Fenil and Bollywood

Posts Tagged ‘Ishqiya

WHERE ARE THE ROLES? Lara Dutta, Bipasha Basu, Sonam and (above) Vidya Balan

They’re not studio hopping in 2010 because there’s no work

MEENA IYER Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; January 5, 2010)

The Bollywood men are sorted. Shah Rukh Khan is committed to doing one film in 2010 with Kareena Kapoor (RA 1). Aamir Khan may or may not even do that much. Salman Khan is introducing 20-something Sonakshi Sinha (Dabangg) to audiences. Ranbir Kapoor is romancing Priyanka Chopra (Anjaana Anjaani) and Katrina Kaif (Rajniti). Akshay Kumar is serenading Deepika Padukone (Houseful), Southern hottie Trisha (Khatta Meetha) and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan (Action Replayy). Ajay Devgn wants Bebo (Golmaal-3)! The five or six men who matter at the box office have their screen partners more or less sorted. If they sign new films, they once again want the top five Bollywood girls to prance with them. So what happens to the rest? Well, well. “As usual the expiry date for heroines in Bollywood is getting shorter and shorter, their shelf life is cramped,’’ says trade consultant Amod Mehra. He continues, “Except the top four girls actually —whichever order you place them in — whether it is Kareena, Katrina, Priyanka and Deepika, the other girls have slipped into oblivion.’’ A top hero (from the lot mentioned above) adds, “One of the heroines is so desperate for work, she is actually contemplating doing a film with an art film actor. The reason for her desperation is understandable. Last year we saw B-town beauties Preity Zinta and Rani Mukherji being phased out. In 2010, at least half-a-dozen girls of the existing lot will be quietly shown the gate.’’ Another trade source points out that Bollywood has enough talent and glamour to keep it going. However, the men on top definitely want either the Top 5 or they want someone completely ‘virgin’. Vidya Balan says she would much rather do just Ishqiya that revolves around her completely and follow it up with one Chenab Gandhi — again a pivotal role for her. But the fact of the matter is that even a volcano of talent like Vidya is left with little choice. Honestly, how many regular films can she find herself fitting into? Bipasha Basu and Lara Dutta also have just one/two films on hand. Asin Thottumkal hasn’t shot for a single film all through 2009. Post Ghajini she greenlighted only London Dreams and the 19th Step. London Dreams tanked and the 19th Step was shelved. Youngsters like Genelia D’Souza and Sonam Kapoor have promise but are still to make the box office grade. The fact is that 90 per cent of the B-town girls are more visible at advertisement commercial shoots, ribbon-cutting ceremonies, stage concerts and television reality shows. It is the money from these add-on revenue streams that keeps their world going around. Films? Well, what’s that?
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Badly Burnt In Year Gone By, Industry Looks To Strong Content

Bharati Dubey | TNN (THE TIMES OF INDIA; January 3, 2010)


Pursue excellence and success will pursue you,’’ was what Aamir Khan’s character philosophised in 3 Idiots. But when the lights dimmed and audiences sat down after the National Anthem, what greeted them on screens for most part of the year was average, even poor fare, making 2009 the annus horribilis of the first decade of the 21st century. More than 200 films, with Rs 1500 crore at stake, released last year but almost Rs 1000 crore sank in the sea of mediocrity without a bubble, the sharks-andsexy bikini Blue leading the pack.
Added to it was the multiplex strike which cost around Rs 350 crore, upset release dates forcing films to share Fridays and dent each others’ collections. A multiplex source said, “Cannibalisation caused by big films’ release dates clashing could have been avoided.’’


The year began with Chandni Chowk To China that lost 50% of its Rs 65-crore budget. And marketing blitzkreigs couldn’t save a Blue and Kambakkht Ishq and the audience clearly showed content was king with surprise hits like DevD, New York, WaKe Up Sid and Ajab Prem ki Gajab Kahani. DevD made Rs 6 crore, collected Rs 25 crore at the box office while its ancillary rights made another Rs 5 crore and there are still more satellite runs to be sold. Trade experts also put films like Love Aaj Kal, Ajab Prem ki Gajab Kahani, Wanted among the certified hits, followed by profitable films like Paa, All The Best, De Dana Dan and Raaz 2.


