Fenil and Bollywood

Posts Tagged ‘rumours

Himesh Reshammiya and Radio producer Ravi Agarwal have been buying tickets in bulk just to show that their film is making money

By Sonal Chawla (MUMBAI MIRROR; December 08, 2009)


Is Himesh Reshammiya his own biggest fan? Buzz is that he is himself buying tickets of his recently released Radio. Though hundreds of tickets have been sold (or bought) there are just a handful of viewers in the cinema halls. Fact is that Radio, which released on December 3, Thursday, is faring abysmally at the box-office.

Manoj Desai of G7 multiplex said, “Someone comes to my theatre and does block booking. Har ek show mein block booking hota hai toh management ko tajjub hota hai aur accha bhi lagta hai ki jaa rahi hai tickets.”

However Himesh emphatically denies the allegation. “It’s a false allegation just to prove that some tickets are being bought by the production house or my people. The tickets can be bought directly from the manager if the production guys want them. Anyway, what difference will a few tickets make in the overall impact of the collection. It’s baseless, that all I can say. The producer has recovered his cost even before the film’s release and it is a target-audience film, where my performance has been appreciated. There is no need to prove any theatre collections to make it a hit. There is no reason to do so by anyone.”

A famous suburban multiplex’s manager revealed, “Radio is a very bakwaas film and if such radio jockeys are born, then all our FM stations will shut down.”

When quizzed about the production house of Radio buying tickets in bulk, the manager said, “They are buying hundreds of tickets every day just to show that the film is doing well but actually, the theatre is empty. About 20 odd tickets are bought by the public and Himesh buys about hundred tickets. For every show, he buys tickets saying he wants to show the film to his relatives and friends. One day Himesh’s men come, the other day someone from the producer’s end comes to buy tickets while on the third day somebody from the actress’s side buys tickets in bulk. No one really comes to watch the film. The theatre is empty as no one (associated with those who are part of the film) comes to see it even for free. They are barely 20-25 people in the theatre.”

When asked how he knows that the ticket buyers are sent by Himesh, the manager replied, “Unke chamchon ke zabaan pe lagaam nahin hai. Even my booking guys are very smart, they ask for letters if one does bulk booking. That’s when they end up saying that the tickets are being bought for Himesh’s relatives and friends.”

When asked why his staff asks for letters, he said, “We normally don’t do bulk bookings. Samjho 100 aatankwadi aagaye toh the end ho gaya na?”

When we called producer Ravi Agarwal to know the collections of Radio, he said, “The collection is superb. Mumbai has got a good collection almost 75-80 per cent. People thought Himesh was a single theatre hero but he is doing very well in multiplexes too.”

When asked if he has done corporate bookings or bought bulk tickets, Agarwal said, “I have notdone any bookings. We had to give tickets to our media partners.” Are tickets being bought by people from his production house? “I am not that big a producer to make a film and also only buy its tickets. These are rumours,” he said.

When we spoke to another multiplex manager to know the collection of Radio, he said, “Friday saw 54 per cent and Saturday 47 per cent.”

Are the theatres empty, despite tickets being bought in bulk? “People are coming but the number of people coming in is not equal to the number of tickets being sold. Sometimes it happens that the people distribute the tickets but often people don’t turn up. We can’t predict that.”

“We manage to get the collections and whatever tickets are sold out, irrespective of people turning up or not, he is paying us cash and we are earning money. We don’t exactly ask who comes to buy tickets.”

Yusuf M Sheikh, the Mumbai distributor, said, “It is a very decent film and has picked up really well over the weekend. Friday morning was a little slow because there was a Thursday night paid preview. It tends to happen that when one watches a movie on a Thursday night, Fridays are slow. I am not saying it has done an excellent job but has picked up very well on Saturday, Sunday and has got a nice collection.”

When quizzed about theatre being empty and bulk bookings being done by the production house, Sheikh said, “Are you mad? I don’t know who is telling you these stories? What makes you think so? This is not the case at all. Tell me which corporates have bought these tickets. I’ll give them my next film also. If that were the case then Radio would have major collections everywhere. I have visited each and every theatre and this was not the case anywhere.”

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NOT KEEPING MUM: Aishwarya Rai Bachchan
Aishwarya laughs off Bollywood rumours

SUBHASH K JHA Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; December 3, 2009)

Bollywood rumours, once again, of Aishwarya Rai Bachchan being pregnant were delightfully laughed away by the Bachchan bahu. “I think it was triggered off by that ad with Abhishek and me,” she said. The ad has the couple saying, “Ek khush khabri hai…” Ash added, “That’s where the talk must have started. But there’s no truth to it.”

