As broadcasters keep striving to help their offerings cut the ever-increasing clutter and connect with viewers and potentially new customers across on- and off-air platforms, mark a good solid win for Discovery Communications’ Animal Planet. The channel has inked a deal that will help it take its wildlife-related content directly into the heart of the one ‘safe’ wildlife-viewing space in the city, the Veermata Jijabai Bhosale Udyan & Zoo, better known as the Byculla Zoo or Mumbai Zoo, run by the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai.
MCGM has tied up with the popular wildlife channel to sensitize the citizens of Mumbai, especially children, about the importance of wildlife, and in a first-of-its-kind initiative, will launch a 3D Theater located inside V.J.B. Udyan & Zoo. It will be powered with world-class content from Animal Planet. The theater opens February 01, 2019 and will provide entry to MCGM school students for free; there will be a nominal fee of Rs. 50 for non-MCGM school students and other individuals.
This tie-up is an extremely laudable initiative by MCGM for the citizens of Mumbai, it is also a truly well-thought out association that fits beautifully with Animal Planet and and its parent company’s mission – to not just inform and entertainment their viewers with their main genre of wildlife content, but also be seen to be coopting children along with their families to appreciate the beauty and importance of wild life. And Animal Planet shows.
Good for the Animal Planet mission, and great for its business too. Yes, Zulfia Waris, Vice President, Premium & Digital networks, Discovery Communications India, told Amruta Sonawane of MediaBrief.com she is not at all thinking about ratings, the association does come with significant benefits to the business. Consider the footfalls: V.J.B. Udyan & Zoo attracts more than 15,000 individuals on a week day, while regular weekend entries cross 30,000 footfalls. The launch of a new 3D theatre, powered by marquee content from Animal Planet, will give a tremendous boost to the popularity of the zoo and Animal Planet, of course, along with sensitizing visitors about wildlife.
What this will also do at just about the best time of the decade, even if it is only in one city of Mumbai, is Animal Planet will showcase its content to youngsters, and perhaps those from MCGM schools, who may not have watched much of their shows, might become early believers and advocates. After all, in whatever demographic, it is the kids who have the highest buy-pester-power.
A laudable initiative by MCGM
Above all, this is a very laudable initiative by MCGM. The V.J.B. Udyan & Zoo is the first zoo in the country to launch a theatre inside its premises. The soon-to-be-launched 3D cinema with a seating capacity of more than 200 will showcase four shows a day. The first show will start at 1100 hours while the last show will be screened at 1600 hrs every day.
Hon’ble Mayor of Mumbai Vishwanath Mahadeshwar said, “Following the success of MCGM’s initiative with respect to the Humboldt Penguin Gallery at the Veermata Jijabai Bhosale Udyan & Zoo, which has garnered wide ranging interest from the citizens of Mumbai, we are pleased to announce this one-of-a-kind initiative in which MCGM is tying up with Discovery Communications India to bring exciting documentaries from their wildlife channel Animal Planet, which will be screened exclusively for the visitors of the zoo. Our aim, through this entertainment-led initiative, is to make every Mumbaikar sensitive about the importance of wild life.”
Ajoy Mehta, Municipal Commissioner, MCGM, said, “The state-of-the-art theater at V.J.B. Udyan & Zoo was conceptualized because we wanted to give a new-age dimension of learning-led entertainment; with a larger cause of educating the young generation of India about the importance of wild life. We are delighted that Animal Planet has joined hands with us in this unique initiative. Initially, we are starting off with a line-up of 5 shows which will be changed at regular intervals to keep the audiences engaged.”
“We expect natural traction for the soon-to-be-launched theatre. In addition, we will also launch an aggressive school reach out campaign inviting students from MCGM schools to experience the world-class theatre,” added Municipal Commissioner Mehta.
click here to Read what Zulfia Waris of discovery communications told Amruta Sonawane of MediaBrief about the tie-up, and the shows planned at the 3D theatre at Mumbai Zoo