Sony rejigs JCPK; plans events special and new daily soaps

In bid to revive the sagging fortunes of its Kaun Banega Crorepati riposte, Jeeto Chappar Phaad Ke, Sony Entertainment Television is set to introduce some bells and whistles and some decorative elements into the Govinda-hosted game-cum-quiz show. According to the grapevine, Bollywood stars of the likes of Jackie Shroff, Javed Jaffrey, Shekar Suman, Urmila Matondkar are expected to come and do a number on JCPK a la KBC. Newspaper reports however have pointed out that National Film Award winner Raveena Tandon and that exasperating but lovable thespian Kader Khan are being talked to currently to put their might behind the show.

"The forthcoming JCPK episodes will be more on the interactive level and participation from the audience will increase, especially the from the school and college going kids who were till now tied up with exams," says SET senior vice president programming and production Rekha Nigam. Nigam admits that JCPK has not managed to set TV sets in homes afire on weekends but she is still hopeful of a spike in the ratings which fell to as low as three in the last week of March (according to ratings firm TAM Media.)

Apart from jazzing up JCPK to make it more appealing to viewers, the channel's management is tomtomming its "week of events" which will showcase a clutch of event-based programmes between 23 April and 30 April.

The first off the starting blocks in the current rollout will be Hrithik Roshan: The man behind the star (23 April 9 pm) and will culminate with two new daily soaps - Kusum (1 May 9 pm) and Kahi Diyaa (1 May, 9:30 pm). It will be followed by Showman of the Millenium (26 April 9pm), Great Bollywood Boogie Woogie (27 April 9.00 pm), the Lata Mangeshkar concert Aye Mere Watan Ke Logo (29 April, 9 pm), and the Hrithik Roshan Special Part II (30 April, 9 pm) which will be immediately followed by Millenium Utsav at 10 pm.

The curious part of this entire affair is that most of what is being aired in this period during the week of events is actually old programming. The Showman of the Millenium was first aired on 31 December '99, the Great Bollywood Boogie Woogie too was telecast in the same year. The Lata Mangeshkar concert had its first telecast last month.

Will viewers take kindly to the old fare that is being shoved down at them? Is Sony showing older shows to get its competitors off guard? Will it unleash a plethora of new earth shaking new shows all of a sudden next month? That only Sony and time can tell us. And both of them are not talking now.

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