Colors CEO Raj Nayak today rubbished reports that the channel's popular reality show Bigg Boss 8 got extended as it's new series Chakravartin Ashoka Samrat took time to complete. Nayak said the Bigg Boss Halla Bol, an extension of Bigg Boss 8, was planned right from the beginning as the reality series was doing good.
"These reports that 'Halla Bol' was introduced as Ashoka was not ready are completely baseless. It was a pre-planned thing as the eighth season of the show was doing amazing. "So, we thought that we should introduce a new segment with a new host and we have been getting good response," Nayak told reporters here.
Chakravartin Ashoka Samrat, set to go on air from February 2 after Bigg Boss gets over this weekend, was launched here in Karjat, Maharashtra, where the show is currently being shot. The pre-production of the historical show took six months to complete including the building of the sets by 'Mary Kom' director Umang Kumar in collaboration with Nitin Desai.
"It was a challenge for me to prepare the sets for Ashoka because it was not a mythological show where you can play with your imagination. But Ashoka is a historical show and if we are not right on the fact then we can land in a big soup," Umang, who has also created the sets of mythological show Mahadev, said.
Dhoom 3 star Siddharth Nigam, who played the young Aamir Khan in the film, is playing the titular character of Ashoka in the show. Nigam said playing the greatest emperor of India was like revisiting his history lessons.
"I am in my 9th standard and my teacher teaches me history. I like Ashoka the most because I have learned about him on my own. I took three months time to prepare for my character," Nigam said.
The show has been produced by Contiloe, who were behind the epic Maharana Pratap, and they feel it is the 'grandest' show from their side. "We did an extensive research on the show and consulted the books available on him. We did dramatise some parts but it was done on dotted lines. The story starts from Magadh and Ashoka's journey from woods to become the emperor which was predicted by Chanakya," Abhimanyu Singh, CEO Contiloe, said.
Eminent actor Manoj Joshi is playing Chanakya, who is touted as the most intelligent human being in the history. Joshi has previously acted in Marathi TV series Chanakya, where he played Shriyak. Asked if he was apprehensive of getting typecast, the actor said, "No, I don't have the fear of getting similar roles. If I get such roles many a times, I would love to do them again and again."