Unlock 2.0: After fiction, it is time to resume reality shows
After getting a nod from Maharashtra government, daily soaps on TV have resumed shoots after 100 days, while reality shows are still figuring out a way ahead amid the new social distancing guidelines that are in place.
While shows such as Fear Factor: Khatron Ke Khiladi (KKK), Sa Re Ga Ma Pa L’il Champs, India’s Best Dancer, were on air when the lockdown was announced in March, Roadies held online auditions for the wild card entry and Kaun Banega Crorepati’s selection too went digital.
According to producer Hemant Ruprell of Frames Production Company, India’s Best Dancer is expected to go on floors in mid July, as the team is currently chalking out a procedure.
“The onset of monsoon is a challenge, so is to cut down of crew by 66%. Unlike a 350-450 people, we’ll now have to work with 150. The format of the show won’t change, so we’ll be taking necessary precautions like quarantining the performers, doing health check-up after they perform together on stage,” he says.
For Geeta Kapur, one of the judges of the dance show, everything else would be fine. “But, one thing that would change for me is the way I express myself physically. I hug and dance with a contestant. They’re like my children but now I’ll have to control my emotions because I’ve an ailing mother at home. Then there are other concerns like costumes that are being designed for everyone. Thankfully I have a few of them ready,” she says.
Talking of their upcoming shows, Dance Plus and Super Dancer, Ruprell adds that crew members would now operate in separate marked zones to maintain social distancing.
“Also, there would be no studio audience.People who’d be running around the most would get PPE kits. There would be disinfection tunnel, sanitiser and temperature guns, etc available apart from other things,” he shares.
Ferzad Palia, Head- Voot Select, Youth, Music, and English Entertainment, Viacom18, says that they’re right now exploring shoot locations for their shows, especially Roadies, given that it’s an outdoor format.
“We’ll ensure that SOPs, norms, and formalities directed by the authorities are followed. Since half the show was shot, we finished editing at back end, and have started airing fresh episode June 27 onwards. We have content ready till about September,” informs Palia.
Meanwhile, according to sources, participants of Sa Re Ga Ma Pa L’il Champs are back in Mumbai, and shoots are expected to resume soon.
Amid all the worries about shooting reality shows, producer Preeti Simoes explains why shooting fiction is tougher because in fiction actors shoot in closer proximity for scenes where they’re sitting or eating together, emotional and intimate scenes.
“But in reality shows, people usually are at a distance and camera angles do the needful. We can also shoot in different times and weave in the footage. Participants can be quarantined for episodes that require them to shoot in closer proximity. Also, reality shows shoot two episodes a week,” says Simoes, looking forward to start shooting her next comedy show.
Participants of these shows are also raring to start shooting. Actor Tejasswi Prakash, one of the participants of KKK, shares they finished shooting the entire show last year in Bulgaria, only the finale episode is left, which might be shot in Mumbai.
“We’re told that they’re planning to go on floors tentatively on July 15. I don’t have any apprehensions in going back to work because I know the team will take care of our safety,” she says.
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