So you love those reality talent hunt shows eh? Shows where YOU get to choose who the winner is. Where the show hosts encourage you to pick up your phone and dial in the code of your favourite contestant, or sms your favourite contestant's name to vote for him and ensure that he survives for yet another week, and maybe even go on to win. Feels great to be in control, right? And after all, you're making a career for a very deserving dude or dudette. So what if the sms and call charges are quite high at Rs.6/- per unit? They're not gonna go wasted. ITs all going to nurture talent, right? Or is it?
Okay, so lets do some costing now. I'll try my best to make it a little less boring.
A talent hunt show worth its salt has atleast 15 final contestants. And every week one gets eliminated. So basically the show goes on for atleast 15 weeks. And each week you send in votes.
So lets say 15 wks X 7 lakh votes a week(worst case scenario) X 6 per call/sms = Rs.6.3 crores
The final episode on Zee's Saregama Show had 3.6 crore votes - 3.6cr X 3 X 6 = Rs.64.8 crores
Ad revenue and sale of television rights, which I cannot determine, but I'm assuming that to be more than enough to cover up venue rent, lighting, promotion and other incidental expenses.
Assuming that there are 2000 employees, each earning Rs.25000 per month for 3 months, the total expenditure should come to 15 crores.
Out of the proceeds from calls and sms, lets assume 50% to be paid to the telecom co's
i.e Rs.35 crores.
So that leaves us with a balance of Rs.21.1 crores.
Out of this whopping sum, a meagre 1 Crore (as they claim) each is spent on making the music albums of the Winner and the Runner-Up. And we all know how those albums turn out. Apart from Abhijit Sawant's album, the rest bombed. Look at Amit Sana, Kazi and Rooprekha (man, what a crappy song they got:P), Debojit (who, you ask? :P). And most of them end up as one-Hit (rather one-flop) wonders, who fade into oblivion in a couple of months after the show wraps up.
So 21.1 crores - 2 crores = 19.1 crores.
The winner takes it all.
Only the winner here is not talent, but the shrewd channels.