Entertainment channel MTV’s popular new show, 'Big F', has been received with mixed reactions. While several viewers have praised the show for its content that often involves intimate and controversial scenes, the show is also receiving brickbats. According to sources, the show is attracting a lot of attention for its graphic content and the channel is worried that they might have crossed the line.
The show is hosted by actor Gautam Gulati, and also features intimate scenes
A source informed, “The channel has issued a diktat to Bodhi Tree Productions, which produces 'Big F', asking them to tone down the sexual content and make the show more emotional. Since the episodes have been shot well in advance, the producers objected on changing the story at the last minute. But the channel insisted on editing the sexual portions out in order to avoid controversies.” Television actor Gautam Gulati hosts the show.
However, the channel and the production house deny the story and claim that no diktats have come to them. Mautik Tulip of Bodhi Tree Productions said, “There are a lot of misconceptions with that product anyway. It is more to do with coming of age stories of underdogs, who have one moment that leads to a positive transformation in their lives. That’s always the brief we have followed.”
He added, “Depending on the nature of the stories, some have had little more sexual content than others. We look at the merit of the story and see how it develops organically. There have been no diktats as such. Yes, some stories are a little bolder, like the homosexual story we did. The last slot of stories we are doing is in the semi-urban space, so obviously the dynamics of those stories are different. We have been taking broadcast guidelines into consideration, so everything is in line with that.”
mid-day tried to get in touch with the channel, but they refused to comment on the subject, while Gautam Gulati’s phone remained unavailable.
Unlike films, television doesn’t have a censorship board. Every channel uses its own discretion on showcasing adult content, be it sex, violence or expletives. Co-chairman of Indian Film and Television Producers’ Council (IFTPC) JD Majethia throws some light on the censorship process on television. “In TV, there is no specific body that looks into censorship. All channels have similar norms which ensure that certain things don’t get telecast, like content that hurts religious sentiments, showcases adult content, content with derogatory remarks, violence etc. All the channels follow this without fail.”
He adds, “Every channel has self censorship; there’s a team of people which will look into the Standard in Practices (SIPs) of the content they provide. If a channel goes overboard, the government intervenes and issues a notice. A few years ago, 'Bigg Boss' and Rakhi Sawant’s show 'Rakhi Ka Insaaf' had faced similar problems. The Information and Broadcasting Ministry asked the makers to shift the show to post 11 pm. Plus, every show has a slide which runs at the beginning stating: if anyone finds any content derogatory they can report it to so and so.”