Kaun Banega Crorepati 12 director on changes on set & Amitabh Bachchan’s unique elbow shake for contestants

In a candid chat, the director of Kaun Banega Crorepati 12 tells us what is it like to shoot amid pandemic, his equation with Amitabh Bachchan and more. Read.
Kaun Banega Crorepati 12 director on changes on set & Amitabh Bachchan’s unique elbow shake for contestants
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Kaun Banega Crorepati has always been a show which is considered a game changer. The quiz based show hosted by megastar Amitabh Bachchan returns to the small screens with its 12th season today. In a candid chat, director Arun Sheshkumar, tells us what changed for them on ground, his equation with Amitabh Bachchan and the challenges they have been facing. Over to him:

How is this season going to be different this year?

A lot has changed in the show this year. For the first time ever in two decades of KBC, the show will roll without an in-studio audience. Audience Poll as a lifeline will not been used for the first time since its inception. Owing to current times, the process has changed of course, everyone has to maintain social distancing, wear masks, get their temperature and oxygen levels checked while the crew on the set is seen wearing PPE kits to protect themselves and the person they interact with. Technically, we have created barricades for the contestants in front of their LED screen, so if they get selected, there is a path created for them, so they directly reach the hotseat. You may not see some technical fixes, but it is consciously present on the set. We have also increased the distance between two Fastest Fingers First contestants and only have 8 at a time to maintain social distancing and follow proper Standard Operating Procedure.

During shoot (pre-post) what are the best practices being followed?

Keeping all safety protocols in mind for Mr. Bachchan, the contestants, and the crew, we are religiously following all hygiene & safety practices. Apart from the government directed guidelines, there is a lot more that we are conscious about. The control rooms where the production team operates, has changed. The room has got partitions now and the whole team coordinates through headsets. The workspace of the departments has been designed, keeping the new normal in mind. Crew members on ground has reduced and gone down by 30%, food area has become bigger having only two people sitting on one table with partition. Physical interaction has become zero on the set keeping the whole experience contactless, we are operating only on headphones and maintaining distance. There is also a separate walkway for Mr. Bachchan between the stage and the room he sits in, it is again divided by a glass partition where my whole team sits on the other side of it and communicates through mics and speakers. 


A post shared by Amitabh Bachchan (@amitabhbachchan) on

Also Read: Kaun Banega Crorepati 12: Amitabh Bachchan's opening poem is everything you want to hear right now

With no audience, what are the challenges or moderations that you had to opt for to make sure the show looks grand as always?

With no audience, the biggest challenge is to establish a psychological presence of the audience on the show. There have been structural changes where the entire audience area has been re-designed with the hope that someday if the audience is allowed on the set, there is space for them. Having said that, it’s the contestants and the gameplay that makes KBC relatable year after year. We definitely spruce up the show with lighting techniques & sound, but at the end of the day, people come to the show to see how knowledge proves to be a great leveler and that’s always been our focus. 

Can you share your journey with Mr. Bachchan over the years?

My journey with Mr. Bachchan has been the most memorable journey. I cannot thank god enough for giving me this opportunity. Since childhood, I never dreamt of working in this industry, but I did want to meet Mr. Bachchan as a fan. It is a dream come true working with him, directing him and him knowing me by my first name. For me, each day is a learning process with him as he teaches me new things, while he learns things from us too in this process. Every evening when I come back after shooting for KBC, all I can remember is a great learning experience. 

What changes has Mr. Bachchan brought while shooting for KBC?

With Mr. Bachchan, it is always a soulful experience. A new trend which he has started on KBC this season is greeting the contestants very interestingly. He does not shake hands with them but has encouraged elbow-shakes. Looking at that, brings a smile on our faces and we have tried implementing it amongst us and the crew too. 

Anonymous 7 months ago

When is this fake manipulative old man going to quit???dint he just survive COVID?or was that also for publicity???its shocking that this straight faced con man has bluffed so far