Fenil and Bollywood

Posts Tagged ‘september

Delhi-6 to rerelease a year later with a new tragic ending. The new version will have Abhishek Bachchan’s character dying

By Subhash K Jha (MUMBAI MIRROR; December 30, 2009)


A year after the release of the ill-received Delhi-6, director Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra is set to release the film with a new tragic ending.

The film was originally planned with Abhishek Bachchan’s character’s death at the end. Mehra, apparently with considerable pressure from his producer, UTV, decided to alter the ending to a happy one. Incidentally, Abhishek had strongly advised his director-friend against the ending.

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A member of the cast says, “Abhishek and Rakeysh had many arguments on the subject. The producers felt that audiences will react adversely to Abhishek’s character dying. Although Rakeysh was unhappy with it, he shot the alternate ending.”

Now a year later, the character Roshan will die in a new version of the film to be released very shortly. Confirming these developments, Rakeysh says, “I made a mistake. I should have gone with my original script with the tragic ending. Going by the reactions I got after I showed the newly edited film at the Venice Film Festival in September, I am sure this is the right version of Delhi-6.”

The new version will coincide with Rakeysh embarking on his next directorial project, apparently the historical Mirza Sahibaan, which the director is now in the process of casting.

Rakeysh Mehra

Rakeysh is also set to begin a professional story bank within his production house. The director says, “While there is an acute shortage of writers in our cinema, new writers seem to have no access to the mainstream banners. We want to give these writers a chance to bring their talents to our company.”

Rakeysh will also be introducing new directorial talent. “I am surprised at the number of new talented writer-directors who are coming to us with wonderful innovative ideas. I want to make these talented filmmakers a part of my team. I can’t make all the films that I want to. These directors can make some of them.”

By Virat A Singh and Vickey Lalwani (MUMBAI MIRROR; December 24, 2009)


Hrithik Roshan gets this water. As do hundreds of residents in one of the city’s most posh suburbs. Every day, for over a month now, residents of Juhu’s 12th and 13th Road have been waking up to severely contaminated water flowing from their taps.

Water sample collected from Hrithik’s Juhu 12th Road home at 3 pm on Wednesday

Supplied by BMC as drinking water, it is the colour of coal tar, with visible suspended particles, and smells of faeces. And it flows from taps meant for supplying clean, potable water.

This has forced Roshan’s wife Sussanne, a mother of two, to use the family’s good offices to bring the BMC to book. “It is a very bad situation. We are getting drinking water which is mixed with sewage water,” she told Mumbai Mirror.

The Roshans who live at Palazzio building on Juhu 12th Road sent Ashok Vasodia, their secretary to BMC K/West Ward office on Wednesday afternoon to lodge a complaint. Their concerns are shared by the other residents who live under the threat of an epidemic breakout.

Vigilant resident Kishore Gupta remarked, “We have a TDS (Total Dissolved Solids) meter at our house and the reading of the BMC water ranges from 135 to 200, while a packaged drinking water has a TDS of around 70. BMC water should normally have around 75. This shows the extent of contamination!”

“We are receiving dark, brackish water, which smells of faeces and  can be used only to flush toilets. We are forced to use packaged water,” complained Sunila Lalwani, a resident of Jasmet on 12th Road, opposite Roshan’s Palazzio. She also added that her 11-year-old son Sachin who must have somehow ingested this contaminated water, had to miss his second semester examination after falling ill.

Rekha Teckani, who runs a playgroup for children in the neighbourhood, says, “If we take a bath with this water we start stinking. The question of using this water for drinking and cooking does not even arise!” Teckani buys packaged drinking water for her playgroup kids.

According to Dr Anant Narde, resident of Girnar building on 13th Road, the problem of contaminated water was aggravated after BMC contractors, appointed for re-laying 13th Road, damaged the existing water pipelines in September this year. “We have been receiving this contaminated water for over a month now and live in constant fear of our children taking ill. Officials from the BMC’s Hydraulic Engineering department assured us they will provide us free potable water. But we will have to bring tankers and it is not possible for us to go scouting for tankers in the morning. The neighbourhood has no option but to call for private water tankers.”

Some residents have even threatened that if the problem is not solved in a couple of days they will fill bottles with the contaminated water and present it to councillor Adolf D’Souza and all BMC officials from the K/West Ward as a Christmas gift.

