Everything We Know About Mindy Kaling’s New Netflix Series, ‘Never Have I Ever’
Mindy Kaling’s new Netflix comedy series finally has a title. The highly anticipated series, Never Have I Ever, will be Kaling’s first with Netflix. She’s also worked with NBC in, of course, the iconic hit The Office and with Hulu both in The Mindy Project and most recently, with her television adaptation of the hit movie, Four Weddings and a Funeral.
The new series comes on the heels of her success with her film Late Night, which she wrote, executive produced, and starred in. The film, which stars Emma Thompson, was received very well at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival.
At a post-screening Q&A for the movie in January the actress noted, “This is a film about being an outsider…And when you don’t see yourself represented in film, you start to fall in love with whoever is out there. This comes from a real love and passion for movies that show that kind of outsider.”
It’s a coming-of-age story
Never Have I Ever has already received a ten-episode order from Netflix. Created by Kaling and Lang Fisher, the comedy series follows the complicated life of a modern-day first generation Indian-American teenage girl. Fisher is an industry veteran who’s cut her teeth as producer or writer on hit shows such as Brooklyn Nine-Nine, The Mindy Project, and 30 Rock.
As Kaling said in a Facebook post, “Get ready for lots of relatable, awkward teen moments.”
The Why Not Me? author told Variety, “Netflix approached me about doing a series on young Mindy,” she said. “I wasn’t as interested in telling a period piece about an Indian girl growing up in the ’80s, but I told them I’d love to do a show about a 15-year-old Indian girl now.”
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, she made it clear she’s not appearing in the series.
“I love acting, but I also really love not acting, and I did it for so many years straight between The Office and The Mindy Project and there was no break in between the two,” she said. “Also, I think having a baby, I’ve been able to focus more on creating new material and frankly finding new talent.”
There’s a newcomer playing Mindy Kaling as a teenager and she’s awesome
Speaking of new talent, Kaling and Fisher tweeted a casting call on Twitter for the lead of Never Have I Ever. After sifting through 15,000 actresses, they made their final decision for newcomer Maitreyi Ramakrishna. The 17-year-old Canadian actress, anticipating issues with people complaining about her name, is already making her sassy mark.
The actress told Now, “If you can say the character names in Game of Thrones, you can say my Tamil name.”
The comedy series will have a narrator
As far as is known right now, the father of Kaling’s character on the show is deceased, but he was a huge John McEnroe fan (which, by the way, Kaling’s real parents were, as well). The natural progression, then, was to ask tennis’ former bad boy himself to narrate the series, a la The Wonder Years. As a result, this adds a marvelously emotional layer to the overarching plot.
McEnroe was a big name in tennis in the 1970s and 80s. A three-time Wimbledon champion, he is a professional broadcaster, most recently calling matches for Wimbledon, the U.S. Open, and the French Open.