Posts Tagged ‘RGV’
By Bollywood Hungama News Network, December 5, 2009 – 00:00 IST
Maverick filmmaker Ram Gopal Varma is ready with the sequel of Phoonk, titled Phoonk 2. The film has been directed by Milind Gadagkar, who had written the original version.
Launching the first look of the film, RGV Said, “When Milind Gadagkar the writer of Phoonk came up with the idea of Phoonk 2, the opening sequence itself made me jump up in my seat. The moment I read the entire script I was convinced that he should direct the film as I was amazed at the clarity he had in detailing of the story.”
Comparisons between the two films are inevitable, to which he replies, “In spite of Phoonk’s hit status quite a few people say that it’s not a scary film and there is a reason for that. Scare can be of two kinds, where one is of a kind which scares you due to a completely helpless situation you catch yourself in, and the other which just plain scares your senses. Bhoot falls in the 2nd category whereas Phoonk falls in the 1st one. Phoonk 2 also falls in the 2nd category where its intention is as plain and simple – to just scare the audience’s pants off.”
On choosing the horror genre for his first film, debutante director Milind Gadagkar says, “Ever since I can remember, I have always been a huge fan of the horror genre and the psychosis of fear. Fear is such a strong emotion that it defies all logic. As small children we are scared of entering a dark room; somewhere further in life, we rather try and avoid isolated roads with no street lights.”
“It is not just ghosts that we are scared of but there are times in our lives when a strange and inexplicable incident also scares the hell out of us. Studying this phenomenon of fear has always intrigued me. All said and done, I am really thrilled that inspite of me not having liked Phoonk, Ramu liked Phoonk 2,” Milind concludes.
When asked if he was satisfied with Milind’s treatment of the film, RGV said, “When I saw the 1st cut of what Milind showed me of the film, I told him that it’s not only far better than Phoonk but I think it is the scariest film Bollywood has ever made and it is miles above all my so-called scary films like Bhoot, etc and I mean every word of it from my spine onwards….. Chilling!”
RGV even lets out a bit of the story, “If the entire Phoonk story was about how this evil woman who practices black magic was bent upon torturing and killing a little girl in order to make her father suffer and how the father after desperately trying every measure manages to get a tantrik who kills the evil woman, Phoonk-2 starts off with the spirit of the evil woman coming back from the dead and brutally murdering the tantrik.”
The film has been made in three languages, Hindi, Tamil (Bommai-2) and Telugu (Aavaham). Looks like audiences can await one chilly ride with Phoonk 2.
DDLJ ENTERS ITS 15 YEAR; STILL RUNNING SUCCESSFULLY IN MUMBAI!
One of the best Bollywood films of all time, Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (DDLJ) has been running since its release in 1995 at the Maratha Mandir theatre in Mumbai! Very surprisingly, the solo 11:30 am show of DDLJ still gets viewers and during weekends, it is easily 70-100% full! It was released on October 20, 1995 and this Tuesday, it entered into its 15th year!
However, a lot of doubts have been raised as to how such an old film still manages to get audience. Some say that Yash Raj Films, the producers of DDLJ, are forcefully running the movie at Maratha Mandir to create a record. But none of this is true and I can vouch for that as I myself have gone to see DDLJ couple of time there. Some of the reasons for DDLJ’s successful running:
1. OUTSTANDING ENTERTAINER: DDLJ is a sweet well-made feel good film that has its heart at the right place. It was a cult film at that time as it managed to place something interesting before the audience and at the same time, didn’t trudge a different path. And SRK’s mind-blowing performance created frenzy among the females. You can find many (males too) who have seen the film more than 30/40/50/100 times and are ready to watch it again! Thus, it’s a film which almost any moviegoer can watch it anytime!
2. SHAH RUKH KHAN’S CRAZE: Shah Rukh Khan has one of the biggest fans following. So many fans from other cities/countries that are on a visit to Mumbai make it a point to watch DDLJ at Maratha Mandir!
3. TICKET PRICING: The rates of DDLJ’s show are damn cheap. Balcony tickets cost Rs 22, Dress Circle tickets are priced at Rs 20 while stall tickets are available for Rs 18. With such low rates, it becomes damn affordable for anyone, even for the poorer sections living nearby, to watch DDLJ many times!
