Fenil and Bollywood

Posts Tagged ‘Lara Dutta

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?
Here’s what we suggest you bring out the popcorn for
MUMBAI MIRROR; January 01, 2010

Karthik Calling Karthik

Farhan Akhtar’s next film is a story of a lovable loser whose chance meeting with his namesake changes his life forever. Karthik Calling Karthik has a star-studded credit list which includes Deepika Padukone, Javed Akhtar and Shankar, Ehsaan and Loy. Considering Farhan acts in the movies he either directs or produces, it seems like he is bent on wanting to typecast himself as the underdog. Weird but true!


My name is Khan

Bollywood’s biology lessons continue with My Name Is Khan. With 9/11 as the backdrop, the movie follows Rizwan Khan (SRK) who suffers from Asperger’s Syndrome. This is an autistic disease that makes the victim devoid of empathy. This, of course will give rise to many comical situations, just like Paa did. The film brings together the electrifying pair of Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol back on the silver screen. Add Karan Johar to the mix and you have a surefire hit. But come on, what is the film industry going to explore next, the common cold?


Raajneeti

A modern-day political rendition of the Mahabharata, Raajneeti boasts of an A-list star cast – Ajay Devgan, Arjun Rampal, Ranbir Kapoor, Nana Patekar, Vivek Oberoi, Manoj Bajpai and Katrina Kaif. The movie will use the dilemmas the characters in the book went through, and draw parallels with it in reel life. Katrina Kaif is reportedly playing the role of Sonia Gandhi in the movie. After all both of them are quite similar: accent – check; powerful woman – check; foreign descent – check; relationship with Salman Khan – no one really knows.


Kites

Kites follows the story of Hrithik Roshan, a salsa dancer who falls in love with his student. Language barriers don’t matter here, love conquers almost all. But ‘something’ happens and it’s up to another student Kangna Ranaut to save the day. Maybe Sussanne walks into the movie or some other terrifying event occurs, we don’t know yet. But we hope the movie does better than Hrithik’s personal life.


Raavana

A modern day rendition of the mythological text, Raavana will get Aishwariya and Abhishek on the silver screen together for the first time after getting hitched. The movie has been plagued with problems – floods, elephants stomping around the set, maybe a higher power is sending a message through all of this. We won’t say anything, let the box-office decide.


Action replay

In Action Replay, a man ages backwards… Hmm, let’s see where have we heard this story before? A clear rip-off of the Hollywood hit, Benjamin Button, the film will feature Akshay Kumar and Aishwarya Rai. Director Vipul Shah is back with Akshay Kumar and hopes his dream run will continue.


Teen Patti

As much as producer Ambika Hinduja denies it, Teen Patti’s plot seems like a rip-off of the Hollywood blockbuster 21. The film features three ace actors, Ben Kingsley (supposedly not doing a cameo), Big B and Madhavan. With the help of a unique algorithm, Amitabh who plays a mathematical genius leads a team of college students to make a lot of money. Does Amitabh hold the algorithm for the movie’s success or will this be just another failed spin-off?


Houseful

Akshay Kumar has a slew of releases lined up next year and Houseful, the laugh-riot is one of them. The story follows Akshay who is very unlucky in life and is trying to find true love. The women helping him achieve this goal are Deepika Padukone, Lara Dutta and Jiah Khan. In real life, however, we think it’s the other way around. Akshay will end up teaching Deepika more than two expressions, Lara how to sign movies and Jiah Khan how not to be dropped from the one-odd film she has signed.


No Problem

Anees Bazmee has three mega comedy films lined up next year. One of them is No Problem which has quite a star cast – Anil Kapoor, Sanjay Dutt, Akshaye Khanna, Sushmita Sen, Kangna Ranaut, Paresh Rawal and Sunil Shetty. The film is a love story of impossible proportions. Another impossible proposition is Kangna actually makes people laugh after making them weep all these years.


Well Done Abba

Shyam Benegal has been travelling the world with his latest film, Well Done Abba. The satirical movie sees Boman Irani play two roles. Fitting two Bomans in one shot is a feat in itself and a testament to Benegal’s directorial skills. The movie follows the journey of Armaan Ali, a driver from Mumbai, who is out to find his daughter’s (Minissha Lamba) beau. Minissha, who has been alternating between commercial and semi-art house cinema, is reportedly playing a strong role in the film.


