Fenil and Bollywood

Posts Tagged ‘youth

IN TELLYLAND: Shah Rukh Khan, AkshayKumar and (top) Rani Mukerji with guest Shahid Kapoor, Salman Khan and Karisma Kapur on their TV shows
How worthwhile has it been for channels putting Bollywood stars on TV?

ROSHNI K OLIVERA Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; January 4, 2010)

Abhishek Bachchan is stepping into his father’s shoes by hosting a game show on TV. What prompted Bachchan Jr. to give a nod to the small screen? Was it a lucrative offer? Perhaps, because it’s money that draws film stars to television. Shah Rukh Khan, Salman Khan, Akshay Kumar, Rani Mukerji, Karisma Kapur… the list is endless of Bollywood stars who made the big crossover.

Akshay, reports said, was paid a whopping Rs 2.5 crore per episode to host the second season of Khatron ke Khiladi. And Salman Khan was apparently given Rs 89 crore for the first season of Dus Ka Dum! It’s big money all right for the stars, but is it worthwhile for the channels to shell out such big bucks for the star value?

Statistics prove that shows with Bollywood stars have never topped the overall Television Rating Points (TRP) charts. Only Amitabh Bachchan’s Kaun Banega Crorepati, that changed the face of Indian television years ago, saw TRP success. All other shows hosted or judged by stars have raked in average or dismal TRPs. Yes, there is a fair amount of curiosity and people are bound to watch the show at least once for the star’s sake, but after that it’s content that sells. Meanwhile, TV actors are unhappy with the ‘filmi’ invasion but will not complain openly for fear of antagonising the channels. “Does it make any sense to pay film stars in crores? No show has zoomed up the TRP charts,” said a popular TV actress. “The TRPs that these stars have got, after the initial few episodes and special episodes, is the same that any other anchor has got! Did Rani’s presence lift the show up so much… wouldn’t it have been the same if it was somebody else? And what big difference did Karisma make?” Another veteran actor added, “In the name of recession TV actors had to go through paycuts, but film stars on TV continued to rake in the moolah!”

Channels have their reasoning. Programming head Ashvini Yardi explained, “We go in for film stars for three reasons: It boosts perception… the brand image of the star rubs on to the channel. For instance, having Akshay’s show gives the channel a fresh, adventurous and risk-taking image. Second, reality shows help bring in a fresh audience, especially the men and youth, who are not regular soap watchers. Also, shows with film stars rake in huge money in terms of advertisements.” What’s important though, pointed out Ashvini, is to make the right choice while choosing a film star. “The show has to go with the star’s brand,” she said. TV serial producers, however, believe that since it’s serials that hold the top slot in the number game, more attention should be paid to them. “Instead of cutting down on our budgets, channels should cut down on paying so much to film stars,” grumbled a TV director. Producer-director Rajan Shahi’s glad that top film stars are now also TV stars. “I hope TV stars get the same treatment in films,” he said. Talking about B-town’s foray on the small screen, he added, “I’m sure taking film stars has some benefit that channels see. In the past film stars have given huge TRPs… may be the magic will work again. For me, Rakhi Sawant has been the most successful film actor in terms of success on TV.”
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By Bollywood Hungama News Network, January 1, 2010 – 00:01 IST

Vidya Balan She is the epitome of ‘V’ulnerability, ‘I’ndian-ness, ‘D’earness, ‘Y’outh, and ‘A’ttitude. For those in the know, will surely know whom we are referring to. But for the uninitiated, she is the one and only Vidya Balan, who celebrates her birthday today. Not many know that this Gen-Next’s Dream Girl started her affair with the camera with the Malyalam movie ‘Chakram‘, a film in which she was paired opposite the southern superstar Mohanlal. And as far as the ad world is concerned, it was the Surf Excel commercial that paved the way for the ‘Excel-lent’ actress into the silver screen. And the resultant of this was the Pradeep Sarkar directed Parineeta, a film that gave Bollywood its very own Superstar in Vidya Balan.

