Kids' channels and Children's Day programming

The channels are extending the celebrations over the weekend as well.

MUMBAI: For kids’ channels, Children’s Day is the most important day of the year. Despite not raking in any special reach or viewership, channels yet air special episodes for their young audiences.

Discovery Kids and Sony YAY! will be airing special episodes throughout the day. Sony YAY! will run a Movies Marathon with back to back Honey Bunny movies right from 9 am throughout the day. Similarly, Discovery Kids will have new episodes on two IPs- Fukrey Boyzzz and Little Singham. The channels are promoting their fresh line-up across their networks.

Sony YAY! business head Leena Lele Dutta said, “We keep doing activities and initiatives for our audience on their special day being the most significant day. I don't know why schools don't give a holiday. It is actually a full day for children but we keep them entertained. With Movie Marathon, the entire day is going to be filled with movies from our Honey Bunny catalogue which is Crazy Family Adventure, Train Chase to Haunted House, etc. So it will be playing on a loop for the entire day. We will be promoting the same on our channel and our network channels like Sab for appointment viewing.”

Discovery Kids head Uttam Pal Singh said, “We are doing an extension of our recently-launched show Fukrey Boyzzz. When we launched our new IP, we had its extension plan for Children’s Day also. We have new episodes for Fukrey Boyzzz as a Children’s Day special. We have a second IP Little Singham for which we have a 60-min long special episode – Junglee Joker Jaayega Rokar on 14 November at 11.30 am. Kids will enjoy both our IPs together. Children’s Day is not a designated holiday. Kids have school that day so we have extended the flavour of our new episodes from 14 to 17 November – four-day long programming.”

With regards to ratings and viewership on Children’s Day, channels don’t see any significant changes in the numbers. “We celebrate children throughout the year; it's not just one day. For us, it's an everyday effort of how do we connect with kids and how can we celebrate that. In terms of reach and ratings, Children’s Day does not shape up well. It’s our efforts because we club it not just for a day but for the week, so that we, hopefully, see some spark coming up for the channel with this programming,” said Singh.

Even Dutta agreed that the channel doesn’t see any rise in viewership on Children’s Day as kids have school. She said, “The important thing is for them to be associated with Children's Day possibly extending the day over the weekend. That is why our association with the leading hotel chain is also over the weekend over brunch. There is no spike in viewership as such. It's not a special holiday for them to sit and binge-watch.”

Sony YAY! also associated with a leading hotel chain for children's day where they will have a Honey Bunny sponsored brunch. It will be called Brunch with Honey Bunny. The toons will be present and the entire menu and dishes will be based on shows and movies of the channel. “We are also doing an association with Crossword. Parents and kids come together and for a day, the parent becomes the child. So we are not only celebrating Children’s Day for kids, but also the child in a parent,” informed Dutta.

The channel also has a CSR initiative with an NGO. The kids will watch movies, play games and solve crosswords and puzzles.

Kids-specific plot points will be played out on Sony Marathi’s Maharashtrachya Hasya Jatraa and on Sony SAB TV’s Aladdin - NaamTohSunaHoga. Again, it will be centred on Honey Bunny, kids and Aladdin. “So we are doing an all-rounded association that year on year we keep building in order to make it bigger and better. This year, unfortunately, Children's Day is on a weekday. Had it been on a weekend it would have been more robust. Having said that, the scale at which we are doing on-air and on-ground is quite large,” opined Dutta.

Even Nickelodeon India has launched the campaign – #Khulke Bolo – encouraging kids to be themselves and speak openly without any fear and filter. Speaking about the campaign, Viacom18 Hindi Mass Entertainment & Kids TV Network Nina Elavia Jaipuria said, “We at Nickelodeon keep children at the core of all that we do and on their special day, we want to celebrate kids with all their quirks and innocence. With this innovative campaign, we want to encourage and empower children to speak their mind openly and fearlessly. This Children’s Day, Nickelodeon urges all to speak their mind and bring out the child within.”

Apart from kids’ channels some of the English GECs have also planned a special line-up for kids. Romedy NOW has curated a special property ‘Naughty & Nice’, which will showcase a line-up of animated movies including Mune, Sherlock Gnomes, Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs and Sing from 10.15 am to 4.15 pm.

Star Movies also unveiled its exciting line-up with the “Pop-Up Theatre: For the Kids” property. A line-up of interesting movies will air on 13 and 14 November 2019 from 4 pm onwards. Besides this, the channel is also bringing Deadpool for the very first time on Indian television on 17 November at 1 pm and 9 pm. Star Movies’ Pop-Up Theatre will air movies like The Boss Baby, COCO, Ferdinand, Incredibles 2, Baby’s Day Out and The Toy Story 3.

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