Indian star Alia Bhatt will make her Hollywood debut with Netflix's Heart of Stone, a spy thriller that entered production earlier this week. The film is headlined by Gal Gadot and Jamie Dornan. Bhatt is coming off of one of her biggest hits—the period crime drama Gangubai Kathiawadi, directed by the acclaimed Sanjay Leela Bhansali.
Plot details for Heart of Stone are under wraps, but Netflix won a closely contested bidding war for the Skydance package in January 2021. Gadot, who previously collaborated with the streamer on last year's record-breaking Red Notice, announced the start of production with an Instagram post on Monday. Sharing a couple of set photos and a video, she revealed that her character in the film is called Rachel Stone.
Wild Rose and The Aeronauts director Tom Harper is helming from a script by Greg Rucka and Allison Schroeder. An earlier Deadline report said that the streamer is modeling Heart of Stone after the Mission Impossible and the James Bond franchises.
Bhatt, the daughter of filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt, is considered one of Hindi cinema's brightest young stars, having delivered acclaimed performances in films such as Highway, Udta Punjab, Raazi, and Gully Boy, the latter of which was selected as India's official entry for the 2020 Oscars.
Highway, Gully Boy, and her latest, Gangubai Kathiawadi, all premiered at the Berlin International Film Festival. Her Hollywood debut comes in the wake of fellow Indian stars such as Deepika Padukone (xXx: Return of Xander Cage) and Priyanka Chopra (The Matrix Resurrections) also making inroads in the west.
This year, Indian acting royalty Shabana Azmi will appear on the Paramount+ series Halo. Last year, actor Kubbra Sait played a supporting role in the Apple TV+ show Foundation.
Heart of Stone is produced by Skydance's David Ellison, Dana Goldberg, and Don Granger, along with Mockingbird's Bonnie Curtis and Julie Lynn and Pilot Wave's Gadot and Jaron Varsano. Harper, Rucka, and Patty Whitcher serve as executive producers.
Rucka previously wrote the streamer's The Old Guard, adapted from his own graphic novel series. Schroeder has an Oscar nomination for co-writing Hidden Figures.
Gadot, best known for playing Wonder Woman in the DC Extended Universe, is expected to reprise her role for a third solo Wonder Woman film.
She will also return for two more Red Notice films while the streamer preps to debut another potential spy franchise with the $200 million The Gray Man, led by Chris Evans and Ryan Gosling. Interestingly, The Gray Man also features an Indian star, Dhanush, in its sprawling ensemble.