Vidya repeated the success of Parineeta with films like Lage Raho Munna Bhai, Guru, Salaam-e-Ishq: A Tribute To Love, Bhool Bhulaiyaa, Heyy Babyy and the more recent smash hit Paa. Vidya has everything that is required of a Diva. In other words, it becomes totally needless, to say that Vidya is definitely a Diva in the making.

Friends, please join Bollywood Hungama as we wish this Diva named Vidya Balan, a very happy Birthday!

Do post your wishes below!

BIRTHDAY CHEERS: Remo, Jackky and Vashu Bhagnani
The 25-year-old gets his second big break

TIMES NEWS NETWORK (BOMBAY TIMES; December 26, 2009)

Yesterday was Jackky Bhagnani’s 25th birthday. And, to mark the momentous occasion, his filmmaker father Vashu Bhagnani doubled up as Santa Claus and gave him his second film. Tentatively called Production No 21, the film to be directed choreographer Remo D’Souza has elements of comedy, drama, action, youth and exuberance. And Jackky is in an upbeat mood. Candidly he admits that his debut flick Kal Kissne Dekha was a dud. “However, I’m happy that my work in the film was appreciated,’’ says the youngster.

This time over, his father waited for the right moment to make an announcement. “Dad just felt it would be appropriate to announce my second film on my birthday,’’ says Jackky. He explains that Remo and he had actually zeroed down on this project even as KKD was being made. Jackky truly believes that one must let leave past mistakes behind and move on. “Today I know more about acting that I did when I made by debut,’’ he says. “I’m sure my second film will be a more fulfilling experience in that sense.’’

Remo, who is Jackky’s friend, steps in to add, “I had this subject worked out and when Vashuji heard it, he immediately volunteered to make this film under his banner.’’ Remo feels he is fortunate that a producer of Vashu’s stature agreed to fund his film. “Now my film will be mounted on the scale that I originally visualised it as,’’ he says.

He has also directed a film in Bengali and he is happy that his Bollywood debut has Jackky in it. He feels the boy has the ‘fire’ in him and given the right platform he will deliver. Both the actor and the director are now on a hunt for a female lead, and the appropriate title for this film that will be shot in quick, continuous schedules starting January. This could well be Jackky’s coming of age moment.

By Taran Adarsh, November 13, 2009 – 10:01 IST

Every kid imagines what it would be like to be an adult. He wishes he could grow up quicker. Of course, once he grows up, a small part of him wishes he could go back to his childhood days. Quite an irony, isn’t it?

There’s a line in AAO WISH KAREIN that goes, ‘If you want to be a part of a fairy tale, it’s important that you believe in it [fairy tale].’ The statement is applicable for everyone desirous of watching AAO WISH KAREIN.

BY BOLLYWOOD HUNGAMA.COM

In terms of concept, AAO WISH KAREIN bears a striking resemblance to the Tom Hanks starrer BIG [1988]. A decade-and-a-half ago, the Salman Khan – Sridevi starrer CHANDRAMUKHI also tackled a similar theme. In that respect, the concept isn’t alien at all.

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It’s not sacrilegious if a film bears an uncanny resemblance to another film [it could be a coincidence], but films like these need to be well-structured and most importantly, supported by incredible actors who can make you believe in fairy tales. Also, the makers ought to take a stand at the very outset: Should it be targeted at kids or youth? You just cannot sit on the fence. In this case, you don’t know if AAO WISH KAREIN is aimed at the kids or is it a breezy romantic flick, targeted at the youth.

All said, AAO WISH KAREIN has some endearing moments, but not enough to salvage it.

12-year-old Mickey’s life was almost like a fairy tale: A beautiful family, best buddy Bonnie and his angel on earth – Mitika [Aamna Sharif]. One fateful day, Mickey’s fairy tale is shattered into a million pieces. He realizes he’s an adopted child and his 23-year-old angel Mitika too calls him a kid. A heart-broken Mickey sits all by himself until Hitchcock [Johny Lever] appears.

