Posts Tagged ‘october 14’
MEENA IYER Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; October 14, 2009)
Anthony D’Souza is the man behind Bollywood’s costliest film — Shree Ashtavinayak Cine Vision Ltd’s Blue that’s releasing this Diwali (October 16). And he admits that his producers have actually let money flow like water to make this big screen spectacle. “It is the first Bollywood film to be shot in the Bahamas,’’ says Tony, adding that he chose the location despite the heavy cost because it was the only place in the world where he could shoot with live sharks. The budget skyrocketed further because the food and drinking water had to come from Florida.
However, on the eve of the film’s release, the debutant director is hardly worrying his head over the accounts. Instead, he is excited about having made India’s first under-water film and says he is completely indebted to his producer Dhilin Mehta for partaking in his vision. He has also had Hollywood technicians like Amir Mokri (Bad Boys-II) to give him expert advice. Tony is also all praise for his actors. “Sanjay Dutt was the first one who I gave a narration to — and he agreed almost immediately. In fact, he will also be in my next film titled Bond.’’
About Akshay Kumar, the film’s backbone, the director says, “Akshay is the most unselfish, punctual, dedicated, uncomplicated actor I have ever met. Stories about his interference are a myth.’’ But Tony is partial to his leading lady Lara Dutta whom he salutes because she learnt to swim in three months and was then swimming with the sharks like a pro. The film’s youngest actor Zayed Khan is a friend, he says. “I love Zayed because he is frank, forthright and the perfect choice for my film.’’
But even Tony admits that Blue wouldn’t be complete without those magical seven minutes of Katrina Kaif. Says the director, “Katrina is a thorough professional. She takes her work very seriously. Katz is the female Akshay and, like him, she is a very punctual actor.’’
Ram Gopal Varma has always maintained that he does not believe in the institution of marriage and the only thing that keeps him going is churning out film after film.
Although there is news about him having a family in Hyderabad, the filmmaker has always been tight-lipped about it.
We stumbled upon pictures of his daughter, Revathy, and were surprised to know that Ramu has a daughter who is in her early 20s and studying medicine.
She dreams of becoming a surgeon and is in touch with her father. We present pictures clicked during the wedding of Ramu’s sister, Jyoti’s son, Suman.
Ramu who is shooting in Hyderabad for Rakta Charitra met with his family last week at the wedding.
Also present in the wedding were Ramu’s ex-wife Ratnashree and mother Suryavati.
Show me the money
Rupa Ganguly turned down the role of Vivek Oberoi’s mother in Rakta Charitra as she was offered a low remunerationIt is a well-known fact that Ram Gopal Varma doesn’t pay his actors well, but not everyone is willing to work for peanuts. Last week, Varma approached Rupa Ganguly to play the role of Vivek Oberoi’s mother in Rakta Charitra, but she turned it down as she was offered only Rs 2.5 lakh.
The story goes that an official from Varma’s office called up Rupa and offered her the role of Vivek’s mother in the Hindi version of the bilingual, Rakta Charitra. Rupa was thrilled to bits. However, her hopes were dashed when she heard that she will be paid only Rs 2.5 lakh.
A source says, “The 16-day schedule in Hyderabad was broken into three trips. Rupa felt that she deserved more than just Rs 2.5 lakh.”
Confirming the story, Rupa says, “I am honoured that Varma thought of casting me. I have seen quite a few of his films and think very highly of him as a filmmaker. But I would have preferred some decent money for the same. It was simply not a viable proposition.”
The producers of Radio and Himesh Reshammiya wanted Paresh Rawal for a cameo so badly that they were willing to delete the cameo from the script if Paresh refused. But thankfully, they didn’t have any scrapping to do as Paresh agreed and refused any sort of remuneration too.
Our source said, “The makers of Radio desired to cast Paresh for a hilarious character that would have a 20-minute cameo. Himesh spoke to his producer and friend Rakesh Upadhyay who then spoke to Paresh. They had a meeting, and when Paresh heard the role of Zandulal Tyagi, an RJ who has a superhit radio show called Bahut Confusion Hai. he agreed and did not charge a penny. Paresh said we all are Gujjus and there is no need for any money.”
Talking about the incident, Himesh said, “Only Pareshbhai could have done justice to the character of Zandulal Tyagi. If he wouldn’t have agreed, I would have asked Ishaan Trivedi to drop the character. You have to see his character to believe it. I am aware that he does not do cameos anymore. It was very gracious of him to do it for me and Rakeshji and I are indebted to him.”
Vivek Oberoi, who has been single after his relationship with Aishwarya Rai ended on a bitter note in mid-2005, is fast gaining the reputation of being an incorrigible flirt. The single and ready to mingle Vivek has found a new agony aunt and is taking her advice seriously. Apparently, Kareena Kapoor had advised him to get a steady partner (on the sets of Karan Johar’s Kurbaan), and it’s hard for Vivek to ignore such wise counsel.
After his reported link-ups with Vidya Balan, Minissha Lamba and Sonam Kapoor in the recent past, the latest on his list is the pretty TV actress Neeru Bajwa, who is his co-star in Kumar Taurani’s forthcoming film Prince — It’s Showtime. And this bonding was not restricted to just lunch, coffee and dinner.
