MUMBAI: It was in late 2011 when viewers were introduced to one more general entrainment channel (GEC) and who had thought that in a short span of three years, Star Network’s Life OK would challenge the established ones.
After climbing to the third spot in the TAM TV ratings chart and staying there for long now, the channel has proved its might. It created a niche for itself because of its path breaking content like ‘Saubhagyavati Bhava’, ‘Savdhaan India’ and ‘Devon Ke Dev…Mahadev’.
The man behind the success, the channel’s general manager Ajit Thakur is a humble man who believes in delivering results rather than talking about it.
Thakur who took the path less taken, in an earlier interview to indiantelevision.com, had said that before 2014 ends the channel will have new offerings for its viewers.
And keeping to his words of giving viewers a never-before-seen experience, the channel has announced its newest property. A dance reality show, ‘Dance to Dance’ will see Akshay Kumar mentoring the contestants as well as hosting it.
Thakur had earlier said in a statement expressed that he has no aversions in doing what other channels are already doing, be it dancing, singing or saas-bahu soaps, but his focus will be on how to do it differently.
The reality programme will see the dancers perform in challenging venues rather than on a stage or a set. One would dance on a narrow wall or even under water. Kumar will first demonstrate the format to each contestant in the dance format with a commitment of a ‘first of its kind’ show.
Produced by SOL Productions, it is open to trained dancers from across the globe rather than just celebrities. Thakur informed that around 30 per cent of the budget of the series will be spent on marketing. Since, there will be several foreign participants, apart from advertising on channels, newspaper, hoardings and radio announcements, social media will be used heavily to reach the viewers overseas.
Apart from this, there are two more new fiction shows that will grace the small screen, soon. The channel is open to work with new producers and agencies and take the channel to the next level.
It has already joined hands with Rajshri Productions, Balaji Telefilms and producer Vipul Amrutlal Shah. Sources close to the development reveal that all the shows are currently at the planning stage and will have clarity in the next two months.
“The series will be on-air post Diwali,” adds the source.
Thakur intends to maintain the momentum by continuing with non-traditional content on the channel. Ekta Kapoor’s programme tentatively titled - Bade Dhoke Hai Is Raah Mein Pyaar Ke marks the fiction debut of Sonali Bendre on television.
Reported to be a story with a political backdrop, Bendre is supposed to play the protagonist, who will be forced to develop a career of her own after her husband would get caught in charges of corruption.
Talking about the channel’s second upcoming property, Shah needs no introduction. The man who started off his career with the soap opera Ek Mahal Ho Sapno Ka has given the industry many successful movies in Aankhen, Namastey London, Singh Is Kingg, and many more. After the success of the game-changer show 24 on Colors, Shah’s show is touted to be another big success story.
Tentatively titled Force, it will be an action-thriller series. It has also roped former Roadie Rannvijay Singh as the lead.
Last but not the least, Rajshri Productions, which currently has ‘Pyaar Ka Dard Hai…’ on Star Plus, is set to narrate one more love story but in a different manner. The show that was tentatively titled Khel Khel Mein has got its final title in Mere Rang Mein Rangnewali.
The serial stating true to Rajshri’s taste will see a joint family with three generations staying together. The show is touted to be a complete family drama with a ‘slice of life’ story about young love.
“We have set a benchmark for new genres. We want to find more new stories and that as time goes by, will become the next level for Life OK. We have always taken pride in working with new people, both inside Life OK and the people we work with outside, our producers and agencies,” Thakur had said in an earlier statement.