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Ex| AXN to enthrall Indian audiences: Yagnik

AXN India promises to never let your weekends be same again, starting this June. They are all set to premier new seasons of top shows from US in the ‘Fresh from the US’ slot for their dedicated fans from June 13th. Indian viewers are in for a treat where they will get to see the new seasons of their favorite shows from the US. First time ever in the history of television entertainment, AXN will stream the world premiere of the first episode of Hannibal season 3 on the network’s digital platform Sony LIV while rest of the episodes will follow post the telecast on AXN.

 AXN will be bringing in a diverse bouquet of brand new series like CSI Cyber and Orphan Black Season 3 which will be aired at 10 pm and 11 pm every Saturday beginning from 13th June and

NCIS – New Orleans and Hannibal Season 3 at 10 pm and at 11 pm respectively starting from 14th June, every Sunday.

Orphan Black, the two time consecutive winner at the Critics Choice Awards for Best Actress in 2013 and 2014 is one of the best sci-fi TV shows on world television. In its two short seasons of airing, Orphan Black has won many accolades and nearly 40 awards, including the Golden Globes, the Critic’s Choice awards and the Young Hollywood award. The show has been popular among its fan base due to its plot, theme and the thrill while season 3 of Orphan Black promises to bring more drama and action soaked in science of DNA and cloning; and military’s top secret projects.

Hannibal Season 3 is set to treat its viewers with a never-seen-before vulnerable avatar of the monster Hannibal in an exciting chase that draws towards his capture. Audiences are to get hooked up to know if legendary monster Dr. Hannibal Lecter, psychiatrist, psychopath, cannibal currently hiding in Europe will be captured by his arch rival Will Graham? Hannibal Season 3’s first episode will premiere exclusively in India along with the U.S. on their OTT platform Sony LIV.  It will world premiere on Sony LIV from 7:30 AM onwards on Friday, June 5, 2015.  Thereafter all following episodes will be available on Sony LIV after its telecast on AXN India.

NCIS – New Orleans is an American television series combining elements of the military drama and police procedural genres led by Special Agent in Charge Dwayne Cassius Pride and his team. An edge of the seat suspense thriller CSI: Cyber is an American police procedural drama television series, where the special team will probe internet-related murders, cyber-theft, hacking, sex offences, and blackmail within the FBI's jurisdiction.

In a conversation with Adgully, Saurabh Yagnik, Executive Vice-president and Business Head, Sony PIX & AXN India spoke at length about the upcoming seasons, the marketing strategies used and why he believes that the English Entertainment genre still has a lot of potential.

While talking about different verticals of shows that AXN showcases he said “AXN offers the widest variety of iconic shows in the most diverse genres like premium reality, crime, edgy drama and signature AXN shows. AXN has a very strong brand recall and much differentiated positioning and that’s our strength we would not like to dilute that strength of AXN. Our objective is to build the best show while AXN is all about character association.”

Speaking about the marketing strategies being used to promote their shows he said, “There are two kinds of audiences that we see in this space, one is called the influencer, they pretty much want to get on board with new shows as and when they are launched, so these kind of audiences love making conversations. Our promotion is targeted at a) television, b) digital and social media, that’s where the conversation happens about the show and we are promoting these shows using all these vehicles. What we are doing is building the right social conversations on media like Facebook, Twitter etc. which help in targeting the relevant audience and getting close to them.”

On being asked if the numbers bothered him, since they are a niche channel, he said, “I think I take the numbers with a real pinch of salt. It astonishes me that India has such a large young population which consumes English extensively. There is also penetration of internet and the monetary collection of international movies and shows are rising. In spite of all of this, the overall share of English in television in India is still 1 and half % and the genre doesn’t see much growth. I think we need to look at how much we are able to capture the right audience. There is a task on hand to grow consumption but the category promises much more than what appears through viewership or other data right now. When you look at the social conversations around the shows and talk to people about it, you know the overall awareness of international movies and international shows is much higher now than it was few years back. So I think it is good times and we should be able to see progressive growth in consumption.”

Uday Sodhi - EVP and Digital head, Sony Entertainment added, “What adds up to the success of the digital medium is that it serves up entertainment here and now. Fans of a series as absorbing and sumptuous as Hannibal don’t want to wait for the season premier and only a digital entertainment destination such as Sony LIV has the power to cater to their need for instant gratification. Therefore in association with AXN India, we have come up with this initiative of taking Hannibal to the digital medium.”

He further added, “With Sony LIV and its Video-on-Demand service, viewers also have the advantage of losing themselves in the exciting world of the show through the carefully curated content from the past to the present. It obviates the need to download low-quality episodes from untrustworthy sources on the internet or request friends to share their stored content.”

So, AXN is set to not let you move from your seats with thrilling and exciting shows from their bouquet of ‘Fresh from the US’ shows.

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