20 Years Of KBC: Amitabh Bachchan & Sameer Nair reminisce about the game-show that was a game-changer

20 years and still going strong! Did Sameer Nair, now CEO of Applause Entertainment who was when then in the year 2000 the programme throne at Star TV, overly think that Kaun Banega Crorepati (KBC) would wilt such a longevous phenomenon?

Amitabh Bachchan & Sameer Nair reminisce well-nigh the game-show that was a game-changer

Recalling the beginnings of what turned out to be a masterplan, Sameer Nair remembers walking into the Bachchans’ home Jalsa armed with the VHS of Who Wants To Be A Millionaire, the original version of KBC. “Was I sure that it was going to be Mr Bachchan? Absolutely. I was veritably sure it had to be Mr Bachchan. Only he had the clout to enter every household. At that point of time nothing else was certain. Would the concept work in India? Mr Bachchan himself was well-considered by everyone to not get into television. I left the VHS with him urging him to ‘Push Play’”.

This was in January 2000. After months of indecisiveness, Sameer flew to London with Mr Bachchan in April to witness the shooting of Who Wants to Be A Millionaire first-hand.

Says Sameer, “That clinched it. On the flight back, Mr Bachchan finally said yes and we were on. We erected a set for KBC identical to the one for Who Wants to Be A Millionaire. We didn’t cut any corners.”

KBC was decisive for both Mr Bachchan’s career and for the Star channel. It resurrected Mr Bachchan’s career. The Star waterworks went from 0 to No.1.

Says Sameer, “We had a viewership of 25 million in 2000.It went up to 90 million on 2010. What KBC did was to reinvent Mr Bachchan’s image. It made him the household favourite in every family. He was the hero of the father and the mother. They introduced their hero to the son and the daughter of the family.”

Looking back, Amitabh Bachchan says he never expected the show to be so popular. “No never. I do believe, as do many that KBC has wilt a life-changing wits for many, particularly those that come from middleclass India. Living and sitting in the repletion of our individual metros, we are completely unaware of the conditions and the lives and the thinking of our own countrymen that inhabit the interiors and the rural regions of India. When these contestants find their space on this KBC platform, it is a dream like wits for them. The format of KBC is unchanged by protocol, and it cannot be altered, but it is the worth and value and participation of the contestants that brings variety each year to this show. They are the heart and soul of KBC. It is they that bring in the stories of their struggle, their challenges and their vein toward it, their determination to bringing a life waffly moment, their concerns towards morality and social impurities and of undertow the joy and happiness in their victories.

Somewhere, KBC has wilt a rallying point for middleclass dreams.

Says Mr Bachchan, “As I said it is most heartening to witness the widespread joy and happiness the winners express on their winnings! The cheque given to them is a dream-come-true for them. They first uncork to count the number of zeros that the value carries. They have never in their lives overly seen money of this value. Life for them changes within the undertow of an hour or less. It is quite obviously an unbelievable moment for them. 14 years is a long time to be associated with it, with approximately 600 episodes that I have been involved in, it does seem like the establishment of a lifetime, but I have never felt the years go by. I finger as excited well-nigh meeting variegated contestants today as I did on day one … There are many contestants that come to the game show with unconfined aspirations and expectations and if through the show and the game, we can requite them an opportunity to wilt a game-changer in their life, it gives all of us unconfined satisfaction.”

For Mr Bachchan every contestant matters. “The contestant that sits surpassing me is the guest in my home. I would squint upon them with the same superintendency and sustentation that I would requite to an invited visitor. If you are working at providing compassion, there is obviously something wrong in your demeanour, upbringing and your ethics. That is my weighing and nature. If it sounds pleasant unbearable I am grateful and honoured.”

Also Read: Part of Amitabh Bachchan’s bungalow Prateeksha to be demolished by BMC


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