Guzaarish

The film that is loosely based on Whose Life is it Anyway? has Hrithik playing a paraplegic radio jockey.  The film seems like a cry-till-your-tearbuds-dry-out movie – it explores the dilemma of euthanasia. Hrithik who believes in challenging himself till the cows come home, reportedly, spent hours in the wheelchair when not required to shoot, to get into the head of the character. Hrithik and Aishwarya reunite after Dhoom 2, and with Sanjay Leela Bhansali directing, it becomes one of the most awaited films in 2010, never mind Saawariya.


Road, Movie

Indian cinema has been through many fascinating twists and turns but none quite as romantic as touring cinemas.  Essentially this means that the owner of one mounts the film projector on the back of a truck and the projectionist travels the length and breadth of a state with the truck, stops wherever there is a pilgrimage or a mela and projects the films he is carrying onto a white curtain which is then viewed by the locals sitting on both sides of the screen. Dev Benegal has made Road, Movie about one such projectionist (Satish Kaushik) and the young owner (Abhay Deol) and the adventures they have as they show their movies. The film has been very well received on the festival circuit.


Anjaana Anjaani

After playing twelve characters in What’s Your Raashee?, we’re sure Priyanka Chopra has become a stranger to herself, especially after the film tanked. Siddharth Anand, director of Ta Ra Rum Pum and Salaam Namaste, tries a romcom with Anjaana Anjaani. Starring Ranbir Kapoor and Priyanka, the film shows two strangers who fall in love and the journey they take together.


Aisha

Abhay Deol’s love for Delhi continues with his Bollywood release, Aisha where he plays another spoilt, rich Delhi brat. His character is modelled on Mr Knightly from Jane Austen’s novel, Emma. The movie is a romantic comedy that explores horrible mismatches. It also has a strong female role that has been bagged by Sonam Kapoor.  Whether Sonam is strong enough for the film after two failed films (read: Saawariya and    Delhi-6) is another matter.


Khelein hum jee jaan sey

Ashutosh Gowariker is no stranger to large canvasses (think Lagaan, Swades, Jodhaa Akbar) so it’s no surprise that he is now filming another humongous project, Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey, which revolves around the Chittagong Uprising in the pre Independence days. After What’s Your Raashee?, this is another film adapted from a book, Do and Die by Manini Chatterjee. Abhishek Bachchan and Deepika Padukone lead the star cast and Nitin Chandrakant Desai leads the crew. Hopefully Ashutosh’s version of history will not be challenged,  the way Jodhaa Akbar was.


Knock out

Inspired’ from the Hollywood masterpiece Phone Booth, Mani Shankar will look to re-create the magic in Bollywood. A man is trapped inside a phone booth, not because the door is stuck, but an assassin has a sniper rifle trained on him.  Kangna plays the role of a journalist, Irrfan plays a cop and Sanjay Dutt the assassin.


I Hate Luv Storys

A true-blue rom-com, I Hate Luv Storys brings together the very glamourous Sonam Kapoor and the man with the melting eyes, Imran Khan. Described as a love story not meant to happen but which does happen, it is the story of a man who does not believe in love and a girl who does. They meet on a film set; a milieu the director Punit Malhotra is very familiar with, having cut his teeth on Karan Johar’s sets as an assistant director; and sparks fly.


1-800-Love

When you have a tag line that says, ‘From the makers of Ghajini and Jaane Tu…’ you know you’re in for a commercial roller-coaster. Abbas Tyrewala dons the director’s hat for 1-800-LOVE again and the music score is Rahman’s handiwork. A telephone call connects two people – one who wants to die, the other who is searching for meaning in life. They meet, fall in love, yada yada… If you are watching the movie and you get bored of John Abraham’s three expression repertoire, close your eyes and maybe the music will do the trick for you.


Tees Maar Khan

Tees Maar Khan has gotten more publicity that it ever dreamed of just because Shah Rukh Khan is not playing a role in Farah Khan’s film. But it does seem like SRK has rubbed off on the new lead actor, Akshay Kumar. Kumar plays a ‘stylish’ (metrosexual) conman in the film. He will be joined by Akshaye Khanna, but the female lead has not yet been confirmed.


Hook Ya Crook

Finally, Bollywood gets a movie that shows hope in combining two things that Indians love best – cinema and cricket. Viraj Pradhan (John Abraham) dreams of being a cricketer but is a repeat offender who gets thrown into a maximum security prison. The jail is a haven for cricket players, but Viraj wants much more, he wants to be part of the men in blue. The film has reportedly roped in Indian cricketers for the movie but going by the ads on TV, the word ‘acting talent’ isn’t part of the Indian cricket team’s vocabulary.