Local councillor Adolf D’Souza blamed the contractors who damaged the pipelines while working on the road. “After receiving complaints from the residents we inspected the site along with officials of the Hydraulic Engineering department and discovered that the existing pipeline has been damaged at various places, allowing sewage water to seep through the water pipeline throughout the stretch. We have already laid new water pipeline on 13th Road and it was to be connected by March next year. But given the gravity of the situation I have asked officials to connect these new pipes to the main water line near Juhu Church and supply clean water from that pipeline.”

A senior official from Hydraulic department voiced, “We are tired of the sewerage department as their contractors have been merrily damaging water pipelines all around Juhu and neighbouring areas and we have to face the ire of locals. We are repairing the lines and laying down a new pipeline to solve the water woes completely but this will take around a week’s time.”

Juhu residents have been facing the problem of contaminated water for nearly 10 years. And laying down new pipelines may not be the answer. As Sunila Lalwani pointed out, “A new pipe line compounded the problem as it cut down the water flow drastically. We were receiving only one hour of water supply everyday. So laying down a new line without rectifying the water pressure problem is foolish.”

By Sonal Chawla (MUMBAI MIRROR; November 13, 2009)

Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Chenab Gandhi seems to be jinxed. Harman Baweja was first signed for the film but was given the boot. Later, they were in talks with John Abraham but that didn’t work out.

Finally, Rajeev Khandelwal was signed for the film. However, now the buzz is that producer Bhansali and director Vibhu Puri are contemplating to replace even Rajeev. A source says, “Chenab Gandhi was supposed to go on the floors in September but was postponed to next year due to Rajeev’s television shows. However now Vibhu and Bhansali are in two minds about casting him. They feel that Rajeev may not gel with the likes of Vidya Balan and Amitabh Bachchan, owing to his appeal as an indie actor. The duo is looking for another actor, but hasn’t informed Rajeev about his ouster as yet.”

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Parinda, Satya, Vaastav, Company and Gangster-these are handful of Hindi films which were based on the mafia/gangster menace and also very well executed. Now Baabarr should be added to this list of ‘finest gangster films of Bollywood’! The film is violent, gory and raw but at the same time, it’s thoroughly engrossing packed with award-winning performances and amazing execution! It was a must-watch but unfortunately, was missed by many!

The story of the movie: The film is based in Amarganj, the Uttar Pradesh town where criminal incidents occur daily and has become a part and parcel of the residents. In one of its dingy lanes, Baabarr (Sohum Shah) emerges as a ruthless gangster. Working with his 5 brothers, Baabarr runs an extortion racket and doesn’t think twice before killing. The govt entrusts the task of eliminating Baabarr and his gang and all their activities to S P Dwivedi (Mithun Chakraborthy). How Dwivedi, along with corrupted Daroga (Om Puri) go about doing their duty is what follows next in the film.

Director Ashuu Trikha may not accept, but the truth is that Baabaar, undoubtedly, is based on dreaded UP gangster, Rafiq Qureshi’s life. The director and the screenwriter (Ikram Akhtar) wonderfully trace Baabarr’s journey from his first murder at 12 years to his death at just 22 or 23 years. The film keeps you on the edge of your seat right from the beginning and has several high-voltage shocking scenes which give goosebumps.

One of the four factors that make Baabaarr stand out is that it takes us to a world which we are ignorant about. The film throws light on Amarganj where murders take place casually, where people have more guns in their houses than chairs, where people are never ever given lessons on good manners and where people are addressed as ‘Oye Pehelwan’ instead of ‘Hey Dude’! However, the setting doesn’t look unrealistic at all (it isn’t actually) and the viewer absorbs everything that is projected in the film. Secondly, every character in the film is added with a purpose and each of them is damn interesting. My 5 favourites were Baabarr, Daroga, Maamu (Tinnu Anand), Sarfaraaz (Shakti Kapoor) and the sexiest one in the film, Tabrez (Sushant Singh)!
Thirdly, everything that happens in the film has a purpose. Meaning, none of the scenes were unnecessarily added-it was all connected to the main plot. For instance, one may feel that grown-up Baabarr’s intro scene where he kills a businessman named Jilani was just added to project Baabarr’s ruthless and merciless nature. But the scene is well connected to the next one and also to the storyline. And lastly, the climax of this film is shocking! There is an excellent twist that takes place which catches you unawares! It doesn’t spoil the film at all and also looks justified. In short, a great work by the writer-director duo!

