Fenil and Bollywood

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Ranbir Kapoor’s mom Neetu is fond of Katrina Kaif, whom her son is reportedly dating

By Vickey Lalwani (MUMBAI MIRROR; January 04, 2010)

A lot has been said and written about the reason behind Deepika Padukone and Ranbir Kapoor’s split. From Ranbir’s ‘friendship’ with Katrina Kaif, to Ranbir’s charming ways with women, to Deepika’s possessive nature. One more reason which often made headlines is Ranbir’s mother, Neetu Kapoor’s so-called dislike of Deepika.

Deepika and Ranbir were in a serious relationship for nearly two years but during that time, she could never come close to Ranbir’s mom. No prizes for guessing that she must have tried several ways to win her over but failed in all her attempts.

Neetu Kapoor

While talking about Deepika, Neetu had said that right then Deepika was just Ranbir’s girlfriend, no more.

Meanwhile, it was reported that Ranbir and Katrina Kaif, his Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani and Raajneeti co-star have got closer.

However, the latest development in the Kapoor household is a very interesting one and bound to raise eyebrows. Neetu has developed a huge liking for Ranbir’s current squeeze, Katrina. The two ladies get along like a house on fire and think similarly on a host of subjects.

A source says, “Neetu and Katrina share a very warm relationship. Katrina respects Neetu a lot. On the other hand, Neetu feels that Katrina is a very well-mannered girl.”

Ranbir Kapoor and Katrina Kaif

Neetu too confirmed her liking for Katrina. She says, “Yeah. Katrina is a very nice girl. I am very fond of her.” However, when we asked her to say more about her fondness for Katrina, she clammed up.

Katrina, on the other hand, chose not to comment on her relationship with Neetu Singh.

Are you reading this, Deepika?


By Sonal Chawla (MUMBAI MIRROR; December 30, 2009)

While the whole world believes that Katrina is recuperating in London with her family, a reliable London source tells us that she is actually in New York. Incidentally, Ranbir Kapoor is also in New York shooting for Sajid Nadiadwala’s Anjaana Anjaani. Coincidence? We don’t think so.

Post her surgery in Mumbai, Katrina flew off to London claiming to spend New Year’s Eve with her family. Katrina, who ushers in the New Year with her mother and siblings each year, was particularly thrilled about the family reunion this time round, because she was looking forward to playing with her sister’s little son. But apparently, family has been sidelined in favor of some companionship.

One can’t help but wonder how she planned to keep her jaunt to New York a secret. It’s a small, small world after all. When we called her grandmother’s place in London, a relative said, “Oh, but Katrina is in New York.”

However Katrina said, “I’m very much in London. It’s a joke in my family about me being in New York because I’m harassed by many calls.”

Kaif also skipped beau (or is it seriously ex-beau now) Salman Khan’s birthday in favour of New York. Ranbir and Katrina met on the sets of Raajneeti but their friendship really took off when they shot Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani. For the last few months, Ranbir has been in an on-off relationship with Deepika Padukone while Katrina’s relationship with Salman Khan has slowly ground to a halt.

Everyone knows Kangna Ranaut, the accomplished actress of today. Here, she talks of her past and how it has made her the person she is

By Indu Mirani (MUMBAI MIRROR; December 29, 2009)

• What sort of a child were you?

I was very quiet. I used to suck my thumb. Other kids would never play with me and I would be sitting in one corner. There was something very strange about me. I didn’t live in the present. I was always in a dream world. I would be dreaming about the shows that I watched like Aladdin or Snow White and I would want to go to their world. My father would hate that I sucked my thumb, he would slap me and put my finger down and then I would cry.

• Were your parents strict with you?

I was never a naughty child, never troubled my mother. If you ask my parents they will say that I was very quiet, very peaceful and very scared of them. If they asked me to sit somewhere after five hours I would still be there. (laughs)

• Did you lead a very restricted life?

