Yantra Media, Asianet programming initiative takes on movie piracy

MUMBAI: After unleashing its fight against movie piracy with the launch of a full-fledged digital movie project last month, the Kerala entertainment space is now all set to deliver a second punch on the industry evil, this time through a TV show venture.

In an innovative programming initiative, the Chennai-based production house Yantra Media and the Malayalam entertainment channel Asianet have come together to launch a movie-based game show Super Hit Challenge, which promises to nurture Malayalee's theatre-viewing habit.

Aspiring contestants will be asked to answer certain questions based on the movie they have recently watched in a theatre, through an Interactive Voice Response Systems (IVRS) system. The binding clause of the 'rules' is that, the contestant should submit the movie ticket he had purchased in the theatre to ensure his entry into the contest.

The game show promises bumper prize to the winner of each episode. The 'challenge factor' comes in, when the ousted contestants decide to 'challenge' the leading scorer, when he prepares to face the bumper prize questions, and the amount both the parties have already won is at stake.

Speaking to, Yantra Media head Shyamsundar said, the show would unfold a unique synergy between the television and movie industries. "Today, in television, we get to see a lot of film-based programmes, which are meant to boost the box office fortunes of those films covered. But, none of them really make an attempt to fight the more serious issue of movie piracy, which is actually killing the industry. In this context, Yantra Media, supported by Asianet, has conceptualised this innovative format. This format urges and inspires consumers to watch movies in theatres only", says Shyamsundar.

Yantra Media has made an initial investment of Rs 4.5 million on the project. "Since we will be spending a lot on the prizes, the actual investment would peak in the long run. We are in the process of signing up leading brands for the prizes," says Shyamsundar.

Asianet is expected to launch Super Hit Challenge in August and each episode will have a half hour run. The channel is presently working out a slot for the game show.

Anchored by popular Malayalam film actor Mukesh, Super Hit Challenge promises participation from the cream of the film industry. "The whole industry is backing us. Superstars like Mammootty and Mohanlal have already assured us their participation in the show," says Shyamsundar.

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