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WHAT WAS COOKING? Lara Dutta and Tiger Woods
Rumours of Golf Ace and Miss Universe from India resurface

MEENA IYER Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; December 28, 2009)

An old rumour dating back to June 2001, is raising its head again and is likely to bring unwanted attention to Bollywood hottie Lara Dutta who is already under media glare for her new relationship with tennis star Mahesh Bhupathi. The story goes that way back in 2001, a year after India had two beauty pageant winners in Lara Dutta at the Miss Universe and Priyanka Chopra at Miss World, Golf Ace Tiger Woods was dating one of them. The rumour was that our Lara Dutta, who was reportedly dating New York Yankees baseballer Derek Jeter, had also caught the eye of the greatest golfer in the world. A US newspaper, in a story on Tiger, had the champion golfer denying he was dating “Miss Universe Lara Dutta of India — or trying to steal her from New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter.” The Woods Foundation people, in fact, dismissed the story as being “Nothing more than gossip, probably put out by Dutta’s camp.” And Lara came back to India and fame in Bollywood.

But now that skeletons are tumbling out of Tiger’s woodwork, the gossip that he may have actually dated one of our Indian beauty queens is again gaining momentum. Suddenly Tiger’s denials that were taken very seriously eight years ago are now being re-examined. After all, he has turned out to be quite a champ off the greens. And has swung his club around in every direction!
IN STYLE: Rani Mukerji, Kareena Kapoor, Vidya Balan, Aishwarya Bachchan and Priyanka Chopra. 
The actress’ Mughal-e-Azam look has made her fashionable once again

SHARIN WADER BUTANI Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; November 30, 2009)

Don’t know if you’ve noticed but Vidya Balan, who’s making a big comeback to Bollywood with Paa this week, is suddenly one of the nattiest dressers in tinsel town. And, just by repeating stylish variations of the same Indian garment once popularised by Madhubala as Anarkali in Mughal-e-Azam. Vidya, who was notoriously considered Bollywood’s worst fashionista after her disastrous wardrobe in Heyy Babyy, has glamourously reinvented herself. And, by choosing to wear the Anarkalistyled churidaar in different avatars, the actress has inadvertently become a trendsetter of sorts. Several Bollywood divas have been spotted wearing the Mughal-e-Azam look after Vidya.
Aishwarya Bachchan and Kareena Kapoor carry it off well, and so do Lara Dutta, Priyanka Chopra, Rani Mukerji and Sonam Kapoor. Even some telly stars are seen in the long flowy garment these days. Vidya refused to take credit for this new fashion trend and said, “I’m flattered. It feels good to know that women are liking it.” She has always preferred ethnic wear to western. “Though the Anarkali covers you from head to toe, it’s still very sensuous… like the saree,” said Vidya who has an Anarkali in almost every colour and style. “I might have brought it back in vogue,” she reluctantly accepted “but Indian women have always been wearing one.”
After Blue, Lara Dutta will flaunt her body in a bikini in Sajid Khan’s Housefull
By Subhash K Jha (MUMBAI MIRROR; November 25, 2009)


Unlike her film, Lara Dutta won a round of applause from everyone as she showed off her chiseled body in a bikini in Blue. And she is now cashing in on it. In her next film, Sajid Khan’s Housefull, she will show off her fabulous body in a bikini again. Lara says, “Let’s just say that there is an ocean dive in Housefull.”

Lara adds, “I didn’t have a choice about the bikini in Blue. I couldn’t possibly go underwater in a burqa, could I? I worked hard on my physique, and it did generate interest.

For Housefull, there’s a water sequence. So the swimwear is back. It’s not like I’m getting into a bikini for the heck of it.”

Tell her that her films are falling like nine pins at the box office and she is quick to defend them, “Sometimes you take a decision based on whim, and not logic.

Blue and Do Knot Disturb sounded like fun. Now I have Housefull which is a fun caper.

It gives me another chance to be a comic actor. Shooting for Housefull with my favourite actors Akshay Kumar, Ritesh Deshmukh and Boman Irani was fun.”

THE BARAATIS: Ajay Devgn, Lara Dutta, Sanjay Dutt and Akshay Kumar

MEENA IYER Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; November 25, 2009)

In the season for ostentatious Bollywood weddings the only talk around showbiz right now is who is spending how much on what.

