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India’s ‘Big Brother’ Gets Bigger

Two new local-lingo versions of show to bow

LONDON — In the U.S., reality show “Big Brother” is no longer part of the zeitgeist, but in India “Bigg Boss,” as it’s known, goes from strength to strength.

Two new local-language versions of the show are imminent — including  a South Indian reboot greenlit by Viacom 18 channel ETV Kannada, due to launch in late March.

Another regional-language version is in the pipeline and details will be announced soon.

Viacom 18 network Colors airs “Bigg Boss” in Hindi and will bow a seventh season in the fall.

All three versions of the format will have a 14-week run of 98 episodes. These include extended two-hour launch and finale shows.

Each series totals 100 hours, all of which will be made by Endemol India, based at Lonavala, near Mumbai, where the long-running Hindi version is produced.

Endemol India CEO Deepak Dhar said: “Given the diverse cultures and dialects in India, there is a large base of untapped audiences across the country for ‘Bigg Boss.’

“The local and global success of this format speaks for itself and we have been keen to replicate that in different languages here, whilst adapting the drama and jeopardy of the show to regional tastes. Our aim is to make these the first of many similar deals for our formats.”

Endemol India is also turning “Bigg Boss” into a feature film.

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