Yeah, I did. I wasn’t allowed to leave home after 6 o’clock so I would always make sure that I would go out late in the night. Then when my parents would say something like, ‘Andhera ho gaya hai, tum late aayi,’ I would just say ‘yes’. Slowly I became a person who wouldn’t listen to anyone. My father would be very upset with the clothes that I would wear. I don’t know what I wanted to prove. Now when I go home, I usually wear a salwaar kameez and wonder, why was I torturing them? (laughs)

A lot of the restriction came from living in a joint family. I remember having the biggest fights with my grandfather and every one’s jaw would just drop. Nobody had the guts to answer back to him and I was only 12 when I started doing so. He is an IAS officer and had lived all his life in Mumbai and for some strange reason he would always say that first all the males of the family would eat and then the females. I didn’t approve of rules like that and would insist on joining the men at the table. He would leave the table. My parents were quite embarrassed because of me.

• When was the first time you fell in love?

I was quite young. He was my English teacher, a very good looking guy and I was just a 13-year-old. That was the time I became aware of my sexuality. We were very comfortable with each other because he had been my teacher since I was eight or nine. But when I was thirteen and he would say, ‘Beta come here..’ or something like that, I would think what’s wrong with him, he doesn’t have to talk this way (laughs aloud). That was a beautiful romance because in my mind I used to romance him and he would be teaching me.

• How does living in a small town (Manali) compare to living in Mumbai?

These are two completely different worlds. This one is completely fake and that one is the real world. In Manali people live with animals. They feed them fodder and clean them too. So much of nature is involved there that you stay balanced. Here you deal with cars, roads, buildings and if you see a beggar, you treat him like a building and you treat a building like a human being. There is no reality here. I see so much of balance there, I see no balance here.

• What were you studying in Delhi?

Basically I went there for my vacations and then I decided to take admission in some college. Then I met a few people there and got into theatre. If you ask me honestly, I cannot recollect that time. I was like an animal, just wandering around. If someone was going to a modelling agency, I too would go with that person. I wasn’t aware of my actions at all which is a very pathetic and shameful way to live but I was living a life like that.

• So coming to Mumbai was also a part of that life?

Yes, my agency Elite sent me to Mumbai. I didn’t ask why I am going to Mumbai or what I will do in Mumbai. I came to Mumbai because I thought everybody came to Mumbai after Delhi. Then one fine day I stopped taking calls from the agency. I stopped going to the auditions. I used to go to town taking trains to give auditions and then within seven days of it all I was fed up. Then I said, ‘Forget it! I am not going to any audition as I don’t get any work.’

• Isn’t it all difficult for a young girl to manage?

It is and that’s what gets you into trouble. How do people get into problems? Actually they are the biggest problems for themselves. I got carried away with the life here, the nightlife, discos and the whole city life.

• You didn’t have any aspirations?

From childhood I would tell my parents and I would become somebody very famous. They used to be very rude to me when I would say this but for me it was always a matter of fact. I knew I was going to be what I wanted to be even if I had no idea what that was.

• And when you were rejected at the auditions, did it  dent in your confidence?

It did. I went through a lot of insecurities. I was leading a very random life for a year before I got Gangster. Before that too, I was supposed to do a few films. I didn’t have any concept of A grade or B grade cinema. I had hardly seen 10 films in my life. So if someone said, come to this audition, we want to sign a film with you, I would sign it. Fortunately for me, those films never took off. My parents would tell me that I would never be anyone and they would say all sort of negative things and I would think maybe they were right. I would think of myself as a loser in every sense, not only professionally but also in my personal life. That would scare me but also it wouldn’t last.

• Is there anything that you hated about yourself and wanted to change?

I hated everything about myself, my life, everything. When I came here, I was very uncomfortable about the clothes that I wore. I used to wear those really cheap clothes, buy them from streets and wear them and I would look so funny. I used to feel funny, not that I looked funny. Those dresses were not appropriate and no one should go out on the streets in them. They were fine for parties but I had no concept of what to wear and when. And I looked like a 16-year-old coming from some village trying to be modern. Not that I was dumb, I was intelligent but it was just so weird that people kept looking at me not very respectfully and I hated being so uncomfortable. If I had been wearing just jeans and a T-shirt, nobody would have noticed me. That was worse because if you are looking for assignments and modelling work and if nobody notices you then it’s terrible. So I was uncomfortable in every way. I never became friendly with anyone. Life was strange without parents, proper food, proper house, nothing at all in place. I hated everything around me and the way I was. I would go on for weeks and weeks without thinking where I was heading. That was a phase I remember and someday I will definitely make a movie on that.

