Fenil and Bollywood

Posts Tagged ‘harman baweja

By Taran Adarsh, December 18, 2009 – 16:18 IST

Indians are passionate about cricket. Am also sure you must’ve encountered a number of cricket fanatics over the years. Most film-makers dread to release their films during crucial matches, fearing that a sizable chunk of moviegoers would prefer to watch a match than a movie.

This year, we’ve had VICTORY [Harman Baweja, Amrita Rao] and DIL BOLE HADIPPA [Rani Mukherji, Shahid Kapoor] focusing on this popular sport. Prior to that LAGAAN, IQBAL and JANNAT. Now WORLD CUPP 2011. Unfortunately, WORLD CUPP 2011 neither excites you as a cinematic experience, nor does it whip up those passions.

BY BOLLYWOOD HUNGAMA.COM

Ravi Kapoor essays the captain of the Indian cricket team, who tanks a match with the help of his team-mates against arch rivals Pakistan in World Cup. They are banned for four years when exposed by the media. His girl-friend Soha [Manisha Chatterjee] dumps him and his family disowns him.

Cut to 2011. Ravi is given one more chance to prove his patriotism by the coach [Suresh Oberoi]. Ravi is again approached by the same bookie [Zakir Hussain] to repeat the same performance once again, but this time he turns the offer down. His girl-friend is kidnapped. Ravi goes through a crisis before he wins the World Cup trophy.

WORLD CUPP 2011 falls flat due to a weak script. The film tries to explore the unholy nexus between cricketers-bookies-underworld, besides the rise-fall-rise of a cricketer, but the writing is so amateurish that it doesn’t hold your attention. Perhaps the intentions were right, but not the final output.

Debutante writer-director Ravi Kapoor may’ve borrowed from real-life, but several portions seem unpalatable. Like, for instance, the ease with which the captain of the Indian cricket team and even the umpire interact with underworld dons while the final match is in progress seems bizarre.

Talking of acting, Ravi Kapoor has screen presence, but needs to work on his acting skills. Prem Chopra, Suresh Oberoi and Zakir Hussain are passable.

On the whole, WORLD CUPP 2011 is a weak fare.

Advertisements
Big B, SRK among several who catch Avatar premiere in Mumbai…

TIMES NEWS NETWORK (BOMBAY TIMES; December 18, 2009)

A lot of films try to lay claim to the old ‘most anticipated film of the year’ tag, but on Tuesday night, it was clear that Avatar was indeed the biggest Hollywood film of the year amongst Bollywood’s celebrity film buffs; it brought the Bachchans and the Khans onto the same blue carpet in a premiere rivalling the big Bollywood premieres. After 14 years of incubating in director James Cameron’s brain, Avatar, the once-ultrasecret project known as ‘Project 800’, finally premiered to an enraptured and appreciative Bollywood crowd. But before the 160-minute-long saga of 10-foot-tall blue aliens on a distant moon called Pandora began, the blue carpet was walked by larger than life superstars like Amitabh Bachchan, Shah Rukh Khan, Abhishek and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Yash Chopra, Gurinder Chadha, Harman Baweja, Vivek Oberoi, Ram Gopal Verma, Rohan Sippy, Vidhu Vinod Chopra, Rajkumar Hirani, Anthony D’Souza, Rohit Shetty, Shirish Kunder, Tisca Chopra to name a few.

At the end of the film, as the news channels spoke to the guests leaving, some admitted to tears, many felt it would be difficult to watch “normal movies again” and most were ready to take another trip to Pandora right then and there. Networking sites were instantly flooded with more gushing praise.

Aryan had his school exams and couldn’t make it, but Shah Rukh Khan was so amazed by the experience that arranged a screening for his family and friends over the weekend. … Hrithik, who was stuck at the shooting of Guzaarish and couldn’t make it in time to the venue, is also looking to have a private screening of the film. Amitabh Bachchan told the media “It was a fabulous film, a wonderful experience!” Abhishek, who was not scheduled to come as he had to walk the ramp the same evening in the suburbs, rushed just in time to catch the film. He posted his views on a site soon after “It’s not a film. It’s an experience! James Cameron is Hollywood’s answer to my favourite director, Manmohan Desai! He could pull off anything. Avatar too is a Hindi film at heart. It’s definitely a ‘must watch’ for the experience.”

