Posts Tagged ‘kurbaan’
MEENA IYER Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; January 4, 2010)
Like a cat that has swallowed the cream, Kareena smacked her luscious lips and said, “There I was licking my wounds when God above answered my prayers. Honestly, I’m delirious. To think that I started 2009 with a whimper and ended it with a bang. Someone up there heard me.’’
Just before she set off on a tour of England with Saif Ali Khan, the incorrigible Bebo said, “2010 has a lot of promise. I sincerely wish the Midas touch continues. I’ll start the year with my idol, Shah Rukh Khan, with whom I’m travelling to Miami for RA 1. Then I’m going to be traipsing the globe with Saif in Agent Vinod. And, if Aamir keeps up his promise to me, the two of us will end up in a romantic film by the end of the year.’’ Jumping like a child, she asked, “Listen, is it wrong to love more than one Khan at a time? I’m guilty of just that. Shah Rukh and Gauri are my close friends. I love Saifu. And as for Aamir, well, what can I say? He’s the new Khan on my block.’’
Gamely she takes the blame for her duds. She knows the critics dipped their pens in poison when she did KI and MAMK. “My funda is simple,’’ said Bebo. “Actors should be like scientists, always willing to experiment. I experimented and I failed. That doesn’t take away from my acting abilities. If I don’t experiment, the same guys will write — she’s a plastic doll on screen. One does take chances with one’s roles and if the films fail, I’m more heartbroken than anyone else. Don’t forget films are all I live for. I give my films everything I have. So failure does affect me. But to write me off each time I have a flop is unfair.’’
Maybe, but that’s the way things in Bollywood work. One Friday you’re a handmaiden, the next Friday you’re the Queen. And, if you’re lucky, you can get an extended lease at the box-office. Like Bebo just managed. firstname.lastname@example.org
IT’S TIME TO REJOICE!
Although 2009 is considered as a black year for Bollywood, the last 3 ½ months have proved to be profitable not only for producers, distributors and exhibitors but also for viewers. There were at least half a dozen commercially successful films like Wanted, Wake Up Sid, All The Best, Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani, De Dana Dan and Paa. Also, flops like Dil Bole Hadippa, What’s Your Raashee?, Do Knot Disturb, Blue, London Dreams, Tum Mile, Kurbaan etc did manage to bring audiences to theatres in its first 3 days of release. Also, we got two Hollywood blockbusters, 2012 and Avatar. And tomorrow’s release 3 Idiots is expected to be the biggest hit of 2009. This Aamir Khan flick is been given one of the widest releases. If all turns out to be well, 3 Idiots may become the biggest blockbuster ever, breaking even Ghajini’s record (which at present is the biggest Bollywood hit).
People are coming to theatres. So many movies are running successfully. Unfortunately, no is celebrating it and no trade analyst is coming forward to discuss about it. Ironically, during bad times, every producers, distributor and trade pundits will come forward and state as to ‘how our industry is going through a crisis’. Somehow, we have become more negative in our approach. We love to live in bad times! Come on guys, pop the champagne and enjoy the good time!
TICKET RATES INCREASED FOR 3 IDIOTS
Watching 3 Idiots shall turn out to be an expensive affair. Knowing that people are going to come for sure to watch this Aamir Khan flick, Vidhu Vinod Chopra and the distributors of the film have urged multiplexes and single screens across the country to increase the ticket rates for 3 Idiots. Even morning shows which had a meager price of Rs 60 or 80 is now sold for 160 or 180 and even 200 bucks. A prominent multiplex in South Mumbai (Inox, Nariman Point) takes away the cake by charging Rs 290 for the 11:30 am show! And for the evening and night shows, the least said, the better!
Surprisingly, hardly any Bollywood intellectuals have spoken against this unfair practice. All of them are concerned only with the problem of piracy. Why? Because it concerns them-they face huge losses because of pirated DVDs. And they don’t need to care for the inflated ticket prices since they can either afford it or they get to see films free of cost in preview screenings!
But all of them have failed to see the point that one of the biggest reasons for piracy is the expensive ticket rates. Reducing the ticket prices will automatically reduce piracy to a certain extent. But instead of applying this idea, ticket rates are increasing, thus giving a boost to piracy. Producers and distributors are only concerned with extracting maximum profits. And when viewers shun theatres due to high prices, they will again come up with ‘industry going through crisis’ stuff when the fact is that they only created the situation in the first place! Very very sad!
