Fenil and Bollywood

Posts Tagged ‘destiny

The dusky actor has made Mumbai her home – and Subodh Maskara her husband

By Subhash K Jha (MUMBAI MIRROR; January 05, 2010)


There aren’t very many Delhi-based Bollywood actors, but Nandita Das certainly figured high on the list. Even Aamir Khan – her co-star in 1947 Earth – had tried to convince her to move from Delhi to Mumbai to pursue her acting career, but she held strong. Now, Nandita has finally made Mumbai her home, post her recent marriage to environment entrepreneur Subodh Maskara.

Confirming the news, she sighs, “What I resisted doing for 13 long years has finally been done. I couldn’t imagine shifting to Mumbai for my career, but love did it.”

Nandita Das and Subodh Maskara

Subodh was introduced to Nandita by her friend Shahana Goswami (whom she directed last year in Firaq) and her boyfriend Milind Soman. “Milind and Shahana kept urging me to meet Subodh. But I’m the last person to believe in blind dates. But look at destiny, now I completely believe in instant love. When I was hesitant about meeting him, Subodh sent me a lovely e-mail. And I said, ‘Why not? Just have coffee with him?’ So we met. And immediately I knew this was it. Within five months of meeting him, I knew I wanted to marry him. We became soul mates seamlessly,” she recalls.

Nandita and Subodh got married according to Ashram Vidhi rites on January 2 at Subodh’s residence in Worli, which is now their marital home. “Only our parents – his parents and brother, my parents and my brother were there for the marriage. And of course, Shahana and Milind, who brought us together. We couldn’t possibly get married without them,” adds Nandita.

Meanwhile, friends like Paresh Rawal have been urging Nandita to direct another film. However, at the moment, she is content playing Mrs Nandita Maskara at her new home in Mumbai. So does she cook for her husband? Nandita gasps, “That would really be going too far, even further than my move from Delhi to Mumbai.”

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THIS IS ME: Sonal Sehgal

Sonal Sehgal would rather go with what her heart says

DEEPALI DHINGRA (BOMBAY TIMES; December 1, 2009)



When the going gets tough, the tough get going. And that’s exactly what Sonal Sehgal had to do, after waiting eons for her film Aashayein to release. The Nagesh Kukunoor film where she stars opposite John Abraham got delayed so much, that Sonal decided she could not wait any longer and signed her next film Radio. “It was six months after the music launch of Aashayein and I thought to myself that if I keep sitting at home, I’ll probably forget how to act!” she laughs. Of course, that doesn’t mean she isn’t disappointed about her first film being delayed so much. “It’s my first film, so it’s naturally very close to my heart. Plus it’s a beautiful story. When I asked Nagesh last when it would release, he said ‘soon’, so I’m waiting for that to happen soon,” she smiles. On the other hand, she’s a firm believer in destiny and believes that whatever has happened, has happened for the best. Says Sonal, “Since Aashayein got delayed, people don’t have any pre-conceived notions about me yet, and that’s why I was able to sign such diverse films as Radio and Jaane Kahan Se Aayi Hai.” Talk about Radio where she’s paired opposite Himesh Reshammiya and we can’t help but ask if she was advised against taking up the role by anyone. “If the director has such faith in Himesh, then who am I to judge?” she dodges the question diplomatically, and then laughs, “Anyway, I rarely listen to people’s advice. I want my success as well as failure to be credited to me alone,” she adds. But the actress is kicked about her role in the film. “It’s a contemporary look at relationships,” she says, adding that anyone who’s been in a relationship would identify with the film. “I play a girl who gets divorced from her husband but the habit of the relationship is hard to let go for her,” she explains her role. With so much work in her kitty, Sonal is glad that all the hard work and patience is finally paying off. “We make plans for our lives but God always has bigger, better plans for us,” she says with a smile.

Touchwood, we say!

Priyanka and Shahid have called it quits but coincidences continue to chase them. This time, it’s a mobile number in different films

By Meena Iyer (MUMBAI MIRROR; November 21, 2009)


Rumour has it that Priyanka Chopra and Shahid Kapoor, who were “good friends” during the making of Kaminey, are no longer on talking terms. But destiny continues to play cruel games with them.