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Some scenes of the film are memorable. Baabarr’s first murder at 12 and Baabarr killing Jilani in his own factory set the mood. Tabrez finishing Akram in a cow slaughter house is gruesome scene but clapworthy. The intermission point was easily the best scene of the film!

The only glitch in the entire film is that it gets a bit slow in the 2nd half.

Every actor in the film has pitched in a fabulous performance-in fact, much much better than their other films in recent times. Newcomer Sohum Shah rocks with his finest performance. Since it his debut, he doesn’t come with the baggage of any past significant performance and thus, one connects to his character instantly. Also, the actor wonderfully exhibits the ruthlessness that his character needed. Even his dialogue delivery rocked. This year, except Raj Singh Chaudhary of Gulaal, none of debutants have managed to impress and hence, Sohum has high chance of bagging the Best Debut award next year!

However, the question arises that based on his appearance and the kind of character he played in Baabarr, will he be offered other types of roles in future? I hope he gets as he’s a truly a gem! Best of luck! (P.S.: Is Sohum Shah Mukesh Shah’s son who is the co-producer of the film?!)

Mithun Chakraborty does his job with élan. His meeting with Sohum is an explosive scene! Om Puri rocks and this was certainly one of the finest performances of his life. The way he changed his mannerisms, walking style and accent for this role and did a great job is definitely praiseworthy. Same goes for Sushant Singh who delivers phaadu performance! I have loved this talented actor since 16 December and am impressed to see him in such an interesting role. Here is an actor who deserves to be a superstar!

Urvashi Sharma was fine but one may argue that her character was unnecessary. Mukesh Tiwari was brilliant, esp in the pre-climax scene inside the prison. Ditto for Tinnu Anand, who shows his extremely talented side in the pre-climax. Shakti Kapoor is surprisingly, extremely likeable! Govind Namdeo was as usual. Kashish Khan as Baabarr’s wife gives a nice ‘Kaminey’s Charlie-type’ performance! Abbas Ali Moghul, the action director of the film, is there for a scene and plays the role of Akram Qasai. He’s a great actor! Pratima Kazmi plays Lilavati, a character based on Mayawati. Shockingly, a beep tone is inserted whenever her name is mentioned in the film! Others also do a great job.

Anand Raj Anand’s music was alright. The title song is impressive. Suhass Gujarathi’s cinematography is brilliant and the dingy by-lanes of Uttar Pradesh towns are well captured. Abbas Ali Moghul charms as the actor and also as the action director! Although some scenes had too much bloodshed, it was needed. Sunil Singh’s background score was in sync with the film’s mood.
Vikram Misra and Ikram Akhtar’s dialogues were one of the best things about the film. The best dialogue of the film (and one of the best in recent times) is: “Gas khatam ho gayi hai…tujhe jalakar chai banayenge tujh pe!” Absolutely rocking!

Ikram Akhtar has also written the story and script of the movie and he excels thoroughly! The film keeps you on the edge of the seat and doesn’t bore even for a moment! Great job by Akhtar, who has scripted some contrastingly light films like Nayee Padosan, Joru Ka Ghulam, Chal Mere Bhai etc!

Finally, Ashuu Trikha is a revelation! The director has always done a fine job in his past films (Deewanapan, Sheesha, Alag) but was let down by faulty scripts. In Baabarr, however, he is armed with a flawless script and he does a brilliant job. He succeeds in exposing the gangster-police-politicians nexus that is rampant in the interiors of the country and where lawlessness prevails. Hats off to Ashuu and hoping to see him with such nice films in future!

Some of the best scenes of the film:
1.   Baabarr’s childhood
2.   Baabarr finishing Jilani
3.   Tabrez’s entry
4.   Baabarr and Tabrez’ confrontation during the tender meeting
5.   The intermission point
6.   Baabarr shot
7.   Dwivedi teaches Daroga a lesson
8.   The last 25 minutes

On the whole, Baabarr is surely one of the best gangster films that has come out from Bollywood. Although it has excessive violence, it manages to impress with his intriguing execution and performances. The film wasn’t publicized well when it released in September this year. But now, all movie buffs, do catch it on DVD! Don’t Miss It!

