Fenil and Bollywood

Posts Tagged ‘winter olympics

SMILES AHEAD: BT shot Akshay Kumar exclusively on the sets of Khatta Meetha

Akshay Kumar in his avatar as the Common Man

MEENA IYER Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; January 1, 2010)

The last decade in Bollywood has primarily been dominated by three Khans (Shah Rukh, Aamir and Salman) and one Kumar (Akshay). And even as his brand equity is at an all-time high, Akshay Kumar’s business plan in the new year is to take his banner Hari Om Production (HOP) to greater heights.

The banner which is a late bloomer, swung into action with Waqt — The Race Against Time in 2005, but has already notched up hits like Namastey London, Singh is Kinng, the entertaining grosser De Dana Dan, and is now ready for its next three productions — Priyadarshan’s Khatta Meetha, Farah Khan’s Tees Maar Khan and Nikhil Advani’s Patiala House.

Says Priyan, a close associate of Akshay and the HOP, “Khatta Meetha is a satire on the system. It is about the road-mafia which is prevalent all over but more so in Bihar and eastern UP. The main plot line is inspired by R K Laxman’s famous common man. Based on a true incident, this film unveils the travesty of the common man. I have made this film in Malayalam earlier and it was wonderfully received. I’m sure it will be a winner in Hindi too.’’ Both Hari Om Productions and Akshay will move by leaps and bounds in 2010. While the banner will have two releases in Khatta Meetha and Tees Maar Khan, the actor will also be seen in Sajid Nadiadwala’s Houseful and Vipul Shah’s Action Replayy. Of course, it is not all work and no play for this superstar. He is currently on vacation in Goa with his family. Asked what was uppermost on his mind when the clock struck 12, he says, “I sincerely want 2010 to be a year of peace and harmony. I wish BT readers a Happy New Year.’’

Rewinding to his recent Canada trip where he represented India at the Winter Olympics, the superstar says, “I can’t tell you what a proud moment it was when I was handed the Olympic Torch in Canada. It was very moving. In my opinion films and sports are the two passions that can bind any nation.’’ Having talked about his moment of glory on foreign soil, Akki adds, “I’m proud that New Delhi is the chosen destination for the Commonwealth Games. I pray for peace because I want this sporting event to go off really smooth. I want the world to know that India is safe and capable of hosting an event of this magnitude. As a true sports lover this is something uppermost on my mind.’’

ALL SET: Akshay Kumar.
Winter Olympics torchbearer Akshay Kumar leaves for Toronto tonight…

SHARIN WADER BUTANI Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; December 15, 2009)

Akshay Kumar’s packing his bags. The Khiladi leaves tonight for Toronto where he will be the only actor among 14 international celebrities to run with the XXI Winter Olympics torch on Thursday. Akshay, who received the torch from Canadian Prime Minister Steve Harper in Mumbai last month, is the Indian ambassador at the Games which are slated to start on February 12, 2010. Over 80 nations participate in the Winter Olympics and the competition is held in eight sports including ice hockey, figure skating and Alpine skiing. India, which sent a four-member team to the last Games that were held in Turin, Italy, in 2006, came back with no medals for our efforts in the luge, crosscountry skiing and Alpine skiing. Clearly, the country’s pride now is Akshay at Toronto! The actor, when asked why he was chosen for this great sporting honour on an international platform like the Olympics, replied, “I definitely didn’t get nominated because of my cricket skills… I may be a celebrity, but with great power comes even greater responsibility. I have put a lot of effort over the years supporting and being brand ambassador for the ‘Special Olympics’ in India. I would go to any lengths to promote sport in my country, my efforts have been appreciated worldwide, and I am touched that India shares my enthusiasm. To be honoured to carry the Olympic torch is so prestigious in every country, you can’t ask for this honour, you can only be recognised for your true love and dedication to children, to sport, to bettering your country’s involvement in the world. You can’t imagine how grateful I am. And how nervous as well!”

SHAHEEN PARKAR (Mid-Day; November 6, 2009)

Dhamaal 2 has hit a roadblock. Though the bound script of the comedy is ready, the film can’t go on the floors.

Producers Ashok Thakeria and Indra Kumar (also the director) have been denied remake rights of Disney’s 1993 Hollywood flick Cool Runnings on which Dhamaal 2 is based.

The duo was confident of obtaining the rights to make an Indian version of the comic caper. As a result, they had their team of writers in place before the necessary remake green signal.

A still from Dhamaal

Familiar procedure

Says a source, “They were sure of the go-ahead from Walt Disney. For their earlier film Daddy Cool, Thakeria had managed to secure the rights for Boney M’s popular song of the ’80s Daddy Cool. As they had gone through the paperwork and technicalities involved, they thought it was a familiar procedure.”

But much to their chagrin, Disney turned down their request. Adds the source, “This has now put Dhamaal 2 off track. For the past several months, a team of writers would be in their Maruti Internatioanl production office at Andheri working on the script. And just when it was complete and ready, they were shown a red signal which came as a jolt to them.”

The makers are in a fix because they can’t go ahead with the same plot as it would lead to copyright issues. As the source puts it, “Now that they have openly declared that they wanted to make an Indian version of it and have been denied, there is no way they can make anything similar to it. All the past months of efforts of the writers are wasted.”

Indra Kumar however maintains, “The scripting of Dhamaal 2 is still on. The sequel has not gone on the floors because the script is not ready. Our film is a comedy but not based on any Hollywood film nor did we seek any remake rights. These are just stories that people are floating.”

Dhamaal, which released in 2007 stars Sanjay Dutt, Arshad Warsi, Ritiesh Deshmukh, Aashish Chaudhry and Jaaved Jaffrey. Most of the cast had agreed to star in the sequel as well.

Cool Runnings
Cool Runnings is a 1993 comedy flick loosely based on the Jamaica national bobsled team’s debut at the 1988 Winter Olympics. Directed by Jon Turteltaub, it stars Leon Robinson, Doug E Dour, Maik Yoba, Rawle D’ Lewis and John Candy. When the team fails to acquire the points necessary to get to the summer games, there’s still a way for them to make it to the Winter Olympics. A wacky coach trains the the squad to make for the weirdest team but no one’s more fun at the Winter Games!