It is estimated that the Shilpa Shetty-Raj Kundra affair will reportedly cost the Kundras something to the tune of Rs 5 crore, with the bride’s jewellery alone being valued at Rs 3 crore. But the mother of all B-town weddings this season is the wedding of Pankti Mehta, the marketing head of Ashtavinayak Cine Vision, where the budget will reportedly surpass the Kundras. Soft-spoken Pankti is the sister of filmmaker Dhillin Mehta who produced Jab We Met and Blue, and she is marrying a US citizen, Jimeet Sanghavi.

A-league actors — Akshay Kumar, Ajay Devgn, Saif Ali Khan, Sanjay Dutt and a dozen others are expected to attend the wedding reception on December 5, at one of Mumbai’s fivestar venues. The wedding card itself is as thick as a photo album and has nine attachments inviting film folk to the various functions.

Note: There is a Pritam night, a Falguni Pathak night, a qawaali night, a sangeet affair and besides regular functions like mehndi and shaadi, there is also a cricket match between the Mehtas and the Sanghvis. Reports say that this is the most opulent Bollywood wedding in recent times and a top star
says, “A film can be financed with the wedding budget.’’ But for the Mehtas, this is something they always wanted for the apple of their eye.

KEEPING MUM: Mahesh Bhupati and Lara Dutta

MEENA IYER Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; November 16, 2009)

For a few months now, rumours have been flying fast and furiously that tennis ace Mahesh Bhupati is reportedly ‘good friends’ with Bollywood beauty and ex-Miss Universe Lara Dutta. But when she was promoting her film Blue, Lara categorically said that she was single. However, B-town continues to buzz about how Mahesh and Lara are more than just good friends. At a hairdressing salon in Bandra, whose owner is a friend of Lara’s, there was actually buzz recently that the two are going to get hitched. Which really, from BT’s point of view, is not a bad idea at all. But Lara and Mahesh continue to deny their personal equation on any level. Meanwhile, Shvetha Jaishankar-Bhupati, former Femina Miss India International 98 and a runner-up at the Miss International pageant in Tokyo, had issued a statement in October saying, “Mahesh and I have shared a life together and as we part ways, I wish him all best for his future.” Shvetha, an extennis champion, was also partners with Mahesh in running his celebrity management company and is actively involved in the social cause which deals with children’s education projects. She hasn’t reacted to the stories about Mahesh and Lara. Why should she? If they’ve parted ways, and if Lara is in the scheme of things in Mahesh’s life now, also if both Lara and Mahesh are cool about their relationship, we don’t see how it matters who’s doing what!

By Joginder Tuteja, November 2, 2009 – 15:43 IST

Anthony D'Souza This has becomes a trend of sorts. No sooner does a film hit the screens or is ready for release, stories start floating around how its maker is ready with the plans of making his next. It may be mere speculation, a PR plug or a confirmed report but the fact that it does get the film (which is about to get released) noticed. In certain instances a filmmaker knows the origin of the news. However, there also have been cases where he himself is flabbergasted with such information floating around. What may just turn be a thought over a mug of coffee is elevated to the scale of being confirmed to such an extent that it appears as if the film would get on floors within a week of the news making headlines.

Diwali releases went through the same syndrome with glowing announcements around the next projects of Rohit Shetty (All The Best) and Prem Soni (Main Aurr Mrs Khanna). While Rohit was said to be caught in a dilemma of choosing his next film between the sequel to Golmaal and All The Best, Prem confirmed that Salman Khan had green lighted another project for him.

Something similar happened to Anthony D’Souza as well who happened to share certain thoughts about his next assignments with a few associates. The next thing he heard, there were projects like airborne thriller Aerial and a sequel to Blue all set to be kick started. What’s more, he had apparently also signed one of his favourite actors from the industry and close friends – John Abraham.

However, a fortnight after the release of Blue, Anthony D’Souza a.k.a. Tony is ready to term this information as sheer rumour that doesn’t come with any basis. He denies working on either Blue 2 or Aerial and also dispels the theory that he has signed John for his next.

“All of these are mere speculations and I have no clue from where have they originated. All I said was that I would love to work with John since he is a close friend. He is the one who got me in the industry and I owe him a lot. Tomorrow if a project works out well for both of us then we would be game for working together. However, this isn’t something that I am stating today after Blue; I have maintained this for a year now. If this admiration and gratitude of mine is sensationalised by some and posted as twisted headlines, then I can’t help it, right? On a lighter note, I have always been forthcoming in admitting my love for Hollywood. However, that doesn’t mean that Francis Ford Coppola has sanctioned a film for me”, jokes Tony.

