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Spelling magic

tv Updated: May 22, 2010 12:48 IST
Rachana Dubey
Rachana Dubey
Hindustan Times
Highlight Story

For a change, a reality show will see magicians competing against each other. The show called Magic is being produced by Winay Mahajan’s The Right Picture (TRP) and will see Jackie Shroff as the judge.

Due to air on

Star One

, this show is, presumably, the first of its kind in India, where the focus will be seen shifting from dance performances and singing, to magic. Auditions were reportedly conducted across 18 - 19 cities in India, mapping the interiors and some prominent cities too.

Those probable judges

Sources say that the production company had approached actors Jeetendra and Naseeruddin Shah and magicians Chris Angel and Franz Harari to judge the show.

“None of them agreed to be a part of the show for reasons best known to them. The production house managed to convince Jackie Shroff to judge it along with magicians S A C Vasanth and Rajat Narsimhan. The short listed contesting magicians are fantastic. The show is expected to have the regular elimination pattern and will go on air on June 26,” informs a source from the channel, stating that it will occupy the 8.30 pm slot.

Jackie Shroff confirmed his presence on the show, but says that he still has to hear a final word from the channel. “If it happens, I’m sure it will turn out to be a great show. I’m confident because it’s different from the regular reality ones. Magic is something that everyone from a kid to an aged person enjoys. I’m sure it will be fun. I have just shot for the show’s promo,” he adds.

This show isn’t Shroff’s first outing on TV. He recalls his days as the host of a show called


. “I was probably the first Bollywood actor to jump on to the television bandwagon. I started hosting this Bollywood oriented show when no one knew the concept of a star host. We weren’t as evolved back then. Later, I also hosted


, which aired on Sony and got some really great responses. It even won some awards. Strangely, we never returned with the show,” states Shroff.

All that matters

When asked about the various other celebrities who had been approached to judge I

ndia’s Magic Star

, he points out that even his role in


, with Shah Rukh Khan, had gone to several people before coming to him. “I’m used to this. There were many great celebrities who turned down the role of Chunni babu in


. History has repeated itself. Some prominent celebrities turned this one down and it came to me. It doesn’t matter who didn’t take it. What matters is who took it up,” he chuckles.

Shroff reminisces that when he started doing shows on TV, he was looked down upon. “Look how times change! Today, everyone worth his or her salt and pepper wants to do something on TV. It’s big bucks, big name and comparatively less effort. Maybe that’s why a lot of film stars today run their kitchens on TV assignments,” he states.

The International Magic Association is supposedly supporting the show. It will also help design the magic acts for the show. Since there is a month for it to go on air, the search for the hosts is still on. The magicians, who’ve been short-listed, are reportedly undergoing rigorous training sessions under the guidance of expert magicians.

Eventually, the actual competition will be between the top 10 selected magicians. The show will last for a period of 10 weeks only.