SBS celebrates Diwali in virtual reality with shows on food, wildlife and the movie The Lunch Box

SBS Diwali

SBS is celebrating Diwali across October and November with dedicated programming across TV, radio, online, On Demand and, for the first time, in virtual reality (VR) with Tomorrow’s Diwali.

Exploring what Indian festivals represent to the diverse Indian Australian community,  Tomorrow’s Diwali  combines real-time art with emotive narrative from a range of community voices. Using VR’s painting tool Google Tilt Brush, visual artist Keroshin Govender takes audiences on an immersive journey, creating visual representations that reflect diverse stories for all Australians to embrace.

SBS Radio is bringing the experience to events in Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne throughout October and running a competition to win flights to India.

SBS Director of Audio and Language Content Mandi Wicks said: “Diwali is one of the biggest events on the SBS calendar and we are looking forward to celebrating with the Indian Australian community through the world of virtual reality and inspiring all Australians to explore the rich heritage of our Indian Australian communities.”

Elsewhere on the network, SBS celebrates Diwali with brand new food series,  My Restaurant in India, which follows Masterchef 2014 contestant Sarah Todd on her journey to open a restaurant and club in Goa and a range of dedicated documentaries, including  Treasures of Ancient India  and  Kolkata: City of Joy.  SBS On Demand is also marking the occasion with a special Exclusives Collection, featuring titles such as  Shadows of Time  and  The World Before Her.  

To experience  Tomorrow’s Diwali, and for your chance to win flights to India, visit  before 4 November.


My Restaurant in India  ”“  begins Thursday 20 October, 9pm

Masterchef 2014 contestant Sarah Todd is opening a 400 seat restaurant and club in Goa. This six-part series will follow Sarah through the crucial stages of the restaurant development, through the chaos of opening night and beyond as she sets about creating the ultimate Goan beach dining experience.

Wild Sri Lanka ”“ begins Friday 28 October, 7:30pm

The plains of Sri Lanka offer a wildlife spectacle to rival Africa’s Serengeti. The landscape may seem timeless, but everything is in a state of constant change. Life on the plains is dominated by Sri Lanka’s extraordinary climate. Situated at the point where two tropical oceans meet, it is deluged by two separate monsoons each year. It’s a climate that every living thing must adapt to, by changing, by migrating ”“ and sometimes by forming the most unlikely alliances with each other, and also with man.

Treasures of Ancient India ”“ begins Saturday 29 October, 7:30pm

The story of the Indian sub-continent told through the treasures that have shaped the modern Indian world. Host Sona Datta takes a journey of thousands of miles deep into the Indian subcontinent to discover some of its most hidden treasures and reveal secrets from its ancient past. Sona travels back 5000 years to the ancient civilisation that first grew up on the shores of the Indus; revealing the lost Buddhist culture of northern Pakistan, and luxuriating in the extraordinary architectural flowering of the Mughal Empire and the fabulous temples of South India.

India: Nature’s Wonderland ”“ begins Wednesday 2 November, 7:30pm

India – land of stunning wildlife, ancient cultures and extreme landscapes. Wildlife expert Liz Bonnin, actor Freida Pinto and mountaineer Jon Gupta reveal India’s natural wonders.

World’s Busiest Railway ”“ begins Wednesday 16 November, 7:30pm

World’s Busiest Railway goes behind the scenes of Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus super-sized transport operation to reveal how the station’s staff and technological systems cope as they are stretched to breaking point on a daily basis. It’s a revealing journey into the everyday workings of an extraordinary station that is a microcosm of India ”“ congested, vibrant, hot, colourful, and dangerous ”“ organised chaos supported by a backbone of bureaucracy. With access to control rooms and signal boxes, driver’s cabs and engineering workshops, as well as the policemen, porters and dabba wallas who direct, help and feed travellers, this series tells the story of the megacity of Mumbai ”“ its station and its transport challenges – over four hours.  

Kolkata: City of Joy ”“ Tuesday 22 November, 8:30pm

Sue Perkins immerses herself in the complex life of Kolkata. She sees first-hand how it has evolved from a place notorious for its fabled ‘Black Hole’ dungeon and the dreadful poverty of its street people to a place reinventing itself as a vibrant new megacity, with a booming property sector and a reputation for eccentricity, culture and tolerance. In this intricate human habitat, Sue explores the lives of its people, from the 250,000 homeless street kids hustling for a living to the wealthy young entrepreneurs who race their Ferraris and Lamborghinis down the streets of the New Town.

SBS On Demand Exclusives Collection

Dateline ”“ India’s Love Detectives

Is the partner you met online really who they say they are? Hiring private detectives to investigate lovers is big business in India, as modern technology challenges age-old tradition.

Shadows of Time

The love story of Ravi and Masha, spanning 60 years. Ravi and Masha are just children when they are sold into labour by their parents. When the factory manager threatens to sell Masha, Ravi gives up his savings to buy her freedom. They agree to reunite once Ravi buys his own freedom but a series of misunderstandings tear them apart.


A rickshaw driver commits his days to ensuring the safety and wellbeing of his passengers. His random acts of kindness are observed by an eccentric, ageing billionaire, who masquerades as a beggar in order to find a worthy heir to his fortune. This contemporary fairy set in New Delhi suggests that ‘sometimes the poorest of men are the richest’.

The Lunchbox

In Mumbai’s famously efficient lunchbox delivery system, a meal made by an unhappy young housewife mistakenly lands in the hands of a widower. After realising the mix up, the strangers begin to communicate through a series of letters, revealing a little more of themselves each time.

The World Before Her ”“ from 18 October

Two young women follow completely divergent paths in the new, modernising India  – one wants to become Miss India, the other is a fierce Hindu Nationalist prepared to kill and die for her beliefs.

The collection will be available on SBS On Demand:

SBS Radio

Experience  Tomorrow’s Diwali  with SBS Radio at events in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane from 16 to 23 October.


Diwali Festival, Blacktown Showgrounds

Sunday 16 October, 12-7.30pm

Deepavali Fair, Parramatta Park, Parramatta

Sunday 23 October, 12-10pm


Sri Durga Temple Celebrations Dussehra, Rockbank

Sunday 16 October, 11am – 8pm

Wyndham Diwali, Presidents Park

Saturday 22 October, 12-10pm

AIII Diwali Fair, Sandown Racecourse

Sunday 23 October, 11:30am ”“ 9pm


King George Square, Brisbane

Friday 21 October, 11am ”“ 9pm

My Australian Diwali

SBS Radio programs will be calling on audiences to share memories and experiences of celebrating Diwali in Australia. Hindi, Punjabi and Gujarati broadcasters are encouraging listeners to share photos and videos via social media to show how they’ve celebrated the festival since migrating to Australia.


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