4. LOCATION OF MARATHA MANDIR: The theatre is situated opposite Mumbai Central Railway Station, the southernmost terminus in Mumbai on Western Railway. Many travelers who reach the station in the morning but have a late afternoon train to catch decide to watch the film in order to pass their time! Even though Apsara, Novelty, Minerva theatres aren’t very far from the station, travelers still prefer watching DDLJ. Also, the hawkers, vendors and other poor people working/dwelling near Maratha Mandir go for it as for them it’s the ultimate entertainment. Other single screens nearby have closed and they can’t afford multiplex tickets. So they prefer watching DDLJ due to cheap ticket rates and also because the film never bores!
5. CURIOSITY: I know many who stay far away in the suburbs of Mumbai but have gone to watch DDLJ out of curiosity and amusement that the film is still running!
Some 6-7 years back, even I found it difficult to believe that the film managed to get audience in each show. But then, DDLJ is a magical film. Also, when I had gone to see DDLJ in its 500th week, I was surprised to see that people who were there in the show (it was housefull) were so engrossingly watching the film. They knew the film perfectly as they had seen it many times and they could have cracked jokes and passed stupid comments in emotional scenes, as masses generally do. But they didn’t and were shanti se seeing it! DDLJ, indeed, is much more than magical, I guess! Whatever it is, it rocks and I hope it keeps running forever!
ACCEPT THAT YOU GUYS MADE A BAD FILM!
Blue and All The Best have done a great job at the BO but the 3rd Diwali release, Main Aurr Mrs Khanna (MAMK) have failed miserably. The film could neither impress the critics nor the audiences. Director Prem Soni gave two reasons for film’s debacle-first, the producers made a mistake for going easy on the film’s publicity and second, there was a general resentment against the film and attempt was made to sabotage it! Producer Sohail Khan, on the other hand, blames the co-producer of the film, UTV, for releasing the film during Diwali with Blue and All The Best. According to him, MAMK wasn’t perfect Diwali stuff and that people want to watch comic films in the festive time (Ironically, Prem Soni a month ago was heard saying that Diwali is the perfect time for MAMK!). He wanted the film to release next year during Valentine’s Day.
Both Sohail and Prem are giving different and contradictory reasons but none of them are ready to accept that they made a bad film. Even if the publicity was low-key, the film had made its presence felt. And regarding the point that attempt was made to flop the film; I don’t buy it at all. Go and ask viewers who saw the film-they all were disappointed. So, the word-of-mouth wasn’t good and that’s why the film failed. Sohail’s reasoning also isn’t justified. A bad film is going to flop whether it’s released in Diwali or on Valentine’s Day or during any other fest. Also, during 2004 Diwali, Veer-Zaara and Aitraaz had occupied almost all shows in theatres and also the headlines. Yet, Mughal-E-Azam, released simultaneously with these two films with very less prints, managed to grow and do a great job at the BO.
At such times, my respect for Ram Gopal Verma increases! He’s the only one who accepts that his film wasn’t upto the mark. He went to the point to say that those who liked his Sholay-remake Aag are mental patients! Kudos to RGV!
Posted September 24, 2009on:
By Bollywood Hungama News Network, September 22, 2009 – 16:49 IST
Ram Gopal Varma is yet again embroiled in a controversy that has one of his protegee at the hilt of it all. The man who is known to have launched many a careers in Bollywood is now being accused of destroying one.
Lalit Marathe who struggled his way into finally completing his first directorial venture Shabri under Ram Gopal Varma banner is rather miffed. Reason being that his film has been stuck for the past three years. To vent his feeling, he took up his cause on Facebook, where, he claims, the campaign is quickly gathering steam as the users are starting to feel that Varma is playing with Marathe’s career.
Marathe’s ire seems to brew from the fact that even though the film is ready, it’s still not getting a release from its producers, RGV and Adlabs. What further aggravated matters was when people from Rome Film Festival approached RGV for the film; they were never directed to Marathe.
While RGV claims that the film is in its post production stage, Marathe calls it an excuse and wonders why it’s taken three years for a film’s post production to be completed.
Apparently, many Facebook users feel for Marathe’s cause and have pledged their support for same. An overwhelming experience for an emotional Marathe.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s ego got a jhatka on Wednesday night, when he bumped into Ram Gopal Varma at the airport in Bangalore. He walked up to Ramu in the VIP lounge to greet him and the director mistook him for a pesky wannabe actor. Apparently, he breezily dismissed the captain, saying, “Please take my office number. Drop off your photos there.”
While a poor, bewildered Dhoni is left scratching his head, trying to figure out that googly, Ramu seems to be living in a bubble. Maybe that’s the only way to live with yourself after inflicting a horror like Agyaat on an unsuspecting public. But this bubble therapy sure has become a cause for embarrassment.
