Posts Tagged ‘dhobi ghat’
By Subhash K. Jha, November 27, 2009 – 11:34 IST
It looks like it will be another year at least after 3 Idiots and his own home productions Dhobi Ghat and Delhi Belly before Aamir Khan will sign another new film.
Since the release of Ghajini in December 2008, Aamir has not signed on the dotted line for any project. In fact Aamir had decided to take one full year off after Ghajini to rejuvenate himself. After the tough physical and emotional preparation for Ghajini, Aamir just wanted to relax and spend time with his wife and children.
That’s precisely what he has done for the last one year. But now Aamir would be taking one more year off. This next one year would be devoted to putting his three home productions in order.
Says a source, “Aamir had earlier decided to take one year off. But now he has decided to extend his sabbatical by one more year. Filmmakers who have approached him with projects have been told that Aamir intends to take approximately one more year to supervise the post-production and final look of the three films that he has produced in 2009, namely Abhinay Deo’s Delhi Belly, Anushka Rizvi’s The Falling and Aamir’s wife Kiran Rao’s Dhobi Ghat.”
Aamir feels, all three projects need serious fine-tuning and have been delayed because he has been busy finishing and promoting 3 Idiots.
Says the source, “The only way Aamir feels his three productions can be completed and released in 2010 is if he sets aside all his own acting assignments to look into them. So he isn’t signing any films in 2010 either.”
Says the source, “It requires guts to say no to the best roles going around in Bollywood, and at a reported fee of approximately Rs 30 crores per film. But Aamir suffers no security pangs about not signing films. He told a friend he will work at his own pace, no matter what the temptation or provocation to take on extra work may be.”
MEENA IYER Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; November 28, 2009)
Pratik says, “My filmmakers be it Sanjay Leela or Rohan will do all the talking about their films. I’m under a contract and unable to say much.”
The star son, however, clears the air about a controversy that said he kept Bollywood superstar Aamir Khan waiting on the sets of Kiran Rao’s Dhobi Ghat because he was holidaying in Goa. “I haven’t been to Goa in five years,” says Pratik. “I may be young, restless and even stupid but I would never keep a senior actor like Aamir waiting.” Brickbats be damned, then. It will rain bouquets in Pratik’s backyard on his birthday, today!
Has anybody in Bollywood made Aamir Khan, who is a stickler for perfection, wait on the sets? Well, Raj Babbar and Smita Patil’s son Pratik, who incidentally is just one-film-old, did just that recently. Not only did Pratik make the senior actor wait endlessly on the sets of his wife Kiran Rao’s directorial debut, Dhobi Ghat but also did not report to the sets that day. Consequently, Aamir had to go back home as the day’s shoot had to be called off due to Pratik’s no-show.
The particular scene was supposed to be shot at Masjid Bunder.
A source says, “Frantic efforts to trace Pratik were made, but to no avail. Officials from Aamir Khan Productions made repeated calls to Pratik’s mobile, but nobody could trace him that day.”
After some time, the production guys learnt that Pratik had gone away to Goa. “It was very strange of Pratik to go to Goa. He is often spaced-out,” adds the source. They couldn’t shoot for the next two days because of Pratik’s absence.
Aamir, of course, gave Pratik a piece of his mind when he returned. He told Pratik, “Aise kaam nahin chalega. Please try and understand.’ After that, Pratik did not play truant.
Pratik remained unavailable for comment.
|Looks like Aamir Khan has taken a fancy to Pratik Babbar, who plays the central character in his wife Kiran’s Rao’s debut film, Dhobi Ghat. The diligent actor seems to have taken him under his wings and is making him go through the grind for the role. The actor had to go to a real dhobi ghat every morning to learn to wash clothes. Commenting on his training process, Pratik says, “I play the dhobi who washes clothes for all these characters, including Aamir Khan. He’s my saab. I went to real dhobi ghats and washed clothes for five hours everyday for a week. It was quite a unique experience. Now I’ve become an expert at the job. I can’t say I enjoy doing it, but if I’ve no one to do my washing, I won’t sit and cry.”
The actor has insights into the dhobi lifestyle as well. Pratik says, “Do you know these guys wake up at 3am? And the first thing they do is swig alcohol. They are drunk the whole time while they wash. That’s all they do. Wash clothes and drink.”
But Aamir Khan did take special care of Pratik Babbar during the shoot, and not just because he is the film’s producer. It has more to do with the fact that Pratik is Smita Patil’s son and everyone including Aamir Khan feels protective towards the boy. Talking about how Aamir helped Pratik with his performance, Pratik says, “He helped me with my scenes. But most importantly he made me do voice exercises. He made me clench my teeth and read out the whole script to myself. And he made me yell at the top of my voice. All this helped me with the pronunciation and rolling of the tongue.”
Pratik says he chose Dhobi Ghat as his crucial post-debut film solely because of Aamir Khan. He explains, “I’ve to admit it was because of Aamir. When I went to the audition they told me AK would be playing a role as well. That did it. I was on. No questions asked. I was itching to tell everyone about him. But I was warned not to open my mouth. Honestly, Aamir is of a different calibre.”
One of Sanjay Bhansali’s desires, of working on a film with Smita Patil, was never fulfilled, but the director has signed her son Prateik Babbar to do a film with him. Prateik will be featuring in a film produced by Sanjay later this year.
Titled My Friend Pinto, the film will be directed by Raghav Dar who assisted Mani Ratnam on Guru and also worked as the associate assistant to Abbas Tyrewala on Jaane Tu Ya… Jaane Na.