• Was there peer pressure to do things?

I would do whatever others did. It didn’t matter if I liked it or not. It wasn’t peer pressure definitely but because I wanted to be one of them or maybe I wanted to prove that I belonged to this world, I went on like that for years and years. I didn’t hate it at that point of time. If I would have hated it, I would have changed it. But I had no clue what was wrong with my life. It took me two years to realise who I really am. Not that I hated it but I wasn’t happy either.

Were you lonely?

Loneliness was never a problem because whenever I was lonely I would do something that would make me happy. My problem was that I had too many people around me and they never let me be alone. Before I became an actress, I would go for auditions with people, have coffee and come back, normal life, not very different from Delhi. Then after I became an actress, there were designers, ADs, people who roam around the whole day on the sets. They kind of open those doors for you. You get shocked with what is happening around you but you don’t show it. This is how your new life starts and it just takes over.

• You also got into some wrong relationships

Well, when you get into a relationship it’s not wrong at that point of time and I won’t consider anything wrong with them. For me, I have been in two relationships till now, and both have been beautiful in their own way. It was I who was a random soul, and I still am. I still have so many things to learn in life. I am not a perfect person, nobody is perfect. So whatever experience one goes through is because of oneself.

Did you at anytime realise that you were in relationship that you shouldn’t be in?

See, relationships are not that important in my life. I don’t feel any pressure to say that love means everything and blah blah! For me, I don’t think love is something which will make me complete. It’s who I am. I have something to prove and I have a strong urge to do certain things in life. And if I don’t do that, I will be a very unhappy person. I never gave that kind of priority to any relationship. If I would have done that I would have been in a happy relationship and an unhappy career. I am clear about my priorities now. People at times judge me. They say that she says her priority is her career and her ambitions… but that’s ok. I am not ashamed of the fact that it actually is.

Today I am done with dating. Now if I get into a relationship, it will be with a proper plan. Now I would want to be with a man with whom I can see a future and give it more time and energy. If I see a man turning into my husband in the near future then only will I go ahead with a relationship. This is what life or age does to you. You can preserve your innocence but at the same time you cannot deny the fact that you cannot sometimes take another chance with life.

• So that means you are not going to fall wildly in love now because you are first going to look into the husband aspect of it.

Yeah. That’s true actually; otherwise I have always fallen in love first and then seen the right and wrong of it.

• You are too young to reach this decision. At this age people are still having flings.

Yes, if you start little late. But I started too early. (laughs) I started at 16. (laughs loudly)

• Are you still edgy?

That’s a very difficult question because to explain who I was is very difficult even for me. I mean nobody knows who they really are. Right now, I am definitely not the person who I want to be. There is still a lot to achieve but I am also definitely not the person I hated to be. I am okay now, peaceful,  but I want to be a better person in future. I am sure the better part of me is still to come.

Who do you want to be?

I just want to be a person whose very presence makes people smile. I want to have positivity and grace as a woman. When I came here, I was a tomboy. Not even a tomboy, I was something between a guy and a girl. I want to be a nicer human being so that when I look at myself I should feel proud of myself. Right now I don’t feel proud of myself. Earlier I used to feel shit about me. Whatever I said, I did, everything was wrong. I would always say the wrong thing at the right time. Now I don’t do those things which make me hate myself. I don’t beat myself up everyday when I go home. I am peaceful. But I am not even the person who would be so proud of herself.

• Are you ever fake?

Yes, I sometimes say things for the sake of saying things. Like the most common thing that I would say, “How are you?” makes me feel so fake. I prefer to say, “Kaise hain aap?” that makes me realise what I am saying. When I say it, I do really mean, kaise hain aap? So I am watching myself.

• When you were in trouble at any point in your life, have you taken any favours from your friends?

I have never ever taken any favour from anyone in my life. I have never called up any friend to discuss my problems or ask them for solutions. I have really great friends who claim to stand by my side when I am in trouble. I have been in trouble but never had the courage to test them because if my time was already bad, I wouldn’t want one more shock. So I never really tested my friends.