Though Ramu denies telling Dhoni to drop off photographs, he agrees that he treated him like any upcoming actor who lurks around, pouncing on any opportunity to attract his attention. He says, “Yes, it’s true. I’m hopelessly ignorant about cricket. Only after he left, the people with me told me that he’s Dhoni. I would like to apologise to him the next time I meet him.”
The question of whether actors are still breathlessly waiting to work with Ramu needs to be pondered over carefully. But perhaps Ramu thought that Dhoni was yet another agyaat (unknown) entity?
Publicity ke liye kuch bhi karega seems to be Ram Gopal Varma’s new motto. He pushed the limits by putting up hoardings of Agyaat which appeared to have a dead man hanging from them. Apparently, Priyanka Kothari’s lusty bust thrust in an item number was not enough. On Monday, the city woke to the startling marketing gimmick.
The hoardings had a dummy of a human body with blood oozing out from its mouth hanging with the poster. The dummy looked so real that it fooled people into believing that a man had hung himself.
The hoardings were put up on Sunday night at 12 prominent suburban locations. Those who travelled on Monday morning were horrified and immediately called the police control room. A huge crowd gathered near the hoarding that was put up near the Goregoan flyover. Only when the cops removed the dummy from the hoarding, did people believe that it wasn’t a human body. After this, the police control room continued to get similar calls from the rest of the locations.
Sub Inspector of Amboli Police Station, Ravikant Sawant said, “We got a call in the morning from a passerby who saw the hoarding at Anna Nagar, near Chitrakoot grounds, Andheri. He thought a dead body was hanging on a film poster as there was blood all over him.
We sent a police van immediately. Initially, even we thought the same. Only after removing it, did we realise that it was just a dummy. We have removed it and kept it at our police station so that no one has that issue again.”
Chief Creative Officer of UTV Rampage Motion Pictures, Ram Mirchandani said, “We (the producers) thought it’s a good marketing strategy. If anyone has any objections, then we will take it off.”
The police have removed the dummies from all hoardings and kept them in their custody.
By Joginder Tuteja, July 29, 2009 – 14:11 IST
|A G Y A A T
Till yesterday evening, the team of Agyaat was worried if Censor board would come down heavily on the film. Other than the fact that the film is an adventure thriller (that’s the way Ramu insists on calling the film rather than slotting it as a ‘supernatural thriller’ or a ‘horror flick’ or a ‘slasher drama’), what further worried Agyaat team was the rundown that it had with the Censor board around the controversial number in Rann.
However, there was nothing untoward that happened once the film was shown to Censors as they happily passed it with just two minor cuts. Not just that, they also granted the film a U/A certificate, something that is a good reason to celebrate. Reason being that Ramu’s earlier horror/thriller films like Raat, Bhoot, Kaun and Phoonk have all been handed over an ‘A’ certificate.
The two cuts which have been made though are from the song ‘Shiv Shambhu‘. Picturised on Priyanka Kothari, the song has a few shots featuring a ‘chillam’ with the leading lady getting into a ‘dum maaro’ act.
Says a source attached to the film, “Censors felt that depicting such shots from the film would go against their anti-smoking stance. As per them, the song would have been better off if these two shots were cut. We also complied and didn’t complain much. Yes, we do feel though that it would have been better had the song remained as it is since it’s a part of a film being shot within a film. But then, it’s ok.”
How about the gore factor? The film belonging to such genre is bound to be embellished with gory elements, isn’t it? So how did Censors agree to that? “First and foremost let this be clarified that the film isn’t gory by any means”, the source adds, “Ramu has his own ways of invoking fear and showing gore belonging to Ramsays brand doesn’t fit in well with his kind of storytelling.”
Ramu has the final word here, “You don’t always require horrible looking/distorted faces to get the message across. Sometimes, the challenge lies in the very fact that you have to scare audiences with just the right sound effects, background and camera effects. This is what you will get to see in Agyaat as well.”
The film releases next Friday i.e. 7th August.
By Bollywood Hungama News Network, July 27, 2009 – 14:33 IST
|A G Y A A T
Trust Ram Gopal Varma to do the unexpected each and every time. His latest thriller Agyaat means unknown and just like the film’s title, even the film’s cast and crew still don’t know what the film’s ending is. The reason behind this is that RGV has gone ahead and shot multiple endings for the film and has not yet revealed to his cast and crew which one he will retain in the final copy.
