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TV titans vying for prime time slot

A month ago, it was rumoured that top soap producers, Ekta Kapoor and Rajan Shahi, were vying for space on a channel for their upcoming shows. The buzz is that the two are fighting over...

tv Updated: Apr 13, 2010 20:05 IST
Rachana Dubey

Ekta KapoorA month ago, it was rumoured that top soap producers, Ekta Kapoor and Rajan Shahi, were vying for space on Star Plus for their upcoming shows.

Now, the buzz is that there has been a clash between them over the coveted 10 pm slot on the channel. Kapoor’s, Balaji Telefilms and Shahi’s, Director’s Kut have been working on their respective new shows and both want to telecast their show in the prime time slot.

When asked, Shahi denied that he has been asking for that slot. “I was informed 20 days before Bidaai went on air about the slot allotted to it. Likewise for Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata Hai. It’s now become more of a lucky charm for me not to approach the channel, especially Star Plus, for certain slots. I think their programming team is well versed with how to slot what kind of shows. So, I don’t need to approach them for this,” he says.

Prime time, prime space
Kapoor says that she’s not fighting with Shahi over any slot either, and will be happy with the channel’s decision to slot her show where they feel is apt. “I go a long way with Star Plus. We have never fought over these things and we never will. I have always been accommodating. I ensure that I adhere to what the channel asks,” adds Kapoor, who once ruled the 10 pm slot with Kahani Ghar Ghar Kii.

Meanwhile, the show currently taking up the slot is Sabki Laadli Bebo, that toplines Kanwaljeet Singh and Shivshakti Sachdev. The show that started over a year ago hasn’t been performing very well since. It has faced stiff competition from Uttaran on Colors and 12/24 Karol Bagh on Zee TV, that fare better on the TRP charts every week. With the new show, whether it comes from Balaji Telefilms or Director’s Kut, Bebo, it is said will either be axed or taken into the noon slot and eventually be phased out.

A source from the channel confirms. “Plans to replace Bebo have been in the offing for long. But we didn’t find any great replacement. Now, we may take a call on whether we want to continue to run it in the noon slot or simply end it,” adds the source.

QUICK Facts
* Star Plus current ratings: 315-325 points. The channel ranks No 1.
* Ekta Kapoor launched three of her longest running shows, Kahani Ghar Ghar Kii, Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi and Kasautii Zindagi Kay, on the channel in 2000.
* They ended after completing eight years during 2007-08.
* The ratings of the shows were often in double digits.
* Rajan Shahi’s shows, Sapnaa Babul Ka,Bidaai and Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata Hai, took over the prime time slot.
* They continue to dominate the slot between 9pm and 10 pm on weekdays. They have also been among the top five rated soaps for over a year.
* However, their ratings continue to be in single digits.