Fenil and Bollywood

Posts Tagged ‘18 years

Aamir Khan, who at 44 plays a 22-year-old collegian, says in his mind he is stuck at 18!

MARK MANUEL Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; December 22, 2009)

Aamir Khan, as you know, has gone into hiding to promote his new film that releases this Friday. In disguise, to people’s surprise, he has popped up in different parts of the country over the past week: at Varanasi, as a Banarasi babu; outside Sourav Ganguly’s house in Kolkata as a cricket fan; in an Ahmedabad school, defying Narendra Modi’s fatwa; at the Chanderi village in Madhya Pradesh; then a Punjabi wedding in Faridkot; and, yesterday in Chennai. How this is helping the film, I don’t know; but I’m sure Aamir does, and I wouldn’t be surprised if he returns to Mumbai as Santa Claus on Christmas Day. He is hoping the festival will prove as successful for him as it did last year when he released Ghajini, and in 2007 — for Taare Zameen Par. Just before he went underground, Aamir told me over a quiet cup of tea at his Pali Hill home: “Christmas is a coincidence, but I’m hoping it will be third time lucky. I also believe for a film made well, any time is a good time to release it, otherwise no matter how you plan it…”
He has no doubts that this film has been made well. It’s been produced by Vidhu Vinod Chopra and directed by Raju Hirani. And, acting opposite him for the first time in his 20-year-career is Kareena Kapoor. Of his gorgeous co-star, Aamir said enthusiastically, “She’s outstanding, a great and
instinctive actress, extremely committed, a team player, we get along well, and she’s good looking… what more to ask for?” I agreed. The vibe between the two actors is exciting, and they look good together, the age difference between them notwithstanding. In the film, he plays a 22-year-old collegian. “That,” he told me, “was the biggest challenge for me as an actor at 44. I’m asked often if I feel my age. No, I really don’t. All of us are stuck in our heads at a particular age. And that age depends on your personality. I’m stuck at 18. And, I’ll be 18 till I die!”
He got into this film straight from Ghajini. Which meant, he had to shed that eight-pack streetfighter’s body painstakingly built up over 13 months for one raw scene of action. “It was heartbreaking,” Aamir revealed. “I didn’t want to lose it. But I had to look boyish. I had to stop training, get onto a careful and strict diet, and I began playing badminton… for three-four hours. Catch a 44-year-old doing that!” But he did it, because this is the same Aamir Khan who has always used his body as a tool in his films. “The way I look is important,” he admitted, “but for any character, it begins with how you feel in your head. What makes the character tick? You get into the mind of the character. From that flows how the body will look. My character in the new film is a free-spirited kind of guy, unusual in his thinking, and with a childlike curiosity about life and things around him.” He really didn’t want to play this role. “Get someone who’s 22,” Aamir advised Raju Hirani and Vidhu Vinod Chopra when they approached him. They told Aamir, “In real life, you are the character of this film, you don’t follow the path, you’re non-conformist, you do what your heart tells you. As for looking young – if you could build yourself up to look huge in Ghajini, now work on becoming small. Go for it.” And Aamir did. He said of Raju, “His big strength is that his films are not only entertaining, but also enriching. Like Munnabhai! You go home taking something valuable from the film.” And as for Vinod, who is rumoured in Bollywood to be arrogant and bold, Aamir said, “He is how he is, but he understands his director and creative team and supports them, and he has a passion for cinema. Being a director himself, Vinod is creative and he gives his films a great release. I look for that quality in a producer… whether he is able to give the film a good platform after I’ve worked so hard on it.” That Aamir Khan always does, whether he’s making the film for himself or some other producer. And he enjoys making one film at a time, which he will release on Christmas Day! “I could do more, in my lifetime I could do 500 films, but when I’m doing a film all my energies are into it. At that point, I don’t enjoy taking on anything else. I enjoy the space I am in. I’m not a factory or a huge production system. I’m… kya bolta hai… a handloom product. A one-machine-one person-one shirt kind of actor. I’m not a largescale outfit producing a million shirts. Numbers don’t excite me and are not my strength. I enjoy marketing a film. But towards the audience. My connect is with the audience. I enjoy dealing with the audience, not with exhibitors, distributors.” And that is what he is probably doing somewhere in the country right now, maybe in disguise! (Contributed by Meena Iyer, Aakansha Naval Shete)

Shabana Azmi returns to theatre with a challenging role in a one-actor play. She will play her character as well as its spirit

By Subhash K Jha (MUMBAI MIRROR; November 04, 2009)


If you find Shabana Azmi talking to herself, don’t be surprised. She will now act in a one-actor play where she essays two roles. Broken Images, based on Girish Karnad’s A Heap of Broken Images, will be directed by theatre veteran Alyque Padamsee.


