Cashing on the spirit of cricket

Cashing on the spirit of cricket

Daredevil: Priyanka Chopra will host the IPL edition of ‘Khatron Ke Khiladi’.It’s raining cricket on television, courtesy the third season of the Indian Premier League (IPL). While this is a virtual treat for cricket lovers, others need not despair. With a slew of new shows, channels are outdoing each other in launching new programming content and premiering blockbuster movies — all of which reads as great news for the couch potato.

Movie lovers are in for a treat. Hollywood Premiere League (HPL) season II on HBO is screening Academy Award and Golden Globe nominated family flicks. Explains Shruti Bajpai, Country Manager (South Asia) HBO Asia, “To celebrate the spirit of sports during
IPL, we launched HPL, a line-up of 60 action-filled blockbusters, one every day, right after the match at 11 pm. We have doubled up the excitement with interesting value additions like choosing the ‘HPL man of the match’, snippets of ‘catch of the match’, ‘best moments of HPL’ and even a scoreboard to track the box office record and award haul.”

IPL has entered into a unique entertainment licensing deal with Colors to further enhance the ‘cricketainment’ quotient by combining the inimitable spirit of cricket and the glamourous world of Bollywood and entertainment. The tie-up is churning out shows like ‘IPL Rockstar’, an IPL edition of ‘Fear Factor – Khatron Ke Khiladi’ among others.
Commenting on this partnership, Lalit Modi, Chairman and Commissioner,
IPL says, “I have always maintained that the IPL is a cricketing carnival like no other and with this unique partnership, we are delivering on our promise to extend the IPL franchise beyond cricket, the IPL season. Moreover beyond imagination.”

Adds Ashvini Yardi, Head of Programming, Colors, “We have entered into a three-year partnership with IPL, which gives us the license to produce four shows. ‘Fear Factor’ IPL Edition is our driver programme and we have, in fact, recently announced that Priyanka Chopra will be anchoring the show.”  The special IPL edition of ‘Fear Factor – Khatron Ke Khiladi’, will have 13 cricketers (Indian as well as international) competing with each other to vie for the ‘Fear Factor — Khatron Ka Khiladi Khitaab’ for 2010.

Priyanka Chopra is extremely quipped about hosting her very first show on television. She says, “I am looking forward to begin a new innings on TV with this show — a sure shot in pumping up adrenalin levels. It’s exciting to be a part of a concept that is unique and associated with some of the biggest names in cricket.” Another show related with the IPL is the ‘IPL Awards’, which can be dubbed as the Oscars of the cricket world. Adds Yardi, “These awards will see superstars of Bollywood and international performers shake a leg alongside our heroes of the cricket pitch.”

As for the makers of others shows who are not connected in any way with
the IPL; they are still confident of what they are bringing to the table. “Our
USP is that we understand the young female general entertainment channel (GEC) viewer very well and design our shows to cater to the segment. As a result, our shows are least affected during IPL,” says Nikhil Madhok, VP Marketing and Communication, Imagine.

He adds further, “Last year our viewership increased during the IPL and the data this year indicates the same.” So all you TV buffs out there, get ready to be bowled over in more ways than one!

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