Just a month and a half since its first original series from India, Netflix is set to release another this week in Ghoul, a horror miniseries starring Radhika Apte. Based on Arabic folklore, the three-part series Ghoul – an Indo-American co-production – is set in the near future at a covert detention centre, following a newly-minted interrogator named Nida Rahim (Apte) who’s tasked with drawing a confession out of a feared terrorist. But after the prisoner immediately turns the tables on his interrogators, Rahim realises she might be dealing with a supernatural threat.
In the run-up to Ghoul’s release, Netflix has dropped a few trailers in addition to details about the premise, the meaning of the title, and more. Here’s everything we know about Netflix’s next Indian original Ghoul.
Ghoul is set to release August 24 on Netflix in India and across the world. Netflix shows are released at midnight Pacific Time, which means Ghoul will be available to stream at 12:30pm IST on that day.
Netflix has released three trailers to promote the arrival of Ghoul on its service. The first one introduced Rahim’s character: after turning in her own father as an anti-government activist and topping her interrogation class with high scores, she’s given the new job of drawing a confession out of Ali Saeed.
The second trailer was low on words, with visuals including a flamethrower burning books, prisoners being tortured, guard dogs barking out of control, weird sounds, CCTV footage distortions, and Rahim pumping a shotgun among others.
Netflix took a different approach with the third trailer, using it to delve into the meaning of the word ‘ghoul’ in Arabic folklore, describing it as “a demonic phantom or an evil spirit that blends in right with humans”.
Netflix’s Ghoul has been written and directed by Patrick Graham, who has previously scripted and helmed a bunch of short films and TV movies such as Phir Se (2011), Hood (2009), and Slaughterhouse (2008).
The show has been co-produced by Anurag Kashyap and Vikramaditya Motwane's Phantom Films, Jason Blum's Blumhouse Productions, and Ivanhoe Pictures.
As previously mentioned, Apte is the lead star in the new Netflix series. The aforementioned terrorist prisoner is called Ali Saeed Al Yacoub, and he’s played by Mahesh Balraj, whose previous credits include the 2015 drama Parched, a film in which he incidentally starred alongside Apte as well and played her character’s husband.
Manav Kaul (Tumhari Sulu) plays a high-ranking officer named Lt. Dacunha, who is in charge of the detention centre where Apte is posted. Ratnabali Bhattacharjee (Sold) plays Dacunha’s deputy Laxmi, while Mallhar Goenka (City Lights) and Rohit Pathak are also part of the supporting cast.
Ghoul wasn’t produced as a Netflix Original, but rather acquired by the service after its completion. (The show reportedly entered post-production last July.) And that’s likely why the runtime of all three episodes is between 43-49 minutes – that would have allowed for advertisements to be slotted in to make it into a full-hour for airing on a TV channel – rather than the usual nearly hour-long nature of shows made for Netflix.
If you’re planning to binge watch Ghoul, the total runtime of the show is 2 hours and 16 minutes, essentially the length of a movie.
That would likely be a no. Ghoul is a miniseries, which means the show was designed as just three episodes.
We discussed Ghoul on Transition, Gadgets 360's pop culture and gaming podcast. The Ghoul discussion starts at 34:40. You can listen to it via Apple Podcasts or RSS, or just listen to this week's episode by hitting the play button below.