My rating-**** out of 5!

This review first appeared on MouthShut.com: http://www.mouthshut.com/review/Baabarr-178084-1.html

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A two-day Kurbaan shoot in Pune was cancelled due to the swine flu scare; Karan Johar doesn’t want to expose his stars and crew to any potential danger
By Kunal M Shah (MUMBAI MIRROR; August 10, 2009)

Saif Ali Khan and Kareena Kapoor on the sets of Kurbaan

The country is in the grip of swine flu paranoia, and it helps to be cautious. After all, prevention is better than cure. And now that the swine flu scare has hit Bollywood, Karan Johar, whose Kurbaan crew was scheduled to shoot in Pune for two days is not taking chances, especially since he has a 180-member crew, apart from lead stars Saif Ali Khan and Kareena Kapoor to look after.

Our source said, “Kareena and Saif were supposed to leave on August 7, while half of the unit had already reached Pune to shoot on August 8 and 9. These were the last two days of the shoot and the stars were pretty excited. However, in the wake of the swine flu scare and the fact that people are scared of going to public places like hotels, airports, cinema halls, the production unit decided to cancel the shoot right now and do it at a later stage.”

Kareena Kapoor said, “We were set to leave on Friday at 2pm when we got a call from (director) Rensil D’silva and (producer) Karan Johar saying that they have decided not to go to Pune due to the swine flu scare. We have about three scenes left and we can easily shoot them in September, once we have a clear picture on the swine flu and the precautions we have to take. I think it’s very sweet of Karan to think about people and do this.”

Marizke D’souza, executive producer of Dharma Productions said, “We had a large unit and we felt that it was appropriate to postpone the shoot right now. We have done this as a precaution. We will be going there to shoot the remaining portions at a later stage.”

RECREATING MAGIC: Boney Kapoor; stills from Mr India and No Entry

Meena Iyer TIMES NEWS NETWORK  (BOMBAY TIMES; August 8, 2009)


That Boney Kapoor is releasing his much anticipated Salman Khan film Wanted around Eid this September, everyone knows. What is a big secret in the Bollywood producer’s life is that Boney is taking his relationship with Salman further by announcing his role in No Entry-2 (with Anil Kapoor, of course) in the same week. And, his Mr India-2 as well.


Boney is reluctant to discuss the
finer details of these sequels, naturally, but he is sure that wife Sridevi and brother Anil will definitely be part of Mr India-2 in some capacity or the other. BT spied on publicity designs of an invisible man (Mr India was invisible remember?) in a warm embrace with an attractive woman being readied for the launch of the sequel with the tagline “appearing soon”. And for No Entry-2, the tagline reads — “twice as wicked”. Boney, who shares a warm camaraderie with Salman, says, “I have received fantastic distribution offers for Wanted and am confident it will fetch a better price than Ghajini, so I’m elated. I’m also happy to be sitting on a hot property like No Entry. The film is one of the biggest hits of all time and making a sequel to it with Salman and Anil is the natural thing to do”.

Nagesh Kukunoor’s films have been a yo-yo of genres. For every Teen Deewaarein, Iqbal and Dor, he has made Bollywood Calling, Bombay to Bangkok and 8×10 Tasveer. What makes him tick?
By Indu Mirani (MUMBAI MIRROR; July 24, 2009)
You were the poster boy of new age, low budget cinema. What happened to you?

I love this mantle that was thrust on me but seriously I always made films according to the situation I was in. When I was starting out, I knew no one would give me a film so I took all my savings and made a film. After that film was successful, had I played the Bollywood game, and accepted the offers to do urban romantic comedies, I could have immediately leapt up to a three or four crore film. But I chose to write a semi-biographical film (Rockford) about a boy in a boarding school. I made the film in the money I could raise at that time which was about Rs 65 lakhs. My films have always been about what I could muster at that point of time.

