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SAB sends ‘FIR’ on a sabbatical to make way for ‘Peterson Hill’

MUMBAI: In line with its philosophy of doing something different each time, SAB TV has given its popular and long-running fiction show ‘FIR’ a seasonal break to make way for another light-hearted comedy ‘Peterson Hill’.

Launching on 26 January, the show will air at 10:30 pm from Monday to Friday. It is about different people living on a platform and the station master of the station called Peterson Hill, a quaint railway station in a small town of Shimla.

SAB senior EVP and business head Anooj Kapoor said, “’FIR’ completed 1350 episodes and its rating reached stagnation, so we thought of giving it a seasonal break. The new show will replace it. ‘FIR’ is an evergreen property and if there is a demand, we will get it back. With this show, we wanted to do something different visually. The concept is fresh on television.”

Produced by Ashwini Dheer’s Garima Productions, the show is the producer’s third project for the channel. He has earlier produced the second season of ‘Lapataganj’ and ‘Chidiyaghar’ for SAB.

“Ashwini Dheer is good with characters and we wanted to create a fresh set of characters and place them in an ambience which has not been seen on SAB and in the genre of comedy before,” Kapoor stated.

Aiming to give a feel of the hills and snow, the show has been shot extensively in outdoor locations like Shimla, Kufri and other neighbouring areas.

While the channel is building its weekday slot with new shows, its weekend band presently has only one hour of original programming with ‘The Great Indian Family Drama’ at 9 pm. When asked about the weekend strategy for the channel, Kapoor said that they aim to strengthen their weekend band but will do so only after the IPL.

“We won’t be launching any show till the IPL is over as there are just two months to go for the fiscal to end. We will launch our next show around June,” he stated.

However, Kapoor is very confident about the channel in terms of ROI. “We get a good show response as we presently have over 90 brands on the channel. We are one of the most profitable channels today, thanks to the fact that we have moderate budgets and high advertising revenues,” he said.

The story of ‘Peterson Hill’ is about Kishore Chadha who is the station master of Peterson Hill. He is a man with a golden heart who believes in the simplicities of life. His wife Pinky is proud of her husband’s honesty and goodness of heart. The story features various characters that people the station as well as some travellers whose stories get entangled with those of the people living in town.

The show also has a friendly ghost, in the form of Peterson Hill’s first station master, who can only be seen by the coolie.

The show stars Rohit Roy, Sucheta Khanna, Mansi Srivastav, Navindra Bhel, Samiksha Bhatnagar, Ashwin Mushran, Rakesh Srivastav, Swati Das and Ishtiyak in pivotal roles.

The marketing plan for the new show will see activations outdoor, in print and on television apart from the home channel. On the digital front, the team will be creating conversations around the show and characters. They are also launching an app called ‘SAB Express’ based on the show.