There have also been talks that other than John, the principal cast of Blue is coming together with him again. What does the filmmaker has to say about that?

Anthony D'Souza “As much as I love John and would want him in my films, there is no project for which he has signed on the dotted line yet. Neither is that the case with Mr. Akshay Kumar, Mr. Sanjay Dutt, Zayed, Lara or Katrina. They are all great actors and I would love to work with all of them together again. But no, there is no film which is happening with them at the moment”, Tony sets the record straight.

Where does that leave so-called announcements like Blue 2 and Aerial? The moment Blue hit the screens and took a very good opening; a sequel seemed to be offering. Also, knowing Tony’s penchant for action adventure, it was being stated that he would now take his cast and crew in the air with Aerial. There have also been theories around him making a trilogy of such action adventure cinema.

“These are nothing but overzealous minds at work”, laughs Tony, “For the records, I am neither doing Blue 2 nor Aerial. These are all speculations. Yes, I have a penchant for making action flicks and my next would belong to that genre as well. However, it won’t necessarily have an adventure element to that. Whether it would be Blue 2 or something else? Well, for all you know, it could be Red or Yellow“, he laughs, “Seriously, it’s too early to be even talking about it. I am still in the process of fleshing out a subject. Let things take their due course and we would make the right announcements. Till then, let’s enjoy Blue.”

Well, with another rumour biting the dust, one looks forward to how the trend continues for weeks to come. Whether there would be more in the offering around adventures of Aladin? Whether London Dreams may lead way for New York Dreams? Would Ranbir have many more stories to tell after Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani? Or if Aamir Khan would be bringing in four idiots for his next assignment after Three Idiots?

Of course, we are waiting!

BOLLYWOOD HUNGAMA.COM

BEAUTIFUL: Katrina Kaif. For more pictures of the actress, log on to http://photogallery.indiatimes.com
John Abraham to be part of sequel film too

SUBHASH K JHA Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; October 22, 2009)

For those who cribbed about Akshay Kumar being without a leading lady in Blue, here’s news. The film’s sequel will feature Katrina Kaif, who had an eightminute role opposite Zayed Khan, this time round with Akshay. The story brings together Akshay and Katrina, Sanjay Dutt and Lara Dutta, and Zayed Khan with a new leading lady — Neha Uberoi, who is Sanjay’s business manager, Dharam Uberoi’s daughter. The film is likely to be titled Aasman (Akshay’s suggestion) and a role is being written for John Abraham who will have Sonal Chauhan cast opposite him. Director Tony D’Souza said, “I really want to work with John. All I can say is the producers are ready to back me with my next project with the same budget as Blue. It will start off as an undersea adventure and then move to the sky.” The producers are likely to host a huge bash soon where the sequel will be announced.

SHOW ME THE MONEY: Sanjay Dutt, Zayed Khan and Akshay Kumar; (top) Lara Dutta in the film
Huge opening adds to the celebrations

MEENA IYER Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; October 22, 2009)


The extended Diwali weekend has proved to be a boon for last week’s Bollywood releases. Shree Ashtavinayak Cine Vision Ltd’s underwater thriller Blue that opened this Festival of Lights, benefitted big time because it raked in a huge initial in the celebration period.

Trade analyst Taran Adarsh says, “The promotion and publicity helped it to get a grand opening.” He also believes that since India hadn’t seen any thrillers involv
ing underwater action sequences, this proved to be the USP of the film.

Uday Singh, CEO, PVR Pictures, says, “We opened wide… and the first four days’ collections have been extremely encouraging.” Uday feels that Blue is a large screen spectacle and the audience is taken in by the sheer opulence of the product.

The makers of the film are upbeat, too, because they say that the opening weekend collection is one of the best initials an Akshay Kumar film has taken. “The Khiladi has proved once again that he is
one of the biggest Bollywood stars,” says a leading distributor.

International pop superstar Kylie Minogue’s ditty Chiggy Wiggy with Akshay has also found its share of fans. “Blue has hit the jackpot,” is Taran’s opinion.

It is estimated that the film’s collection has benefitted by the sheer magnitude of the number of screens it hit — over 2,000 worldwide. And with no new major releases lined up this week, Blue still holds viewers’ fancy.
meena.iyer@timesgroup.com