In Madhur Bhandarkar’s Fashion, Priyanka, who played a model, displayed a mobile number on screen at every audition. Now, Shahid, who plays a film aspirant in Ken Ghosh’s Chance Pe Dance, was also spotted displaying the same mobile number in the theatrical trailer, which is being aired with Kurbaan.

Guess neither Priyanka nor Shahid wanted it this way but as luck would have it, both the films Fashion and Chance Pe Dance are being presented by the same film corporation (UTV). The unimaginative creative team must have taken the liberty of passing of what was once Priyanka’s to Shahid.

So, who does this number belong to? Shahid or Priyanka?

When we probed further, it was revealed that the number displayed on both Shahid and Priyanka’s audition board actually belongs to Ram Mirchandani, who was once working in UTV and is now with another corporate.

Soon after Fashion released, Ram had made his displeasure known about getting a hundred phone calls a day from people who thought that it was Priyanka’s number in real life.

Now one wonders whether Ram will still continue to get as many phone calls after people see the number displayed by Shahid, who is currently riding a wave.

A source says, “If it had struck Shahid that the number he was holding on the slate is the the same one that Priyanka had used in Fashion, he would probably have asked the writers to change it. Now he has just to live with the fact that what was once Priyanka’s is now his by default, if not by design.”

Commenting on the story, Ram says, “I didn’t know that Shahid was going to be displaying my number on a slate for Chance Pe Dance. Ken Ghosh and Shahid told me about it after they had shot the scene.  They told me it was done in good faith and I should be a sport.  I don’t think Shahid or Ken knew that Priyanka has used the same number in Fashion.  It is just one of those coincidences.”

Shweta Tiwari’s refusal to sign a joint affidavit stating that she and estranged husband Raja Chaudhary are still married resulted in Raja losing out on a reality show as a commentator
By Vickey Lalwani (MUMBAI MIRROR; September 05, 2009)
Shweta Tiwari clearly doesn’t want her name to be associated with her estranged husband Raja Chaudhary any longer, even if it recently resulted in him losing out on a plum project. Even though they are still not divorced, Shweta refused to sign a joint affidavit, which required her to agree that Raja and she are husband and wife. The show will be shot abroad and he needed to renew his passport. As he needed her signature, her refusal delayed the renewal and he lost the project.

Shweta’s signature would have helped Raja procure his passport enabling him to join the unit of the show 100% De Dhana Dhan overseas. Unfortunately, by the time she signed on the dotted line, Raja had lost the project.

Raja was asked to be a commentator on the show along with Mohan Kapoor. Raja was looking forward to be part of the new reality show mainly because they had offered to pay him well.

Shweta and Raja in happier times

A furious Raja confirmed, “If Shweta had signed jaldi se, I would have been a commentator on 100% De Dhana Dhan. I guess, the show was not in my destiny but it definitely hurts if you get work and you are unable to do it because of some silly reason.”

The story goes that Raja had earlier obtained his passport from Ghaziabad. “Last month, I had to renew it for which I had to go to Ghaziabad again. When I had got my passport earlier, I was not married but for my passport renewal I had to prove that Shweta and I are married. To prove that, I needed a picture of Shweta and me together. I also wanted her signature to endorse the same. Yes, we are fighting for legal separation in the court now but we are not divorced as yet. I either have to write ‘divorced’ or ‘married’ in the passport application from. One’s marital status can’t be ambiguous in the form. Shweta took 25 days to sign the affidavit because of which I got delayed and lost out on the show,” added Raja.

Raja says that he tried his best to make Shweta understand that she should help him out in this matter. “I called her several times, spoke to her secretary and even sent her many text messages. Par kucch faida nahin hua,” said Raja.  “I really needed 100% De Dhana Dhan. It is a good project with good money.”

