Pakistani news network Ary News has just reported that an Indian version of Game of Thrones is in production. According to Ary, Sony Entertainment TV will broadcast the show, titled Rani Mahal, and it will follow the A Song of Ice and Fire books by George R.R. Martin.
One of the biggest hurdles Sony will have to overcome is the huge budget that HBO has allotted for Game of Thrones, plus the strict censors in India. Still, the show is off to a running start, and has even hired actresses to portray Daenerys Targaryen and Cersei Lannister.
Find out more about the Indian version of Game of Thrones, after the jump.
Sakshi Thanvar will portray Daenerys Targaryen.
Anita Hassanandani will portray Cersei Lannister.
Parth Samthaan will portray Jon Snow.
The following is an excerpt from Ary News describing the show:
“Daenerys Targareyn is a character from Game Of Thrones who is also referred to as the ‘Mother of Dragons’ on account of the three dragons she commands. Originally a princess, she along with her brother were exiled when her father was killed and his kingdom sacked. The novel chronicles the rise of the determined princess as she gains strength and amasses an army to avenge her father’s death and reclaim the throne. Then there are the Lannisters and the Starks, reputable, rival families who have nothing but spite for each other.“
Interestingly, this description makes it sound like Sony is planning to center its version of the Game of Thrones story around Daenerys, which makes me wonder how true to the books it can actually be. Heaven forbid it end up looking like Star Plus’ reimagination of Game of Thrones on Hindi TV. (I’m sorry…I’m so sorry.)
There is one more noteworthy bit of Game of Thrones news coming out of India. DNAIndia is reporting that Season 5 of Game of Thrones will be simulcast with the US.
“We are thrilled to bring season 5 of Game of Thrones, one of the most iconic HBO Original TV shows, to Indian audiences at the same time as the US airing,” said Monica Tata, Managing Director of HBO India. “This is our way of thanking the premium subscribers of HBO Defined for supporting us in making the channel a success.”
UPDATE: According to various sources, the Indian version of Game of Thrones will not be a straight-up adaptation of Martin’s books, although it will be based on them. Instead, Rani Mahal (Queen’s Paradise) will be set in the real world circa 1857, the year of a large-scale rebellion against colonial forces in India. Also, the show will focus heavily on Daenerys Targaryen.