About a year or two ago, UTV Bindass had launched a horror reality show that was shot in the most eerie locations in the country. Contestants were made to face their biggest phobias. Now, horror reality shows are moving one step up. Big CBS launched the new edition of the American show, 13: Fear Is Real, on July 13, and now plans to bring it to India.
The channel's head honcho, Tarun Katiyal, points out that our country has a huge appetite for reality TV and scary shows. "Our show combines both, and takes the genre (horror) to another level. So far, we've seen shows that narrate horror stories of haunted houses and lost souls indirectly. 13: Fear Is Real doesn't just tell stories; it's a game of survival where contestants have to endure terrifying situations on the way to the big prize," he explains.
The format brings 13 people together, who compete to stay 'alive' in the contest while facing their darkest fears. Situations on the show are inspired by horror movies and are packaged with shocks, psychological scares and beware-of-the-dark moments.
Each week, one or two unlucky victims are 'killed off' through frightening challenges until there is just one left.
"We have to adapt the format for Indian audiences and create frights without hurting the sentiments of the viewers," says Katiyal. The number 666 is widely considered unholy and is associated with popular horror culture. Inspired by this, the prize money in the US was $66,666, which approximately comes to Rs 3.6 crore. "We will find a suitable Indian equivalent," promises Katiyal.