Rohan Sippy, who had seen a trade show just the previous day, loved the film so much he came to see a second screening and plans to see the film over the weekend, again. He said, “With Avatar, James Cameron has redefined what we can dream. It is a film of breathtaking scale and impossibly meticulous detail. But I think his real triumph is that he has used his total mastery over technology to make us really feel what it is to be alive and human…” Ajay Devgn and Kajol have also requested for a screening of the film for their family and close friends after hearing the premiere buzz from others. While Vivek Oberoi said, “It’s really amazing that the west can come up with films like this. I would’ve loved an Indian director to make a film like Avatar. It’s simply astounding!” “I saw Avatar in 3D. To say the least, it made me feel pre-historic in every way,” says Varma. Director Ken Ghosh, Fardeen Khan and Zayed Khan have also planned to block an evening entire show at a suburban multiplex for a private screening for friends and family. Looks like the general public might not get tickets for the film after all, looking at the number of private screenings and shows being blocked by the Bollywood fraternity itself. The premiere was hosted by Vijay Singh, CEO 20th Century Fox India and Big Cinemas.
ALL SET: Priyanka Chopra

MEENA IYER Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; December 10, 2009)


Life has come a full circle for former Miss World Priyanka Chopra. On December 12, nine years after she picked up her own crown, PC will be on the beauty pageant podium in Johannesburg as a judge for the final round of this year’s Miss World contest. “When Julia Morley, who is in charge of the beauty pageant, invited me to be a judge, I was ecstatic. There I was a teenager all those years ago, nervous as a help on the same platform. Now I’m going in a totally different capacity,” said Priyanka. The actress is happy she could work her busy shooting schedules around to accommodate this contest, which she considers a very prestigious one.


Back home, too, Priyanka is in a very happy place. Kareena Kapoor, Katrina Kaif and she are the top three Bollywood beauties who wield a certain power over the box office. Naturally, the best projects are divided between them. “This was a good year,” said the actress, “and hopefully 2010 will be as good if not better.”


She happily starts the year with Pyaar Impossible in January while also shooting with hotshot Ranbir Kapoor for Sajid Nadiadwala’s Anjaana Anjaani and with Bollywood supremo Shah Rukh Khan for Farhan Akhtar’s Don-2. “Besides these films, I’m scheduled to do a film with my Kaminey director Vishal Bharadwaj,” said the dusky beauty.


The low point of 2009 was when she cried herself to sleep after Ashutosh Gowarikar’s What’s Your Rashee came unstuck at the box office. “When you put blood, sweat and tears into a project and it doesn’t fetch you the kind of box office you hoped for, it hurts,” Priyanka admitted. But she did not rise to the bait when asked what she feels about co-star and ‘ex’ Harman Baweja making his feelings public for her long after they had split. Guess when things are looking up for her the way they are right now, she has every reason to be gracious.

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.”

.

 

LAUGHING ALL THE WAY TO THE BANK: Bollywood hit producer Boney Kapoor prepares for his next blockbuster,
Milenge Milenge, starring Kareena Kapoor and Shahid Kapoor

Boney Kapoor is buoyed by the success of Wanted and the future prospects of the last Kareena-Shahid film together

MARK MANUEL Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; November 9, 2009)

