20 Sep 2017
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CNN-News18 goes for an overhaul

MUMBAI: Almost a year after its rebranding, TV18’s English news channel CNN-News18 is revamping its prime time with new shows in the 9- and 10-pm slots.

The current show ‘India@9’ will make way for ‘Face-Off At 9’. The show will continue to be anchored by deputy executive editor Zakka Jacob. Bhupendra Chaubey, who was anchoring ‘Big 5 At 10’, will now host a new show ‘Viewpoint’ at 10 pm.

‘Face-Off At 9’ will witness a face-off between the biggest newsmakers on the top story of the day to bring out key insights without drowning the same out in unnecessary noise. Rather than having the same set of guests, the show will have a new set of guests from across the country.

The interactive and participative show ‘Viewpoint’ will explore various perspectives on the day’s top news stories. The show will cover the top 5 stories of the day and feature discussions with guests.

The show will also connect with viewers through social media and on the ground to bring people’s viewpoints to the debate.

Managing editor Radhakrishnan Nair said that the new overhaul is part of CNN-News18’s focus to be a content-driven rather than being an anchor-driven channel.

“India@9 will address key issues of the day. The difference between this show and the previous show will be that we will have different kinds of guests on the show. We want to create a new set of guests. They can be from any part of the country and we will reach out to them,” Nair said.

The new show will ensure that there is a definitive end to a debate rather than leaving the issues unanswered. It will also expand on big stories that CNN-News18 reporters break. The channel will also do a Twitter poll to gauge viewers’ opinion on the best debaters on the show.

As far as ‘Viewpoint’ is concerned, it will utilise its anchor Bhupendra Chaubey’s vast reporting experience and political understanding besides having a comprehensive look at the top issues of the day.

The channel will also unveil new programming for the 7–9 pm slot. “In a week or two, we will also make changes to 7–9 programming. We are launching new shows between 7 and 9 pm. They will not be debate shows but more of news reporting,” Nair stated.

He further said that the 7 pm show will have all the news stories of the day while the 8 pm show will focus on one big story.

Nair said that the channel is also working on morning and early-evening time bands as there is a lot of viewership in morning while viewers in non-metro urban areas start watching news from 5 pm.