Fenil and Bollywood

Archive for January 2010

By Satish Sundaresan, January 21, 2010 – 12:58 IST

Katrina Kaif

The news that has been doing the rounds for sometime now is about the search for the heroine of Farah Khan and Shirish Kunder’s flick Tees Maar Khan. The film has been in news since its announcement. First it was Akshay replacing SRK as the lead, followed by the ‘namesake’ casting coup, wherein Akshaye Khanna was roped in for the film.

As far as the heroine for the film was concerned, the rumor mills went overboard with names that ranged from Sonam Kapoor to Deepika Padukone and likes. But, according to Bollywood Hungama’s confirmed sources it is neither Sonam, nor Deepika, because it is Katrina Kaif! When we spoke to Shirish to confirm the news, all that he said was, “I cannot say anything right now. I can only speak about it in a couple of days.” Our source also went onto add that the trio of Akshay, Katrina and Farah have shot a cover page shoot for a daily (which is supposed to be out in a couple of days) to announce the coming on board of Katrina as Tees Maar Khan’s leading lady.

With Katrina coming on board, expectations are bound to be sky-high about Tees Maar Khan, considering the hit track record that Akki-Katz have delivered in the past, like Namastey London, Welcome and Singh Is Kinng to name a few. What remains to be seen is that will Tees Maar Khan follow suit or will it create a new track record?


By Subhash K. Jha, January 21, 2010 – 16:44 IST

In a film industry that is plagued with piracy and other forms of creative and financial vandalism, the downloading of Sudhir Mishra’s unreleased film Tera Kya Hoga Johnny nonetheless comes as a rude shock.

The director, shooting his latest film in the freezing winter of Delhi, took time off to speak exclusively to Bollywood Hungama.

“Suddenly the news of my film being downloaded has become bigger than the film itself. This, I must admit, comes as a rude reminder of what lies ahead for our film industry. It’s not just piracy. The internet is where we need to look for trouble sources now.”

Sudhir was busy shooting on Tuesday. “When I finally heard about my film being on the net, I checked it out. This is not the full and final version of Tera Kya Hoga Johnny. It’s a very rough cut. I’d advice all netizens to avoid watching the illegally download version because that’s not my film.”

Trying hard to keep the annoyance and anger out of his voice, Sudhir refuses to play the blame game with the film’s co-producer Tutu Sharma.

“All I’ll say,” says the tightlipped critically acclaimed director “is that the film did not get leaked out of my office. What has already happened must be avoided in the future. But we aren’t letting this go. Complaints have been filed in two police stations of Mumbai and with the Google authorities. This must not happen again.”

Sudhir, however is confident that the unfinished version on the internet won’t jeopardize the film’s prospects. “After Slumdog Millionaire, the West is looking with much curiosity at the slum culture of Mumbai. I had no plans of doing an English version of Tera Kya Hoga Johnny. But everyone who saw it in New York suggested I do it. Every frame in my film has been shot in the slums, lanes and gullies of Colaba in South Mumbai.”

Tera Kya Hoga Johnny is an episodic story of a street -child name Johnny. Mishra got an actual boy from the streets of Kolkata to play the lead and even unofficially adopted the boy who now lives with the director.

Neil Nitin Mukesh who features in one of the episodes was blamed for the film’s two-year delay in release. It was said that Neil didn’t want the film to release because of his minuscule role.

“Now at least everyone should stop blaming me,” smirks Neil. “It was said that I delayed the film by refusing to dub for it. Arrey! The film was in sync sound, so there’s no question of not dubbing. I’m very proud of Tera Kya Hoga Johnny.”


American actress Lucy Liu will be in Mumbai soon to direct a film starring Tannishtha Chatterjee

By Subhash K Jha (MUMBAI MIRROR; January 21, 2010)

Charlie’s Angels and Kill Bill star Lucy Liu is turning director along with two other American actresses, Meryl Streep and Angelina Jolie. This is for a four-segment, all-women feature film, which is yet untitled. The USP of this project is it converts some of the topmost American actresses into first-time directors.

It is to be shot in four continents beginning with India. Although the fourth director is yet to be finalised, the other three directors are set to go behind the camera; the first one being Lucy Liu.

The heartening news is that Lucy turns director with a film set in Mumbai. The hush-hush project starts filming in February at undisclosed locations in Mumbai. Two other segments of the film are to be shot in two other countries by Angelina Jolie and Meryl Streep.