And it was during the filming of JTYJN that the Prateik and Raghav decided to work together.
My Friend Pinto will be Prateik’s first lead role. He had an appreciated cameo in JTYJN and Aamir Khan plays the lead in his next, Kiran Rao’s Dhobi Ghat. Prateik’s aunt Manya Patil is only too happy for Prateik.
A thrilled Manya said, “Do you know Prateik was offered Saawariya at the very initial stage of the film when Sanjay was undecided about who to cast as the lead? But back then, Prateik was not interested in acting. He was at a stage in life where he was not sure which way to go next.
Then Abbas offered him JTYJN. It seemed too small a role to me, but Abbas asked me to trust him with the role, he said was tailor-made for Prateik. And just like he had assured me, the role was good and Prateik’s career is shaping up well.”
Prateik said, “I’m happy to work with Mr Bhansali.”
Remember Aamir Khan’s marketing strategy to have ushers sport the Ghajini look during the screening of Shah Rukh Khan’s Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi? Here’s another brilliant plan that Aamir has come up with. Everyone knows that Aamir has a cameo role in wife Kiran Rao’s directorial debut film, Dhobi Ghat. But what is, or rather was, a closely guarded secret is that Aamir has a full-fledged role in the film and can be well called the lead actor of Dhobi Ghat. This makes it two lead actors for the film, the other being Pratiek Babbar, who is currently being touted as the only male lead by the filmmakers.
A source says, “It is a very clever marketing gimmick to say that Aamir only has a guest appearance in the film. It ensures that the audience will go to watch the film with minimum expectations from an actor of Aamir’s calibre. What the filmmakers want is for the audience to be glad to see Aamir throughout the film after expecting him to play a brief role in it. Consequently, viewers will feel that they have got more than their money’s worth and that will work in the film’s favour. Which is why, it has been intentionally announced that Aamir only has a cameo in the film. Actually, Aamir plays the central character along with Pratiek. Even the publicity around Aamir will be low-key. It’s a marketing strategy.”
Telling us about Aamir’s character in Dhobi Ghat, our source says, “Aamir plays a painter who lives and works from his tiny studio-apartment in a noisy and congested Mumbai neighbourhood. In our normal day-to-day life we meet so many people on a daily basis… say a watchman, a servant or a dhobi. Pratiek plays a dhobi and the film is about how one day such people become very significant in your life. That’s the story of Dhobi Ghat. Kiran never wanted to cast Aamir in the film but Aamir insisted and even screen tested for the role.”
“The film is complete and Aamir has shot for over 30 days. The editing process is currently on and the final release plans are being worked out. Monica Dogra of Shaa’ir + Func plays the female lead in the film,” adds the source.
Once, filmmaker Kamal Amrohi stormed out of a film function when his actress-wife Meena Kumari asked him to hold her handbag, while she went up on stage to receive her trophy. Commenting on the event, a yesteryear actor says, “Kamal saab didn’t like the idea of being referred to as Mr Meena Kumari, even for a brief second. His ego would never permit it.”
Ditto for naval lieutenant commander Rajneesh Behl, who was not at all happy if the focus was more on him being award-winning actress Nutan’s husband. He always wished to be in command.
And, if you’re wondering why we’re digging up past skeletons, it is only to tell you that there’s a brand new breed of cool superstars, who are perfectly happy to occasionally bask in their wives’ or girlfriends’ glory. They love the fact that they have beautiful, smart and talented women as partners.
For instance, Abhishek Bachchan is ecstatic that wife Aishwarya Rai Bachchan is such a huge international star. He says, “I’m proud to be married to someone as beautiful as Aishwarya. I’m fully aware that a lot of people envy me because she is my wife.”
Abhishek has gone one step ahead and is happy to accompany Aishwarya to the Cannes film festival or the The Pink Panther-2 premiere, where the flashbulbs seek Aishwarya out more than him.
Ajay Devgan too confesses that he has no problem “minding the baby”, while wife Kajol pursues her film career. While Kajol is currently shooting in San Francisco for Karan Johar’s My Name is Khan with Shah Rukh Khan, Ajay says, “What is the big deal if Kajol shoots 60-75 days in a year? For the rest of the year, she is a hands-on mother and wife. I see no reason why she shouldn’t pursue her acting career when she is so much in demand. In fact, I’m proud of her being an actress and my wife.”
Twinkle Khanna has no desire to step in front of the camera. She laughs if you even suggest it. However, husband Akshay Kumar is completely turned on with Twinkle’s role as an international interior designer. “When Tina accompanies me to London or New York for shootings, she hardly ever comes to the sets,” says Akshay.
Akshay says there are days when Twinkle is out making work-related buys, while he looks after son Aarav. “Tina is very good at her job and very much in demand,” says the actor, who takes pride in his wife’s career and he’s happy to cheer when she receives a trophy.
Aamir Khan loves the fact that wife Kiran Rao is an independent filmmaker. He has given her carte blanche to make her film Dhobi Ghat just the way she wants to.
Then there is filmmaker Rajkumar Hirani, who is absolutely happy to let his wife pursue a career in flying (yes, Mrs Hirani flies planes). And, if a unit hand is to be believed, Saif Ali Khan is so proud of girlfriend Kareena Kapoor that he didn’t hesitate to press her feet in full view of the Golmaal Returns unit in Goa because her feet were sore from wearing stilettos.
Yeah, Bollywood’s changing and it is liberated men who are showing the way.