But Bollywood’s loss was Hollywood’s gain, with films like 2012 and Avatar (that collected a whopping Rs 50 crore so far) filling the void for good entertainment.


It was left to And Aamir Khan to play Santa Claus third year in a row, with 3 Idiots the biggest hit of the year. It grossed a phenomenal Rs 100 crore in India in the first four days, and Rs 175 crore worldwide till December 31, even denting into collections of Avatar. Trade analyst Amod Mehra said, “What Ghajini collected in a week, this film has done in three days.


Corporates didn’t really have a great year in 2009 and after the bloodbath in the first half of the year, most of them avoided buying films outright, with even 3 Idiots being released on commission.


Thus 2010 dawns to vastly altered realities — purse strings have tightened by cautious corporates; big banners are no guarantee for success and may dish out big turkeys instead; marketing and stars don’t sell, a good story does; and the days of astronomical fees are over.


“Audiences are very smart, the content ultimately will guide their choices and approval. Marketing and hype will only work if content supports that hype. We may not have a Blue this year but projects like Veer and Prince are costly and prima facie look difficult in terms of recoveries,’’ says a trade expert.


So when Akshay Kumar, blamed for soaring star prices, announced towards the end of 2009 that he would not charge any fee for Farah Khan’s Tees Maar Khaan, it was a lifeline for the industry that had almost gone into the ICU.


Says Amod Mehra, “It is not that people did not come to watch Akshay Kumar films in 2009, it is just that the budgets of the films were so high and his remuneration was almost 40% of those budgets, so recoveries were not possible despite a good opening. But now that the actors are looking at sharing profit with the producer after the cost of the film has been recovered like in the case of Aamir Khan’s 3 Idiots then it will be fair enough. Cutting down of star prices will definitely reduce the budget of films and they will become viable and that is definitely going to be the trend in 2010.”


The year thankfully doesnt have a Rs 100-crore Blue in its line-up. Last year most production houses scrapped films as star prices were not viable. In fact, it is learnt Saif Ali Khan is reworking the budget of his next film Agent Vinod starring Kareena and himself. In fact, 2010 is short on mega projects as budget constraints ensured very few got on the floors in 2009.


The first biggie of 2010 will be Veer,
followed by Rann, My Name is Khan, Action Replay, Kites and House Full in the first half of the year. The second half of the year would have Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Guzarish and Patiala House.


The action in 2010 seems definitely more in mid-size and multiplex projects that would have strong and clutterbreaking content. “There are a lot of films this year that may not topline the Khans or Hrithik Roshan but still have a decent line-up of names and would be thematically different. Tight budgets and good content seem to be the mantra in the decision making corridors of Bollywood. Each company is carefully evaluating its options and are not getting carried away,’’ says Priti Shahni of Indian Films. Corporates, for instance, have decided to take films only on commission, and not buy them outright.


Shahid Kapoor’s Chance Pe Dance, Striker starring Rang De Basanti’s Siddharth, Aamir Khan Productions’ Peepli Live, Vishal Bharadwaj’s Ishqiya would release in the first half of 2010.


Generation-next too would be making its presence felt with Ranbir Kapoor in Anjana Anjani and Rajneeti, Imran Khan in I Hate Love Stories, Sonam Kapoor in Ayesha, and Deepika Padukone in House Full.


As the record breaking run of 3 Idiots that has spilled over to 2010 has shown, great content along with great pre-release buzz make the perfect mix.


2010: Coming Soon
RAJNEETI (Naseeruddin Shah, Nana Patekar, Ajay Devgn, Katrina Kaif and Ranbir Kapoor) BUDGET: 50 cr


DHOBI GHAT (Aamir Khan, Prateik Babbar) BUDGET: 15 cr


RAAVANA (Abhishek Bachchan, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan) BUDGET: 50 cr


TEEN PATTI (Amitabh Bachchan, Sir Ben Kingsley) BUDGET: 35 cr


VEER (Salman Khan, Zarine Khan) BUDGET: 50 cr


RANN (Amitabh Bachchan) BUDGET: 25 cr


ISHQIYA (Vidya Balan, Naseeruddin Shah, Arshad Warsi) BUDGET: 20 cr


MY NAME IS KHAN (Shah Rukh Khan, Kajol) BUDGET: 50 cr


KITES (Hrithik Roshan, Barbara Mori) BUDGET: 50 cr


ACTION REPLAY (Akshay Kumar, Aishwarya Rai) | BUDGET: 35 cr


GUZAARISH (Hrithik Roshan, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan) BUDGET: 50 cr