• When you say you never had the courage, you mean you were scared that they would not be by your side?

I don’t know. I never had the courage to discuss my problems with people around. I have always shown the happier side of me and I will continue to do that. It’s not my friend’s duty or concern to help me out with my troubles. I think it’s unfair to do so.

The presence of friends makes me uncomfortable. It distracts me from the situation. It’s the same with my parents. Even in childhood when I was in trouble, I would lock myself up in my room and would not leave my room until I had solved the problem. I have a lot of faith in my strength but parents and friends get so weak and I just think handling them is much more difficult than handling the situation.

• How do you manage to look so different in every film? Is it deliberate?

Honestly, it is. It bores me to death to be the same because for me it’s a character that I have to get into. So I change everything that I can. So I kind of do the fun things so people are shocked but I don’t like myself looking the same all the time.

Sometimes it can be embarrassing. Recently, at the Paa premiere, one of my co-stars was treating me like a fan. It was only when I said, ‘I am Kangna,’ that he realised that it was me. It’s so embarrassing, we work together for 60 days and they don’t recognise me. It has happened with me a lot. When I was in theatre, my guru used to tell me that it is a blessing in disguise. At times he would give me a guy’s role. He said that you have a face which can be moulded into anything. But another thing that really matters is whether my hair is curly or straight. It changes me so much that sometimes I too wonder about the look. It’s very good for a double role though.

WHAT WAS COOKING? Lara Dutta and Tiger Woods
Rumours of Golf Ace and Miss Universe from India resurface

MEENA IYER Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; December 28, 2009)

An old rumour dating back to June 2001, is raising its head again and is likely to bring unwanted attention to Bollywood hottie Lara Dutta who is already under media glare for her new relationship with tennis star Mahesh Bhupathi. The story goes that way back in 2001, a year after India had two beauty pageant winners in Lara Dutta at the Miss Universe and Priyanka Chopra at Miss World, Golf Ace Tiger Woods was dating one of them. The rumour was that our Lara Dutta, who was reportedly dating New York Yankees baseballer Derek Jeter, had also caught the eye of the greatest golfer in the world. A US newspaper, in a story on Tiger, had the champion golfer denying he was dating “Miss Universe Lara Dutta of India — or trying to steal her from New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter.” The Woods Foundation people, in fact, dismissed the story as being “Nothing more than gossip, probably put out by Dutta’s camp.” And Lara came back to India and fame in Bollywood.

But now that skeletons are tumbling out of Tiger’s woodwork, the gossip that he may have actually dated one of our Indian beauty queens is again gaining momentum. Suddenly Tiger’s denials that were taken very seriously eight years ago are now being re-examined. After all, he has turned out to be quite a champ off the greens. And has swung his club around in every direction!
MY SPACE: Deepika Padukone, Ranbir Kapoor and Katrina Kaif
Ranbir Kapoor, Bollywood’s newest superstar, refuses to court controversy

MEENA IYER Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; December 24, 2009)

It’s being whispered in Bollywood that 2009 could well mark the birth of Ranbir Kapoor, the film industry’s next superstar. He won accolades for Ayan Mukherjee’s Wake up Sid and Shimit Amin’s Rocket Singh-Salesman of the Year. And, he rocked the box office with Raj Kumar Santoshi’s Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani. Coming as he does from a family that has ruled the roost in Bollywood for 75 long years, the 28-year-old actor is likely to keep that legacy going in the coming decade. As he embarks on a brand new calendar year Ranbir agrees that 2009 has been truly gratifying. “I hope I made my parents proud,’’ he says. Adding, “The industry and the audience have given me the kind of love and support that I didn’t think would happen. Honestly, I’m humbled and while I love all the compliments coming my way, my career has just begun. I want to continue doing good work — and if it gets the box office that Wake up Sid or Ajab… got, well I’m thrilled. However, I still believe in something like Rocket Singh. Jaideep Sahni and Shimit Amin are talented guys, they had a message to give in the film. And, I stand by it.’’ Ranbir admits that epithets like ‘superstar’ and the ‘next big thing’ make him delirious. “But it also means loads of responsibility,’’ he says. Refuting rumours that his remuneration has shot up to Rs12 crore, the actor says, “For an actor to talk about the money he charges is disrespectful. Honestly, the only thing that I truly want is for my work to get recognition. Money, fame, adulation will come; but it can never be the focal point of my existence. With modesty I must say that I haven’t grown up wanting anything. My parents gave me a privileged lifestyle. So how much money I charge can never be the deciding factor to gauge what heights I have scaled.’’
He is also well aware that the flip side of superstardom means that he will now live in a glass house with everything from his love life to his moods getting unwarranted attention. “I certainly don’t think discussing my relationships with my co-stars comes with the territory of stardom,’’ says the actor. “I will not talk about Deepika Padukone or Katrina Kaif. It is disrespectful to them as women and to their families. Who I date is really very personal.’’ So there you go. With the adulation, Ranbir has also got the attitude.

