Posts Tagged ‘november 20’
2009 has been a very bad year for UTV. After three films — What’s Your Rashee?, Main Aur Mrs Khanna and Kaminey — failed to set the cash registers ringing, they were heavily banking on Karan Johar’s Kurbaan, directed by Rensil D’Silva.
But their hopes of having a hit were dashed with Kurbaan proving to be a turkey at the box-office.UTV had bought the film from Karan for about Rs 50 crore and released it across 1,700 screens.
One could understand if the audience gave it a thumbs down after watching it. However, the shocker is that the film didn’t even get a good opening when it released on November 20. Despite being a solo release, it barely managed 35 per cent occupancy on the first day. The box-office collections thereafter have been far from encouraging, flattering reviews from film critics notwithstanding.
Endorsing the fact that the film did not register more than 40 per cent collections in its first three days, trade analyst Amod Mehra says, “Shockingly, the collections on Sunday were even less than that on Friday and Saturday. The film is a big blow to Dharma Productions and UTV. “
Mehra adds, “People are not interested in seeing terrorism any longer. New York did fairly well but that’s because it wasn’t publicised as a film based on terrorism. It looked like a very youthful film with fun elements by John and Katrina. The entire publicity of Kurbaan was wrong. If the heroine of Kurbaan doesn’t want her mother to see her steamy scenes with her boyfriend, how can one go with family members to see such a film?”
Distributor Ramesh Sippy says cautiously, “I don’t want to make any assessment. But yes, Kurbaan has not lived up to its expectations.”
We also spoke to some of the theatre officials. Manoj Desai (of Maratha Mandir, Gaiety-Galaxy) says, “I registered 80 per cent collections on the first three days whereas it did not go beyond 40 per cent in other theatres. However, the collections have nosedived since yesterday. Koi picture dekhne ke liye tayyar hi nahin hai. The overall feeling is that it’s a very serious and cruel film.”
An official from Cinemax, Andheri, says, “We had expected that this film would rake in around 85-90 per cent collections. But from day one, we knew that it wouldn’t be a hit. First day, we registered only 40-45 per cent collections. People have not related to the film, it has no repeat value. On Saturday and Sunday, we recorded only 50 per cent ticket sales.”
Vikram Varma, Fun Republic, communications manager, says, “We recorded 35 per cent in the first three days. But today (Monday), we only have 15-20 per cent occupancy. I think that too many films were released in the past few weeks and this has adversely affected Kurbaan.”
We then spoke to the public to find out why they haven’t gone kurbaan over Kurbaan. 23-year old Eka Lakhani from Lokhandwala says, “I was dying to see Kurbaan as I had heard a lot about it. The film started very well, but soon I realised that there was neither any love story nor any terrorism track. Kareena and Saif got lost in the second half and I had to look for their scenes together. The terrorism part wasn’t explained well either.”
34-year-old Menka Chandiramani from Seven Bungalows says, “I was quite impressed by Kareena and Vivek’s acting but the film hasn’t stayed with me. It had nothing new to offer. Moreover, I wonder why there was so much brouhaha about Kareena and Saif’s sex scenes. We have seen much more than this in Hindi films.”
The director of Kurbaan, Rensil D’Silva, put up a brave front. He says that people are trying to bring down his film. “That happens with every new film. But you know, I am getting a lot of calls and text messages from people whom I don’t even know saying that they have enjoyed my film. I am basically a creative guy. The best people to talk about this will be the distributors of Kurbaan (UTV).” However, Siddharth Roy Kapoor, CEO of UTV remained unavailable for comment.
Karan’s first film with UTV, Wake Up Sid raked in average returns but failed to be a profit-making proposition. And the audience’s thanda response to Kurbaan has only made things worse for Dharma and UTV.
|Abrar Alvi with his niece||Sahib Bibi Aur Ghulam|
Abrar Alvi, who passed away on Wednesday due to a stomach complication, lived most of his life as Guru Dutt’s resident writer. He was 82 years old. His health gradually deteriorated after he suffered a paralytic attack four years ago.
Though he wrote some films outside Guru Dutt’s banner including four back-to-back Vyjanthimala starrers Suraj, Chotisi Mulaqat, Sungharsh and Saathi between 1966-68, his name remained associated with Guru Dutt for whom he directed the classic Sahib Bibi Aur Ghulam and wrote the dialogue and/or screenplay for Aar Paar, Mr & Mrs 55, Pyaasa, Kaagaz Ke Phool and Chaudvin Ka Chand.
Gulzar saab had a very interesting encounter with Abrar Alvi in 1968 .”Abrar Alvi saab was the uncle of one my favourite protégés Salim Arif. I was asked to write from scratch a screenplay earlier written by Abrar Ali Saab for HS Rawaail’s Sungharsh. The screenplay and dialogue had to be re-written from scratch by me, on the behest of the film’s leading man Dilip Kumar as they just couldn’t see eye-to-eye. It was one of my first writing assignments in films. We spent a lot of time together during those days. He was a very warm, humane and cultured man. He remained associated with Guru Dutt’s cinema. He hardly wrote for anybody except for Guru Dutt and his brother Atma Ram. I’d never pass by his home in Janki Kutir without stopping by to pay my respects. Another pillar has fallen,” says Gulzar.
