Fenil and Bollywood

Posts Tagged ‘sharmila tagore

By IANS (Mid-Day; December 26, 2009)

Vishal Bhardwaj’s production venture “Ishqiya” faced the censor board’s ire for using the word ‘sex’ in its promos. But the ban has been lifted, giving respite to the producers.

The film has a scene where actor Arshad Warsi uses the three letter word, but it did not go down very well with the censor board.

Bhardwaj and his co-producers managed to convince the board members that the word was needed, and they finally gave their nod.

“It was initially decided that the word would be beeped and we gave an application for it to the revising committee, that comprises six-seven members. We had to convince them and make them understand that the word is essential for the film and the dialogue,” Mansi Maroo, co-producer of the film, said on phone from Mumbai.

With the censor board’s approval, the producers will re-launch the promos with the word audible.

“The dialogue lost its impact because of the ‘beep’ and now our whole plan has been delayed. In order to rectify things, we will have to re-do the scene and launch another promo with the word audible,” she said.

Asked if Bhardwaj too accompanied the other producers to the meeting with the censor board, Maroo added: “Vishal did not go for the meeting but he did have talks with the censor board people.”

Set in eastern Uttar Pradesh, “Ishqiya” is a tale of romance between individuals caught in a web of crime, suspense, passion and deceit. Directed by debutant Abhishek Chaubey, the film also stars Naseeruddin Shah and Vidya balan in pivotal roles.

Maroo also revealed that such procedures create hindrance in the film’s promotion.

“We have lost two-weeks of right promotion.”

“However, we are glad that finally we were heard and our job was done,” she added.

IANS tried to contact censor board chief Sharmila Tagore, but she was not available.

“Ishqiya” is slated to release Jan 29.

BAAP RE BAAP: Amartya Sen and daughter Nandana

Nobel Laureate Prof. Amartya Sen discusses cinema exclusively for BT with actress daughter Nandana Sen in Mumbai

MARK MANUEL Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; October 25, 2009)

It’s funny, with a daughter like the lovely international actress Nandana Sen, you would have thought Nobel Prize economist Prof. Amartya Sen would be well informed about cinema. But he’s not. He knows just about five people connected with filmmaking. And these he counted for me with much difficulty and some prompting from Nandana. “I knew Satyajit Ray extremely well,” he began, “he and I studied at Santiniketan. I had huge admiration for him. And I know Mira Nair, Shyam Benegal, and, and… what’s his name, Mrinal Sen! I do know Nandita Das and like her films, also. And I met… what’s the name of the guy who acted with you in Rang Rasiya… I shook his hand? Randeep Hooda? Yes, I met him. I also met Amitabh Bachchan, whom I don’t know, and Shabana Azmi, who’s an old friend. I used to like her father’s poetry and now, I like her husband’s. And Salman Khan…”

He was in Mumbai to deliver a keynote lecture for the Indian Philosophy Congress yesterday and I was meeting the distinguished father and sexy daughter at his suite in the Taj. I was drinking coffee. The professor ordered a pot of Darjeeling tea. When it came, he was appalled. “This tea is too strong for Darjeeling,” he grumbled, “it’s got the strength of Assam.” Then to
Nandana, who was busy eating pistachios noisily, he said, “Chuck it in the sink!” He is unintentionally humorous, he speaks in a deep, rumbling voice, and he chooses his words carefully — as if aware that when Prof. Amartya Sen speaks, people hang onto his words even if he isn’t talking welfare economics. That’s his hobby horse. And he travels around the world at 76 on his Nobel Prize ticket, astonishing scientists and academicians with his philosophy on poverty, gender inequality and political liberalism. But I had got him onto cinema. And Prof. Sen was struggling.

“You’re wasting your time, I’m not knowledgeable about
films,” he said trying to discourage me. “You asking me who I like is like asking me a cooking recipe. I’m happy to tell you. But my recipe won’t alleviate the culinary world much!” Nandana, fortunately, was not having any of it. “Baba, you like Sharmila Tagore, isn’t she one of your favourites,” she chided him. “Yes,” Prof. Sen admitted. “And Katherine Hepburn… what a fantastic actress, so sharp and intelligent.” Then he surprised me by saying, “Jane Fonda, I know. I’ve had a couple of dinners with her. Her husband, Ted Turner, started the UN Foundation and was a trustee. So is my wife, Emma Rothschild. And the dinners where spouses gather, are quite impressive. There’s also Nelson Mandela.” But to come back to cinema, he doesn’t see too many films, though he thinks he’s seen all of Nandana’s. Rang Rasiya, in which she plays Raja Ravi Varma’s muse and appears topless in one breathtaking scene, Prof. Amartya saw at the London Film Festival and actually liked. “It’s not been released and nobody seems to know why,” he said querulously. “Has it been made for the archives? It would have been a great success in Europe and the US after receiving favourable notice in London.”