Shabana needs to master the art of playing one character and also its spirit. Though Shabana is not talking about her new venture, reports from the Azmi household suggest that she has been rehearsing the scenes rigorously with her sister-in-law Tanvi Azmi, standing in for the character of her spirit.

Shabana’s earlier play Tumhari Amrita with Farooque Shaikh had only two characters and it continues to be a hit more than a decade after its first staging 18 years ago. Ardent Shabana fans hope Broken Images will have a similar impact. A friend of Shabana says, “At this stage of her career, Shabana needs new challenges as an actor. Otherwise, she would rather devote her time to the social causes she stands for.”

Shabana Azmi Alyque Padamsee

The friend also expresses concern about the difficulty that Shabana will face while playing the two characters. She adds, “How will Shabana be able to play two characters in a play without any support from another actor? In Tumhari Amrita, she had Farooque. In Broken Images, it’s just Shabana.”

Alyque Padamsee said, “Right now, I am in the middle of rehearsals with Shabana. Could you call later?” In a hurry to sign off, an impatient Alyque said that he had convinced big actors like Shabana to work with him earlier too. “I had also directed Smita Patil in a play 20 years ago,” he says.

The play is expected to be staged in Mumbai in December, to be followed by other cities in India and abroad.

KISKA NUMBER AAYEGA: Will the figures add up for Ajay?

Bharati Dubey | TNN (THE TIMES OF INDIA; October 13, 2009)

Mumbai: No, that’s not a typo. Nearly 18 years after he came into the film industry, Ajay Devgan has dropped the ‘a’ from his surname. Ajay’s brand new surname comes before the release of his home production All The Best. Last week the film ran into minor trouble with a copyright infringement lawsuit but its makers say they’re all set to release on Friday.

Celebrity numerologist Sanjay B Jumaani maintains that professional advice needs to be sought if one decides to follow any ‘science’. “Minus an ‘a’ the change in Ajay’s fortunes will be moderate. If he had added an ‘n’ to his surname, his number would add up to six—Shah Rukh’s number—and that would’ve been better for him,’’ explains Jumaani. He does believe, though, that Ajay should have worked on the title of his film. “The title remains untouched and adds up to number 8. This is a karmic number and can go either way,’’ Jumaani says.

Talking of titles, Jumaani predicts the new season of Bigg Boss will be a smash hit because the letters total up to 6—also Amitabh Bachchan’s number and a lucky number by itself.

The K-brigade seems to have run its course on the small screen. Explains numerologist Suniiel Naik, “The alphabet ‘k’ comes under the influence of the moon but that’s just one part of the story. Beginning the title with ‘k’ won’t help. The entire set of words need to be looked into until a powerful figure is arrived at.’’ TV producer Hemal Thakar was down in the dumps before he knocked
out a ‘k’ from his surname. Thakar has produced the popular Jeevan Satthi and will add an extra ‘g’ to the title of his latest serial Hum Dono Hain Alag Alag. Of the younger crop of actors, Kapoor khandan scion Ranbir will have a good year, predicts Jumaani. “He is a number 1 and has entered his 28th year. Also, Boney Kapoor’s Wanted is a big hit because he has turned 56 in the year 2009—both adding up to one.’’

Trade analyst Amod Mehra believes all these numbers don’t add up to much at the box office. “Dropping an ‘a’ or adding a ‘g’ to a name is definitely not going to help a film if it is bad,’’ he says. “All this is done by actors because of their personal insecurities. No science or superstition will help a bad product work at the box office.’’ Go figure.

CREATING AWARENESS: Satish Kaushik and Anupam Kher
It’s meant to address society as well as entertain, say duo

NIMISHA TIWARI Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; Aug 7, 2009)

Thirty-four years of friendship between Anupam Kher and Satish Kaushik have led the actor and director to form a production house called Karol Bagh and make a film titled Teree Sang. Manoj Mittal, another friend of the duo’s since their Delhi college days, completes the partnership. As for their maiden film…

“Did you know that the legal age for consensual sex is 16, while the legal age to get married is 18,” asks Kaushik, explaining that it is their mission to address social issues in an entertaining manner. “It’s almost a literal translation of my association with Satish in the last many years. We would like to make films that hopefully become box office hits on the basis of their content and social relevance,” adds Anupam.
Incidentally, Teree Sang — which releases today, enjoys the consent of principals of over 50 premiere schools in Delhi.

Kercy Daruwala, Managing Director of co-producer Sony Pictures India, says, “We are happy to be working with such senior filmmakers as Kaushik and Anupam and to introduce fresh talent. Teenage pregnancy is an issue that is relevant in Indian society today and has not been addressed by the film industry. We believe this film will encourage the nation to sit up and take notice of this important issue.”