Kairali TV changes prime time strategy, to introduce soaps

MUMBAI: Kairali TV, the Malayalam general entertainment channel, is changing its prime time game plan. It is introducing soaps in this band for the first time to replace some of its interactive and music-based programming.

The channel's prime time is being filled up with four daily soaps. Kairali TV is also bringing in some other key changes in its programming schedule.

Explains Kairali TV managing director John Brittas, "There were a couple of soaps earlier in other bands and then we opted for an interval. In the prime time, we had been trying other genres. But now, since we have People TV taking care of infotainment, we thought of making the main channel a pure general entertainment channel. Also, various reputed production houses in Malayalam have now joined hands with us to produce soaps."

Kairali TV has now packed the 7:30 pm to 9 pm block with three soaps. The Central-Pictures produced Priyam has already been launched in the 7:30 pm slot. In the 8 pm slot, the channel will launch on 12 December Oru Mandara Poovu, a daily serial that will run for one month. Another soap launching on the same day, in the 8:30 pm slot, is a sitcom Kochu Thersiakochu starring many of the topline Malayalam film stars. In January, Oru Mandara Poovu will be replaced by another daily.

Kairali TV is following the commission model for the soaps. Cost-wise, it is spending in the range of Rs 75,000 - Rs 80,000 per episode.

Kairali TV is getting rid of its interactive shows including Kairali On Demand and Kairali Weekender. The music band will be shifted to other time slots.

"Its been decided to replace these assorted programmes with soap-based programmes. We are taking Kairali On Demand and Kairali Weekender off the air for the time being. We haven't decided on the new schedule of our music-based shows. Some of the shows may be shifted to People TV also," says Kairali TV executive producer Shibu Chakravarthy.

According to Chakravarthy, the evening 30-minute news bulletin at 7 pm will be pushed down to 6:30 pm from 12 December. He added that the Sunday prime time movie at 3:30 pm was also under review.

"We have plans to revamp our movie band. Kairali TV has acquired some latest Malayalam hits including Thommanum Makkalum and Chaandupottu. This gives us confidence," says Chakravarthy.


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