Actor Salman Khan will return as host of the popular reality show Bigg Boss, for its upcoming 14th season. Salman has hosted the show since 2010’s season four. Over the years, the actor has become synonymous with the show, and the channel has gone the extra mile in keeping him on as host, reportedly by increasing his salary dramatically.
The actor has said that he is amenable to taking a pay cut this year, so that the show can sustain itself after the coronavirus lockdown. “This is the reason why I am doing this season of Bigg Boss. It’ll provide employment to people, there’s a very large unit, they will start getting their salary, they’ll be able to get ration for their homes,” he said during a recent press conference. “Obviously you might not see huge increments, but we are paying full salary,” Abhishek Rege, CEO of Endemol Shine India said, to which Salman replied, “What about mine? It doesn’t matter. I am more than happy to cut it down so that everyone else gets paid.”
According to a Bollywood Hungama report, the actor was paid Rs 2.5 crore per episode from seasons four to six of the show. “Thereafter, he doubled his fees to Rs 5 crore for Bigg Boss 7. For Bigg Boss 8, Salman is estimated to have charged Rs 5.5 crore per episode and for Bigg Boss 9, he increased his fees to Rs 7-8 crore per episode. For season 10 of Bigg Boss, he took home Rs 8 crore per episode,” the report said.
When it was reported that the actor would take home Rs 11 crore per episode for the show’s 11th season, Salman said in a press conference, “Please make Raj (Nayak, Endemol COO) pay me that amount.” While Salman made it sound like just a rumour, Raj’s response suggested that the number may not be too far from the actual figure. “Salman Khan doesn’t come cheap, you know,” he said.
If reports of Salman’s steadily increasing paychecks are indeed true, it makes him one of the highest paid actors in the world. To put things in perspective, the world’s highest paid television actors — Jim Parsons, Johnny Galecki, Kaley Cuoco, Kunal Nayyar and Simon Helberg of The Big Bang Theory — make $900,000 per episode (Rs 5.75 crore).
For Bigg Boss 13, Pinkvilla quoted a source as saying that Salman would be paid more than Rs 200 crore for the season, amounting to Rs 13 crore per day of shoot. “Last year, he charged Rs 11 crore per day of shoot. He shoots both the weekend special episodes in a day and so, in 2018 he minted Rs 165 crore from the whole season,” the source said, and continued, “BB 13 will be a notch higher. He has hiked his fee and will get Rs 13 crore per week, which means Rs 6.5 crore per episode. That also means that he will in fact be earning close to Rs 200 crore (Rs 195 crore exactly) this time and not 400 crore as being reported.”
After the show was unexpectedly extended by a few weeks, Colors convinced Salman to stay back by paying him a reported Rs 2 crore extra per episode. Bollywood Hungama quoted a source as saying, “Salman made it very clear that he didn’t want to extend his stint on Bigg Boss due to his other film commitments (post-production of Dabangg 2, shooting of Radhe: Your Most Wanted Bhai). However the channel Colors lured him to stay on with added zeroes on his paycheck.”
Bigg Boss 14 premieres on October 3. Rubina Dilaik, Abhinav Shukla, Nishant Singh Malkani, Jasmin Bhasin and Pavitra Punia are just some of the names in contention.
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