He hardly visits Mumbai. His work brings him to Delhi. And his
heart takes him to Kolkata. Now Prof. Amartya Sen looked out of the window at the Gateway and said, “I’ve not been here since the November disaster, but I have various memories here. The best one is of defeating the Australian cricket team! I was in the health club, exercising on the bike and watching a news channel, when they came in. They wanted the bike and to change the channel. I objected. They were a little assertive and gave me the democratic argument that there were more of them. But I was here first, I told them. Then their captain, Steve Waugh, came. He conceded that I had a point. I thought, no matter how poorly India did in cricket against Australia, I had done reasonably well!”

Sharmila Tagore has just done her first Marathi film Samantar, opposite Amol Palekar. She talks about her occasional foray into acting and lists her most memorable roles
By Indu Mirani (MUMBAI MIRROR; September 01, 2009)
What tempts you to do a film?

When I got married way back in 1968, my decision was to cut down on films but never give up. The very act of getting married means that you are not alone, you are taking on a family. In those days it could take two-three years to make a film. Now, we work on one film at a time, which is the ideal way to work. That’s how regional films are made.

I am turned on by a good script and a good role and I don’t judge a good role by its length. When you start doing character roles, it gives you a liberating feeling because you are no longer victim to looking good and you can then freely be the character.

I would love to do those characters with today’s directors like Vishal Bharadwaj or Raju Hirani. Imtiaz Ali obviously makes films about two young people in love but if he ever has a role for elderly people I would love to do it.Samantar offered all this?

In Samantar, although my character, Shama, is a recluse, she doesn’t go by social compulsions but by natural compulsions which is about being herself. Being herself means gardening, being close to nature, she creates beautiful pottery, she plays the violin. But in the company of people she isn’t herself. I chose this role because it is not a very verbose character so there is minimal dialogue except that I do have a three-page soliloquy.

Amol is a very sensitive director, and there is beautiful camera work, beautiful locations, and very competent and talented actors who play the smaller supporting characters. We shot at this place called Kalna which even the Bengali directors haven’t discovered. It’s a place of archeological importance. It’s a terracotta Shiv temple dating back 300 years, it has 108 Shivlings white and black.

The music by Anand Modak is excellent, Shomit’s lyrics are excellent.

Sharmila in Samantar

Why did it take you so long to take on a Marathi film?

Because nobody asked me so far. Amol was the first one who came with a Marathi proposal. I have been seeing Shashikalaji’s performances, Dr Mohan Agashe is a dear friend and I have always had the highest regard for Marathi actors because like in Bengal, they are all very good actors. If we can see Iranian films and Chinese films, why can’t we see our own regional films?

Doesn’t every language have its own meter and isn’t it difficult to adjust?

Bengali and Marathi have the same meter. Pauses, breaks and emphasis are the same. It’s just that some alphabets are pronounced differently.

So, is your character alone or lonely?

She chooses to be alone, but is not lonely. Like I said, she does not follow social compulsions. She is alright with herself, true to her own being and to her nature.

When you are alone, not enjoying yourself, are resentful and wanting company and when you don’t get company you feel deprived, that is being lonely. I would take loneliness in a negative sense. Somewhere in our souls we are all alone. To be alone I think is wonderful, that is when you can introspect, grow or evolve and that is a very positive thing. To be alone and doing your own thing, listening to music, exercising, looking at a beautiful flower, swimming in the sea or walking alone in the hills, it’s a wonderful healing process. When you are doing yoga you aren’t doing it to impress anybody, you are doing it for yourself. That is a healing and growing process. That is the difference between loneliness and being alone.

Which three Hindi films would you list as most memorable?

I would say Safar with Asit Sen, Dooriyan with Bhimsain and Mausam. Safar and Dooriyan were the two films where I follow an individual goal as a woman. Usually all women put the family before and sacrifice for them. These two women want to follow their careers and are therefore misunderstood. Indian films should have professional women because the moment you become a working woman, you are  a negative character, you are the cause of divorce. Children should feel, ‘I have a working mother’ and look at it with added value as opposed to that she is working woman, she must be neglecting her children.