Abhishek Bachchan (33) was replaced in films, thrown out of some and suffered the ignonimity of having his films stalled. But he is a survivor. He talks about his journey candidly
By Indu Mirani (MUMBAI MIRROR; August 26, 2009)
When did you first become aware that you were Amitabh Bachchan’s son?

From as early as I can remember because for us at home it was never like, “I am Amitabh Bachchan’s son”. He was always ‘Pa’ for us. That’s something my mother always made sure of. I was never led to believe that I was the son of this great actor and so I was special.
Did you ever resent being Amitabh Bachchan’s son?

Never never… and I don’t think that will ever happen because I thank god everyday that I have been born into the family that I am born into and that I have the loving parents I have.

Did you ever want to be anything other than an actor?

As a child you have different ambitions everyday. I was no different. But amongst those ambitions, I also wanted to be an actor and acting is the one that stayed with me. As a kid I wanted to be a fireman, astronaut, race car driver, business tycoon. As a kid you are forever dreaming and then I realised that here is a job in which you can be everything at the same time.

What about acting comes easily to you?

I don’t know what comes most easily to me. Maybe just the acceptance of the environment because this is the world I grew up in, this is the world I know.

And what is difficult?

There are certain scenes and emotions that are difficult to tackle. But that is how it should be, you shouldn’t do an easy job.

How do you overcome such moments?

At that moment, it’s sheer desperation. You come up against a road block and you do whatever it takes to overcome it. You dig deep and pull out all the stops, just go for it.

Do you find yourself referencing your dad?

With an actor of his caliber, he is a standard, a reference point for every actor.

Did you ever watch any Rajesh Khanna films?

No, I never really saw his films. As a kid I always saw dad’s films.

In retrospect, how do you react to the flak your wedding invitee list got?

What flak? That was created by the media. I was switched off it. It was my once-in-a-lifetime wedding. I didn’t want anything to alter what I felt at that time period of time. I had no idea what was going on outside my gates. For me I was going to get married to the person I loved and that was going to be my favourite memory. I don’t pay heed to these kinds of things. Do I make a big deal about the invitation list? No. I don’t expect to be invited anywhere and I don’t think anybody said, ‘Oh, I should have been invited.’ Nobody said that to me. If they have a problem they come and talk to me and I will tell them the reasons behind it. The people invited were just very close friends and family. People tend to forget I had an ailing grandmother in the hospital and it was a conscious decision on the part of the family to keep the celebrations to a minimum. I would have loved to call the entire film fraternity. Yes this is where I work, these are my people. Could I? No, and I think people should respect that and if they don’t, then, it’s their problem.

How did you deal with the 17 failures you had at the beginning of your career?

You have to deal with it. You do whatever it takes. I have always been uncomfortable talking about myself because I am not that kind of person. Some people understand it some people don’t, some people accept it, some people don’t. I am fine with it. My only focus at that point of time was to carry on working. The minute you start thinking about the negatives, you become a bitter person. And I am not bitter, I never want to be and I don’t like bitter people.

Was it difficult?

Of course, it was. I was replaced in films, I was thrown out of the films and my films shut down halfway. It’s not a pleasant feeling. Do I make a big deal out of it? No. As compared to the struggle of other people, mine looks small. Many people don’t know that when I decided to be an actor, for a year I didn’t have a job. Some people might have thought that, ‘Oh, he is Mr Bachchan’s son; he would get a job easily. And I know close to 30 directors, who are some of the big directors who said to my face, “No sorry, we don’t want to make a film with you.” It’s not like I had a line of producers outside my house. I have been to a lot of producers and directors requesting them to work with me. Thankfully JP saab came over and said, ‘I want to work with you’ and he was the first person who did and I readily accepted. So how do you deal with it? Try and be positive and keep working hard.