Bengali actress Tannishtha Chatterjee, who created ripples with her role of a repressed Bangladeshi wife in Sarah Gavron’s British film Brick Lane, is playing the lead in the Mumbai segment. After the actress (currently doing the festival circuit for Dev Benegal’s Road, Movie opposite Abhay Deol) was selected in Mumbai among many topnotch hopefuls, she flew down to LA to meet Lucy.

(L): Tannishtha Chatterjee (R): Lucy Liu

Tannishtha confirms the news. She says, “At the moment, I am not supposed to talk about this project at all. If I breathe a word, I will be guilty of breach of contract. So let us just say, I love Lucy!”

V K Murthy is the first cinematographer to be awarded the Dadasaheb Phalke Award. He talks about his journey and working with Guru Dutt, who was irreplaceable for him

By Manasi Paresh Kumar (MUMBAI MIRROR; January 21, 2010)

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V K Murthy

V K Murthy’s once steady hands have captured the most beautiful images for Indian cinema. He is the man who turned legendary filmmaker Guru Dutt’s creativity into on-screen magic.

That shot in Kaagaz Ke Phool where Guru Dutt and Waheeda Rehman are bathed in white light as Geeta Dutt’s melancholy Waqt ne kiya… rings out became Murthy’s calling card as a cinematographer. A pioneer of lighting techniques, Murthy is credited to have turned the technique and technology into art. This year he takes home the prestigious Dada Saheb Phalke Award (the first cinematographer to win this award) as a befitting tribute.

His fragile 86-year-old frame struggled to pose for the barrage of photographers that laid siege to his Chamrajpet home in Bangalore, as the news spread. But the cinematographer understood the challenge. “It is difficult to take a shot sometimes,” he said. He rolls out his story…

If I were an actor

As a 12-year-old, I wanted to become a Hindi film hero and even took Hindi lessons so I could speak clearly. But at 16, reality dawned and I realised I did not have the personality of an actor. But I remained fascinated by the art of story telling and its technique. At that time, S J Polytechnic was the only college in South East Asia to have a course in cinematography and I enrolled for it. When I went to Bombay, it was a struggle to find a footing in the Hindi film industry. I didn’t know where my life was heading. Maharana Pratap gave me my first break where I assisted cinematographer Dronacharya. Yet it was Fali Mistry who honed me in the art. To this day, I am yet to see a more talented cinematographer than him.

Lovely sight
Leading ladies were all stunning then, you could never pick one as a favourite. However, I was a favourite with them if their compliments were anything to go by. Meena Kumari always told me, ‘Murthysaab, nobody makes me look as beautiful as you.’ Madhubala was, of course, a beauty.

Chaudhvin ka chand

Who needed colour

I was assistant cameraperson for the film Baazi and had suggested a particular shot for a musical bit in a song. Rathra, who was the cameraperson for the movie and leading man Dev Anand’s cousin, said that the shot could not be done so. I asked for permission to shoot it myself and in the third take, we got it right. Guru Dutt asked me to be his cameraman from then on.

When I began my career, we were in the black and white era which was indulgent to one’s creativity. Any cinematographer will tell you that black and white is the best way to shoot. It allows you to experiment with lighting and shot break-ups. But when I shot the song Chaudhvi ka chand in technicolour, it amazed me to see the difference.

For my own
I have shot just one movie Huvu Hannu and even acted in it. Why I did not become a more integral part of the Kannada film industry is a question you need to ask the producers of that time who never invited me. They said I was too expensive.

Guru Dutt, magic and movies

Waqt ne kiya…

Though Dutt and me were from Karnataka, oddly enough we always communicated in Hindi. We were individually creative and worked very well with each other. Though many consider Kaagaz Ke Phool to be his finest, I personally am a fan of Pyaasa. The writing, the scenes, the sequence are par excellence and gave me the best platform to experiment.

While making Kaagaz Ke Phool, the two of us were sitting in the studio as the late afternoon sun poured in through the ventilators of the room. It struck both of us that this would make a great shot. When we shot Waqt ne kiya, I had used mirrors for the effect and the final product was stunning, capturing the pathos of the song beautifully.

We had shot one scene for a new movie Gauri, with his wife Geeta in the lead, when he died. I had lost a friend and creative soulmate. I have worked with Shyam Benegal on his Discovery of India series, Govind Nihalani and Pramod Chakravarthy who I was very fond of. But there was no other Guru Dutt for me.

