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Virasaat different from the usual

Monday, June 05, 2006

New Delhi (UNI): At a time when an increasing number of television channels are dishing out ''kitchen politics'' in the name of entertainment, he is one filmmaker who believes in the motto of ''combining entertainment with a social message'', a philosophy reflected in his film 'Baghban' as in serials like 'Mahabharat'. It is the same philosophy that is reflected in Ravi Chopra's latest serial 'Viraasat' that seeks to propagate the social message that "hate divides hearts while love can bring them together" through the story of two warring families that are sought to be brought together by the love of their respective kin.

Speaking at a press meet here last evening to promote the serial, to be telecast on prime time on Star Plus from June 12, Ravi Chopra said '' As a production house, our endeavour has always been to combine entertainment with the imparting of a social message in our films as well as television serials, in pursuance with my father B R Chopra's philosophy that the ''motto should not only be to entertain but also give a social message to people''. Viraasat is a continuance of the same policy.'' Sangita Ghosh and Rohit Roy will play the lead in the classical drama, being produced by B R Films', which will be a story of two warring families ,the Lambas Vs. the Kharbandas. Rohit Roy and Sangeeta Ghosh play the central roles of Rahul Lamba and Priyanka Kharbanda, who are madly in love with each other but are however bound by an age old enmity between their warring families.

Scheduled to be aired Mondays to Thursdays every week at 9 pm, 'Viraasat' features one of television's most popular stars, ranging from Kiran Kumar, to Deepak Quazir to Aman Verma to Amarr Upadhyay to Jayati Bhatia to Pooja Rawal Ghai to Rohit Roy and Sangita Ghosh (of 'Des Mein Nikla Hoga Chand' fame). Speaking at the press meet TV star Sangeeta Ghosh said the serial or its portrayals bore no similarity to any 'saas-bahu' sagas being aired on various television channels today.

''The serial bears no similarity to any 'Saas-bahu' serials on television today. Infact, it is a clean entertainer that can be watched by the whole family together'' she said. Her co-star Rohit Roy, excited at the prospect of being cast in a TV serial being made by B R Films, said ''The serial is the first time that I have been cast in an intensely romantic role. Infact, the prime motivator to do the serial was that it is a far different role from those I have done till now on TV.''

Talking to mediapersons, Ravi Chopra said apart from being a multi-starrer, the serial, to be aired in 260 episodes, had been set on a large scale. Infact, Amar Upadhyay, known for his portrayal as Mihir in 'Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi' and for whom this serial marks a return to TV after a brief hiatus, summed up the feeling of the entire cast of the serial when he said ''For all of us working in the serial, 'Viraasat' offers something very different from what we have done before.'' It is undoubtedly one of the most ambitious ventures embarked upon by B R films after 'Mahabharat'.

'' Viraasat has been made on a large budget. The setting is just like that of a film. In any case, I feel there is no difference between a film and a television serial. After all, both are meant to entertain. The only difference is that while in films, we go to the cinema halls to watch them, in case of TV serials it is the serials that come to people's homes'' Ravi Chopra said. The launch of the serial on Star plus is part of the endeavour of the channel to strengthen its weekday prime time slot. In this context, sources in the Star Plus believe that the serial, being touted as the biggest ever in the weekday primetime slot, will furthermore righteously spruce up the channel's year on year strengthening leadership in the weekday 9.00 PM primetime slot.

''Our currently running successful 9.00 pm finite show 'Miilee' had reached its logical conclusion, so it is imperative for us to launch a show which could fit well into the bigness of primetime 9.00 pm band and be a through entertainer, too. With Viraasat that's exactly what we are getting for the viewers - it being the biggest line-up of television stars ever on the small screen - straight away helps us in adding further to the variety mix of Star Plus's programming, while viewers gets more choice.''

Mr. Deepak Segal, EVP, Content, Star India Pvt. Ltd, said ''Like always, our endeavour is to dole out a classic family entertainer as it goes on to set its own mark, one which has no precedence, and thereby expect Viraasat to help us consolidate the channel's supremacy in the primetime slot after having already done so, successfully in the weekend band,'' he said.

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