So, that puts paid to the buzz about her walking out on Abhinay Deo’s Crooked, in which she teams up again with Abhishek, and also stories of her aim being to complete Vipul Shah’s Action Replayy, Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Guzaarish, Mani’s Raavan and Rajnikant’s The Robot as early as possible.

Said a friend, “Ash does not get time for herself. She is trying to balance various projects, some of which have overshot the deadline, while playing her domestic roles properly. It’s a very tough balancing act, she needs a break.”

Understandably, the actress is now dropping out of projects that haven’t started. The buzz is she might not play Mumtaz Mahal to Ben Kingsley’s in Taj Mahal, a project that she had said yes to while shooting The Last Legion with Sir Ben.
Television actress Narayani Shastri is dating producer Rahul Agarwal

 

By Vickey Lalwani (MUMBAI MIRROR; December 01, 2009)

 

A lot is brewing between actress Narayani Shastri and the producer of Red Alert, Rahul Agarwal. Although Narayani isn’t part of Rahul’s film, he invited her to attend the premiere of the film with its cast and crew at the International Film Festival of India (IFFI) in Goa, last week.

Unit hands of Red Alert felt that Narayani was given extra special treatment in Goa. An insider from the unit said, “Narayani stayed in the same hotel with the entire cast of Red Alert. Rahul took very good care of her.”

Another source said, “Narayani spent quantity as well as quality time with Rahul in Goa. She took a lot of interest in the film. She was constantly with Rahul during the film’s premiere and he couldn’t stop blushing whenever they were together. Rahul is so fond of her now that he has cast her in his next film Na Ghar Ke Na Ghat Ke. Rahul will direct and also act in his next film while Narayani has bagged the lead role.”

Rahul simply laughed off the rumours and said, “We were just colleagues and then, we became very good friends. Narayani and I do hang out together. Frankly, there is nothing wrong in caring

Rahul Agarwal

about someone, is there? Narayani has amazing screen presence. I wonder why no filmmaker has discovered this yet. In Goa, I also discovered that she is quite popular. So what if she was in Goa with the team of Red Alert? She came to support me, what’s wrong in that?”

On the other hand, Narayani said, “Rahul is a superb guy and we share a great rapport but I am not dating him.”

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!

SURPRISED: Shahid Kapoor
Shahid Kapoor is amused at rumours about Pankaj Kapur’s directorial debut..

 

MEENA IYER Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; November 8, 2009)

 

Shahid Kapoor, fresh from his New York movie outing, arrived in Mumbai to a round of rumours about his father Pankaj Kapur’s directorial debut Mausam. A segment of the media went to town saying that the actor’s price for his dad’s film would be a staggering Rs.12 crore. It was also suggested that Pankaj had written this subject in 2007 — and at that point had contemplated asking Bollywood’s No.1 actress Kareena Kapoor to be the leading lady in this romantic caper. Shahid, who was dubbing for his film Chance Pe Dance — a January release, fails to understand where such talk is originating from. He says, “Dad has always wanted to make a film with me. Mausam is something he is working on currently. He didn’t have an inkling of it in 2007; and even if the germ of the idea had been sown then, he didn’t discuss it in detail with any of us. So the question of him thinking of casting anyone at that point is ludicrous.”
The 28-year-old says the only thing that is certain about Mausam is that it will be financed by a leading film corporation. It is expected to go on the floors in January and a major portion of the film will be shot abroad because the film needs picturesque locales. Reacting to rumours of his remuneration, the actor says, “Whether I will charge Rs 12 crores or less, is something even I don’t know because nothing is on paper.” Market sources say that the actor got his last highest price (reportedly Rs 8 crore) for Vishal Bharadwaj’s Kaminey. However, Shahid refuses to talk money in print. He is also amused with rumours of his going on a statewise hunt looking for a fresh face to serenade on screen. “The film is still in the final draft stage. Yes, a big film corporation is on board, but the budget, my remuneration as an actor, dad’s remuneration as a technician and other aspects can only be talked about after it is put in black and white. Everything currently being said about Mausam is speculation,” Shahid insists.
meena.iyer@timesgroup.com
Pratik Babbar took time off to campaign in Uttar Pradesh for his father Raj Babbar, putting to rest the rumours of a rift between the two

By Subhash K Jha (MUMBAI MIRROR; November 03, 2009)

 

Raj Babbar Pratik

Shaking off rumours of a rift with his father Raj Babbar and his decision to drop his surname, Babbar, Pratik Babbar took this week off to campaign for his father for the by-elections on November 7. He is campaigning in the Firozabad district of Uttar Pradesh.

