Barring Salman Khan, no Indian movies star has been paid as much as Vijay Sethupathi is to host a television show.
Vijay is apparently being paid a whopping amount to host the Tamil edition of MasterChef, thereby effectively bridging the pay parity gulf between south Indian stars and their Bollywood counterparts.
A source close to the development says money was Vijay's only criteria when it came to hosting MasterChef.
"Otherwise, why would such a popular and busy screen actor, with as many as five-six films on the floor, squeeze time out to do a television show?"
"See, Vijay doesn't do movies for the money," the source adds. "Many times, he lets go of his full remuneration to accommodate a challenging role. This (MasterChef) is his chance to make some money."
The fee being offered to Vijay is apparently Rs 5 crores (Rs 50 million) per episode. That apart, it requires only five-six hours shooting hours every week.
Speaking about MasterChef, Vijay had told Subhash K Jha, "MasterChef is an international cooking franchise. They have their show in many countries in many different languages. I am hosting the Tamil version of MasterChef."
"I have been hosting another television show, Namma Oru Hero, for two years. This is a Tamil weekly show where I bring into the limelight unsung heroes, the working class soldiers, the doctors, nurses, school teachers..." Vijay added. "For me they are the real heroes."
Feature Presentation: Ashish Narsale/Rediff.com