay-TV network in the United States and operates the StarzPlay streaming service of the same name in more than 26 countries. Lionsgate plans to expand to 55 countries soon.

Netflix, Disney + Hotstar, Prime Video are now government regulated

Some of his international originals are already known. Lionsgate Television is developing a John Wick spin-off called The Continental to serve as the origin story for the hotel and allow rented guns to do non-lethal business on its property. Then there’s Becoming Elizabeth, an eight-episode limited series about how Queen Elizabeth I – played by Alicia von Rittberg – ascended to the throne.

As you can see, the focus is on adult content, which Hirsch noted during the announcement. Hirsch said they aren’t interested in targeting people of any age, as are all major streaming services – such as Netflix, Disney + Hotstar, and Amazon Prime Video, which are mentioned but not named – and are happy to have a narrow focus too to have. He believes that this makes them a complementary offering for the big players and, as such, will help them survive in a competitive environment that others have already consumed (Viu ​​in India and Quibi in the US).

Lionsgate Play continues to help with pricing (Rs. 99 per month or Rs. 699 per year) and local language support (many tracks are dubbed in Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Marathi, Kannada, and Bhojpuri). It doesn’t have a lot of content though – at first glance, it seems there are fewer than 100 movies and TV shows right now. Only seven new titles will be added in December.

Lionsgate Play is behind the Indian premiere of a number of series, including Anna Kendrick-directed Love Life (the first HBO Max offering in India), the British comedy series The Goes Wrong Show and the war epic No Man’s Land from Fauda producers.

As we noted earlier, the giant Lionsgate Play watermark that can be seen all over the top right corner cannot be let go.


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