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SAB TV, the comedy channel offering of Multi Screen Media, will launch four new shows to expand its offering. According to market sources, these include Wah Wah Kya Baat Hai, a reality show, an unnamed travel-based comedy fiction and Jeanie and Juju, a remake of a popular international sitcom.
Wah Wah Kya Baat Hai is a reality show based on Hasya Kavita by some of the popular poets in the industry. Produced by Meera Telefilms, it will be hosted by Taarak Mehta and Neha Mehta (of Taarak Mehta ka Ooltah Chashmah fame). The artists have been shortlisted on the basis of the auditions done across cities. The show will be on air from September 15 on the weekend 10 pm band. Despite being a reality show, it is not an advertiser funded program (AFP) but will be supported by regular spot buy format.
Market experts point out that since Wah Wah Kya Baat Hai will compete directly with some of the top shows of Hindi general entertainment channels, it has to have a universally acceptable strong comedy appeal.
On Star Plus, the same time slot showcases Ek Hazaaron Mein Meri Behna Hai (Saturday) and Hindi movie (Sunday), while on Sony, CID (Saturday) and KBC 6 (Sunday) will give competition to the new show. On Zee TV, DID L'il Masters and Saregamapa (after September) will be poised against Wah Wah Kya Baat Hai.
Also, Colors places its reality show, Zindagi Ki Haqeeqat Se Aamna Saamna, in that time-slot.
It may be noted that RBNL's Big Magic, the channel that targets the Hindi heartland, had launched a similar show, Hasya Panchayat, early this year.
Moving ahead, SAB TV has geared up to launch three more fiction comedies. The earliest in the pipeline is the remake of the popular international sitcom, I Dream of Jeanie. The Indian version is called Jeanie and Juju and features Giaa Manek and Ali Asgar (of Saathiya Saath Nibhana fame). It is also learnt that the channel plans to launch it in the weekday prime time slot.
Apparently, SAB is banking on the popularity of Manek. In an official communiqué, Anooj Kapoor, EVP and business head, SAB TV, says, "With Giaa in the show, we're sure to attract a huge audience as she has a big fan following. The show is unique as it will have special effects and tricks that Jeannie performs. It is an uncommon genre on Indian television and the audience will surely enjoy the novelty."
The tentative next launch will be a travel-based comedy fiction family drama, which will weave in the stories of two friends who travel the world together. It is also learnt that the show will see substantial investments as a major part of the series will be shot outside India. The show will be aired around the beginning of November.
It is also learnt that a few initial episodes of the show will showcase the locales of Mauritius and Switzerland. Sources close to the upcoming show confirm that it is being produced by Deepti Bhatnagar Productions. The production house has earlier worked with the channel for the silent comedy, Malegaon ka Chintu and Main Kab Saas Banungi.
The second season of Gutur Gu, the first silent comedy fiction show, may resurface by the end of this year on SAB. The show was a success and ran for about two and a half years on the channel. It is learnt that the channel plans to launch a new season with the same star cast through the same production house, Fireworks Productions.
The production house is famous for its thriller fiction series, CID and the horror series, Aahat. Though the channel refused to reveal details, market sources close to the upcoming series confirm the news to afaqs!.