Asha Parekh got to know Abrar Alvi during the making of Shikar in 1968. “Shikar was directed by Guru Dutt’s brother Atma Ram. Abrar Alvi wrote that film. I’d sit and chat with Abrar saab. He knew so much about many things besides cinema. He was a very sensible, refined , cultured and educated man. One by one all the stalwarts are going away,” says Asha.
Abrar Alvi is survived by his wife, two daughters and three sons.
SHARIN WADER BUTANI Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; November 20, 2009)
Remember how hatke Farhan Akhtar and Ritesh Sidhwani were about their venture Rock On? The filmmakers took the same passion with them to Istanbul when they went there along with director Abhinay Deo on a recce for their film Crooked with Abhishek Bachchan. Taken up by the beauty of the place, they drove around thinking of a song that would suit the location, then called up Javed Akhtar and asked him to compose one and send it to them in 24 hours. Javed got Shankar Mahadaven to compose his lyrics and sent the song to Istanbul, where they continued driving around playing the song in their car, until Abhinay found a spot he thought the sequence would look best. The film goes on the floors on January 14. And Farhan and Ritesh are now on the lookout for a new face to play opposite Abhishek. The hunt is on for a girl, but not on foot or in a car all over Istanbul. Which is a pity, because the women there are of exceptional beauty as well.
MEENA IYER Times News Netowrk (BOMBAY TIMES; November 19, 2009)
A few days before Diwali, Deepika Padukone was a girl deeply in love. Despite her own work assignments, the leggy beauty was shunting between Mumbai, Bangalore and Bhopal just to be able to spend quality time with beau Ranbir Kapoor. Just when they were crowned the hottest couple of Bollywood, came the news that they had decided to part ways. BT even heard a diva, with chocolate-like complexion, telling people on the sets of a comedy film that the hotshot couple had made a clean break. But if rumours are to be believed, the embers haven’t died down yet. True, Ranbir and Deepika are no longer the couple they used to be, but the two still exchange a dozen phone calls everyday. While one may or may not give credence to this, it’s very clear that the young actors don’t want to ruin a friendship they’ve shared even if the ‘fondness’ levels have dipped. Besides, both are smart enough to understand that being in the same industry, they will cross each other’s paths everytime. Meanwhile, instead of wallowing in self pity, Deepika has decided to keep herself immersed in work. The girl has green lighted Ashutosh Gowarikar’s Khelien Hum Jee Jaan Se with Abhishek Bachchan; Kunal Kohli’s next with Imran Khan and Pradeep Sarkar’s film with Neil Nitin Mukesh. She’s expected to fly to the US on a work assignment around November 20, do two new commercial endorsements and then there’s also Kartik Calling Kartik and Houseful which she has to complete.
OMAR QURESHI Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; November 17, 2009)
Elaborating on the November 20th release, Karan says, “The story addresses the perpetually looming threat of terrorism, the film lends emotion into that graph. It has a point of view. That’s the path. Of presenting this threat in a logically, emotionally, sensitively cinematic manner. I’m quite delighted with the final product.” But there had been a thought in Karan’s mind, some time ago, to cast SRK in the lead role in this subject. “Maybe it was a thought a long time ago. Simply because SRK is emotionally a part of everything I do. Even before I wake up to box office figures, Shah Rukh calls asking, ‘How’re the collections dude? … How’s it going?’ He’s part of Dharma. However, that said, after the way the film has shaped out, Saif and Kareena are ideal casting,” smiles KJo. And how dissimilar is My Name Is Khan from this subject? Isn’t that Karan-directed venture also a ‘terrorism’ subject? “Not at all. My Name Is Khan is totally different in as much it doesn’t deal with terrorism at all. That’s all media conjecture. Wait for that one as well.” What we couldn’t wait for was his response to Kareena’s recent joke that KJo was like a ‘witch’, that everything he said was almost prophetic. Karan couldn’t stop laughing: “We have this strange Karmic Connection and I feel the need to be as protective about her as ever. I love Kareena to death. We fight too. We didn’t speak for a year. I hurt her and she hurt me. But one only fights with those one loves. Now that we’re past the initial hurdles, we’re the best of friends. And you have to see her in the film to believe what she’s capable of. As for the ‘witch’ part, I wish I could prophesise the success of Kurbaan for starters … that’s all I pray!”
I don’t know what the trade pundits have to say about Karan Johar’s Kurbaan, but Saif Ali Khan, whose first film this is opposite Kareena
Saif Ali Khan More Pics
Kapoor, is very confident about the November 20 release.
