After 18 years and over 50 TV shows, producer Ekta Kapoor is clear she doesn’t intend to re-enter the reality show scene ever again, despite rumours that she is planning one with a leading channel. Her only two reality shows, Kabhi Kabhi Pyaar Kabhi Kabhi Yaar (Sony Entertainment) and Kaun Jeetega Bollywood Ka Ticket (9X), got her more brickbats than bouquets.
“We put too much drama into these shows, and even today, regardless of what anyone says, I’m proud of them!” she says. “We took baby steps into the reality show scene with these two shows. Today, I know that I can do better but I am content narrating stories about the common man in my movies and TV shows. The audience connects with them better and that is what matters.”
Prod her on the recent rumours that she is launching a third reality show, and Ekta says, “Producing a reality show takes a certain kind of expertise and I don’t think I have it right now. In the midst of my on-going projects, I have no time to run through new formats and think about how to execute them.”
The 36-year-old producer is currently on a high after actor Vidya Balan won a National Award for her performance in The Dirty Picture. “It proves that the human side of any story, combined with an actor’s honest effort, can make or break a project,” says Ekta, who has four Hindi daily soaps on air just now, each revolving around the ‘aam aadmi’ (common man), which is a shift from her large-canvas shows in the past.
Parichay airs on Colors, Bade Acche Lagte Hain and Kya Hua Terra Vaada on Sony and Pavitra Rishta on Zee TV. “Once in a while, we all borrow ideas from popular movies or real life incidents, and play them up in a way to bring in the audience,” she says.
Sameer Soni’s character, Kunal, in Parichay, recently won a court case against Richa (Mona Vasu) after she accused him of rape, unmasking her as the real culprit. The twist reminds you of the Akshay Kumar-Priyanka Chopra starrer Aitraaz.
“The track was my creative team’s idea in the context of the rampant gender bias in society today. If a woman accuses a man of rape, she is easily believed but if the tables are turned, the plea falls on deaf ears. This twist was one of the best ways of highlighting the imbalance that has been sparking off newspaper headlines lately,” she reasons . “This twist also takes Kunal and Siddhi’s love story forward, making their characters more believable.”