In a bid to attract more eyeballs from India by offering a 360-degree lifestyle content, Discovery Travel & Living (DT&L), the international lifestyle channel from the Discovery stable, is lining up new themes for coming months.
"When DT&L was launched in the fag end of 2004, lifestyle to most meant only fashion. However, the booming Indian economy, increasing disposable incomes and consumer confidence are now driving demand for lifestyle-oriented television content. We have been evaluating various themes and TV formats that would fit into our programming strategy and will air around eight refreshing and compelling programmes every quarter," said Rajiv Bakshi, director (marketing and communications), Discovery Communications India.
The new genre-defining programmes that are slated to go on air this quarter include Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, a show based on male make-overs done by a group of gay men. The show is premised on and plays with the stereotypes that gay men are superior in matters of fashion, style and personal grooming.
In each episode, a team of five gay men known collectively as the Fab Five perform a makeover on a person, usually a straight man, revamping his wardrobe, lifestyle and food.
Also on offer is Monster House, an interior-based show where a team of builders and designers work against the clock to turn ordinary homes into extraordinary places to live.
DT&L's India-related programmes that are currently on air include The Great Indian Wedding, A Matter of Taste, Indian Rendezvous and Adventures of the Ladies Tailor.
Stating that the channel's focus at the moment was on programming that differentiates from others, Bakshi said they were currently working on a couple of shows focused on India, which would be telecast during this year.
Discovery Travel's USP is its presence in 170 countries and it would leverage this strength to create a strong bond with its Indian viewers. It has no plans to Indianise the channel as it wants to continue to be an international lifestyle channel of choice, Bakshi said.
"Indian programming will never dominate the channel. Indian content will be a small but significant part of the repertoire of our programmes as we plan to air them in other parts of the world. However, DT&L will have at least 15 per cent of Indian content on air at any given point of time," he added.
Targeted at the upscale audience, mostly adults with an international outlook, DT&L at present has a cumulative subscriber base of 26 million across the top 30 cities in India.