Mickey hopes for a miracle to happen. He wishes to become big. To his astonishment, he wakes up next morning and realizes that his wish has been granted. He has indeed turned big. But was this miracle a blessing or a curse in disguise?

The choice of the subject is perfect. But there’s an inherent flaw in the story and that is, the 12-year-old kid seems to be in love with the pretty woman, but the moment his wish his granted and he transforms into a grown up man overnight, he continues to behave like a kid. Romance, therefore, just doesn’t exist and even if it does, it’s far from exciting.

Ideally, the writing would’ve worked had the kid-turned-grown up behaved like a grown up.

The culmination to the story is well penned, but, again, it might not work in entirety. The writers could’ve run their imagination wild, given the fact that they were writing a fairy tale, instead of taking the safe route here.

Director Glen Barretto has handled a few individualistic scenes well, especially the ones between Aftab and Johny Lever. Music is soothing to the ears, but the non-promotion or lack of popularity will make the effort go unnoticed. At the same time, there are too many songs in the second hour, which weren’t required frankly. Keshav Prakash’s cinematography is top notch. The locales of Himachal Pradesh and Goa are well captured on celluloid by the DoP.

Aftab pitches in a sincere performance. He looks the character. Aamna is easy on the eyes, although the role doesn’t demand histrionics. Johny Lever is first-rate. Rati Agnihotri is good. Yatin Karyekar is alright. The kids are full of energy. Riteish Deshmukh makes a brief appearance towards the end.

On the whole, AAO WISH KAREIN is engaging in parts, but how one wishes the film would grab your attention in entirety. The wish of striking a chord and hence, succeeding at the box-office won’t come true for this reason.

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BLUE WILL GIVES YOU BLUES!!

No matter how grand a film is, how wonderfully it has been promoted or which big names associated are with it, if its content is bad, then nothing can save the film. Blue comes in this category. The film was so nicely publicized, the promos looked rocking, Akki-Sanju pairing seemed electrifying and Lara Dutta’s bikini scenes had sent the youth in frenzy. Unfortunately, the film’s story is pathetic and thus, the film disappoints…big time!

The story of the movie: Sagar (Sanjay Dutt) is an honest guy staying in Bahamas and has a girlfriend, Mona (Lara Dutta). His best friend is Aarav (Akshay Kumar), a rich and over ambitious businessman. One fine morning, Sagar’s younger brother, Sameer aka Sam (Zayed Khan) arrives at Sagar’s place after staying in Bangkok for 5 years. Sam hasn’t come there just to meet his folks for a few days-he had ran away from Bangkok after taking panga with a gangster Gulshan (Rahul Dev) there. On the other hand, there is a treasure lying deep under the sea, somewhere near Bahamas, and Aarav persuades Sagar to join him in finding the treasure. But Sagar has reservations about it which is connected to his past.

In just 15 minutes, you get a hint that the director is unfit and doesn’t know his job well. The opening credits scene was brilliant. But the following scenes and also the boxing sequence hold attention initially but the interest soon wears off. The movie then focuses on Zayed Khan which was the best part of the first hour. But the story hardly moves once Zayed comes to Bahamas and joins Sanju and his team and this happens till the intermission point. In between, there two songs are thrown in, ‘Chiggy Wiggy’ and Blue Theme, which serve no purpose to the main storyline.

The actual treasure hunting begins in the last 30 minutes and you expect fireworks right till the climax. But alas…it was plain lackluster. The director could have included added more thrills or at least some twists and surprises. Sure, there is a twist in the end but that doesn’t work big time. Also the climax was so lame!

Talking about flaws, there are plenty. What is striking is-the treasure is part of India’s wealth and was coming to India in a ship in 1949. But when the ship sank, no effort was made by the Indian Govt or for that matter, any adventurer to get hold of it. Although there were stories that the captain of the ship took away the treasure, still no one tried even investigating this case and that too for 5 decades! Very hard to digest!