In the last two years, I made four features back to back, Bombay to Bangkok followed by Aashayein followed by 8X 10 followed by Yeh Hausla. Now to answer your question, Bombay to Bangkok was a very small budget romantic comedy, Aashayein was an emotionally fulfilling drama, 8X10 was a big action pic, Yeh Hausla, about five women is back to a small film in Rajasthan. So I have never played the game of ‘Ok, I have done an 8X10, now I will not do small features.’ It has to make sense in terms of budget, the economics of course, but also where I am in life. If I can muster a Rs 30 crore film, I will do a Rs 30 crore film. But if I have a script that needs a small budget, I will do that. I have never played by the rules.How can somebody who makes Iqbal and Dor also make Bombay to Bangkok? What exactly is your sensibility?

It’s what I feel about the genre that I am writing. There is no pattern. I want to make films that I believe in, that I am passionate about. After doing Iqbal and Dor, I really wanted to write this wacky comedy Bombay to Bangkok. The problem is the baggage that an Iqbal and a Dor carry. The Indian audience is very much about they-like-this-about-actors, they-like-this-about-directors, about seeing them in the same repetitive pattern. If I have defined my filmography by not sticking to a pattern, I am not going to change now because I have been more successful with one genre.

The process of filmmaking has to be as much fun for me as it is for the audience. I will make the film for myself first. I have to enjoy the process. When I think I do that, I serve the audience. The basic thing that was taught to me when I was learning theatre, was to ‘serve the audience, serve the play’. This doesn’t mean ‘cater to the audience’. In order to serve the audience and serve the play, the best way is to pour your passion into what you are doing, what you believe in.

The beauty about art is you don’t know how it is going to impact the audience or the viewer till after its done. The one lesson that I learnt early in the game, is that there is no right way to do anything. And here is the irony of the business; there are no lessons to be learnt. Experts will say this is not the season to make a romantic comedy and then a romantic comedy will just blitz the box-office, then everybody will be mmm…

Do you agree that Iqbal may be your best film so far?

No. It was a film that exactly touched a chord with the audiences. It goes to show you how ridiculous this field is because Iqbal was originally about Malkhamb and every producer I pitched this to, was unpleasantly surprised. The moment I switched over to cricket, it touched a chord. Everyone went bonkers. I know how much effort it took to make Iqbal and I know how much effort it took to make Bombay to Bangkok. I shot 18 hours a day. I was doing two locations, three location shifts a day. So the amount of effort I poured into it was the same. One story struck home and one story completely bypassed everyone. As a filmmaker, there was the same set of rules, the same amount of dedication, the same shot breakdown, and the same madness. It’s impossible to judge what is good work and what is bad work. All you know is sometimes it works with the audience and sometimes it doesn’t.

Will Aashayein ever release?

Thanks to the strike, our plan went for a toss. We thought we would release it in September. Now I think we are going to wait till November because there are so many big films, that Percept is not sure where to push this in. So I am in the dark.

You are again venturing the path less tread with the woman centric Yeh Hausla…

(laughs) As a matter of fact, after I did Iqbal, when I did Dor, it was a challenge. People said ‘Are you mad, why are you doing a woman centric film?’ Then post Dor, people asked me ‘When you make such sensitive films about women, why don’t you make such films more often?’ If a story is good and it grabs you, even hardcore men who had to be dragged to Dor because it was a chick flick, didn’t complain. Within the framework of a film, whether you like it or not, a director will push his or her philosophy, but as long as it comes presented in a wrapping of a good story, it will be appreciated. For me that’s most important. And it’s the same with Yeh Hausla.

So when are you making your next big actor film?

I don’t know, it could be soon. There are a lot of conversations that have been happening. At any given time I have a bank of scripts; I just keep writing them. So my immediate next one could be an action pic or it could be really really small romantic film.

What happened to your very pronounced American accent?

(laughs) I can bring it back in one half second. But I have worked pretty hard at being non-standing out, if there is such a phrase.

I personally think you are a lousy actor…

(laughs) Thank you.

…are you going to act in all your films?

I have never cast myself in a role that I felt I will not be able to do. Usually it’s the smaller roles, barring Hyderabad Blues where I played the lead. However in Teen Deewarein, I truly enjoyed playing Naagia, the Hyderabadi character. But again it was the lesser role. Unfortunately, here, the ham quotient is very high. I can ham but I won’t. May be if I ham will be a better actor. (laughs aloud)


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