The change is happening…

It needs to change more. Look at the disparity between the hero’s salary and the heroine’s.

What did you think of Saif in the Kal part of Love Aaj Kal?

It’s written very well, and Saif is very good, specially in the Kal part. Whatever he does, pulls his shirt in front, the earnestness, he does it very well. He is one of those very spontaneous actors. When he interacts with others, the screen looks good, not that he outsmarts the others. He doesn’t interact with his audience, he interacts with his co-stars. Therefore his scenes are very real and I think he is becoming a wonderful actor.

You are set to have a celebrity daughter-in-law soon ( Kareena Kapoor). How will it affect family dynamics?

I don’t think it changes anything. She also comes from a film background and we come from various fields. One extra person comes in and things change, but it’s for the better. You have to grow, everything grows.

Bipasha Basu is quite amused as her lines in her first Bengali film have been dubbed in a singsong style; forgives director Rituparno Ghosh as her performance hasn’t suffered
By Subhash K Jha (MUMBAI MIRROR; August 05, 2009)

Bipasha Basu in Shob Charitro Kalponik

Bipasha Basu may have made her displeasure known when Rituparno Ghosh, who directed her first Bengali film, Shob Charitro Kalponik, had got someone else to dub her voice that too without informing her. However, all differences were magically dissolved on Tuesday afternoon when the Bengali spitfire saw the film with her younger sister, Vijayeta and mother.

“Not all my grievances,” Bipasha quickly amends that. “But yes, most of my misgivings went out of the window when I saw the film. I still feel the voice speaking for me, is not mine. But luckily, the performance hasn’t suffered.”

Of course, for the first 15 minutes, Bipasha and her sister were in splits. “My sister couldn’t stop giggling because the voice was not mine. Bengali women have a particular way of speaking, it’s very musical. Sharmila Tagore, Aparna Sen and even Konkona Sensharma have it, but I don’t. My voice isn’t melodious. It’s husky and very easy to identify. Moreover, my character speaks in both Bengali and English, lots of English. My sister said, ‘That’s not how you speak English at all’. Of course, everyone will know it’s not my voice. My mother too was concerned,” says Bipasha.

But thankfully for Bipasha (or even Rituparno) the performance takes over. “It’s the best role of my life. The woman is so unlike me. To start with, she’s a lot older than me, her clothes (saris), mannerisms, body language and speech, everything is different. I play this woman whose husband is a poet and no wage-earner. So she has to reluctantly look after the whole family. It’s basically about the ideological gap between the couple, he being an idealist and she being the practical one. There are no outbursts. All the conflicts are muffled. I forgot how much hurt Ritu had caused me by dubbing my voice without informing me,” says Bipasha.

Rituparno Ghosh

After seeing the film, Bipasha immediately messaged Rituparno. She has also decided to dub for one print to be eligible for the National Award. “Earlier when the producers (Reliance Big Pictures) asked me, I had refused because of what had been done. I am very clear about what I want but I’m not obstinate. I’ll now dub for the National Award print. Also, the voice that had been used for me initially was that of an older woman,” she adds.

The undercurrent of darkness in Vishal Bharadwaj’s Kaminey scares the censor board; they fear that anything less than an A certificate will not be appropriate
By Kunal M Shah (MUMBAI MIRROR; July 30, 2009)


The certificate awarded to a film by the censor board impacts its collection. Vishal Bharadwaj’s Kaminey has run into trouble with the censors and even after the revising committee saw the film, they refused to give it the U/A certificate that he was hoping for. The options available to Vishal are that he can to go to the tribunal or seek legal help for his film. Apparently, the film has been given an A certificate due to its heavy dose of violence.

Our source said, “The examining committee saw the film on Tuesday afternoon and thought that the film had too much violence. They suggested major cuts. However, Vishal is not keen on brutally chopping the film and neither does he want an A certificate.

So, the film was sent to the revising committee where Sharmila Tagore, the Chairperson, watched it with a panel of members in Delhi yesterday afternoon. However, after watching the film, it has been decided that the film will indeed have an A certificate. Vishal’s request for a U/A certificate has fallen on deaf ears. Vishal now has to decide if he wants to go ahead and challenge the censor board’s decision, or be happy with the A certificate.”

The objections arose mainly due to the dark theme of the film. Another source from the production house, UTV, said, “There are some cuts in the film. The abusive language is nothing to be worried about as it is marginal. Even the cuts have been made to be politically correct in certain places. However, the darkness of the film and the inherent violence, even though not onscreen, is felt powerfully due to the theme. The film is based on the underworld and the very nature of violence in the film is what the censors objected to.”

