Fenil and Bollywood

Posts Tagged ‘John Abraham

Anurag Kashyap finds an unusual hero to play a serial killer for the second film of the Mumbai trilogy – Nawazuddin aka Patna Presley of Emosonal Attyachaar

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


Anurag Kashyap’s much talked-about Mumbai trilogy has found its third and final hero. While Aamir Khan stars in the first film, John Abraham will play the lead in the third. Now, the little-known but talented Nawazuddin who gave sterling cameo performances in 2009 in Nandita Das’s Firaaq, Kabir Khan’s New York, Anurag Kashyap’s Dev D (one of the two Patna Presleys singing Emosonal Attyachaar) and Black Friday, has been pencilled in as the lead in Kashyap’s second film in the Mumbai trilogy. It’s a huge leap for an actor from a village near Delhi.

More startling than his casting is the character that Nawazuddin plays. He plays Raman Raghav, India’s most brutal serial killer. In 1968, Raghav bludgeoned a number of pavement dwellers to death before he was caught and diagnosed with schizophrenia. (Sriram Raghavan has, in fact, made a documentary on the serial killer.)

Nawazuddin has been secretly reading up on Raman Raghav and looking at footage of the killer. When we spoke to him, Nawazuddin was taken aback. He said, “Anurag has asked me to keep it absolutely quiet. Yes, I’m playing the serial killer Raman Raghav in Anurag Kashyap’s film. It’s the biggest challenge of my career especially since superstars like Aamir and John feature in the other two films of the series.”

Nawazuddin, who has been trying to make a mark as an actor in Bollywood since 1996, has played the lead in Aamir Khan’s Peepli Live and Mangesh’s Dekh Circus too. Says the actor emotionally, “I’ve waited very long for this. I’ve struggled hard to get out of playing the cameo to the lead. Mumbai trilogy is my greatest challenge.”

Anurag Kashyap Nawazuddin
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NO PAIN, NO GAIN: John Abraham pushes himself an extra mile

John Abraham believes if you want to achieve something, you’ve got to go through pain…

MARK MANUEL Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; January 5, 2010)

It is true that a picture speaks a thousand words. But this stark and screaming one of John Abraham pumping 140 lbs dumbells in the gym, does 473 actually. The Bollywood hunk himself believes it is a “wild, crazy and ugly” picture. “But it speaks the state of my mind,” he is quick to explain. He is at an inbetween stage. In between films. He’s finished Abbas Tyrewala’s 1-800 Love and has Nishikant Kamath’s
(Mumbai Meri Jaan) untilted action project lined up next. Then there’s Dostana 2 starting in June. Before which he has four months to himself. “To look at life, to introspect, to ask myself questions about things I’ve done and which need to be done, to solve 10,000 problems, my mind is caught in a melee,” carries on the actor, “there’s a lot of nervous energy, there’s tension waiting to be relieved, and the gym is my release. I’m not lifting heavy weights to prove a point. The gym is like my church and working out is like praying…”
He’s umindful of the fact that, like Aamir Khan and Shah Rukh Khan, he’s stuck to doing one film a year only. There was Dostana in 2008 and New York in 2009. That’s it. “Like everybody else, I get offers all the time, but you’ll never hear I refused a film… I don’t take pride in saying that. The point is not to do everything you get… but to do the right thing,” says John. And right now, he’s not doing anything. Yet he’s the only actor, apart from SRK and Akshay Kumar, with a non-filmi lineage who’s hanging in there. Perhaps that’s because John has a huge and loyal fan following that’s got nothing to do with the success or failure of his films.
But it doesn’t worry him who’s doing what in Bollywood. “I’ve studied economics, so I know that if somebody else’s film works, so will I as an industry,” he says. And he’s busy benchpressing in the gym towards his own benchmarks. He’s got severe tendonitis in both elbows, shin splints, he fractured the bones, severed the veins in his left foot in a 2006 bike accident, he broke the navicular bone in his right foot last year… yet, as his T-shirt suggests, John Abraham is aware that pain is temporary, pride is forever. “If you want to achieve something, you’ve got to go through pain,” he warns. “I’m trying to reach a pinnacle, at the gym, in films and life itself. I want to get to a point where I can say, yes, I’ve got what it takes.”
The biggest hits of their career were NEVER meant to be theirs

MEENA IYER Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; January 2, 2010)

You talk to any film director and he’ll give you gyaan on how such and such actor is in the film because he/she fit the casting to the ‘t’.

Yet, the reality of the matter is something else. It is usually who is available; and sometimes who is more saleable.

Take the latest: Aamir Khan was never meant to be playing the idiot in his latest film. It was to be Shah Rukh Khan. Since SRK and producer Vidhu Vinod Chopra had a difference of opinion, the Bollywood Badshah was replaced by Aamir. And while the rest is history, there are innumerable such examples in the film industry.

History knows that Amitabh Bachchan was not Prakash Mehra’s first choice for Zanjeer. It was meant to be Dev Anand or Raaj Kumar. When both actors said no, the Big B stepped in. Jaya Bachchan even thanked Dev saab for refusing the Zanjeer role. The film gave her — her real life husband and it gave Bollywood one of its most revered screen couples.

Today you wonder how Dev saab would ever have fit into the angry young man mould. But that’s an after-thought.
Hrishikesh Mukherjee wanted Raj Kapoor to play Anand. When he couldn’t, Hrishida sent for Shashi Kapoor but Rajesh Khanna wormed his way in. And till today Anand is synonymous with the 70s phenomenon.