However, the film scores at a few places. The bike race and the following chase scene involving Zayed Khan rocks! Another bike scene post-interval, which also involved a train, was also well-shot. And the best scene of the film was when the goons attack Sanjay’s place. Simply outstanding! So you can see, only the action sequences hold attention. And the film, overall, is a damp squib!

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It’s a treat to see Sanjay Dutt in every film and in Blue too, he does a great job. Although he looked a bit fat places, overall, he gives a smashing performance. Akshay Kumar steals the show. He also raises a few laughs in between and was perfect for this role. However, it’s really disappointing to see Akshay Kumar in pathetic films lately. Let’s hope De Dana Dan (his next with Priyadarshan) works. Zayed Khan looked dashing and charming. The world may denounce him but I feel that he has the potential and can reach the top, if given an opportunity.

I really feel bad for Lara Dutta. When she signed Blue, she didn’t know swimming and she dedicatedly learnt how to swim in just three months and became a pro. However, she hardly has any contribution to the main plot of the film. In fact, one can argue that there was no need for her character in the film at all! Really very unfortunate! Rahul Dev was okay and Kabir Bedi doesn’t have a single dialogue in the film. Katrina Kaif is stunning while Kylie Minogue oozes oomph!

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A R Rahman’s music was good, but nothing special. The Blue Theme, Chiggy Wiggy and Aaj Dil are the best songs of the lot. Rahman’s background score sounded modern and fresh.

Laxman Utekar’s cinematography was eye-catching. The underwater cinematography by Pete Zuccarini was outstanding and the underwater scenes really looked stunning. Oscar winner Resul Pookutty strikes a sixer with his marvelous sound designing. Fantastic job! The locales (Bahamas) are excellent.

Some of the dialogues (Mayur Puri) stand out. While the crew did their job wonderfully, the story and the script (Anthony D’Souza and Jasmine D’Souza) spoil and ruin the show. Same goes for direction by Anthony. He had everything-a producer who was ready to invest large amounts of money, top actors of the current period, an excellent crew (including some from Hollywood) and what not. But alas! Did Anthony feel that people are going to praise his film just by showing them some wonderful underwater scenes and handful of action sequences? The producer, Dhilin Mehta, is equally to blame. What was he thinking when he invested 90 crs+ on such a flawed script and on a debutant director? My blood boils to see huge amounts of money going waste, which could had been utilized in a better way. We are a pro when it comes to lifting/copying/inspiring from Hollywood flicks. Then why can’t we have a Hollywood-like terrific direction and screenplay? Really very very disappointing!

Some of the best scenes in the film:
1. Sam in Bangkok
2. Sagar and Aarav having a drink at the edge
3. Sam being chased in Bahamas
4. Gulshan’s attack on Sagar
5. Sam, Sagar and Aarav searching for treasure
6. The final scene

On the whole, Blue is a big time disappointment. The film’s cast and crew have done a brilliant job but the film fails to impress because of its faulty script. Blue should fail (and it will, for sure, keeping in mind its high cost) at the Box office so that it gives a lesson to all producers in Bollywood that investing large amounts of money on faulty scripts and taking audiences for granted will result in big losses and disaster.

My rating-** out of 5!

This review first appeared on MouthShut.com: http://www.mouthshut.com/review/Blue-177340-1.html

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Kites2

IT’S ALL IN THE NAME: Poster of Kites

Bollywood has given up HAHK and DDLJ for short and simple English titles

AAKANKSHA NAVAL-SHETYE Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; September 15, 2009)

Bollywood has rediscovered the KISS (Keep It Short and Simple) rule, at least where film titles are concerned. Having had its fill of long names — Bollywood’s now high on short words, and most of them straight off the English vocabulary rack. Sample this: almost 20 films this year had English titles and there are almost 30 more to come… from Blue to Wanted and Radio to Kites. Trade pundits attribute this to several reasons. “Almost every title has been exhausted. Others have been blocked by producers before hand. Filmmakers have to come up with unique titles and English words give an instant youth connect,” explains trade analyst Komal Nahta, adding, “Even Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge was shortened to the English DDLJ.”

