Discovery channel snaps up Abhi-Ash wedding?

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Discovery Network’s digital TV channel Travel and Living looks as if it has snapped up the UK TV rights for the much publicised Abhishek Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai wedding.

According to The Times Of India, the deal between the two parties (Bachchans and Discovery) is worth Rs 5 crore, although it is learned that the amount could be a little more than that.

It was always thought that the Bachchans were keeping the local media at bay for commercial reasons. “If they had sold the rights to cover the wedding to a channel, then they couldn’t possibly allow any Indian media to cover the event,”a film industry source told The Times Of India. According to industry insiders, “Even the photographers who shot the pictures have been bound under confidentiality contracts not to release or reveal any pictures to any media.”

There were reports last week stating an exclusive photo deal was on the anvil with international magazines ‘Hello!’ or “Ok!”. With today’s news, this now looks unlikely.

A proposal from an India-based television network too was sent to the Bachchans, but didn’t find favour. Sources reveal that the Bachchans were looking for a foreign channel. And the one with which they struck the deal has a big viewership in the UK where there is a strong Indian population.

If Discovery has notched the TV rights for the wedding, then it will be the first Bollywood wedding, which has garnered such a hefty amount and that too from an international broadcaster.

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