While Pratik is campaigning in Uttar Pradesh, his aunt Manya Patil confirmed Pratik’s bid to stand by his father publicly for the first time. “This wasn’t done to prove a point to anyone, and certainly not to contradict rumours of a rift with his father,” says Manya. “Pratik couldn’t care less what people think. I was surprised when he told me, ‘I want to do this for my dad. He needs me by his side and I have to do it.”

Manya was a bit apprehensive when Pratik informed her about his decision. She says, “The boy is not fluent in Hindi yet, though he is learning fast. So I told him to join his hands and just say a few words at every rally and meeting.”

Watching Pratik stand next to his politician-dad is déjà vu for Manya. She says, “It reminds me of my sister and Pratik’s mom, Smita Patil, when she would campaign for Murli Deora and Sunil Duttsaab. She used to be a prominent part of our father Shivajirao Patil’s political rallies also.”

Speaking about the rumours that Pratik wanted to change his surname from Babbar to Patil, his aunt says, “These rumours probably started because Pratik wanted to call himself Mickey after our beloved family dog who passed away. Then for a while Pratik also told his friends he wants to be known as Patrick. He goes through these phases.”

At the end of the day, Pratik is a proud Babbar. And that is why he has come together with his father for the first time on a public platform.

LOUD AND CLEAR: Rani Mukerji and (inset) Aditya Chopra. For more pictures of the actress, visit http://photogallery.indiatimes.com

Rani Mukerji swears she’s single… despite the rumours about Aditya Chopra

OMAR QURESHI Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; October 9, 2009)



It’s just so easy to hit a soft target. That’s what Rani Mukerji seems to have become for some sections of media — simply because she refuses to respond; holding onto dignity above clarification. But it was time. I had a tough time cajoling her, until she relented. Rejoicing at the accolades she’s got for her superlative act(s) in Dil Bole Hadippa! she was in a happy place. Here’s the Queen Bee in a rare exclusive, about media and more…


The media thinks you take the ‘I-will-talkwhen-I-want-to’ stance too often…
I haven’t changed a bit over the years. But yes, journalism
has changed a lot. It’s not my nature to take calls from the media and talk each time I get an SMS about any issue. If it’s something that makes sense to me, I’d probably answer, but not when I’m busy working or spending time with my family. I know that as an actor I have to talk to the media so they can tell the audiences about me. But when that becomes completely wrong and baseless, I switch off and withdraw.


It upset you that people referred to Dil Bole Hadippa! as your ‘comeback film’…
They’re probably trying to use the word ‘she has reinvented herself’. But they end up using ‘comeback’. Which is strange because ‘comeback’ is a phrase used for actresses who
get married, have babies and then come back; and none of the two things are happening in my life.


You still get upset when the media writes badly about you?
I don’t get upset. It’s because most of them are the kind of reporters who don’t know me, who’ve never met me in their life. So
I don’t care. But what bothers me is when they test my intelligence and make me out to be a person I’m not. Not portraying me correctly to my fans.


You mean like persistent rumours of your marriage?
Exactly! When they write stories about my marriage, I feel really funny and strange. They keep linking me with a certain person. And they’ve been proclaiming that I’m getting married for over last three years. Every six months they decide on a venue and a date. But the date keeps shifting, simply because it’s unsubstantiated. And the media keeps passing it on, like a relay race.


The rumours keep pointing to Aditya Chopra…
I’m not thinking about marriage at all. I’m focusing on my work. There are so many things I want to do. Not that marriage will stop me from doing films. If I’ve found a person with whom I can spend the rest of my life with, yes, I need to marry. Today I don’t think that it’s about the biological clock at all. Marry when you’re ready is the mantra. But I am single, yaar. Can I shout that out?


There was talk that your attempt to ‘patch-up’ Salman with SRK, on Salman’s TV show, upset both of them…
Not true. I don’t get into anybody’s life. I’m too caught-up with my own life. They are my friends and I share a great relationship with them, but I prefer steering clear of controversies.


Not too many actresses say nice things behind your back…

I can’t relate to these things. I’ve genuinely not bitched about anybody behind their back. The fact is that if an actress has made a name for herself — it speaks a lot about her. It takes a lot of hard work and dedication to be in this industry where people are ready to pull you down. So, I respect every actress simply because they must have something to be able to make a name for themselves.


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