Ramesh Aravind is game for the third season of Weekend with Ramesh, which is one of the Kannada TV shows that have enjoyed good viewership from all age groups. Ahead of its airing from Saturday, March 25, the actor-turned-anchor spoke about the show with International Business Times, India. Below, find the excerpts from the interview:
How excited are you about Weekend with Ramesh 3?
The format has changed the landscape of television itself, which is what I am getting as feedback. That way, I am excited to take this forward. More than being a story or a show, it is about inspiring people, which is the tagline of Weekend with Ramesh. It is about inspiring people to do great things in their lives to bring out their full capacities. It is being positive about everything in life. We try to convey that present may not be rosy, but things will be okay and good days will be back.
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It is normal to go through a bad phase. This will remind people that they are not alone, but the big guys, who come here, were in similar situations at some point of time in their lives. All the successful persons, at crucial points, had this feeling of 'Oh I can't do it.' But somehow they pushed themselves and moved out of the situation.
By watching two seasons, one would realise that life is not a bed of roses. Life is not easy, but it is beautiful. Weekend with Ramesh gracefully portrays the difficulties and beautiful parts of the achievers. The best part of the show is that 40 years of a person's professional life is encapsulated in one and half hours. It is a huge task to bring all the highlights and important moments of his life. Fortunately, we have a very good team.
Do you feel pressure when you host the show which is now riding on huge expectations?
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This is not the show against my thinking or nature. The format of the show was decided to suit exactly what I am in terms of spirit. In a way the concept of show is the reflection of me – being positive. I am trained that way. Basically, I am an optimistic person. The show is working because it is my approach to life.
Why do you think the show has struck a chord with the viewers?
I still remember, Raghavendra Hunsur (Business Head at Zee Kannada) had met me at my house two years ago to discuss the probability of the show. We then decided that we will not touch the negative side and our focus will be only on the positive sides of one's life. I personally wanted to highlight the good path of people. I feel that is the main reason why the show has worked.
Did you expect the show to be received so well by fans?
Whenever I went for television, shows had worked. I did 52 episodes of Preethi Inda Ramesh in one year and did Raja Rani Ramesh. Both the shows were received very well by the audience. So, we knew that we would do basically okay. But I never imagined that Weekend with Ramesh would get such an iconic following all over the world. I am not just happy because it has become a successful show, but also with the impact it is making on the viewers.
Do you have a say in choosing the achievers in the show?
I will not go into celebrity selection. My job is to interact with the person who comes to the show. I avoid inviting guests or requesting people to be a part of the show. The channel will decide who deserves to sit in the achievers' seat.
Your previous two seasons predominantly featured people from film industry. Can we see achievers from different fields on Weekend with Ramesh 3?
We tried people from other field as well and not just celebrities. We had Ashwin and many other physically-challenged achievers on the show. I have been telling the channel to bring in a good teacher, solider and good politician. I request people to support when a non-celebrity occupies the hot seat.
Is there anything special that people can expect this season or any changes in the format?
The format remains the same which is already working big time. Success is a step by step procedure. So, we begin with primary school to high school to continue with college. Likewise, we are trying to cover all the steps of a successful human being. What will change is the way I interact with the person sitting opposite me. I want to create a section for gold class in the audience. It is a special row where we want to have young achievers from all over the state, who have done something innovative or saved life, etc. They will probably be a part of the show after 4-5 episodes.
With so much of success, do you think there is a responsibility on you and the channel to choose the right persons?
Yes, so I keep telling them the same. The channel knows their responsibility because the chair is so iconic now. We would not like to let it go down. Imagine a celebrity comes to your show and Weekend with Ramesh tells his success story. But he might soon hit headlines for the wrong reasons.
How does it matter for you as your reputation of the show is at stake at such times?
Life often throws surprises or shocks at us. It can happen all the time which is what life is all about. But let me tell you, among six crore people, this man could have done something really noteworthy. Hence, we would be in the show. After all, nobody is perfect and everybody has flaws. Also, Weekend with Ramesh is not a 360-degree coverage of a person. We only try to cover the better aspects of the achiever's life. I consciously avoid controversies and negative events in life. The show only focuses on how the person became successful in his life.
Has Weekend with Ramesh made any impact in your life?
Definitely from every episode, I have takeaways. I am growing as a person when I hear the inspiring stories.