ANJAANA ANJAANI (Ranbir Kapoor, Priyanka Chopra) BUDGET: 40 cr


AGENT VINOD (Saif Ali Khan, Kareena Kapoor) BUDGET: 40 cr

Figures are an approximate estimation

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Bollywood lets its hair down as 2009 comes to an end and raises its hopes for 2010

TEAM BT Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; December 31, 2009)

AMITABH BACHCHAN: In the New Year, the entire family is hoping to do the kind of work that would please the audience and carry the company forward. Our New Year wishes? May 2010 bring peace and well-being. May it fill us with pride as a nation. May our glory spread further. May we progress in all walks of life. And may the year keep me alive to witness the country, the film industry and my family prosper and progress. I look forward to the coming year passing peacefully.
KATRINA KAIF: I couldn’t hope for a better New Year’s day. I’m in London with my sisters and brother having the time of my life. We have lots of fun when we all are together. After I started working I have hardly seen my siblings. So meeting them is always special and a festival to mark our meeting, is the cherry on the cake. My mother forced me to leave my cell phone behind in Mumbai, so I’m almost cut off from Bollywood. What hopes for 2010? Lots of hard work and hopefully hits.


SHAH RUKH KHAN: I will be at home (Mannat) with Gauri, Aryan, Suhana and a couple of close friends like Karan Johar. Being with close family is the one thing I truly cherish.


AKSHAY KUMAR: Tina, Aarav and I are in Goa. I normally take a vacation from December 29 to January 2 because it includes a double celebration. Tina’s birthday on December 29, and then the New Year’s eve party. Honestly what can be better than spending time with your loved ones? This is a commitment I have made to my family.


DEEPIKA PADUKONE: I will be home in Bangalore with my parents and my sister. Then I go to Goa to wrap up the last fortnight on Ashutosh Gowarikar’s film. Every year I hope that the following year is as exciting as the previous year and I’m very happy with the way my professional life is going. Hope 2010 is the same.


RANBIR KAPOOR: I start shooting for Siddharth Anand’s film in the US from January 2. Since I didn’t wish to be in an aircraft on New Year’s eve, I left India on December 27. My entire family is in Dubai as tomorrow is my paternal grandmother’s birthday and the family is treating her to a one-week holiday there. I wish I could join them!


KAREENA KAPOOR: Saif and I are in England. We are catching up with Saif ’s Oxford batchmates and their spouses. I’m dying to wear my fur coat and sniff the English chill… looking and feeling every inch a diva. We work hard all the year around to make this happen, so let me enjoy myself.

BIPASHA BASU: I’m performing tonight. Then there will be a small get-together with friends. I always like to keep my New Year’s plans uncluttered. Home is the best place to be on any special occasion. And New Year will be a nonfilmy evening at home. Beyond that my only resolution for 2010 is, love yourself.

VIDYA BALAN: I bring in 2010 with my birthday tomorrow… no one can forget it! What hopes do I have for 2010? Oh plenty! After watching Mr Bachchan at work in Paa, I realised being focussed on your work to the point of shutting out everything else is not something I need feel guilty about. Now I’m all set to be seen as this full-blown, seductive, sexually-charged woman in Ishqiya. It brings an entirely new perspective to my personality for the audience. That’s what I’m hoping for in 2010… to find new aspects to my personality through the roles I play.

AJAY DEVGN: Kajol, Nysa, my parents, cousins, sister and her family and I will all be at our Karjat farm house. We’re planning an extended holiday. I start work only from January 2, so does Kajol. So in the meantime it is going to be a huge, long party.


AMRITA RAO: I wonder what 2010 has in store for me… Resolutions sound nice to the ears but adhering to them is a matter of destiny!


AMISHA PATEL: I have a show in Dubai. I will be working and then I will take a holiday. I always like working on New Year’s day because I feel you will then be working throughout!

RITESH DESHMUKH: Friends and I are contemplating how to ring in the New Year. It’s not compulsory to indulge in anything fancy, even a quiet time with good friends does the trick!


