Mumbai: Sony TV`s popular game show Kaun Banega Crorepati (KBC) is set to return to small screen in a newer and a bigger avatar with megastar Amitabh Bachchan as a host, with an aim to expand their reach to smaller cities.
"Last year KBC was a hit in small parts due to Mr Bachchan. His creativity, professionalism and talent had played a prominent part in attracting people from smaller places and we hope to do so again through this season. It will help take the channel to new level," said Manjeet Singh, CEO, Multiscreen Media, of which Sony TV is a part, during the launch of the show Tuesday night.
And with the kind of people Amitabh met in the last season, the veteran star agrees that there is a lot of untapped talent in the smaller cities.
"In last season, the kind of contestants with whom I got a chance to meet were really good and even I learnt that fact that no one should be underestimated. People from small towns came in, some of them from the places we didn`t even know came out with flying colours on the show. This shows there is so much talent in the interiors," said the 68-year-old looking dapper in blue velvet coat.
"Through this show I got a chance to meet people whom I would never have met," he added.
Holding true to their aim, the channel has even changed the time slot of the show from 9 p.m. to 8.30 p.m. slot.
"The objective of the time slot is to expand the reach of both the channel and the show. The idea is here to get larger audiences from the smaller towns," said N.P. Singh, COO Multi Screen Media.
Produced by Big Synergy Media, the fifth season of KBC, which goes on air Aug 15, is back with host of innovative and fresh developments, top prize of Rs. 5 crore and a new philosophy "Koi insaan chhota nahi hota" (Don`t underestimate anyone).
Last year, there were two safe havens at Rs 10,000 and Rs 3,20,000, where if a contestant reaches, he or she would take home at least that much money, however, in the new season the contestants would be allowed to choose their own safe havens in the money tree. However, the four lifelines remain the same Audience Poll, Ask an Expert, Phone a Friend and Double Dip.
And Siddharth Basu of Big Synergy promises to provide audiences with more humane and motivational stories shown in the previous season.
"While creating the show, there have been many challenges as you have to reach out far and wide. The show has always been about human story, this time we have dug deeper in the country to find contestants and each of them have a range of motivational and humane stories," said Basu.
Sneha Rajani, executive vice president and business head of the channel admits that the new contestants on the show "represent the modern India".
"The demand of the show was so much that we had to bring back the show within nine months, much earlier than we anticipated. In this season we got close to 45 lakh entries, during the auditions we realise that the contestants represented India of today. There were people of various colours, caste and creed with no limitations at all," said Rajani.
The show, which will run for 14 weeks, will also have special themes and special episodes.
Actors Saif Ali Khan and Deepika Padukone have already shot for an episode.