Bollywood stars today are no longer happy to just stay on the big screen. Many have also tried their luck on the small screen with great success. Besides acting in TV series and judging shows, they have also tried their hand at hosting shows. Their onscreen popularity translates into instant buzz and business.
It has become a recent trend in Bollywood for many A-list actors to appear on the small screen. These stars are being seen more on reality and performance shows than on TV serials. Their visibility on these shows enhances profits and viewership for channels and the stars in turn reach out to a bigger audience.
Salman Khan who has hosted quite a few editions of Bigg Boss hosted the seventh edition of Bigg Boss too. It became a major hit in India and raked up many controversies that made headlines.
To Salman, a TV show gives a chance for the audience to see the actors in a completely different light, a far cry from their characters in Bollywood movies. “For any actor, the real heroes are his fans. So, by doing a TV show, my audiences get to see the real Salman. Isn’t this (TV) a better reward for me?” he said. Sana Khan, one of the contestants in Bigg Boss 6, bagged a major role in Salman’s upcoming movie Jai Ho. Her spat with a rival contestant won Salman’s heart. When Salman was looking for an innocent yet aggressive character in Jai Ho he felt that Sana would fit the bill.
Amitabh Bachchan hosted the mega game show Kaun Banega Crorepati which went on to create history on the small screen. There were impulsive reactions to the show and it grabbed even more eyeballs when for the first time a female was handed the crorepati title.
Television has become so big that Bollywood’s superstar Shah Rukh Khan admits that an actor’s success today is not measured merely by box office profits, but his association with a TV show. “Today stardom is not about awards and box office numbers, but about who has a bigger TV show. So I am trying to do something. I have told Punit and the Zee family to look out for something for me,” the actor said.
Shah Rukh started his career on the small screen with the show Fauji followed by Circus in 1989. “The TV audience is very big and I also started with TV and I respect the medium a lot. Television is a great platform for every actor and actress. I would love to participate in it whenever given a chance,” he added.
Ajit Thakur, business head, Sony Entertainment Television says: “Shows like KBC and Bigg Boss are as big as films. The reach TV gives today is far wider than the film release on a weekend. And the remuneration is also high. All these factors make stars host TV shows.”