ARSHAD WARSI: I am looking forward to three releases in 2010. Will start Raju’s film next year so it’s going to be an eventful year. I haven’t a plan for New Year as yet. I’ll be with family and friends.


ANUSHKA SHARMA: I don’t do much for the New Year. Actually I do nothing. I just wish my family and go to bed.


SHABANA AZMI: As usual I’ll be with my family and a few close friends for the New Year.


IRRFAN KHAN: On every festive occasion I try to visit my mother in Jaipur. But for the New Year I made plans to be home. Beyond the New Year I’ve made no plans. I’ve noticed every time I’ve chalked out a plan for myself, life has humbled me. I leave all my plans to God.


MUGHDA GODSE: I am dancing at a live performance in Delhi tonight and will spend New Year with family and close friends. I’ve a horror film tentatively titled Help coming up for release. My co-star Bobby Deol is such a sweetheart. I hope to find a guy like him this year. Where are all the gentlemen?”


HEMA MALINI: I won’t be doing anything much for New Year. I’ll be with my family and rehearsing for my dance show which is on January 2.


POOJA BEDI: I’m having a small get-together on the terrace of my beachfront penthouse with flowers, candles and an incredible view of the entire city, with my father, my children and a few loved ones.

SUSHMITA SEN: I normally travel overseas. However, Alisah, my younger daughter, can’t travel abroad yet because she doesn’t have a passport. Hence it will have to be a beach resort in India.

ASIN: For me it will be a quiet New Year with family. I wanted to make it for Christmas itself, however I will ring in the New Year at my family home in Kerala.

…after ten years with a woman-centric film that stars Vidya Balan in the lead

By Subhash K Jha (MUMBAI MIRROR; December 30, 2009)


Noted lyricist-filmmaker Gulzar’s last offering as a director was Hu Tu Tu (1999), starring Tabu and Sunil Shetty. Since then, friends and family, especially his daughter Meghna have been urging him to return to direction. However, no idea seemed to inspire him enough to make that effort.

Vidya Balan

That is until now. Gulzar is set to direct a film in 2010. The film’s subject will be women-centric like his earlier films and will star Vidya Balan.

Without divulging details, Gulzar says, “My next film will star Vidya for sure. I saw portions of Ishqiya and she is truly an outstanding actress.

The fact that Gulzar’s daughter Meghna and Vidya are close friends only enhances the director’s fondness for the actress. “I have known Vidya from the time she used to drop in with Pradeep Sarkar during Parineeta. She is a lovely girl. Do you know, when an Oscar was announced for Jai Ho, Vidya came home and gave me a trophy? Yes, an actual trophy! I am happy to see her friendship with my daughter.

In Vidya, my daughter has found a soul mate. It’s very rare to see two people in the film industry reaching out to one another without ulterior motives. Vidya visits Meghna more than me. In fact, my daughter’s next also stars her. So both father and daughter are working with her,” adds the filmmaker. Apparently, Meghna’s next is a hard-hitting, marital drama.

From (L): Meghna Gulzar, Gulzar

As for Gulzar, Vidya has made a promise to herself. “I will keep sending him notes to start his film with me. I still remember that one shot in Parichay where the song Beeti na beetayi raina is going on and Jaya Bhaduriji is pleating her hair. That moment has stayed with me. No one captures everyday moments with such tenderness. I will do anything to work with Gulzarsaab. To me there are three people who are the epitome of culture and grace – M S Subbalaxmiji, Waheeda Rehmanji and Gulzarsaab.”

By IANS (Mid-Day; December 26, 2009)

Vishal Bhardwaj’s production venture “Ishqiya” faced the censor board’s ire for using the word ‘sex’ in its promos. But the ban has been lifted, giving respite to the producers.

The film has a scene where actor Arshad Warsi uses the three letter word, but it did not go down very well with the censor board.

Bhardwaj and his co-producers managed to convince the board members that the word was needed, and they finally gave their nod.

“It was initially decided that the word would be beeped and we gave an application for it to the revising committee, that comprises six-seven members. We had to convince them and make them understand that the word is essential for the film and the dialogue,” Mansi Maroo, co-producer of the film, said on phone from Mumbai.

With the censor board’s approval, the producers will re-launch the promos with the word audible.

