Fenil and Bollywood

Posts Tagged ‘festive season

By TUSHAR JOSHI (Mid-Day; December 18, 2009)

Koena Mitra was in for a rude shock when someone informed her she was attending an event in Pune on December 19. The actress was puzzled to find her name prominently featured in a Pune newspaper announcing her presence at an event called Toss.

Not approached or in talks
A friend close to the actress says, “Koena was shocked to see an ad in the Pune newspaper and also on some websites announcing her presence at an event named Toss. She was neither approached, nor was in talks with anyone for such a show. After making a few phone calls, it was evident that a local person named Priya Kakre had used her name to make easy money.”

A thousand victims already
The actress found out that the organiser already sold around 1000 passes costing 500 bucks each.  “By using her name, the organisers fooled people into believing that she was performing at the show. They made a quick buck on her name. When we tried to get in touch with Priya she kept giving weird excuses saying she was conned into this by someone else.”

Strong reactions
Reacting to the incident Koena says, “I am shocked and surprised how people can even think about even making a quick buck like this. Cheating people out of their hard earned money is disgusting. I urge people to be wary of such con artists during this festive season.”

The ad, which Koena Mitra insists is for a fake event, featured in a Pune newspaper

Tanushree Dutta’s name is also featured in the ad. She reacts, “I am not a part of this event, neither was I approached for it. This definitely sounds like a scam or an easy way to fool people and make money. I think its sad that someone’s name is used to get publicity and con people who will look forward to watch you perform.”

Sayali Bhagat’s name features in the ad as well. When asked for her reaction, she says, “This is a scam. I heard about it from someone and was shocked that my name is mentioned in the ad. I have been shooting a film for the last three months and no-one else has my dates. Also, if it is an event, I should have been paid and I haven’t been paid.”

MUMBAI: If this were a Hindi film, one would say imtihaan ki ghadi aa gayi hai-testing times are here. After a tumultuous year at the box office, the health of the Hindi film industry will be tested from December 4 to February 12. About Rs 500 crore is at stake and many a big brand of the industry will try its luck at the box office.
While Aamir Khan’s 3 Idiots is arguably one of the biggest films of 2009, Shah Rukh’s My Name is Khan may give 2010 a headstart at the box office. Brand Bachchan isbanking on Paa and Ranbir Kapoor will try and consolidate his new found viability as a solo star with Rocket Singh. And after his success with Wanted, Salman Khan will hope to emerge victorious once again with Veer.

 

“The film industry tries to avoid releases in the first two weeks of January and also in March (exam season),” says an industry source. “The movie business really picks up during summer vacation time and the festive season. Big releases are reserved for Diwali, Eid or Christmas.”

Why this deviation from plan then? Trade analyst Amod Mehra blames it on the backlog. “The multiplex strike changed many a plan,” Mehra says. “Rann was meant to be a Diwali release but could not manage a clearance from the producers. Shah Rukh’s Dulha Mil Gaya was also marked for 2009 and My Name is Khan was rumoured to be a Christmas release. Veer is the only film that was planned for January 2010 and is on schedule,” he adds.

Producer Mukesh Bhatt has no reservations about time of release. “I released Raaz 2, The Mystery Continues in January and it was a hit. Kaho Naa Pyaar Hai, another January release, was a superhit.”

Film trade analyst Taran Adarsh explains that there has always been apprehension in the industry about releasing films in the first two months of the year. “They believe the audience doesn’t really want to start the new year watching films. Also, up north its too cold to get out and go to a cinema hall,” he says. Having said that, Adarsh thinks any month that provides the viewer with good content will be conducive for Bollywood. “Maybe early 2010 will break the jinx.”

About 25 films are releasing between December 4 and February 12. These which include many small-budget films such as the Vidya Balan, Arshad Warsi, Naseeruddin Shah-starrer Ishqiya, Chandan Arora’s Striker and MAMI-award winning Road to Sangam. Shah Rukh Khan and Amitabh Bachchan may clash at the BO with My Name Is Khan and Teen Patti likely to release on the same date. While some exhibitors feel that the release of big films are evenly placed, Mehra believes, “The audience will choose the film they want to watch. They cannot afford to make holes in their pockets and this will affect the fortune of some films.”

Of course, the fact that so many big names have releases within weeks of each other is another issue to contend with. Previously, producers have thrashed out their release dates in an informal manner to avoid overlap of big ticket films. But with the multiplex strike hitting the initial months of 2009 so hard, nobody is in the mood to wait anymore. Ranjan Singh, the marketing head of PVR Pictures is concerned that big releases may cannibalise smaller players. “But if this trend of back-to-back releases in a non-conventional period hits the high notes, all conventional jinxes will be broken and a new trend will be set.”

ON A ROLL: Ajay Devgn


Trade pundits place bets on the Ajay Devgn-Rohit Shetty offering

MEENA IYER Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; October 13, 2009)


The experts are working overtime. As the festive season closes in, the trade pundits and the film distributors are hedging their bets on who according to them will set theatres ablaze this Diwali. Rajeev Malhotra, the Mumbai distributor for Ajay Devgn’s All the Best says, “We pulled it off last Diwali with Rohit Shetty’s Golmaal Returns, hopefully this Diwali we can do the same with All the Best.’’


Rajeev feels this Devgn Films’ October 16 release is a fun, light, clean entertainer and it is the best bet for families who usually come out in droves during the festival season. Taran Adarsh, who is a trade expert, is ready to back Rajeev as well. He says, “I consider Ajay Devgn and Rohit Shetty an unbeatable combination. Ajay is a powerful actor, who has proved his mettle in diverse roles. Rohit knows the pulse of the audience. Together, this combo is sure to rock with All the Best. The pro
mos are truly eye catching and by the looks of it, it should set the box office on fire this Diwali.” Raj Bansal, who is one of the leading names in the Rajasthan territory says, “If you check the history of the last decade, you will note that Diwali is the season for full-on comedies or romantic films. People hate to see grey, brooding films during festival time.’’ Raj also feels that last Diwali, a film like Golmaal Returns surpassed distributors’ expectations, so once again the trade is inclined to back a comic caper like All the Best. Now an interesting trend spotted by Delhi distributor Sanjay Ghai is that massy action-films like Wanted work around Eid; and madcap situational comedies like All the Best should work around Diwali. “This is a worldaccepted logic by the distributor community,’’ says Sanjay. Well, then with so many money-minded men thinking alike, we guess the best movie will make its mark. meena.iyer@timesgroup.com