The current batch of reality shows are soon approaching a close and Hindi general entertainment channels have begun to pull out the replacements’ list. February 2011 will see a host of new launches by Hindi GECs in the perpetual bid to quench the demand for non-fiction content and cater to a different audience section.
In October 2010, the Hindi GE space saw the near simultaneous launch of three high buzz reality format offerings – ‘Masterchef India’, ‘Bigg Boss 4’ and ‘Kaun Banega Crorepati’.
As the shows came to their pre-decided ends, Star Plus was amongst the first to replenish the non-fiction line-up with ‘Wife Bina Life’, which premiered in January 2011. After the end of ‘Masterchef’, in the interim, the channel has been focusing on its weekday and weekend fiction programming.
Another area of focus has been the various award shows that have been aired on the Network. Star Plus is clear about their brand message and has taken many steps in the direction. Scaling up its brand philosophy to unexplored territory, Star Plus has announced that ‘Star Parivaar Awards’ will be held in the city of Macau this year. In the eighth year of its run, this is a first time the channel’s much-awaited and highly watched property is crossing borders and would be telecast over the duration of March 28 to April 3, 2011.
Another upcoming launch is the format show ‘Just Dance’ with gloss quotient Hrithik Roshan, global auditions for which will begin on February 27, 2011. Star Plus has informed that while ‘Just Dance’ is scheduled to be launched after the wave of cricketing events sweeps over, a date has not been fixed as yet.
Meanwhile, the controversial ‘Sach Ka Saamna’ is up for another season too.
‘Bigg Boss 4’ ended this year in the first week of January, post which Colors, too, has focussed on strengthening its weekday fiction line-up with new launches to fill in the space left by ‘Bigg Boss’, while weekends saw the screening of film releases. At a press meet, Colors announced the launch of ‘Wanted: High Alert’ on Saturdays in the 10 pm slot. The show is an extension to the channel’s core branding message of ‘shows with a social message’. Produced by BAG Films, the show will be hosted by actor Sushant Singh, who will be seen narrating real life cases of suspects and convicts on the run and urging the common man to take charge of his safety.
As a programming strategy, Zee TV has always relied less on big-ticket realities. At the moment, ‘Dance India Dance Doubles’ is the only format show on the channel. The channel has announced no impending launches in this area, yet.
Sony Entertainment Television currently has three non-fiction shows spread over the week – ‘Jhalak Dikkhla Jaa’, ‘Maa Exchange’ and ‘Jubilee Comedy Circus’ on Fridays and Saturdays. ‘X Factor’ is soon to be launched, but has no confirmed date announced as of now. This has the channel’s non-fiction quota fulfilled until end of March-beginning April period, by when ‘Kaun Banega Crorepati’ will return with Season 6. Last week, the channel aired Filmfare Awards, which fetched them a 5-plus TVR.
After the marketing chatter around ‘Zor Ka Jhatka’, Imagine TV is all set with the next launch in its non-fiction menu with ‘Shaadi Teen Crore Ki’, starting February 28, filling in the 9 pm slot. Speaking on the idea behind the show, Nikhil Madhok, Senior Director - Marketing & Communication, Imagine TV, told exchange4media, “Our big launch for the quarter is ‘Zor Ka Jhatka’. Our strategy remains the same and for our new launch, we are relying on the platform and buzz that has been generated.”
As channels are stepping into the last phase of their fiscal, new announcements are definitely stirring up the scenario week on week. And, this is just the non-fiction bit of the picture.