"The doors to hell are open, are you ready to enter?", translates Anushka Sharma's tweet in Hindi, as she shares the trailer of Paatal Lok, her first series production on Amazon Prime Video.
Amazon Original Series Paatal Lok which can be translated as Hell or as the Underworld, releases on May 15 and is the sixth Amazon Prime Video series from India in 2020.
The 3-minute trailer introduces the ancient realm of three Lok’s - Swarga (heaven), Dharti (earth) and Pataal (hell or underworld) along with the four pillars of Indian democracy.
The nine-part series attempts to offer a “scathing commentary of modern-day Indian society and politics” through people who figuratively inhabit each of these 3 loks.
The synopsis on Amazon Prime describes a down and out cop (Ahlawat) landing the case of a lifetime, when four suspects are nabbed in the assassination attempt of a prime-time journalist (Kabi). The case turns out to be a devious maze where nothing is what it looks like. The pursuit of it leads him to the dark netherworld – the 'Paatal Lok' – and to shocking discoveries hidden in the past of the four suspects.
There has been a revival of the genre of film noir, showing the underbelly of crime in a sinister and shadowy cinematographic style, with twisted dark wit such as in Mirzapur - another Amazon offering. Pataal Lok promises to provide more of the same.
Udta Punjab writer Sudip Sharma is the creator as well as the executive producer of the series, alongside Anushka and her brother Karnesh Sharma, who are producing it under their banner Clean Slate Filmz.
Directed by Avinash Arun and Prosit Roy, the lead cast consists of Neeraj Kabi (Taj Mahal 1989), Gul Panag (Dor), and Jaideep Ahlawat (Bard of Blood) and Abhishek Banerjee (Stree).
Prosit Roy (Pari) and cinematographer Avinash Arun (Masaan) have directed the nine episodes of Paatal Lok which could make up a single season of the series.