MUMBAI, India — Amazon Prime Video is looking to cash in on India's two biggest loves: Bollywood and cricket.
The streaming service is set to debut its first original series for India, "Inside Edge," on Monday — just six months after Amazon's Prime service launched in the country. It's the latest push to capture a market in which the tech giant has committed $5 billion, and plans to launch at least 17 more original series over the next few years.
"Inside Edge" is a ten part series that follows the "conflicting interests" of a cricket team, as players navigate an entire season in the fictional Powerplay League. Produced by Bollywood star Farhan Akhtar's Excel Entertainment, the show features local actors Vivek Oberoi and Richa Chadha. The series marks Amazon's first step in building out local content here, to compete in an entertainment industry valued at $19.5 billion, according to KPMG.
"TV shows in India have traditionally been long running shows that really don't follow a limited series format," said Nitesh Kripalani, country head and director of Amazon Video India, explaining that an average show consists of more than 100 episodes.
"If you look at what has been successful globally, it has been limited episodes. That's the kind of expertise we want to bring to India," he added.
To do that, Amazon flew in producers and content creators from Hollywood to collaborate with their counterparts in India, Kripalani said. Scriptwriters from Amazon's U.S. shows like "Transparent" and "Man in the High Castle" conducted workshops for Indian screenwriters, offering guidance on storytelling in a limited format, how to develop a longer story arc and tips on how to draw out individual characters.
"We're giving [scriptwriters] that pedestal, that whiteboard and we're collaborating with them. There's a lot of work that we do with our global learnings from the U.S. and the U.K. and the markets that go into writing the right scripts," Kripalani told CNBC.