Boney Kapoor is maha excited. Not over Wanted, his September blockbuster that got close to Rs 40 crore billing, but by his January release Milenge Milenge — which is the last time you will see Kareena Kapoor and Shahid Kapoor romantically paired on screen. I don’t have to tell you the film’s been in the making for a while, but Boney is confident it will be successful. “I can feel it in my bones,” he said emphatically, “why should it not work, it’s a good love story, it’s got fantastic music.” But what about the chemistry between Kareena and Shahid, I asked. “That’s there,” Boney declared, “besides, once the lights are off in the theatre, you forget whether they are a couple or not, and they become characters.”
He’s been a major player in Bollywood for 33 years now, and has always been big on ideas, and bigger on executing them. Which accounts for some 30 successes over the 80s, 90s and so far into the 2000s. Now he rattled off their names to me not in any order but as they came to mind. “There was Judaai in 1997 with Anil Kapoor and Sridevi which was a major hit but not a blockbuster,” he began, “Company, Pukar in 2000 — that won the National Award, and Loafer which was very successful, also Run in 2004… Abhishek Bachchan’s cleansing began with this film, and Sirf Tum in which Sushmita Sen had the superhit song Dilbar… then No Entry, the biggest commercial success of 2005, and Wanted now, which I would rate as one of the Top 10 films of all time. It’s still running! And it’s a case study to the business that has evolved now. When people talk of a film raking in Rs 200 crore… that’s a western concept to lure eyeballs. What you get in hand is what matters. I gave you the Indian boxoffice figures for Wanted. The overseas, satellite, home video/audio, branding rights are separate.”
He’s had some lemons at the box office as well, films like Roop Ki Rani Choron Ka Raja in 1993 that I wasn’t reminding him about. However, Boney said on his own, “I’m a complete hands-on filmmaker, I’ve been through it all, I’ve done so many films, and several for my brothers Anil and Sanjay too, that I’ve got to know the complete and detailed aspects of filmmaking and distribution. With today’s invasion of corporates, the role of the producer is not underlined, there’s just a mad rush to put the package together. That’s why you’ve seen so many packages falling like nine pins! The control of the project is the engine… and it’s important to have a producer driving it with passion. Yes, the corporates brought in discipline where the business of filmmaking is concerned, and they streamlined the revenue mode, but they took away the passion.” That Boney has passion, there is no doubt. “I’ve been through the highs and lows, I’ve had a fractured financial status, but even then… if I can still churn out a blockbuster, what magic might I have done with a complete back-up,” he asked. The answer to that, perhaps, is in the films his production house BSK Network and Entertainment Pvt. Ltd. is making. I’ve already told you about Milenge Milenge. Then there’s the Anees Bazmee directed It’s My Life with Genelia, Harman Baweja and Nana Patekar, a remake of the successful South Indian film Bombraillu in Telugu and Santosh Subramaniam in Tamil. Isn’t Hurman bad news in Bollywood, I asked. “Wasn’t Amitabh bad news until Zanjeer,” Boney shot back. And he’s got three more films in mind for which Boney Kapoor can already hear the cash tills at the box office ringing. They are all sequels. “I’m starting Mr. India 2 — Be Positive,
there’s a strong possibility of Anil and Sridevi being the
lead pair, plus a new, young couple, and somebody big playing the major and unusual role of the villain. Then I’ve got a fix for No Entry 2. And somebody suggested a good idea for Most Wanted. Everything depends on the viability of the projects and availability of the main crew. I’m a strong believer in the need for a good support system. My cast is always according to the need of the film. What works is not a package, but the product.”
Priyanka Chopra’s presence at ex-lover Harman Baweja’s Diwali party has set tongues wagging about their relationship

By Sonal Chawla (MUMBAI MIRROR; October 17, 2009)

After a gap of almost a year, Priyanka Chopra was spotted at ex-boyfriend Harman Baweja’s house on Thursday night. Like every year, the Bawejas had their Diwali party get-together and Priyanka was on their guest list.

A source says, “Harry and Pammi Baweja have their annual Diwali celebration, which goes on till the wee hours of the morning. It also has some B-town celebs attending the party. This year it was a shock to see Priyanka at the party. After her break-up with Harman, she had completely disappeared from Harman’s life. She even cut-off ties with his parents by not visiting his house. However, she was in touch with Harman’s sister Rowena, on and off.”

It was Harman’s parents who invited Priyanka to the party. The source adds, “Although the invitation was given by Harman, it was his parents’ call which got Priyanka to his house. The actress walked in post-midnight and stayed at the party for a few hours.”

It was during the promos of What’s Your Raashee? that Priyanka and Harman upgraded to talking terms. The source adds, “Priyanka was like a family member when she was dating Harman. After their relationship went kaput, she never visited his house. Her attendance at Harman’s Diwali party sends out a lot of messages to people.”

But the question is that if Harman Baweja is back in Priyanka’s life, then where does that leave Shahid Kapoor, whom Priyanka is supposed to be dating?

By Taran Adarsh, September 25, 2009 – 11:54 IST

Let’s come to the point straight away. When you’ve films like LAGAAN, SWADES and JODHAA AKBAR to your credit, every step you take, every move you make comes under a microscopic view. Naturally then, the expectations from Ashutosh Gowariker’s WHAT’S YOUR RAASHEE? are monumental.