By the grace of God, I have a wonderful family. I was never made to look like an underachiever or a loser. They are very supportive and always encouraging, that is not to say that they are blindly supportive. If they saw a film of mine which didn’t like they would say so and tell me how to improve. They never said, ‘Oh, you are hopeless. Forget it!’ There was a point in time when I thought that about myself because when you repeatedly fail and that too on public platform and you are humiliated on a public platform, Friday to Friday, after a period of time, your zest, your confidence goes flying out of the window and you start believing it. When you have 15-16 flops in a row, common sense kicks in, saying ‘Wait a second, obviously you don’t know anything, you are doing something wrong and maybe you shouldn’t be doing this.’ I had no confidence. I couldn’t go out in public because I genuinely believed that I had failed. Then I went up to my father and said, ‘I think, I have made a mistake and I have paid for it dearly and maybe I am not meant to be actor.’ He said, “I have not brought you up to be a quitter, I have brought you up to be fighter. Keep at it. I am telling you, I am going to be your biggest critic. I am telling you that you are improving with film after film. Do whatever you get. Whatever role, small role, big role, just do it. Spend time in front of the camera so that you get the opportunity to improve and eventually prove your worth.’ And that’s what I did. I dived into work, whatever I got, I did, and thankfully after a while they started accepting me.

How important is marriage?

It’s a wonderful institution. I won’t say I am going to recommend it. If you want to get married, get married. It’s a personal choice. I have taken the step to stay with the woman I love and care for. I am happy I did. It has been a wonderful wonderful journey so far.

And kids?

Kids are great. I think part of the reason why you want to get married is that you want to settle down and start a family and have kids. I think two should be good. Ham do hamare do.

Are you part of Dhoom 3?

Dhoom 3 is not being made as of now. If Adi (Aditya Chopra) decides to make it, I am pretty sure Ali and Jay would be apart of it. It’s their story, it’s their franchise, unless they want to take a U-turn and change it completely. Dhoom 2 has been my biggest hit and that’s the character I enjoyed working on.

For years numerologists said you should drop your surname and you resisted. Do you feel vindicated now?

I don’t feel vindicated. I think it’s foolish and stupid to even suggest it. Why would I want to drop my surname? I am very proud of being a Bachchan. I am what I am because I am a Bachchan. I don’t understand the theory behind changing my name. I have a name which my grandfather gave me. I carry it with great pride and I am not going to change it because somebody else wants to change it. Your film is not going to work because you change the spelling of your name. Destiny is written for you and you have to aid it by working hard.

Kareena has said that she has always had space in her heart for you…

Bebo has always said that. She was my first heroine and she will always be special for me. She is not only a very sweet girl but also one of the finest actresses. We started our journey together. So she is always special to me.

So will you work with her?

Of course, I will. People keep saying that I refuse to work with her. The fact is that nothing worthwhile has come up.

The Naqaab beauty is back…


MEENA IYER (BOMBAY TIMES; August 11, 2009)



Urvashi Sharma who shared screen space with Bobby Deol and Akshaye Khanna in Abbas Mustan’s disastrous Naqaab went into oblivion immediately after. Tough times followed for the Delhi beauty who was made to sit on the periphery of films doing precious nothing. All because she was under a contract with her mentors — Kumar and Ramesh Taurani. “My contract didn’t forbid me from accepting films from other banners,” clarifies Urvashi. However, producers were unwilling to approach the Tauranis to ask if they could cast her.

So Urvashi continued to do commercials and wait for the elusive film offer. D-day is here. She has just bagged a couple of meaningful films. One is Baabarr where she plays a Muslim girl from Kanpur. And there is Chashni where she will be seen alongside talents like Jaya Bachchan, Raveena Tandon and Ayesha Takia Azmi. “I’m really happy that I will be doing two to three good films soon,” says the Naqaab heroine.

She admits life in Mumbai has been tough, especially for a newbie like her who has had no friends in maximum city. “I just learnt to keep my head above the tide and keep swimming,” she says. Enrolling in a gym; doing power yoga and whathave-you, Urvashi managed to sit the tough times out and she is glad that she is headstrong enough to swing things in her favour finally. “I’m neither insecure nor unhappy,” says the 20-something, “I’m sure everyone has a period in life where they just have to sit it out and wait for the tide to turn. Isn’t this what they call destiny?”

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