These days it has become quite common for the suspense of a thriller to leak out even before the film actually releases. Hence, RGV is taking no chances. Out of the eleven characters, six characters (including the lead pair of Priyanka Kothari and Nitin Reddy) have shot separate endings and have no clue what the other person has shot.
Confirming this, Ramu says, “Yes…we have shot different endings for Agyaat because of multiple reasons. It’s a film which is very similar to The Blair Witch Project in spirit. We had opportunity to end it in multiple ways. But one of the major reasons for shooting different ends is that I did not want anyone to know the ending. Actually, apart from me and my editor no one else knows the ending of Agyaat till the actual prints are made. Though I keep getting calls from the actors about it, I choose to keep mum.”
By shooting multiple endings, Ramu surely has aroused tremendous curiosity among one and all to personally watch Agyaat on 7th August and find out what the actual ending is.
We all thought Ram Gopal Varma was done with the Bachchan family, on screen. After Sarkar 2, there was a fair amount of tension brewing between the Bachchans and RGV. Now, Ramu says that he is actually done with the Sarkar family, not the Bachchans. That’s why, it seems, Sarkar 3 was shelved. Ah well, all’s well that ends well… It’s evident that if friendships are fickle in Bollywood, so are fall-outs.
To prove that all is now well, Amitabh Bachchan is set to do yet another film with Ramu.
Ramu who is at the moment poised to release his next film another shiver-giver Agyaat and also putting finishing touches to his film on the electronic media Rann, will now do a take on the loopholes in the judicial system, in which Bachchan will play a judge.
Yet untitled, the film is inspired by the rather curious run-ins Ramu has had with the judiciary where he was questioned about his own version of the national anthem in Rann.
Says Ramu, “We’re starting a new film together in January 2010, about the judicial system. Mr Bachchan plays a judge.” It’s a first for the Big B who has played everything from a cop to a mafioso in his career, but never a judge.
First things first, wasn’t there a fall-out between the Bachchans and Ram Gopal Varma and wasn’t he recently quoted as saying that his screen relationship with the Bachchan family is over? Replies Ramu, “I never said that. Whether it’s the Bachchans or Nitin Reddy whom I have brought from Kannada cinema to Hindi films for Agyaat, I’ll always work with actors I think to be suitable for my films. Whether they want to work with me or not, is entirely up to them. I’ve never said my screen relationship with the Bachchans is over.”
So why was Sarkar 3 shelved? “There never was a Sarkar 3! I’m done with the Sarkar family, and that’s what I said,” says Ramu. “I never said I was done with the Bachchan family. I’m doing another film with Mr Bachchan in January not because I want do another film with him, but because he suits the character in my film perfectly. I’ve never worked with stars, only with actors.”
Ramu will himself produce the new film with Amitabh Bachchan.
Despite wanting to complete the Sarkar trilogy, Ram Gopal Varma gives up on Sarkar 3 because of no satisfactory script
Sarkar (2005) is one of Ram Gopal Varma’s acclaimed films. The film is his tribute to Francis Ford Coppola’s The Godfather series and it also netted handsome returns for the filmmaker. Then came the sequel, Sarkar Raj in 2008, but received a lukewarm response. Expectations from Bollywood’s first family, the Bachchans, were so high that critics and the audience were unkind to the film.
Ramu says, “At that stage, I seriously wanted to take the series forward.” The general buzz was that after Abhishek Bachchan’s character was bumped off, the mantle of running the family would be taken over by Aishwarya Rai’s character and the story would be taken forward by her and Amitabh Bachchan’s character. RGV felt he had a winner on his hands and his team of writers tried to take the story forward from where they had left it with Sarkar Raj.
“However, we couldn’t do justice to it,” confesses the filmmaker. Like The Godfather series, he too felt the graph going down with a third film. “If you have seen The Godfather, the first part where Marlon Brando plays the head of the family is easily the most arresting of the three films.”
Now, as he struggles with his writers to come up with the perfect script for the third film, he knows that it is not working out. “My relationship with the Bachchan family (no pun intended) is over,” RGV laughs. “I will make something with the three Bachchans at some other stage in life… But as far as a Sarkar 3 is concerned, it is shelved for sure.”
Ramu adds, “My relationship with the Bachchan family is very close. I don’t wish to discuss the extent of proximity of our relationship because I have never done that in print. But yes, I can say that at the moment, my screen relationship with the Bachchan family is over.”