“The dialogue lost its impact because of the ‘beep’ and now our whole plan has been delayed. In order to rectify things, we will have to re-do the scene and launch another promo with the word audible,” she said.

Asked if Bhardwaj too accompanied the other producers to the meeting with the censor board, Maroo added: “Vishal did not go for the meeting but he did have talks with the censor board people.”

Set in eastern Uttar Pradesh, “Ishqiya” is a tale of romance between individuals caught in a web of crime, suspense, passion and deceit. Directed by debutant Abhishek Chaubey, the film also stars Naseeruddin Shah and Vidya balan in pivotal roles.

Maroo also revealed that such procedures create hindrance in the film’s promotion.

“We have lost two-weeks of right promotion.”

“However, we are glad that finally we were heard and our job was done,” she added.

IANS tried to contact censor board chief Sharmila Tagore, but she was not available.

“Ishqiya” is slated to release Jan 29.

Vidya Balan to play the late Jessica Lal’s sister, Sabrina Lal, in No One Killed Jessica

By Subhash K Jha (MUMBAI MIRROR; December 26, 2009)


Director Rajkumar Gupta, who earlier made the intense thriller, Aamir, has been planning a film on the Jessica Lal murder titled No One Killed Jessica. The crucial casting of Sabrina Lal was keeping the project from taking off. He has zeroed in on Vidya Balan for the powerful role.

Sabrina Lal

Vidya’s earlier stint as a strong, assertive woman in Parineeta and Halla Bol, (which incidentally had shades of Jessica’s life) and Paa has helped her land the critical role of Sabrina.

Sabrina fought a relentless battle to get her sister’s killers nabbed after Jessica was gunned down in a crowded bar on April 29, 1999, in front of several eyewitnesses.

Recently, the sensational case was in the news again when Jessica’s convicted killer, Manu Sharma, was out on parole, making merry in the nightspots of Delhi.

Vidya confirmed the news. She says. “Yes, I am playing Sabrina Lal in Rajkumar Gupta’s film. The minute I heard the role, I wanted to do it. It’s my first biographical role and a big challenge. I’ll be meeting Sabrina shortly. After Paa and Ishqiya, I need to move forward.”

Commenting on the film, Rajkumar says, “I start the film in February 2010. Vidya Balan seemed like the right choice from the start. Now that I have got her for the role, the rest of the casting will be easy.”

CANDID CHAT: Vidya Balan
Vidya Balan in a frankspeak about men and the movies

MEENA IYER Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; December 26, 2009)

Vidya Balan is glowing with the compliments pouring in for her superlative performance in R Balki’s Paa. She may be a foot shorter than both her Bachchan co-stars, but when it came to the histrionics, she matched Amitabh and Abhishek perfectly. Now she’s channelising her energies into Ketan Maroo’s Ishqiya where once again she is it pitted with two versatile talents — Naseeruddin Shah and Arshad Warsi. Talking about her sensuous role in this robust, earthy, love triangle, the diminutive actress says, “I play a village belle. Yet I’m fully aware of my sexual charms and within the four walls of the bedroom, I’m unapologetic about using my guile and charm.’’ Vidya says quality work like Paa and now Ishqiya has made her realise that if she is patient, the right roles are bound to come her way. “Once again I have as many advantages as I had when I did Parineeta,’’ says the actress. “My filmmakers have realised that given an opportunity, I will not let them down.’’

The coming year is an important year for Vidya. She starts the year with Ishqiya and then moves onto Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Chenab Gandhi. “The decision to do fewer films is entirely mine,’’ says the actress who is now super-confident that when it comes to her career, she will not make one false move.

On the personal front, it is rumoured that almost all her heroes be it John Abraham (Salaam-e-Ishq), Shahid Kapoor (Kismat Konnection) and now Arshad Warsi (Ishqiya) are attracted to her. “Rubbish,’’ she flails her hands and says. “In fact, I think none of my heroes even treat me like a lady. I’m treated like one of the boys. My heroes backslap me and we share a few laughs and jokes. However, I don’t think any of them is attracted to me. If they were, I would have noticed.’’
Well, well…so even as the rumour mills continue to buzz about Vidya past romances with John and Shahid, the actress herself has rubbed her slate clean… and is looking forward to her knight in shining armour putting in an appearance in 2010.

What should one say — Halleluah!

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