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ZEE5 to launch in US on June 22

New York, NY: After having won the hearts of millions of South Asians across the globe, ZEE5, the world’s largest streaming platform for South Asian content, has announced its launch in the United States on June 22. The platform is currently under beta testing in the market.

The US is the final and largest launch for ZEE5, setting the stage for its rapid growth in a market with a ready 5.4 million diaspora audience that has a deep cultural and language connect to this content.

With this launch, the streaming platform will open up access to the largest catalogue of South Asian i.e., Indian, Pakistani and Bangladeshi content to diaspora and even mainstream content consumers in the US who have been eagerly waiting to access ZEE5’s massive content library.

“The United States represents our most significant market and the last bastion in our global journey as we launch an ad-free subscription service. As a Global Media Conglomerate, we have had a very deep connection with our diaspora audiences here, so it is a rather happy moment for me to now be bringing this audience the largest aggregation of South Asian content on a single platform through ZEE5,” said Amit Goenka, President, Digital Businesses & Platforms, ZEE Entertainment.

“The United States is home to millions of people whose families have strong connects with South Asia, and we are glad to bring them the largest and most diverse catalogue of culturally relevant entertainment across Indian, Pakistani and Bangladeshi stories,” said Archana Anand, Chief Business Officer, ZEE5 Global.

  • 3,500+ movies – including 120+ World Digital Premieres like Radhe: Your Most Wanted Bhai, Simmba, Uri: The Surgical Strike, Dream Girl, Operation Java (Malayalam), Ka Pae Rannasingham (Tamil), Switzerland (Bengali) etc.

  • 1,600+ TV shows including Kundali Bhagya, Mithai (Bangla), Sembaruti (Tamil), Sa Re Ga Ma Pa (various languages) etc.

  • 200+ Originals – including The Final Call, Kaafir, Mentalhood, Churails, and more.

  • 600+ music, food and lifestyle videos coming soon.

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Bollywood Latest News

‘Friends: The Reunion’ to stream in India along with US

The much-awaited “Friends: The Reunion” will stream simultaneously in India with the United States and the world this week.

The reunion special brings the star cast of Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry and David Schwimmer. The unscripted show will also feature special appearances by David Beckham, Justin Bieber, BTS, James Corden, Cindy Crawford, Cara Delevingne, Lady Gaga, Elliott Gould, Kit Harington, Larry Hankin, Mindy Kaling, Thomas Lennon, Christina Pickles, Tom Selleck, James Michael Tyler, Maggie Wheeler, Reese Witherspoon and Malala Yousafzai.

“We received an overwhelming response from the audience after recently announcing that ‘Friends: The Reunion’ special would stream exclusively on Zee5 in India. We are proud to share that we will bring this event to India along with the world on May 27 at 12.32 pm,” said Manish Kalra, Chief Business Officer, Zee5 India.

Ben Winston has directed the unscripted special and also executive produced along with Kevin Bright, Marta Kauffman, and David Crane.

“We expect high demand from users and would urge them to avail ‘Friends: The Reunion Special’ unlimited viewing offer at least 12 hours in advance before the launch for a seamless experience,” Kalra added.

The original series ran from 1994 to 2004 and continues to draw big ratings in reruns. Over a decade, Aniston played Rachel Green, Courteney Cox was Monica Geller, Lisa Kudrow played Phoebie Buffay, Matt LeBlanc essayed Joey Tribbiani, Matthew Perry was Chandler Bing and David Schwimmer played Ross Geller.

The series streams in the US on May 27 to mark the one-year anniversary of HBO Max’s launch in the US.

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Bollywood Latest News

Churails: Zee5 streaming first Pakistani series spooks the neighbor

Churails, a Pakistani TV series released on India’s Zee5 in August was removed for viewers accessing the platform from Pakistan a few weeks ago before getting reinstated.

The Pakistan Telecommunications Authority had approached the platform after receiving complaints about the show which has swear words and drinking.
The storyline may have also spooked the authorities. The  10-episode series follows four self-proclaimed Churails – strong, independent-minded women – who operate a covert detective agency to expose cheating husbands amongst Karachi’s elite. As their operations expand, they come to be saviors of abused, harassed and mistreated women. Storylines cover issues including child abuse, sexism, and domination along class and racial lines.

Churails was written and directed by British Pakistani filmmaker Asim Abbasi, whose 2018 feature film titled ‘Cake’ was Pakistan’s Oscar entry. Its feisty star cast includes Sarwat Gilani Mirza, Nimra Bucha, Mehar Bano and Yasra Rizvi.

Churails is the first Pakistani drama that has been especially commissioned by ZEE5 under its popular Zindagi brand, which was launched  as an on-demand expansion into international content.  Shailja Kejriwal of Zee Entertainment is a co-producer.

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Entertainment Latest News

I try my best not to act: Arshad Warsi

Actor Arshad Warsi has impressed audiences and critics alike with varied characters in films like the “Munna Bhai” series, the “Ishqiya” films, the “Golmaal” series, “Dhamaal”, “Jolly LLB” and “Seher”, and the web series “Asur”. The actor says he tries his best not to ‘act’ in any of his projects.

He feels acting is just like special effects, adding that “if you can see the special effect,” then the job wasn’t done well.

“I have always believed that acting is like special effects. If you can see the special effect, then it’s bad special effect. In the same way if you can see the acting then it’s bad acting. I try my best not to act,” Arshad told IANS while looking back at the way he has evolved as an artiste.

Before entering Bollywood as an actor, Arshad worked as an assistant director and choreographed a song for the film “Roop Ki Rani Choron Ka Raja”. He made his acting debut in 1996 with “Tere Mere Sapne”, which was a box office success.

Earlier this year, he made his digital debut with psychological thriller “Asur”, which streams on Voot Select. The series showcases the conflict between good and bad. The show takes the audience on a journey of two opposing worlds — forensic science on the one hand and the mysteries of Indian mythology on the other.

Explaining his thought process for plunging into the digital world, Arshad said: “I thought the script was very intriguing and exciting. The whole idea of mythology and science combined with the good old whodunit was enough to get my attention. The cherry on the cake was, I was offered a non-comic role.”

He thinks the digital media has been fantastic for actors.

“I am not experimenting or risking anything, I am finally getting to do the work I have been longing for and enjoy doing,” he added.

On the work front, he will soon be seen alongside Bhumi Pednekar in “Durgavati”, which is being touted as a heroine-centric horror film. The film is presented by Akshay Kumar. He also has “Golmaal 5” in his kitty.

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