Mindy Kaling’s Surprising Choice for Narrator of Her New Netflix Series

Mindy Kaling’s been hard at work on her new Netflix show, Never Have I Ever. Their website calls it “a coming-of-age comedy series about the life of a modern first-generation Indian American teenage girl, inspired by Mindy Kaling’s own childhood.”

Mindy Kaling
Mindy Kaling | Rich Fury/Getty Images

The ten-episode series follows main character Devi, a hard-working high school sophomore through the rough edges of growing up.

Comparing her streaming shows to more traditional shows and films, Kaling told Decider, “I’m part of a dying breed of comedy writers who were trained on a network comedy, with hard jokes, with 22 to 25 episodes a year that ran for nine years. I know and love that big, ambitious network schedule and lifestyle. I honestly love working on both.”

Who’s playing Mindy in the new series?

The series will be based around Mindy’s teenage years and has already found its leading lady. Her name is Maitreyi Ramakrishna and she is a 17-year-old Canadian actress who has already made clear she doesn’t plan on anglicizing her name. As she told Now, “If you can say the character names in Game of Thrones, you can say my Tamil name.”

The actress is elated after beating out 15,000 other candidates for the part of Devi in the forthcoming series. She described how she found out she had gotten the part. Her agent told her they needed to meet for an important phone call at 9 pm.

View this post on Instagram

Still can't believe this… #browngirlcomeup

A post shared by Maitreyi Ramakrishnan (@maitreyiramakrishnan) on

“She made it seem like there was some technical stuff to do with the audition. We dashed home and my agent whips out her phone, is calling this number. And she’s telling me, ‘Make sure you hear exactly what they say. They’re going to tell you a number. Write it down.'”

“And then (show creators Kaling and Lang Fisher) hit me with, ‘So we just want to congratulate you on the part of Devi.’ And I was like, ‘Oh, oh wow. My life is changing.'”

Mindy’s other big project: motherhood

As if writing and producing Late Night, in which she co-starred with Oscar-winner Emma Thompson, didn’t keep her busy enough, Kaling has also been busy as a new mom to her daughter, Katherine.

View this post on Instagram

A lazy Sunday with my little

A post shared by Mindy Kaling (@mindykaling) on

She recently told The New York Times, ““I’m very impatient, and having a baby requires an amount of patience that I was worried about,” Kaling says. “But they don’t tell you that the thing will look so much like you, and do things that are so sweet and adorable, that you’ll naturally not have the same impatience that you would have with a stranger or someone who works for you.”

Tennis’ former bad boy and now, velvety-voiced narrator

Never Have I Ever will feature narration by, surprisingly, tennis great John McEnroe.

McEnroe confirmed in an appearance on Late Night with Seth Meyers that he will narrate the comedy series as himself. His addition to the program brings an emotional component to the series as the hero of lead character Devi’s deceased father.

John McEnroe | Joel Ford/Getty Images

At one time considered professional tennis’ bad boy, McEnroe has for many years been considered a respected broadcaster for Grand Slam tennis tournaments.

McEnroe told Meyers that having him narrate was a natural choice for Kaling, as her parents were “big tennis fans. They used to watch me play way back when.”

Never Have I Ever premieres on Netflix next year.