Our source revealed, “Thankfully, Vivek and Kookie did not fight over Neeru, or it might have disrupted the shoot. Soon, Neeru’s ‘friendship’ with Vivek and Kookie became the hot topic of conversation on the set.”
Naturally, Neeru stood to benefit from her ‘dosti’ with Vivek and Kookie — and she did. “Originally, she was supposed to do a very small role. But soon, her role increased and kept increasing with each passing day. First, Kookie added a song which was picturised on her, subsequently he added a few extra scenes which featured her,” our source revealed.
After Neeru made an impression in a few Punjabi movies, she starred in Shrishti Arya’s TV show Guns and Roses, shook a leg in Nach Baliye 2 with her live-in boyfriend Amit Sadh (Fear Factor, Bigg Boss 1). There were rumours that she and Amit had tied the knot. Thereafter, she virtually disappeared.
She made a public appearance only at director Arif Sheikh’s wedding on January 26 this year, where she hung around with Vivek Oberoi who also attended the wedding. Then she was seen at Kumar Taurani’s 50th birthday party on July 11, where Vivek was again present.
When we called Neeru, she laughed and said, “I hope Vivek is still enamoured by my beauty. He is a great co-star. I don’t know if there was any attraction, but I was very nervous because I was doing my first Hindi film. Vivek, Kookie and I are good friends, we hung out and got along awesomely.”
Neetu admitted that she and Amit are not a couple anymore. “Amit and I parted ways long ago. We hadn’t married,” she said.
As for her role being increased in Prince, Neeru said, “Hmm… not really. Yes, I have a big role. There was a little mystery about a song as to who will do it. Eventually, I did it.”
Kookie Gulati, who was an associate director for Ken Ghosh’s Ishq Vishk and Fida, did not deny that he and Neeru hang out together. He added, “Neeru and I are good friends. That’s it. Nothing more. I have not increased her role. The film is still being edited by a very professional editor in France. And I have no clue if she was close to Vivek. That’s between them.”
|For the Couture week on Tuesday night, Katrina Kaif flew in from Bhopal for a day just to be part of the event and walked the ramp in a dress that Salman had hand-painted. The face on the fabric was of a saint.
Salman has never painted a dress for anyone before. Trying to contain her excitement hours before the event, Katrina said, “Within hours in the morning, Shane and Falguni Peacock took my measurements and stitched the dress for me. It’s got an amazing feel, flow and look. Almost surreal. I feel different wearing it. I can hardly wait to walk the ramp in it.”
Fashion correspondent Mitali Parekh reports
Seen in the first row were Preity Zinta, Sridevi, Boney Kapoor, Malaika Arora Khan, choreographer Farah Khan, Amisha Patel, Seema Khan, Manish Malhotra, Amrita Arora, Twinkle Khanna and Salman’s mothers Salma and Helen. Sushmita Sen was also seen, though not in the first row.
Aamir Khan’s wife Kiran Rao was spotted before the show started but was not seen in the front row with the stars and star wives.
The clothes were designed by eight designers, Gavin Miguel, Shane and Falguni Peacock, Rocky S and Rohit Gandhi among them. The show was styled by Aki Narula. The gowns were designed from prints of Salman’s paintings. Katrina’s gown was by Falguni and Shane Peacock. Each gown had one painting. There were about 9-10 gowns including Katrina’s. The transfer of the painting onto the fabric and the stitching was all done in three days.
Overall, the show was rather stiff and macabre. It began with children playing on stage. Some of them lay on the ramp while the other kids drew their body’s outline with a sketch pen. Then they retreated to the back of the stage where the kids played on the wooden grid. Towards the end of the show, the kids joined the stars on the stage. Again, all the kids lay on the ramp while now the stars drew the outline of their body with a pen as if they were homicide victims.
Loveleen Tandan, co-director of Oscar-winning film Slumdog Millionaire has made it to the super-prestigious Women’s Impact Report 2009 of Variety magazine. The report lists 50 women, who, in the words of Variety, “experienced an extraordinary year”.
Loveleen didn’t even know about the honour until she got a midnight call from Anil Kapoor in Los Angeles. Loveleen says, “Anil asked me if I had seen it. I asked, seen what? He then told me I’m on the cover of Variety magazine as an achiever of the year. He said he had bought two copies and was mailing me one. That was sweet of him.”
Interestingly, this achiever’s name occurs in the ‘Below The Liners’ section of Variety’s achievers where she features with fashion designers Catherine Marie Thomas and Janie Bryant. “I think it’s a category that celebrates women who have crossed over from one field to another, like I did from casting director to co-director in Slumdog Millionaire,” adds Loveleen.
While Loveleen will not attend the Variety awards ceremony in LA today due to personal reasons, she will not miss the chance to go to the Buckingham Palace where she has been invited. “I’ve been invited by Queen Elizabeth and the Duke to the Buckingham Palace on October 13. I wouldn’t miss that appointment for the world, but there’s a problem. My younger sister Amita is getting married on October 14 so I didn’t want to go to London on October 13. But, my sister didn’t want me to give it a miss as she feels it’s an once-in-a-lifetime honour. So I will be going to Buckingham Palace on October 13 and rushing back to Delhi just in time for her wedding on October 14,” she says.
Meanwhile, Loveleen has almost finished the script for her first directorial venture. “Of course, it has strong women characters but my film also has a lot of powerful men,” says Loveleen.