India’s answer to the vicariously delightful, and controversial, Big Brother is the hit reality series Bigg Boss with its bold and brazen house mates.
But the new season of the show, premiering in the UAE on Sunday night, will attempt to shake off its core values: Producers want to make it a family friendly show.
This overhaul is equivalent to sensationalist Paris Hilton trading in her scandalous persona for a saint-like avatar, but with Bollywood biggie Salman Khan spearheading the change, the future is not as bleak.
The show’s soaring popularity was often pegged to loud squabbles and provocative behaviour of inmates.
“In the past, Bigg Boss has been about scandals and fights. But we want to change that image,” said Salman Khan in an exclusive interview with tabloid!.
In Season 6, the Ek Tha Tiger star will step in as the watchful host once again. He’s going solo as opposed to last year when he enlisted the support of his friend and actor Sanjay Dutt as a co-host.
Though he’s tightlipped about the contestants appearing this season, Khan expressed his desire to include the common man in his show which revolves around a bunch of strangers living under one roof. Any connection to the outer world such as telephones and television are barred for the inmates.
“This time, we thought of doing something alag sa [different],” said Khan.
A talking parrot called Radhe with an ability to repeat what the inmates discuss and a panic room that is built to stress out candidates, plus a lie detector kit has also been included in this season’s roster.
Though the show’s organisers haven’t confirmed who will make it to the house, several names including model Poonam Pandey, former cricketer Navjot Singh Sidhu and actor Aamir Khan’s brother Faisal are tipped to be a part of this year’s gang.
So, before Khan gets busy with Bigg Boss and his Dubai gig in November, tabloid! caught up with him to talk Bigg Boss, Dabangg 2 and more ...
I became a part of Bigg Boss because…
“It’s the country’s biggest reality show and personally I love the concept of the show. By default, it generates curiosity in our nation and beyond. I am glad Colors think I am still worthy of it [probably they couldn’t find any replacement].”
I want to change the Bigg Boss image…
“In the past Bigg Boss has been about scandals and fights. But we want to change that image and make it a family, entertainment show that can be enjoyed by all.”
This season we want to include the common man...
“Generally, a viewer’s curiosity is tilted towards knowing more about their idol’s whereabouts and their lifestyle. This time, we thought of doing something alag sa [different]. We thought let the audience enjoy the Bigg Boss from their own perspective.”
My advise to all Bigg Boss Housemates: Behave yourself
“The housemates will have a good time this season provided they behave themselves and do not disobey Bigg Boss. If anyone tries to act too smart then the panic room is awaiting them.”
Brace yourself for never-seen-before elements
“To start with there will be a talking parrot inside the house to give company to the house mates. You will also see a fish in the house and a panic room where contestants will be reprimanded for any unruly behavior.”
I am the host and not their chaperone or their boss...
“I only intervene when I feel that something is going drastically wrong and then I step in and do what I can to control the situation.”
Editing process is not my forte
“I am simply the host and I am not supposed to be judging the contestants or getting involved in the editing of the show. Since we can’t show all 24 hrs, it’s naturally edited to make a well packaged family entertainment programme.”
Dabangg 2 is shaping up well...
“Since it’s a sequel, it has to definitely be better than the first instalment. My intention has always been to work hard. If the work is good, then the results just follow. The key is to concentrate on doing good work. In my eyes, ratings and the box office collections are just numbers. They come and go, so there’s no pressure. I just want to do good work.”