STAR to host a series of
MUMBAI: The STAR network has dismissed reports that it is
contemplating sweeping changes in its game show "Kaun Banega
Crorepati (KBC)," whose success is unparalleled in Indian television
Denying reports in a section of the press that the TRP
(television rating points)-topping show was now going to be telecast
three times instead of four times a week, STAR's chief of
programming Sameer Nair says: "We're still very much on with four
episodes of KBC. And we don't intend to change that. Why should we
when KBC continues to far exceed the TRPs of everything else on
"What we are now doing is we are converting one of the four
episodes of KBC each week into a children's special which will come
on Sunday mornings while the other three regular episodes will
continue to be telecast on weekdays," he adds. KBC will be also
featuring married couples as contestants for 16 episodes.
"We've had remarkable success with KBC," says Nair. "Now we wish
to sustain it. As for rumours about reorganising KBC, why fix it
when it ain't broke? We have no plans of tampering with KBC at all.
People just love to talk."
Nair also dismisses reports that Amitabh Bachchan-hosted KBC is
feeling threatened by the Govinda-hosted game show "Jeeto Chappad
Phaad Ke". "The TRP ratings of 'Jeeto' are down to 4. Our threat
from Sony's show is zero. We aren't even on the same days or slots.
The one time when we took them on headlong with our Madhuri
Dixit-Sachin Tendulkar special we wiped them out," he says.
"But of course we aren't out to prove anything by relocating KBC
to the weekends to compete with 'Jeeto Chappad Phaad Ke'. We already
have control of the weekdays," he adds. "Besides it isn't much
different from our KBC. So at the end of the day 'Jeeto' is no more
than a well-produced me-too."
Nair poohpoohs reports that KBC's ratings have been plummeting
recently. "Such stories are an inevitable fallout of any successful
event. KBC had spectacularly huge ratings when it started. Now it
has settled down to a respectable level. Between 9 and 10 p.m. we
still continue to remain by far the undisputed No.1. There's no
question of any other show creeping up on us," he says. "We are not
only dominating the ratings between 9 and 10 but also between 10 and
11 p.m. with our two back-to-back soaps 'Kahani Ghar Ghar Ki' and
'Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi'. The first 12 slots in the TRPs
have been ours from November."
Nair says he finds it strange that some sections of the press are
waiting for KBC to fall when the show's exemplary success should be
celebrated by all Indians. "This is nothing but the slow crab
pulling down the crab going up the wall," he says.
Meanwhile, Zee Telefilms now plans to hit back at KBC with a
slice of Reality TV entitled "Prisoners of War". Nair confirms that
STAR too is looking at Reality TV as the next big bang after the
game show. "But it's got to be done in the right way suited to
Indian viewers. We're being circumspect about it. Incidentally,
Reality TV needn't be grim. It can be loads of fun. Zee has decided
to be the first one off the block. It's a good move to have Reality
TV as competition for our game show. Let's see how it goes," he
STAR has some great shows planned for this summer season. But
getting big film stars into soaps isn't an immediate plan. There's a
new thriller from Ekta Kapoor's Balajee Telefilms and a political
satire going on STAR in the coming weeks. (IANS)