Vinod Chopra’s entourage cordons off a major public road in Bandra to let the producer into a bylane

By Kunal M Shah (MUMBAI MIRROR; January 21, 2010)

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Vidhu Vinod Chopra

Vidhu Vinod Chopra’s trip to St Paul’s Road in Bandra caused a traffic jam during rush hour. At around 6pm  on January 18, his security guards blocked the entire road; barring all vehicles and pedestrians from using St Paul’s Road for about 10-12 minutes. Vidhu made a grand entry from the other side, which is a no entry and then drove into a bylane.

A reputed director, who happened to be there at the same time said, “Roads are usually blocked for politicians and that too by cops. Now, roads are being blocked for filmmakers as well. It was shocking. Some private security guards simply blocked the traffic from the other side of St Paul’s Road, which is a one way road. Ten minutes later, Vidhu Vinod Chopra drove along on the wrong side of the one way and only after that was the traffic allowed to ply.”

Didn’t the traffic police object? The director replied, “Normally there are traffic cops but on at day, there were none.”

Vidhu Vinod Chopra remained unavailable for comment. But we wonder, has he forgotten his Munnabhai Gandhigiri lesson?

Rohan Sippy’s new film will have the remixed version of the 1970s hit song, RD Burman’s Dum Maro Dum

By Kunal M Shah (MUMBAI MIRROR; January 21, 2010)

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Dum Maaro Dum

After remixing an old song, Sabse bada Rupaiya in Bluffmaster (2005), filmmaker Rohan Sippy is set to recreate another classic Dum Maro Dum from Dev Anand’s Hare Rama Hare Krishna (1971) for his new film. The song created a sensation when the film released, making Zeenat Aman an overnight star.

Incidentally, the title of the film is also Dum Maro Dum and stars Abhishek Bachchan, Pratik and Telugu star Rana Daggubati.

Confirming the news, Rohan says, “Yes, the title of the film is Dum Maro Dum. As far as the song goes, we are still in talks with SaRe GaMa for the necessary permissions. At the moment, we have finalised the songs. We will work on the title song only when we are closer to the release of the film.”

Incidentally, the film’s shooting is yet to begin.

Of all the old songs, what made Rohan opt for this particular song? “The song is a classic and everything about it is unique. These days everyone is doing promotional songs.

Rohan Sippy

We want to be different and do something unique. Legendary names are involved with the song and we don’t want to tarnish their reputation by doing a bad job. We want to do complete justice to the song and live up to the expectations of the earlier song.

Pritam is composing music and Jaideep Sahni has written the lyrics. We will decide how to go about the song, once the film is shot,” says Rohan.

Akshay and Ritesh embarrassed Jiah Khan while dinning at a resort in Italy by slipping the entire table’s cutlery into her bag.

By Vickey Lalwani (MUMBAI MIRROR; January 21, 2010)

What happens when a waiter at a restaurant catches you smuggling out cutlery in your bag? He asks you to er, fork out the cost, perhaps?

Well, that’s what happened with Jiah Khan when she was dining with her Houseful co-stars – Deepika Padukone, Lara Dutta, Akshay Kumar, Ritesh Deshmukh director Sajid Khan and producer Sajid Nadiadwala – at a beach resort in Italy.

// <![CDATA[// // <![CDATA[// // <![CDATA[// It was a prank engineered by Akshay and Ritesh along with their co-stars, director and producer. And guess who played the sidekick? The waiter who served them dinner. After whispering the plan into Deepika and Lara’s ears when they all finished their meal, Akshay got up with two forks and spoons and pretended he was talking on his phone. He kept strolling near the table and when Jiah was not paying attention, he slipped the spoon and fork into her huge bag which was open. After a minute or two, Ritesh repeated Akshay’s exercise. At this point of time, Jiah had two forks and two spoons in her bag, and eeks, used ones!

Completely ignorant of what was happening around her, Jiah kept chatting with Deepika and Lara. A source says, “It was very difficult for both the girls to control their laughter but somehow they did.”

Slowly, the gang passed all the spoons and forks to Akshay and Ritesh who eventually ended up putting all of them (14 forks, 14 spoons, two belonging to each one of them on the table) into Jiah’s bag.

After sometime, Akshay and Ritesh returned to the table. Five minutes later, the waiter came in with the bill and exclaimed, “Gosh! Where are all the forks and spoons? If you don’t mind, I will have to check your bags.”

