New Delhi, May 12 (IANS) Children's entertainment on television is set to get livelier this summer.
Nick, one the country's leading entertainment channels in India, is set to woo children aged between four and 14 with the 'Mighty Masked Cat Niyander', a new episode of the channel's hit series, 'Ninja Hattori' and 'Perman'.
'Mighty...' is about the heroic deeds of a 'superman cat', the mighty Niyander who rescues people in trouble like Superman Clark Kent. The cat, like the Superman, dons a cloak.
The channel has also added several new interactive programmes like the Mother's Day Contest and the Nick Fundoo Supertar, which will give children an opportunity to become television superstars by taking part in a series of promotional contests as part of its holiday hamper. In June, the channel will unveil its Father's Day capsule with a Daddy Cool contest.
The winners will share the screen with Nick Fundoo's hot new brand ambassador Mandira Bedi and their favourite Nick Toon characters in a performance choreographed by Bollywood veteran Saroj Khan. The promotion week that began May 5 will end June 8. The Supertsar contest will reach its grand finale with the release of the kids' music video in July.
Announcing the launch at a colourful programme packed with children, Nick Toon characters and brand mascot Mandira Bedi at The Oberoi Hotel in the capital Monday, Nick officials said the contest was unique because it had no audition, no jury.
'Kids just need to be themselves to take part in the contest. There is no stress of competition. Apart from the four winners who will feature in the Nick Fundoo music video, thousands of other kids will also win loads of prizes like bicycles and mobiles. The video will be titled 'Mauja Hi Mauja',' said Nina Elavia Jaipuria, vice-president and general manager of Nick India.
The Superstar team, comprising four children a host of live Toon characters and Mandira Bedi, have hit the road as part of a three-city campaign trail in Indore, Lucknow and Kolkata. The channel is planning a 360 degrees (comprehensive) campaign that will include 'multi-city ground activation, cinema, radio, outdoor and cross channel television promos', Jaipuria said.
'We believe in giving children what they want. Nick Fundoo Supertsar has been designed keeping in mind the aspiration of every child to become a superstar,' Jaipuria said.
'This is the first time I am doing something for the kids. It is a summer campaign and I have felt so mad, wild and carefree. I wanted to reinvent television entertainment for children, to do something I have never done,' said the actress, who is teaming up with Saroj Khan after 13 years after 'Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge' in 1995.
The actress feels 'Indian television channels are offering quite a lot to the child in terms of entertainment and education and promoting the Indian value system as well.'
'We grew up reading Amar Chitra Katha (picture comics) but today's kids are lucky. There so many mythological serials on television, it is a great way to learn,' Bedi told IANS. But policing, the actress said should be left to parents. 'They must monitor the content their children are viewing.'
The contribution of kids' channels has not seen a significant growth last year, said Jaipuria. 'It grew up by only 10 percent in the 4 to 14 slice,' she said, quoting figures by TAM, the nodal agency that provides TRP count.
'If you place Nick in this perspective, then we have seen a phenomenal growth. In the last 12 months we have grown by 63 percent and nearly doubled our market share from 10 percent in the last quarter of 2007 to 18 percent in the first of 2008,' Jaipuria said.
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