Wednesday, October 20, 2021

How the Kaun Banega Crorepati prize money was set as ‘crore’ by Rupert Murdoch

Kaun Banega Crorepati 13 hosted by Amitabh Bachchan has premiered on Monday i.e. 23rd August 2021. Many contestants of the show have returned back home as crorepatis but many of the people do not know about the original prize money set for the show was in lakh. And it was biz king Rupert Murdoch himself who decided to put the crore tag on the show.

In a recent interview with indianexpress.com, Siddhartha Basu who has directed the show has revealed the story behind the prize money during the launch. He is now a consultant on the reality show, shared that given the huge money at stake, it was definitely stressful for him and the Star Plus team to deliver.

When he was asked that how did the team has decided to jump to crore from the pre-decided lakh, he said, “Rupert Murdoch himself as it was then unprecedented on Indian TV and a game-changer, which he said was out of reach of the competitors.”

“KBC remains the most bountiful show ever in India with hitherto unmatched payouts. The prize money was one part of such a huge show — the open mass participation, the technology, the budget, the expectation — all were bigger than anything attempted till then, so yes, you bet it was ultra stressful, but then the challenge was far more exciting,” Siddhartha Basu further said.

Today it is a known story that how Sameer Nair, then VP, Star Plus programming has suggested the name of Amitabh Bachchan as the host. Back then, no megastar has ever hosted any TV shows in India or anywhere else. “The intention was to make the biggest bang possible,” Basu shared.

However, it was not that easy for the team, as Big B has taken some time to set his mind before entering the small screen as he was generally counseled not to do so. Basu has also shared that how he has flown to London on the original set of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? before the senior actor gave his nod to the project.

“However, he (Amitabh Bachchan) decided to see the recording of the original show in London before making up his mind. Once he saw it, he decided to do KBC with one rider that we replicate the conditions and discipline of that show. There was no looking back, and the scale and scope of shows on Indian TV expanded exponentially,” he shared.

As Sidharth Basu has shared that Amitabh Bachchan does not have a long list of don’ts. He said, “Initially, he had reservations about talking about himself and getting personal with contestants. He opened up slowly and now thoroughly enjoys interacting with people from all walks of life.”

Kaun Banega Crorepati started premiering on 23rd August and it will air every Monday-Friday at 9 pm on Sony TV.

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