Jiah, who was sitting at the corner near the waiter, had her bag checked first. When the forks and spoons tumbled out of her bag, Jiah was left astounded and had no clue how to explain it.

The mischievous company burst out laughing. This is when they disclosed the whole plan and how they had ganged up against her. Naturally, the waiter too was a part of the game plan.

And what did a mortified Jiah do? “Nothing, what could she do?” our source said. Director of Houseful, Sajid Khan, confirmed the story.

Looks like alarm bells are ringing in Rani’s mind as she angles for projects outside the Yash Raj banner

By Meena Iyer (MUMBAI MIRROR; January 21, 2010)

Trade sources say that Rani Mukerji has been sending feelers to filmmakers outside of Yash Raj Films, her personal relationship with the company notwithstanding. The actress who did her last three films, Laaga Chunari Mein Daag, Thoda Pyaar Thoda Magic and Dil Bole Hadippa with YRF, is now looking to break fresh ground with outside producers.

It is confirmed that Rani will be seen in an important role in UTV Spotboy’s No One Killed Jessica. Vidya Balan will play a role based on Sabrina Lall, Jessica’s sister, while Rani will reportedly essay the role of a journalist who was instrumental in having this sensitive case re-opened. Directed by Rajkumar Gupta, who directed Aamir,  the film will go on the floors mid-February.

The reason why Rani apparently greenlighted this project is because she was thrilled with the aspect of doing a thriller. And, No One Killed Jessica, is a fast-paced flick set in the hub of political power, New Delhi.

Sources from the production company are hesitant to talk about the plot, but insiders say that Rani was excited when they told her that this film offers ample scope for the two lead actresses who, in their relentless pursuit for justice, mobilise the entire nation.

Siddharth Roy Kapur of UTV says, “When you have actors like Rani and Vidya by your side, the joy of creating characters that can shake the audience and leave an impact is immense.’’

Aamir Khan resolves to give up drinking and smoking for life

By Meena Iyer (MUMBAI MIRROR; January 21, 2010)

When the 3 Idiots team celebrated their success at a suburban restaurant in Andheri on January 18, people noticed that the lead actor Aamir Khan didn’t touch a drop of alcohol.

A couple of days earlier at his nephew Imran Khan’s engagement party too, Aamir refrained from sipping champagne.

News has it that on January 1, 2010 Aamir had decided that he would give up alcohol and cigarettes.

This time, for life.

Aamir says the next time he invites you home he will treat you to a glass of beer, but he will drink limbu paani.

Confirming that he has indeed decided to quit drinking and smoking, Aamir says, “I just felt like doing it from within. There is no specific reason.”

When he’s goaded further, the actor says, “Yaar, I’ve put on 10 kilos in recent months.  Also, sometimes, I tended to overdo the drinking bit. And I hate it when I feel unhealthy.  So I just decided that I wanted to quit alcohol for life. As for cigarettes, I was never a regular smoker. But I’ve decided to give it up completely too.”

RAY OF HOPE: Union textile minister Dayanidhi Maran (third from left) with Milind Deora and Ashok Chavan at the Bharatmata theatre on Tuesday

Prakash Joshi & Yogesh Naik | TNN (THE TIMES OF INDIA; January 20, 2010)

Mumbai: Union textile minister Dayanidhi Maran on Tuesday assured Mumbaikars that the historic Bharatmata cinema in Lalbaug will continue as it has played a significant role as a cultural centre for Marathi cinema.

Maran, who took a round of the area and visited Bharatmata, said he would respect the feelings of the Marathi people about the theatre as he belongs to Tamil Nadu, where films are respected.

Mumbai Regional Congress Committee president Kripashankar Singh had called on Maran and UPA president Sonia Gandhi to demand that the National Textile Corporation must respect the sentiments of the Marathi people and stop the demolition of Bharatmata.

Gandhi had promised to look into the issue and direct the government accordingly, Singh told TOI. The Shiv Sena and MNS have also taken an aggressive stand to save Bharatmata.

Chief minister Ashok Chavan, who accompanied Maran during the visit, was very happy with the Union minister’s assurance.

“Bharatmata cinema has become a cultural symbol respected by textile workers residing here for generations. We are happy that such symbol will be retained for future generations,’’ Chavan added.

There was strong demand from textile workers, Marathi film personalities and cultural bodies to save Bharatmata which has been showing only Maratahi films since 1940 at concessional rates.

A city civil court has dismissed an appeal filed by the owners of the theatre who challenged the eviction notice issued by NTC.


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