Bollywood’s best-known action star, Akshay Kumar, is back on the show he made his television debut with. Contrary to rumours of colleague Salman Khan replacing him, the actor will host the forthcoming season of Fear Factor: Khatron Ke Khiladi (KKK) that goes on air, in all likelihood, between May and June, soon after IPL 4 wraps up.
Ashvini Yardi, head of programming, Colors, confirms saying, “This time, we have 13 gorgeous women participating. So, we had to bring India’s official action star back to prime time TV.”
Akshay is said to have allotted dates of approximately 30 days for the show, which will be shot in South Africa’s Cape Town this summer. The winner, apart from the cash prize, will also get to star in an ad campaign with the star host.“I love adventure and I can’t wait to go back and start tormenting my subjects with some deadly stunts. Returning to this show is like coming back home,” says Akshay. The teaser campaign of Khatron Ke Khiladi Season Four was released on March 27, when Akshay’s home production Tees Maar Khan was playing on the channel.
Though the action star is now officially on board, his contract seemed to be in jeopardy, according to rumours that were doing the rounds. It was said that Salman Khan had shot a promo of KKK 4 secretly in Bangkok, without Akshay’s knowledge. Prior to that, news broke that Ajay Devgn had been approached to anchor the show.
All about the money
Apparently both these rumours were floated to bring down Akshay’s remuneration, which was initially between Rs 2.75 crore to Rs 3 crore an episode. Now, he’s supposedly taking home between Rs 1.25 to Rs 1.75 crore an episode, given that he’s not had a great year at the box office.
Another rumour is that the action hero sealed the deal with Colors late last year, when his second TV show, MasterChef India Season One, was still on air on Star Plus. Considering that season three of Khatron Ke Khiladi couldn't sustain the initial momentum, and the action hero’s films also didn't exactly set the cash registers ringing, both parties amicably decided to settle for a fee between Rs 1.25 and Rs 1.75 crore an episode, which was fair for both sides.
Yardi firmly refuses to comment, saying, “It’s so unfair to talk bucks. Priyanka Chopra did a good job as host last season. But deadly stunts, thrills, actions are identified with Akshay. There is no better fit for the show. The rest is better left to everyone's imagination.”