Principal photography has commenced on Netflix original drama-comedy film “Kathal” (Jackfruit) from Ekta Kapoor’s Balaji Telefilms and Guneet Monga’s Sikhya Entertainment.

The woman-led film starring Sanya Malhotra (“Dangal,” “Photograph”) and Anant Joshi (“Cobalt Blue”) is set in a small town and revolves around a local politician whose prized jackfruits go missing and a young police officer who is adamant to solve this bizarre case to prove herself. “Kathal” marks the directorial debut of Yashowardhan Mishra, who previously directed several shorts and Amazon Prime Video comedy special “Pata Nahi Par Bolna Hai.”

Mishra co-wrote the script with revered writer Ashok Mishra, who won India’s National Film Award for best screenplay for Shyam Benegal’s “Samar,” and whose credits also include Benegal’s “Bharat Ek Khoj,” “Welcome to Sajjanpur” and “Well Done Abba!,” Saeed Akhtar Mirza’s “Naseem” and Jagmohan Mundhra’s “Bawandar.”

Kapoor, known as India’s soap opera queen, also produces festival fare, including Alankrita Shrivastava’s “Dolly Kitty and Those Twinkling Stars,” which was selected at the Busan International Film Festival.

Monga is one of India’s best known producers globally and her credits include Cannes selections “The Lunchbox,” “Gangs of Wasseypur” and “Masaan.” She served as an executive producer on Oscar-winning short “Period. End of Sentence.”

Both Kapoor and Monga are members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS).

“Kathal” is produced by Monga, Kapoor, Achin Jain and Shobha Kapoor and co-produced by Nachiket Pantvaidya and Ruchikaa Kapoor Sheikh. Balaji and Sikhya previously co-produced Netflix original film “Pagglait,” starring Malhotra.

Sikhya CEO Monga said: “At Sikhya Entertainment we strive to always produce unique, entertaining and heart warming content that stands out. We are absolutely thrilled to embark on another exciting journey with Sanya Malhotra and none better than with our partners, Balaji and Netflix. Yashowardhan and Ashok Mishra, the writers and imagineers behind ‘Kathal’ roped us into its magical world from day one (and page one) and we can’t wait for it to come to life for everyone to enjoy. ‘Kathal,’ like the fruit itself, will leave you with a sweet feeling that we’ll cherish in the coming times and we are so excited for everyone to see Sanya in a completely new avatar in this unconventional story.”

Kapoor Sheikh, co-producer and executive VP at Balaji Telefilms added: “At Balaji Motion Pictures, our aim is to continue telling genre-bending, entertaining and contextual stories. ‘Kathal’ is one such quirky tale set in heartland India and toplined by the talented Sanya Malhotra. Debutant director-writer Yashowardhan’s take on this ‘bizarre’ true story is full of humor and introspective. After the resounding success of ‘Pagglait,’ we’re excited to partner with Sikhya and Netflix to tell stories with an Indian heart for global audiences.”