There’s another reason why WHAT’S YOUR RAASHEE? is special. Casting the same actor in 12 different roles is nothing short of a challenge – for the film-maker, for the writer and also for the actor in question.

BY BOLLYWOO HUNGAMA.COM

Now let’s analyze. WHAT’S YOUR RAASHEE? works in parts. There are 12 raashees, which means 12 independent stories, plus there’s a story of the dulha [Harman Baweja] and his family as well, also there’s a story of a family-friend [Darshan Jariwala] running concurrently. That makes it 14 stories, 13 songs, approx. 3.20 hours running time…

//

Now to the vital question: Does WHAT’S YOUR RAASHEE? work?

Let me answer this question by raising a vital point. Did the running time [of 3 + hours] of SHOLAY, HUM AAPKE HAIN KOUN, LAGAAN, JODHAA AKBAR and GHAJINI bother you? I am sure, it didn’t. The problem with WHAT’S YOUR RAASHEE? is not its length/running time. The problem is its content.

If any film stands on a weak foundation [writing], even 1.30 hours seem never-ending. Conversely, if the writing is power-packed, even 3.30 hours of entertainment seems less. Let’s not blame the length, for the biggest grosser of the world to date – TITANIC – also had a running time of 3.17 hours.

WHAT’S YOUR RAASHEE?, unfortunately, lacks the power to keep you hooked and that’s the prime reason why its running time/length is sure to be criticised.

Oh yes, WHAT’S YOUR RAASHEE? has some wonderful moments and award-worthy performance[s] by Priyanka Chopra, but everything pales into insignificance when the written material is weak.

To cut a long story short, WHAT’S YOUR RAASHEE? is a king-sized disappointment from one of the finest storytellers of India.

WHAT’S YOUR RAASHEE? is the story of Yogesh Patel [Harman Baweja], a young man who, in his heart, has always wanted a love marriage. Till suddenly he is told that he must find his dream girl within ten days to save his family from utter ruin. Finding the dream girl is tough enough. Finding her in a hurry is even tougher.

His solution is simple; he will meet one girl from each raashee – sun sign, as he feels that is the best way to make sure he finds a suitable wife, while also giving himself twelve chances to fall in love. Two meetings per day gives him six days to meet them, three days to make the final decision and he can get married on the tenth day, or so he thinks.

Based on the novel ‘Kimball Ravenswood’ by Madhu Rye, the concept of WHAT’S YOUR RAASHEE? is interesting, but the big screen adaptation isn’t. To start with, you connect with barely a few stories, mainly the one who has a past and also the final one, of an underage girl. But several stories appear ridiculous and hence, ruin the impact generated by several wonderful moments. The jeweller’s daughter, who believes in punar janam, falls flat. Ditto for the other jeweller’s daughter, who pretends to be childish so as to test the intentions of the dulha. It’s farcical. But the most ludicrous one is the businesswoman who has a pre-nuptial agreement in place, even before meeting the dulha.

Even Darshan Jariwala’s track, towards the end specifically, tests the patience of the viewer. The detective drama is also ludicrous. Besides, the climax is far from convincing. The nanaji appears suddenly with a bagful of currency and the dues of the moneylenders and goons are settled soon after the saat pheras. How convenient!

Even the choice of the girl is debatable, since she has chosen him on a rebound [when she found that her lover was cheating on her]. In fact, the dulha had, rightfully, thought of the girl with the past and should’ve settled with her instead. That would’ve been a convincing finale.

Ashutosh Gowariker gets it wrong this time thanks to the poor screenplay. The writing is the biggest culprit here. Sohail Sen’s music is easy on the ears, but why so many songs? A few songs can easily be deleted. Piyush Shah’s cinematography is perfect.

WHAT’S YOUR RAASHEE? belongs to Priyanka Chopra. No two opinions on that. Words would fail to do justice to the remarkable portrayal of twelve different characters by this actor. This is her finest work to date. Harman is extremely likable and enacts his part with complete understanding. Darshan Jariwala is alright. Anjan Srivastava is as usual. Visshwa Badola is first-rate. Pratik Dixit does well.

On the whole, WHAT’S YOUR RAASHEE? is a king-sized disappointment.


Advertisements