Actor Siddique talks about anchoring Kairali TV’s new quiz show, ‘Pachakuthira’

It’s almost the norm these days to have Mollywood personalities host a television game show. Veteran actor Siddhique was one of the first to get on the bandwagon and turn anchor on the small screen, impressing viewers with his knowledge of Malayalam playback singing in the chat show ‘Sangeeta Samagamam’. Now, after a gap, Siddhique is back on television, as the host of Kairali TV’s new game show ‘Pachakuthira’, which will premiere on August 3 (telecast Fridays to Sundays, 9.30 p.m.). “It was Mammookka [actor Mammootty, the Chairman of the channel] who asked me to come on board for the show. I jumped at the chance,” says Siddhique over the phone from Kochi. Excerpts from an interview where the actor talks about the show…

About the show

It’s a quiz show for families, which requires each team to answer 20 questions (split into two rounds with 10 questions each) to claim the jackpot. With each correct answer they can win prizes. At the outset of the game each team can choose their prizes out of one of the five categories, namely gold, cash, home appliances, dress material and furniture. Teams that answer all 10 questions correctly in round one will qualify for round two where they will go head to head for the jackpot of Rs. one crore.

This time around

This time around, playing host is totally different! In ‘Sangeeta Samagamam’ I was interacting with other celebrities, getting them to share their success stories and talk about subjects that I am familiar with – movies and music. ‘Pachakuthira’ is all about testing the depth of one’s general knowledge and I get to interact with ordinary people, guiding them on the quest to win big.

Ideal qualities of a quiz show anchor

If only I knew! I think the key is to be appealing – to both the participants and the viewers. My celebrity status helps to establish an immediate rapport with the participants. It’s as if they know me and because of that consider me as one of their own. I’m a good listener and I like hearing about other people’s experiences rather than talking about my own. That I think is one of the key qualities of being a host. Most people clam up when they face the camera. I try to ease the participants’ fears by getting across to them as a friend, philosopher and guide. I try to slip the questions into the banter.

Brushing up on his general knowledge

I’m not much of a reader when it comes to learning about new things. I’m more of a practical knowledge person, learning through observation. Thankfully, I work in a field where I get to interact with a variety of people across social strata. I make it a point to learn from them. For instance, a particular film shoot may be at a plywood factory one day. I always take the time to study and observe the industrial processes. What are the raw materials needed to make plywood? How is the wood treated? The next day, we might be shooting at a soap factory or a sugarcane factory. And again I pick up useful bits of information. Observation is the key to acting and a great way to improve your general knowledge too.

Keywords: quiz showKairali TV