Mumbai. In order to give stiff competition to Colors TV’s reality show Bigg Boss, television news channel Times Now has decided to have its own Bigg Boss style
reality show news show.
The news channel will hire guests who will spend three months in TV studios and keep on debating one issue after another, which will be telecast on the news channel every evening and will replace The Newshour –channel’s flagship show.
“Of course, Arnab Goswami will play the role of Salman Khan and anchor the show,” a news channel source confirmed, “In fact, Arnab will enter the house each day, unlike Salman, and take part in the discussions.”
“So, technically, The Newshour will not be much different from how it is now, except that we’ll have guests who would be spending all the time in our studios,” the source explained.
Channel believes that such a format has many benefits. First, people appear to watch any random stuff in the name of “reality show”, second, the channel can start showing “live discussions” anytime during the day, and third, the guests won’t be able to go to a rival news channel and hence everything will be “exclusive”.
Experts too agree that the news channel had taken a right step. “Television news channels don’t compete with each other, they compete with entertainment channels for TRPs and advertisement revenues, so this makes complete sense,” said an expert.
The name and format of the show is still being decided, but guests might not be voted out as Times Now believes in “more the merrier” concept for panel discussions.
Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam, who has earlier appeared in Color TV’s Bigg Boss as well, has already confirmed his availability even as the news channel is in talks with various other people, mostly from the world of politics.
“We are targeting politicians like Manish Tewari and Ravi Shankar Prasad, who can fight with each other, while we rope in Teesta Setalvad for igniting those fights,” the channel source revealed and conceded that the channel would mostly focus on Gujarat assembly elections due in December.
The channel is also in talks with Kapil Sibal and Digvijay Singh as wild card entry to the studios who would be making wild statements.
“We wanted Anna Hazare too, but he said that he has more important work to do and he was not jobless for three months,” the channel source further disclosed, “Anna asked us to talk to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who can easily afford to be absent for three months without any work being affected.”
Channel sources said that Arvind Kejriwal too refused to be a captive guest for three months as he was busy making list of politicians to expose and bills to burn. With cartoonist Aseem Trivedi going to Colors TV’s Bigg Boss show, channel is trying to convince Kumar Vishwas from the Team Anna.
“Vinod Sharma and Vinod Mehta, purported to be print journalists but always on-air, will be there too,” the source confirmed.
“And of course Suhel Seth will be there, we are not even asking him to confirm!” said the channel source.