This post first appeared on MouthShut.com: http://www.mouthshut.com/diary/chfdltslp/Fenils-Bollywood-Talk80
MEENA IYER Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; December 23, 2009)
Christmas is round the corner. And Bollywood is sincerely hoping Santa Claus will come to its rescue. Around 240 odd films (including the dubbed titles) have released so far in 2009. But barely four are certified hits. For the No. 1 slot, it is a photofinish between Saif Ali Khan’s Love Aaj Kal and Ramesh Taurani’s Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani. A trade source said, “Love Aaj Kal collected around Rs 60 crore but it was also sold at a higher price. While APKGK was sold at Rs 44 crore with print and publicity and will make a neat profit of at least Rs 10 crore for its producers. So, in a way, it is hard to tell which is the clear No.1.’’ Aditya Chopra’s New York is the second biggest hit, followed closely by Boney Kapoor’s Wanted. There is a mixed view on Amitabh Bachchan’s Paa and Ajay Devgn’s All the Best being in the fourth place. Trade analyst Taran Adarsh feels because AB Corp has curtailed the film’s budget to Rs. 16 crore and Paa is still running in multiplexes, it is a profitable film.
According to reliable market sources, lead actors Amitabh Bachchan and Abhishek Bachchan, and director R Balki, didn’t charge their market price. “It is reported that the Bachchans will get to keep the satellite rights of the film (valued at around Rs 10 crore) against their remuneration,’’ said a trade source. While film editor Komal Nahta feels All the Best has also romped home.
Taran said, “This has been the most unfortunate year for Bollywood. The box-office was crippled by the multiplex strike, swine flu and three four big movies clashing each week after that.’’ Distributor Amod Mehra added, “Many films were liked by the audience… but their price failed them. Raaz, Wake Up Sid and De Dana Dan got a fair share of audience — but the price at which they sold was astronomical, ensuring these films were a loss-making proposition for the main buyer.’’
As far as the critics are concerned, they have had to carry the carcass of the films they praised. Whether it was Kurbaan or Rocket Singh. Filmmaker N R Pachisia said, “Ranbir Kapoor is the future of this industry, Saif Ali Khan did himself a good turn with LAK, but the only man who deserves true praise this year is Amitabh Bachchan who with Paa raised the bar of our cinema to an international level.’’
P.S. The one film that everyone is unanimous about is the dubbed version of 2012 that has done as good business as the biggest Bollywood hit this year.
Box Office hits this year!
Love Aaj Kal
Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani
All the Best
Saif Ali Khan and Dinesh Vijan’s Agent Vinod, which finally seemed poised to take off, has been delayed again. Due to this, some crew members got fed up of waiting for the film to go on the floors and hence opted out of it to work in other viable projects.
The film was supposed to go on the floors in July, but Saif could not find time for Agent Vinod as he was busy with the promotions of Love Aaj Kal. Later, both Kareena and Saif got busy with Kurbaan and the film got postponed. Then Kareena’s dates were given away to the Bollywood version of Stepmom, so the film got delayed even further to January. Now, it is finally reported that the film will begin in the second half of the next year.
A source from the unit, who has backed out of the film, says, “We have been roped in for this project for over six months. We were first informed that the movie will go on the floors in December, which was then pushed to January. Finally, the other day, we got a call from the production house saying that the film might go on the floors by April and we need to sign the contract papers.”
It was the commitment to the project, which seemed on a shaky path that made them back out of it. The source adds, “How can we sign the contract papers? Once we sign the contract, we can’t work anywhere else. So, we will be jobless till this movie goes on the floors. Given this inconvenience, many of us have backed out of the film. We are not signing the contract as we don’t want to be bound with the production house for so many months. If we do sign the contract we will be twiddling our thumbs and not earning money. Some of us have moved on since there is no guarantee of when exactly the film will take off. Meanwhile, we are taking up some other projects,” adds the source.
Producer Dinesh Vijan remained unavailable for comment. Guess Agent Vinod and he were having a fictitious tete-a-tete.
• How long do you plan to work only with Shah Rukh Khan considering that actors have a limited shelf life, unlike directors?
I have never worked without him and I have no clue what the experience will be like. I do my best work when Shah Rukh is on the sets as there is this tremendous sense of comfort when he is around and I feel that everything will be fine and fun on the sets. I think I will be working with him for the rest of my life as we have this special connection not only personally but also professionally. We understand each other very well, he is a member of my family and vice versa.
• Don’t you think that right now the audience wants to watch entertaining films while yours is a serious film?
Well, I don’t know as I never calculate anything as far as creativity goes. I know that I have made a film with my heart, soul and a lot of passion. My entire team- SRK, Kajol, Ravi Chandran, Shibani, Deepa, Sharmistha and everybody else- has really toiled to make it a soulful venture. I firmly believe that emotions are universal and I know that when they connect with the audience, it works. There is no such thing as an entertaining or a serious film; there are good films and bad films. Good films will always find a vast audience.
• Your last film Kurbaan had a terrorism backdrop and was promoted as a love story, which clearly did not work. Do you plan to have a different strategy for the promotion of My Name is Khan?
