What a coincidence!

Call it a matter of fate or pure coincidence, Ekta Kapoor is now set to replace Smriti Irani’s much-hyped show Virrudh with a K-soap on Sony TV. If sources are to be believed, Ekta has been busy with those customary high profile meetings to determine the content of her brand new soap and auditions for actors are already underway.

In the meanwhile, Smriti’s contract with the channel comes to a close next month, as she will complete filming 104 episodes by then. Apparently, the channel heads are not in a mood to renew the contract because of the show’s poor TRPs and have settled for Ekta’s new soap for the 9.30 pm time slot.

A series of factors can be blamed for the early exit of Virrudh. While Smriti ensured big publicity plans for the show, it never really went down well with the viewers. Also, it was an expensive show for the channel as the cast included popular faces like Achint Kaur and Sushant Singh. Says a reliable source from the channel, “A lot of money was involved as we had big telly stars. Unfortunately, the show never commanded high TRPs. We have had several meetings with Smriti’s creative team but nothing could get the show working. We are unlikely to renew the contract as we are getting a new show to replace it.”

When quizzed about it Albert Almeida, senior vice-president marketing, Sony Entertainment Television says, “Ekta is doing some shows for us, which will be launched in the near future. But it’s too early to talk about the content and the time-slots.”

Sandipan Dalal

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