Vishal Bharadwaj

Vishal Bharadwaj remained unavailable for comment.

Delhi’s legendary wedding brass band, Jea, links the past and the present in Love Aaj Kal
By Subhash K Jha (MUMBAI MIRROR; July 20, 2009)

Jea in Love Aaj Kal

Apart of Delhi in 1965 in Imtiaz Ali’s new film Love Aaj Kal had to be recreated in Mandawa and Patiala. And guess what contributed to the authenticity and the film’s energy level after shooting? The legendary Jea wedding brass band from Delhi.

This is a story straight out of the believe-it-or-not pages. When Imtiaz Ali needed a leitmotif and a link to connect the past and the present in Love Aaj Kal, he immediately thought of the Jea band.

Confirming the news, Imtiaz said, “To understand what the Jea band means to Delhi’s wedding culture, you have to belong to the city. It’s literally 100 years old. It’s so much a part of the city’s marriage ethos, you can’t escape its influence at any wedding. They were there at every wedding. And I told Saif, why not use the Jea band to show your character’s link to the past? So while recreating Delhi in 1965, we got the vintage cars, suitable clothes and roads and the Jea band, which plays in our film in 1965 and it also plays in the contemporary portion of the film.”

Now when brass bands are no more that fashionable and in-demand at weddings, the Jea band was thrilled to be approached for Love Aaj Kal.

“They haven’t changed. Earlier the fathers played at weddings, now it’s their children. When they were told they’re part of our film and that they will be performing on camera for the song Chor Bazaari, they got new band-bajaa uniforms stitched for all the band players at their own cost. We shot with the Jea band not only in Delhi but also in Patiala and Mandawa (Rajasthan) because Chandni Chowk does not look likeit did in 1965 any longer. After shooting, they kept us entertained for hours with old film songs.”

Saif Ali Khan picked up many of his mother Sharmila Tagore’s old hits from those evenings in Mandawa and Patiala with the Jea band.

Unfortunately, Jea couldn’t record for the soundtrack of Love Aaj Kal. “They couldn’t keep rhythm with the recording mode. Their style of playing is unstructured,” said Imtiaz.

Incidentally, old music is a looming leitmotif in the film. “We chose Man dole mera tan dole from Nagin while the other choice was Jhumka gira re from Mera Saaya. We wanted a sound that could linger,” added Imtiaz.

Sharmila Tagore has asked Saif-Kareena to get married soon. But Kareena not keen to do so just yet
By Subhash K Jha (MUMBAI MIRROR; July 12, 2009)

Saif Ali Khan and Kareena Kapoor

Now that Saif is almost 40 (he’ll be 39 next month) Saif’s mother Sharmila Tagore, never known to interfere in her children’s lives, has expressed concern about Saif’s marriage. For the first time she has come out in the open expressing the wish to see Saif and Kareena married.

So far Sharmila has never commented on her son’s relationship, though it is no secret that Kareena is a favourite in the Khan household.

Says a source, “Both Sharmila and Mansoor Pataudi have taken to Kareena in a big way. They’ve never seen their son happier in any other relationship. And they know Kareena is the right girl for their son. They also know that Kareena gets along famously with Saif’s children. Now when Saif is on the threshold of 40, Sharmila has for the first time made a statement on her son’s private life.”

The marriage matter has now reached a stage where the ball is entirely in Kareena’s court.

Saif’s and Kareena’s mothers have met and expressed a mutual joy in the union. Kareena’s and Saif’s respective dads are all for the marriage too, though unlike the mothers, the two fathers have left the decision to the two people concerned.

But Kareena is not ready yet.

“I’ve to consolidate my career right now,” she says. “And I know I can perfectly balance out my marriage with my career. I’ve Saif’s mom’s example in front of me. She did all her best films after marriage. More recently Aishwarya Rai Bachchan too has stuck a perfect balance between home and studio.”

Sharmila Tagore

For Kareena it’s not that simple. “I know once I get married I’d like to devote myself completely to that. When it comes to my emotions I’m not a multi-tasker. So at the moment, specially after Kambakkht Ishq, I need to work. These are the best years of my working life. And Saif is with me, neither of us are running away from a full commitment to one another. So no marriage for another three years.”

Apparently after Sharmila Tagore’s uncharacteristic comments on her son’s marriage, Kareena was put in a quandary as neither Saif nor she could ever say no her.

