Viacom18’s GEC Colors targets July launch; Akshay to host show

MUMBAI: The Hindi general entertainment space is getting crowded by the day. After new players like 9X, NDTV Imagine and Zee Next made their entry into the market, Viacom 18’s Hindi GEC Colors is scheduled to launch in July this year.

Colors CEO Rajesh Kamat says, "We have worked on the 3Ds – distribution, differentiation and disruption. Distribution will be key for the channel for the initial sampling among viewers. We plan to have differentiated scheduling of programs, which will play an important role in its success."

Network 18 group CEO and Viacom 18 Media CEO Haresh Chawla said, "The combination of our stronghold in the young adult and kids audiences and access to the audience franchise of Network18 will lend enormous leverage and strategic advantage to our entry into the mass general entertainment space and we look forward to replicating our success and delighting millions of Indian families with Colors."

The channel has roped in Akshay Kumar to host a 16 episode reality show Fear Factor – Khatro Ke Khiladi. To add more glamour quotient to the show, the channel has also brought in actors and models like Yana Gupta, Pooja Bedi, Aditi Govitrikar, Sonali Kulkarni, Tapur Chatterjee, Tupur Chatterjee, Sayali Bhagat, Nethra Raghuraman, Anjana Sukjani, Dipannita Sharma, Payal Rohtagi, Meghna Naidu and Dipannita Sharma. The show would be shot entirely in South Africa over a period of one month and is being produced by Endemol India.

Colors head, content and creative Ashvini Yardi said that the channel intended to launch with a full-fledged primetimes band. The channel’s two driver shows would be Endemol’s Fear Factor and period drama Mohe Rang De, for which the channel is relying on a love story in the backdrop of the Indian freedom struggle, around 1942, which has been produced by Deepti Bhatnagar Productions.

Endemol India managing director Deepak Dhar said, "We are very pleased to be part of the launch of Colors. Fear Factor is unlike anything that has been seen on Indian television before. The scale is huge and it has some of the country’s biggest stars, and bigger and tougher challenges for the contestants. At Endemol, we have the international lineage and experience to create a show of this magnitude and we are certain that it will appeal to our viewers."

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