Mixed Martial Arts is the fastest growing sport in the world, and it has scooped India into its grip. All the credit goes to the Ultimate Fighting Championship and stars like Brock Lesnar, Ronda Rousey and Conor McGregor who have taken the sport to a new height.
In India, a number of MMA themed films have been made over the last few which have featured Bollywood stars. Back in 2015, Dharma production made an MMA film called ‘Brothers’ which featured Akshay Kumar and Sidharth Malhotra. The film made $17 Million and was a box office hit in India.
In 2016, Bollywood’s biggest superstar Salman Khan was featured in ‘Sultan’ which was another MMA themed movie and it was an instant hit amongst fans. The film earned close to a $100 Million in box office.
All these MMA based movies have helped elevate MMA in India and also the forefront of promoting the sport in India has been ‘The MMA India Show‘ which is a talk show streaming live on Sonyliv and hosted by Bollywood actor/director Parvin Dabas. The MMA India Show also has a facebook page with close to 115,000 followers. He has also launched mmaindia.com website which covers all the latest MMA news and features from MMA promotions around the world and has a team of dedicated writers committed to bringing MMA related news to its viewers on a daily basis.
MMA is now in a very healthy position in India with big promotions like UFC and Bellator regularly being shown on Indian television networks. Sony pictures network has been highly committed to bringing high-quality UFC action to its Indian viewers and over the years the number of people watching MMA has only risen.
“UFC remains the most watched mixed martial arts property in India. The sport has enjoyed considerable growth in viewership over the past few years, with close to 100 million viewers in 2018,” says Rajesh Kaul, Head – Sports Business, Sony Pictures Networks India. “Viewership is also largely gendered agnostic, with women contributing a sizeable 44%. One of the reasons for this is the following for fighters like McGregor and Rousey.” He said. [Transcript Courtesy – The Hindu]