Trade analyst Taran Adarsh agrees, claiming that it’s a healthy trend looking at global cinema, “Bollywood films have an international audience. Ever since English lyrics in Hindi songs became a hit, filmmakers began exploring these options. As long as the title suits the content of the film, it’s bound to work.” Vashu Bhagnani, whose next film is titled Do Knot Disturb, adds, “When the masses can accept English songs and words in our films, why not
titles? The audience targeted is largely the youth and they can easily identify with such names.” Rohit Shetty, director of All the Best and Golmaal Returns, defended his titles, “Words like Welcome, All The Best, Luck, and No Problem work well even with the non-English speaking masses in the interiors. These titles have tested positive with the multiplex audience so it’s a win-win scenario all across.”

Trade analysts also believe TV has made English and ‘Hinglish’ popular. “Thanks to the serials, talk shows and advertisements, ‘Hinglish’ has become well-accepted. So if the words are simple and part of daily usage, the names are more likely to work than not,” say trade analysts.

However, filmmaker Vipul Shah, whose films — Singh is Kinng, London Dreams and Action Replayy — all have English names, has a different take. “London Dreams is the name of a band associated with my film, whereas Action Replayy was the name of my play done several years ago. So, the name has to show some connection with the film theme and should not be a random word,” he says. Will the trend of long names that kickstarted with Hum Aapke Hain Kaun pave way for English shorties? Time will tell.

My Name is KhanENGLISH SHORTIES RELEASED THIS YEAR
Fox, Luck, Three, Life Partner, Daddy Cool, Sankat City, Shortkut: The Con is On, Quick Gun Murugan, Bachelor Party, Bad Luck Govind, Chandni Chowk To China, Luck By Chance, Victory, The Stoneman Murders, 13B, Straight, Team, Runway, Let’s Dance, Morning Walk, Perfect Mismatch, Shadow, Toss

ENGLISH SHORTIES TO COME
Blue, Wanted, All the Best, London Dreams, Acid Factory, What’s Your Raashee?, 3 Idiots, Eight, Fast Forward, Shoebite, My Name Is Khan, Jail, Do Knot Disturb, Paa, Radio, Season Greetings, Chase, Kites, Wake Up Sid, Prince, Rocket Singh: Salesman of The Year, No Problem, Road Movie, Accident on Hill Road, Action Replayy

By Taran Adarsh, August 25, 2009 – 08:47 IST

Kaminey The opinions on KAMINEY are divided – either people have liked the film or hated it. But not many are aware that Vishal Bhardwaj, its creator, was well aware that the 40 + age-group wouldn’t take to the film, much before its release. “We had test screenings in several cities, before the release. The reactions were pretty uniform, with the youth [18 to 30] loving the film and the middle-age segment [40 +] hating it. That’s when I realized that the opinions would be in extremes,” Vishal admits.

A lot of people feel that they failed to decipher the initial 20 minutes of the film. “That’s true! I got the same feedback. The next time I would ensure that I simplify things,” he states. Not many are aware that the start of the film was altered after the test screenings. The film began with a war in Africa and shifted to Shahid Kapoor running on the tracks. But the response to the war sequences was outright negative, so the editor suggested that Vishal change the start to Shahid running on the tracks.

Meanwhile, Vishal is all set to start work on his next film, this time with Hrithik Roshan in the principal lead. “This is the first time I am confirming the news. Yes, Hrithik and I are working together. The project will roll once Hrithik is through with Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s GUZAARISH. In the meantime, I am wondering if I should make another film in the intervening period,” Vishal divulges.

What about ISHQIYA? When is it releasing? “Oh, I’ve got tremendous feedback for the first promo of the film. In fact, people tell me ki ISHQIYA ka trailer aapki picture [KAMINEY] se behtar hain [chuckles]… Well, looking at the number of releases in the coming weeks, I haven’t decided on a release date yet. We’ve already completed the film and are in the post-production stages right now,” Vishal reveals.

BOLLYWOOD HUNGAMA.COM