Millions of young Indian viewers are currently tuning in for an Amazing Race-like reality television series shot across regional New South Wales.
Indian contestants race each other across Australia, stopping to perform challenges in towns like Broken Hill, Tenterfield and Coffs Harbour.
Roadies‘ producer, Anu Sharma, says “It’s not so much a race as … a challenge, a travel show, a reality show.
“They incorporate the local culture, the local regional things.
“For example, when they were in Dubbo, they had a rugby match.”
The MTV show has a cult following in India, reaching more than 20 million viewers each week.
“We’ve got a cult following in youth section, which is a prime market for Australia,” Mr Sharma said.
“Not only as overseas students who come to Australia, but also as young, upwardly mobile backpackers which are increasing from India.”
Each episode features a vote-out at the end in which the roadies eliminate one of their fellow roadie, thereby decreasing the number of roadies carrying on with the journey. The Indian version of the show is based on the original MTV reality show Road Rules which started in 1995.
New South Wales Film and Television Office Chief executive Tania Chambers thinks it is a perfect way to showcase what Australia has to offer.
“Any country could not afford to buy advertising time to target 22 million viewers in India, and if there’s any way this great series encourages people to come and visit us, we think that’s a really great thing,” she said.