However Kareena has convinced Saif once again that marriage must wait.

Says Saif, “Amma loves Kareena and of course wants us to be together always. But we both need and want to focus on our work and we’ll think of taking our relationship to the next level when the time is right. Right now, things are beautiful the way they are.”


Suspense thrillers have always been a hot favourite for filmmakers across the world. If executed well, it can work wonders provided it has a nice plot. But if the filmmaker doesn’t succeed in doing justice, the film fails miserably. 8×10 Tasveer falls in between the two-while some of the sequences are interesting, some of the portions towards the end fails to work and in fact, goes above the head!

The story of the movie: Jai Puri (Akshay Kumar) works as a forest ranger in EPS (Environmental Protection Services). He has a supernatural power-he can see the past of a person through his photograph. His father Jatin Puri (Benjamin Gilani) dies in an accident in his private boat. Jai never appreciated his father’s way of running his business and therefore stayed separately with his girlfriend Sheela (Ayesha Takia). Meeting a private detective Habibulla Pasha aka Happi (Javed Jaaferi), Jai realizes that his father’s death was not an accident-it was a planned murder. All those present in the boat during the accident were the suspects which include Jai’s mother Savitri (Sharmila Tagore), Lawyer Anil Sharma (Girish Karnad), Jatin’s brother Sundar (Anant Mahadevan) and Adit (Rushad Rana). Jai then decides to use his supernatural powers to get to the bottom of this incident and comes up with startling facts!

The beginning portions were strictly okay. It is also only after Jaaved Jaaferi’s entry that things turn interesting in the film. The scenes where Jai goes into the photograph and discovers a terrible secret is worth watching. Most importantly, these scenes were technically brilliant. Jai being chased by the murderer was another cool scene of the first half. Nagesh succeeds in keeping the viewer’s engrossed in the 2nd half too.

The disclosure of the identity of the murderer comes as a bolt from the blue. Many are of the view that the motive of the murderer was most illogical. Although it was little stupid, it doesn’t seem indigestible. Also, things take such a turn at this juncture that one doesn’t get the time to think of logic/sense. But what was most foolish was the reason behind the existence of Jai’s supernatural powers! As for the climax, it was little predictable too.

tasveer31Akshay Kumar comes up with a sincere performance. Many have accused him of playing the same type of roles and I have failed to understand how anyone can say like this. Take a look at his last 6 films (CC2C, Singh Iss Kinng, Tashan, Welcome, Bhool Bhulaiyaa and Heyy Babyy) and in each of these films, he came up with good performances and none of the roles were similar to the other. In 8×10 Tasveer, he essays a character which he haven’t played before and does full justice to it. Unfortunately, the film has flopped. Hopefully, his next, Kambakkth Ishq, should be a hit.

Ayesha Takia Azmi as usual looks great and performs perfectly. Jaaved Jaaferi steals the show with his funny act! Let’s hope we get to see him only in comic roles and not in films like Shaurya! Anant Mahadevan was too good. Rushad Rana (who played Gul Panag’s husband in Dor) was excellent. Sharmila Tagore, Girish Karnad and Benjamin Gilani do a good job.

Music was strictly okay. Only the song ‘Nazaara Hai’ is worth listening. However, the background score by Salim-Sulaiman was excellent. Vikas Shivraman’s cinematography was eye-catching!

Nagesh Kukunoor deserves a pat on the back for making films of different genres. Most filmmakers become experts in making particular kind of films and refuse to come out of their ‘comfort zone’. But here’s a man who has the courage and risk-taking ability to do something new and different from his previous films. Coming to 8×10 Tasveer, the beginning portions were little uninteresting and looked unconvincing. As a director and screenwriter, Nagesh tried his best to create tension before the killer is unveiled. However, as a writer, he could have definitely done a much better job, especially while writing Jai’s past. Better luck next time, Mr Kukunoor!

Some of the best scenes of the film:
1.   Jai meeting Happi for the 1st time
2.   Jai trying to find out what happened on the boat through his powers (well-shot scenes!)
3.   Jai chasing Sundar
4.   The killer chasing Jai
5.   Adit confronting Jai
6.   The killer with Savitri (cool scene!)
7.   The killer unveiled

On the whole, 8×10 Tasveer is a one-time watch. The climax may disappoint many but the film may manage to impress many audiences. Since no A-grade Hindi film is gonna release for the next 3-4 weeks, watching this film on a weekend for some timepass will be no harm!

My rating-*** out of 5!