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DNA (Daily News & Analysis) Mumbai Edition - - FRONT PAGE -

Zee TV, the pi­o­neer­ing In­dian satel­lite chan­nel, which com­pleted 25 years early this month, un­veiled its new brand ide­ol­ogy, ‘Ex­tra­or­di­nary To­gether’. A panel dis­cus­sion on the fu­ture of con­tent cre­ation in the emerg­ing me­dia and en­ter­tain­ment land­scape was held with Pu­nit Goenka, MD & CEO, Zee, Amit Goenka, CEO, In­ter­na­tional Broad­cast Busi­ness, writer-lyri­cist Javed Akhtar, film­maker Anurag Basu, and theatre per­son­al­ity Makarand Desh­pande as the pan­elists.

Pu­nit Goenka re­vealed that they will be re­viv­ing the old­est form of en­ter­tain­ment — theatre — and take it to the in­ter­na­tional mar­ket. Talk­ing about the changes in the last 25 years, Javed Akhtar rued that we are gain­ing speed at the cost of depth in con­tent in TV, mu­sic, and films — thanks to the ex­plo­sion of tech­nol­ogy. How­ever, he is op­ti­mistic about the younger gen­er­a­tion dis­cov­er­ing poetry and art. “I in­ter­act with young­sters when I visit col­leges and am happy to see that the re­vival is hap­pen­ing. It’s true that moral­ity has changed and bravado has come in; peo­ple have de­vel­oped in­hi­bi­tions about ex­press­ing lone­li­ness. The ‘Dev­das’ has gone out of films, there are no sad songs; but, that doesn’t mean peo­ple don’t feel lonely,” he said.

Anurag Basu said the big­gest chal­lenge in the com­ing years will be to try and change the thought process — ‘this is what au­di­ence wants’ — and ex­per­i­ment and give new con­tent. He added that in the com­ing years, he sees a film that re­leases on Fri­day be­ing aired on TV the fol­low­ing Mon­day!

Makarand sees the resur­gence of the era where plays would be staged from dusk to dawn. “We are go­ing back to that era. We should take theatre to peo­ple and in as­so­ci­a­tion with Zee, we are record­ing plays and will also be stag­ing them at dif­fer­ent places,” he said.

About Zee’s growth plans, Amit Goenka said, “Dig­i­tal is a key fo­cus area and we will soon launch our rev­o­lu­tion­ary dig­i­tal plat­form Z5, in the next few weeks.”


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