By Vickey Lalwani (MUMBAI MIRROR; December 18, 2009)

Dia Mirza is in love again. She is now dating Sahil Sangha, Nikhil Advani’s former assistant director. A source says, “Sahil went to Dia to narrate a script. They were soon attracted to each other. The rest, as they say, is history.”

Recently, Dia and Sahil attended a high-profile wedding together in Delhi, where they looked comfortable in each other’s company. Dia said, “Yes, Sahil and I did attend a wedding recently in Delhi.

But you see, our families were also there with us. Actually, Sahil and I are very good friends. I have known him for a long time. His mother and my mom are buddies.”

Earlier, Dia has been linked with Kunal Kapoor, Apoorva Lakhia and Bunty Sachdeva.

Akshay Kumar and Priyanka Chopra are on talking terms again, unlike previous occasions where they looked through each other

By Vickey Lalwani (MUMBAI MIRROR; December 17, 2009)

Yesterday afternoon, Akshay Kumar and Priyanka Chopra shocked everyone at a five-star hotel in Bandra, where she was rehearsing for an event. The two superstars, who were reportedly dating each other six years ago, had an amicable conversation for a full ten minutes. This makes for a rather pleasant change – as both have a tendency to look through each other at events.

It is common knowledge that Akshay’s wife Twinkle harbours no love for Priyanka. When stories about the Akshay-Priyanka link-up started making the rounds, reportedly Twinkle made her husband vow that he would never work with Priyanka again. Realising that his family life would turn messy, Akshay stopped interacting with Priyanka. Reportedly, he even walked out of Suneel Darshan’s Barsaat because he did not want to work with Priyanka.

On the other hand, Priyanka and Akshay had always denied that they were attracted to each other. Priyanka and her family felt that her ex-secretary Prakash Jaju was responsible for those stories.

They last starred together in Vipul Shah’s Waqt where their on-screen chemistry could be cut with a knife. After starring in Waqt, if they met in public, they invariably looked through each other.

According to our source, they again avoided each other sat at Nita Ambani’s party just last week. “They didn’t exchange even a ‘Hello’. They don’t talk to each other, do they?” said a guest who attended that party. Just yesterday, there was a story that Priyanka had refrained from going to Vijender Singh’s party because Akshay Kumar was on the guest-list.”

However, all this animosity seems to be a thing of the past now. Their interaction at yesterday’s event is proof of that. Says a witness, “The meeting was very amicable. It is good to see that the two of them have matured and decided to put the past behind them.”

Priyanka was rehearsing for a dance which she was supposed to perform at the same venue later yesterday. Akshay was waiting for his turn to rehearse. The source adds, “Akshay watched Priyanka’s rehearsal. As she was getting down from the stage, their eyes met and the two of them started talking by exchanging pleasantries.”

A source close to Priyanka said, “Akshay even praised Priyanka’s dance performance.”

On the other hand, a source close to Akshay said, “Big deal. They have performed together at functions in the last few years. So what if they spoke to each other now?”

Akshay and Priyanka remained unavailable for comment.

After Waqt, no filmmaker dared to think of casting the two together. But now that they seem to be on cordial terms again, maybe we’ll see the good-looking pair on screen together again.


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