Shatrughan Singh continues to smart that it was he who was to be Jai in the Jai-Veeru jodi of Sholay but because he was riding a crest of super-success then, he didn’t want to do a twohero film. Amitabh Bachchan got the role instead.
Aamir had been pencilled in for Yash Chopra’s Darr but at that point he ‘accused’ Yash of playing games. And SRK made a permanent place for himself in the YRF camp.
Ajay Devgn was to play Karan in Rakesh Roshan’s Karan Arjun. But he was ousted by politics and next thing you know is that Salman Khan was in. Till today Karan Arjun remains one of the biggest hits of Bollywood and Salman’s career. And it may become film history because he and bete noire are unlikely to star in a movie again.

Saif Ali Khan had qualms about playing a pansy in Dostana so John Abraham was brought in. John got male and female temperatures rising with this fun flick and is now a part of its sequel.

Kareena Kapoor asked for too much money for Kal Ho Na Ho; result — Preity Zinta landed this memorable film. Shah Rukh was meant to be playing Munnabhai but since he walked out after some miscommunication, Sanjay Dutt became Munna. Aishwarya Rai Bachchan was in Chalte Chalte till Salman dropped in as an uninvited guest forcing SRK to call Rani Mukerji to replace her… and Rekha and Jaya would never have had their screen face-off in Silsila had Parveen Babi and Smita Patil done their roles.

Unlike real history, reel history is often made by default.

By Subhash K. Jha, December 31, 2009 – 11:35 IST

Abbas Tyrewala Abbas Tyrewala who directed one of 2008’s biggest successes is also a writer of great repute, having written among other things, the prophetic dialogues of Munnabhai MBBS and the screenplay of Maqbool.

Abbas went to see the latest Yashraj production Rocket Singh Salesman Of The Year not only as a writer and director but also as an eager fan of the films that the banner comes out of.

“I love Jaideep Sahni’s writing and Shimit Amin’s direction. But what were they thinking while doing Rocket Singh? Where is the payoff in the screenplay? Where is the hero? Ranbir plays a timid Sardar who steals phone lines and computer hardware from his work-place to start his own business. And we are supposed to accept him as a man of integrity! Would he be able to start his own business if it wasn’t for the nefarious support he gets from his work-place? In other words the ‘hero’ resorts to those very underhand tactics that he claims to abhor and takes the help of that very organization which has disgraced him!”

Most damaging of all, Abbas couldn’t see a hero in Ranbir’s character. “The boss (Manish Chowdhary) is so over-the-top he belongs to another sensibility altogether, calls Ranbir a ‘bastard’ several times, humiliates and disgraces him publicly. We wait for our hero to have his revenge on the boorish boss. I completely believe in the old-fashioned Hindi film formula where the hero gives his tormentor tit for tat. But Boss, where’s the comeuppance for the villain? In fact the story comes across more as the boss’ redemption story as the hero’s.”

Abbas is now more than sure what he wants to do with his own hero John Abraham in 1-800-Love at the end. “I want my hero to either win or die at the end. Not a hero whose fight for the right simply peters out to a dead-end.”

In fact Abbas’s disappointment with Rocket Singh Salesman Of The Year has given him a renewed creative strength. “I now know exactly how my hero’s journey to end. I’m an old-fashioned storyteller. And we’ve at heart a very traditional audience. They want to see the hero triumph at the end, not walk away from the villain as he makes an apology speech.”

BOLLYWOOD HUNGAMA.COM

After signing Akshay, Farah-Shirish to team up with Salman. Will SRK ever forgive Farah for courting his arch nemesis?

By Subhash K Jha (MUMBAI MIRROR; December 31, 2009)


The breach with Shah Rukh Khan seems complete. Shirish  Kunder is working on a script for Salman Khan, which he intends to direct immediately after he finishes with his John Abraham starrer, Alien Sahib.

As it is, Akshay Kumar is playing the lead in Farah’s next directorial venture Tees Maar Khan instead of Shah Rukh.

Farah Khan and Shirish Kunder

Both Farah and Shrish confirm their association with Salman. When asked if Shirish is working on a project with Salman, Farah cryptically says, “Not yet,” while Shirish says a categorical, “Yes.” The deal was sealed at Salman Khan’s birthday bash at Panvel on December 27 where Farah and her husband were special guests.

So where does this new development leave Farah’s seemingly everlasting friendship with her mentor Shah Rukh Khan?

Shah Rukh, it is well-known is at loggerheads with Salman. Friends of one superstar cannot hope to be seen at parties hosted by the other superstar, not after the two Khans fell out at Katrina Kaif’s birthday bash last year.

Both Shah Rukh and Salman have made it clear that the two can never ever be friends.

With Farah signing Akshay Kumar instead of SRK for her third directorial venture and Shirish Kunder set to work with SRK’s arch-enemy, the curtain has truly and finally come down on one of filmdom’s most gehri dostis… the one between Farah and Shah Rukh Khan.

Shah Rukh Khan Salman Khan

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!

By IANS (December 18, 2009)

Actor John Abraham is deeply attached to the idea of wildlife conservation. So it comes as no surprise to know that he will now produce a film on tiger preservation to be directed by internationally renowned filmmaker Mike Pandey.

The documentary film entitled “The Return Of The Tiger” will address the alarming disappearance of the species.

“I decided to produce the film because I truly believe tigers are one of the most magnificent creatures on this planet. And if we don’t take quick and immediate action to preserve them there will be no tigers left,” John said.

Through the film, which will be screened in the documentary section of film festivals and at wildlife-preservation summits, John and Pandey hope to create a certain amount of global awareness about the urgent need to preserve the tiger.

“This film is far too important in terms of its message. I decided to produce it after I met Mike Pandey. He’s such a lovely man, so committed to capturing the essence of nature on camera. I just decided to get committed to Mike’s level of commitment,” said John who wowed everyone with his performance in “New York”.

MID-DAY



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