There is nothing about terrorism in Khan. It is a soulful emotional journey about a man who is all for love and that’s exactly how we are promoting the film. I certainly have no idea why the rumours about terrorism in Khan are doing the rounds.
• My Name is Khan releases on February 12. Do you think it’s the ideal release date considering its Valentine’s Day week and youngsters would want to see a romantic film?
Absolutely! Khan’s core content is a love story. The entire journey is the love story between Rizwan and Mandira, my protagonists. What better time than the Valentine’s Day week for the release of this love story about two people who go through so much in life for love.
• My Name is Khan will have the biggest release till date, even overseas. Do you think it’s the right strategy?
We have a great partnership with Fox Searchlight and it is their strategy to have a platform release, which is what they call such a release. They believe that My Name is Khan has a market way beyond what’s expected and it is their strategy to break certain boundaries of exhibition for this film. They have full faith in the film and I hope their faith pays off. The real work for any filmmaker stars after he finishes directing a film. I spent two years making the film but most of my efforts for the next two months will go in the promotion, marketing and connecting with the audience.
My Name is Khan will premiere at the Berlin Film Festival on February 12. It is expected to be screened at one of Berlin’s most important locations, Potsdamer Platz. Incidentally, it is the first Indian film to be premiered in Berlin.
After Kurbaan was dismissed by the audience, Dharma Productions has decided to shoot Tarun Mansukhani’s Dostana 2 first, pushing back Nishikant Kamat’s next with John Abraham
Karan Johar’s production house Dharma now feels the need to pull up its socks especially after its biggest turkey in years, Kurbaan. Dostana director Tarun Mansukhani has been asked to complete the script for Dostana 2 immediately.
Tarun says, “We will start shooting the sequel in April 2010. I’m just about locking in the script. We want to give the film a nice summery look in London. So far, Abhishek Bachchan and John Abraham are the only cast members who are confirmed.”
In this rush to release a comedy which may prove to be more commercially viable, Nishikant Kamat’s (director of Mumbai Meri Jaan) film with John which was to start early 2010, has now been pushed to July 2010. Confirming this, the reclusive director says, “I think John has one other film to finish before he comes to my project. So I have more time to work on my script. I’ve been locked away in my native village most of this year writing the film.”
Kamat continues to tell us about the project, “I love the cinema of Karan Johar, Aditya Chopra and Sooraj Barjatya and that’s the kind of mass entertainment we’re attempting. John and I have been friends for a long time. We sat and discussed what kind of a film to make. We both thought an adventure-action-romance was a far bigger challenge than a topical subject.”
His film with John will be produced by UTV. And it’s likely that UTV would also be on board for Dostana 2. So a shuffle seems very much on the cards.
After the heavy losses Kurbaan incurred, UTV’s Siddharth Kapoor cautiously says, “We’re in a long-term association with Dharma. So the intention is to collaborate closely with them on their future productions. But nothing has been formalised for Dostana 2.”
Considering the fate of some of the recent films bombing at the box-office and the aftereffects of recession, corporate are entirely rethinking their film financing budgets. Apparently, this is why Eros International, the financers of Agent Vinod starring Saif Ali Khan and Kareena Kapoor, has considerably slashed the film’s budget.
The buzz in trade circles, based on a conversation overheard between a leading producer and a couple of distributors is that Eros International is renegotiating their deal with Illuminati Films, producers of Agent Vinod. The budget of the film has been brought down considerably from Rs 65 crore to Rs 40 crore. Illuminati Films is co-owned by Saif Ali Khan and Dinesh Vijan.
Agent Vinod is a spy thriller with Saif and Kareena playing undercover agents. In fact, buzz is that Kareena plays a full-on action star on the same lines as Angelina Jolie as Lara Croft in Tomb Raider.
In today’s time, when having a big star in one’s film does not guarantee money recovery, it is not surprising that Eros is having second thoughts about the budget of the film. Apparently, the dismal performance of the recent Saif-Kareena starrer Kurbaan at the box-office has also played a big role in Eros deciding to cut costs. Incidentally, this is the third time recently that the real life couple failed to set the screen on fire. They had not too long ago worked together in Roadside Romeo and Tashan.
However, our source insists that the slashed budget of Agent Vinod has nothing to do with the box-office failure of Kurbaan. The source says, “It is a wise business decision which can be termed as a precautionary measure. It has got nothing to do with Saif and Kareena per se. For all you know, Agent Vinod may be a hit and a cut in its cost will benefit Eros and Illuminati all the more.”
Sriram Raghavan, director of Agent Vinod, says that the film will be going on the floors in the next two months. Commenting on the slashed budget, he says, “I don’t know if there is any such development, but I can’t downsize my script. There are a lot of foreign locales and action in the film. So, it’s definitely a high budget film. However, I cannot reveal its budget, producer Dinesh Vijan is the right person to comment on it.”
Eros International and Illuminati Films declined to comment on the story.