MARK MANUEL (Bombay Times; November 5, 2009)
“I’ve a good feeling about it,” he told me. We were talking on the phone because he’s here, there and everywhere promoting the film, and just not available in Mumbai.
Tuesday he was in Delhi, yesterday London, next Dubai. “There’s more to life than shooting,” he sighed. In the background, I could hear Kareena prompting his replies. They’re not doing all the promotions together, because she’s busy making Stepmom with Karan at the same time, and Saif… well, after this he swore he’s taking a month off in December to “train and get into serious shape” before they start shooting for his home production Agent Vinod. His idea of training is not the same as Aamir’s or, say, Salman’s.
“I won’t get a funda trainer… but just kill myself in the gym. It’ll be a combo of yoga and weights. You don’t need a NASA scientist to get a great body,” he chortled.
He’s worked with Karan before in Kal Ho Na Ho, but that time, the filmmaker was completely involved in every aspect of the film. This time, Karan has left it to director Rensil D’Silva. “So the film’s got its own flavour,” explained Saif, “Rensil has brought his ad world sensibilities to Kurbaan, and this is not a filmi kind of movie… it’s a love story and thriller with a socio-politically relevant background. When I step back and see the promos, the posters, I’m like – wow!” Which means he’s confident about what it will do at the box-office. “But there’s also the risk of an off-screen couple being boring on-screen,” he admitted.
“Which means Bebo and I have to choose our roles carefully. We’ve got to present an exciting avatar on-screen… more than the usual pairing. And that we have done in this film. I was equally confident about Love Aaj Kal (his last film and first home production)… but there were moments of panic as well then. In this business, it’s tough to be consistent about your emotions. I can’t be like a rock. I go through ambivalence.”
There’s a lot riding for Kareena, as well, in Kurbaan… especially since her last film Main Aur Mrs Khanna, and Kambakht Ishq before that, didn’t exactly do much for her at the box-office. Saif, aware that she is listening to our conversation, defended his co-star and love. “I preferred her in Jab We Met,” he said cleverly.
“And I thought she looked stunning in Kambakht Ishq. It was a clever attempt at a commercial potboiler. Akshay was very funny. But people discuss Kambakth Ishq as if it was of great national importance. It was a fun film. Main Aur Mrs Khanna… I’m not sure, I saw a rough print, I don’t watch too many films, I’m not an authority… it was a sweet film, I don’t know what to say, baba! I think she chooses all kinds of films. She covers the entire spectrum of Hindi cinema in her choices… not all of them for the best! She’s done Kambakht Ishq and Main Aur Mrs Khanna this year, now she’s got Kurbaan, then 3 Idiots, and she’s working on Stepmom… all different. I think she works more for the audience than herself!”
They’ve worked together in Tashan earlier. The film, well, was disastrous… but it brought them close. Was Kareena different as an actress then, I asked. Saif hummed and hawed, then safely replied, “The same… she’s focused and a sensitive artiste, very concentrated. Also great fun to work with. I had just a couple of scenes with her in Tashan. So Kurbaan is really my first experience with her. There are few people I’ve met who are more passionate about their work. And I’m impressed with that. It’s not just about giving your shot… her knowledge of cinema is great and all round, and she has a deep interest, which I find very cool.”
Naturally, there must have been joys and pains in working with her. I pictured him giving her a backward glance then saying, “No pains, being together, creating something special, watching each other at work… those were the joys. I normally don’t have to worry about my co-star’s moods because I’ve not been so deeply involved with a co-star. But here we were connected. So I had to take time… to get comfortable… to find my own space… to figure out what to do between shots, how to unwind, I mean… we didn’t have to be together all the time. It’s a bit like working with your mom… she knows you so well, there’s no scope of impressing her!
” So, who’s your favourite actress, I asked Saif Ali Khan, the artful dodger. “Suchitra Sen, Zeenat Aman, Madhubala…” he began. Then, “Oh, you mean who I’ve worked with… I don’t know what to say… I’ve not worked with too many… but Rani’s a great co-star and Kareena’s fab… but my favourite actress, hmmm…” And Kareena Kapoor replied for him from the background, “Monica Bedi!”
By Subhash K Jha (MUMBAI MIRROR; October 20, 2009)
Unlike most producers, Karan Johar has realised that it’s no use shoving costly films into competitive zones on clogged Fridays.
Consequently, a wiser Karan has decided to release his Saif Ali Khan and Kareena Kapoor starrer Kurbaan on November 20 instead of November 27 to avoid a clash with Priyadarshan’s Akshay Kumar-Katrina Kaif starrer De Dana Dan.
Director Rensil D’Silva says, “We will be releasing Kurbaan on November 20 as no other film was scheduled to release on that day. We want to avoid a clash with any other film. Why not release solo when we have an empty slot? Clashes don’t help anyone.” Siddharth Roy Kapoor of UTV, confirms the change of schedule and says, “Nov 20 is a better release window as we get a clean week, clear of any competition.”