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March 22, 2018

Aamir Khan to take up the cause of water conservation with new Marathi show Toofan Alaya

Filed under: BollyWood News,Uncategorized,Views on News — admin @ 6:02 pm

Taking the cause of water conservation ahead, superstar Aamir Khan will begin shooting for his upcoming Marathi show, Toofan Alaya (Storm Is Here), next week.

The weekly show will revolve around the water situation in the state and feature a mix of Marathi film stars and people telling inspiring stories.

On the occasion of World Water Day, Kiran Rao, Aamir’s filmmaker wife and founder of Paani Foundation, said the show, to be aired on Zee Marathi, will start from 31 March.

“We have already begun shooting for the show, but Aamir will shoot his bits from next week. We have been shooting the show since last two weeks,” Rao told reporters.

Paani Foundation, set up by Aamir, will start its third edition of Satyamev Jayate Water Cup with an aim to extend the watershed management programme to 75 talukas in 24 districts of Maharashtra.

Aamir Khan. Image from Twitter/@samidsiddiqi91

“There will be information about the Water Cup and we will also tell stories about different villages and villagers. How they are changing their way of living. Aamir and we all will be travelling a lot for the same. There will be entertainment too,” Rao said.

The filmmaker said that well-known faces from the Marathi film industry will be joining the show. “I won’t say much because then it won’t be a surprise,” she added.

“Some of our friends from the industry will also be on the show but we will specifically talk about people who are doing ground work,” Rao said.

Satyajit Bhatkal, CEO, Paani Foundation, announced the NGO’s statewide Jal Mitra initiative, a drive where people can log into the NGO’s website and register themselves to volunteer to do manual labour to build watershed structures.

In the Water Cup, villages compete to carry out maximum work for watershed management and water conservation.

The competition period of the third edition is 8 April to 22 May.

Ten years of Race: Third installment celebrates everything the original film had — with the bonus of Salman Khan

Filed under: BollyWood News,Views on News — admin @ 6:02 pm

Although many might not have noticed the timing of Salman Khan sharing a picture of Bobby Deol as Yash, a character from their upcoming film Race 3, it was rather fortuitous. The star tweeted his co-star’s picture just a couple of days before the tenth anniversary of the release of the first film in the ‘Race series’, Race (2008).

With a major overhaul both in front and behind the camera with Salman Khan replacing Saif Ali Khan as the male lead and Remo D’Souza helming the project instead of Abbas-Mustan, the third film in the action-thriller franchise is all set to join the likes of Jolly LLB to get a reboot — where the film ages the stakes only get bigger.

Traditionally, the concept of sequels tends to lose a bit of sheen with the passage of time. Take the case of Charles Bronson’s Death Wish series, which became a barely noticed almost B-film by the time the fifth film released 22-years after the original that came out in 1974. And then there’s First Blood (1982), the debut of the Rambo series, which was made on a budget of $15 million USD but the third, First Blood III (1988) was mounted on a budget of over $60 million USD and even though the film made almost $200 million USD the idea had became jaded and it would be two-decades before the fourth film, Rambo (2008) hit the screens.

In the context of Hindi films, the sequel has come as god sent and the combination of a ‘sequel’ and a ‘reboot’ has only made things better for the stars. For Salman Khan, the Race franchise offers the slick urban thriller template that is a stark contrast to his other franchise, Dabangg, where it’s the Chulbul Pandey character that lends repeat value. There are talks about a third Dabangg rumored to be directed by Prabhudeva and chances of a fourth Race cannot be ruled out as it gives the producer, Tips Films, a go-to project every couple of years.

Similarly, for Ajay Devgn, the Golmaal series offers a template that could work as well with or without standard character (Gopal) while Singham gives him the character that he could play well into his sunset years, a la Clint Eastwood or Charles Bronson with Dirty Harry and Death Wish series. For Akshay Kumar, Jolly LLB offered a chance to go back to doing comic roles but with a tinge of social messaging, which has come to be seen as his forte.

For a Kangana Ranaut, and nearly most of the Tanu Weds Manu primary cast (R. Madhavan, Swara Bhaskar, Deepak Dobriyal, and Eijaz Khan) their characters in the series can be rekindled at any point in the future without much thought.

The is no question that the near-obsessive drive with which producers and production houses are investing in reboots and remakes is an indication of an abject lack of fresh ideas. In fact, it’s rather saddening to see how filmmakers, as opposed to paying homage to the greats from the previous generations, are choosing to rehash the past simply because frankly, they don’t give a damn (beyond making money, that is).

Some part of this nostalgia-driven reboot/ rejig drive is also an easy way out for many – after all, it’s all about the relationship between characters and the viewer, so why not revisit the tried and tested beloved characters rather than reinvent the wheel?

Salman Khan tweeted about Race 3 in the same week as the release of the film film, a decade ago. Race 3 also seems to be a subtle attempt to rekindle the memories of Salman Khan’s Wanted (2009); the pose that Khan is captured in on Race 3’s first poster is almost Wanted redux.

February 24, 2018

Sonu Ke Titu Ki Sweety movie review: A dreary woman-hate-fest cum unwitting gaymance

Filed under: BollyWood News,Uncategorized — admin @ 5:44 pm

Sonu and Titu have been buddies since nursery and almost brothers. The motherless Sonu even addresses Titu’s mother as “Mummy”.

Titu is the pretty and gullible one, an innocent darling who keeps falling for manipulative, controlling women. Street-smart, worldly-wise Sonu sees these women for the witches that they are and has been saving Titu from them for years.

Enter: Sweety Sharma as sweet Titu’s potential biwi. Sonu is immediately suspicious of her, as he is of any new woman in his Titu’s life, and as he probably will be of any man too, you realise as the film rolls on. But Sweety comes up trumps in every test Sonu throws at her until his opposition to his best friend’s wedding becomes: she is too good to be true, so she must be faking her goodness.

Is Sonu right in doubting Sweety? Or will Sonu Ke Titu Ki Sweety prove that in a world filled with godawful, devious women and their male victims, there are some decent women after all?

Kartik Aaryan, Nushrat Bharucha and Sunny Singh in a still from Sonu Ke Titu Ki Sweety. YouTube

If you have watched writer-director Luv Ranjan’s earlier works, the answers to these questions are so obvious that you may as well fast forward to the final scenes. Ranjan’s calling card so far remains the sleeper hit Pyaar Ka Punchnama (2011), which was about three hapless, innocent young men embroiled in abusive relationships each with an all-out evil, calculating she-devil. He briefly flirted with sensitivity in Akaash Vani (2013), a film on marital rape, but returned with a second woman-hate-fest in the form of Pyaar Ka Punchnama (PKP) 2 in 2015, a near carbon copy of the first with a marginally different cast.

Sonu Ke Titu Ki Sweety recycles the cast, clichés and convictions of both the PKP films.

Kartik Aaryan and Nushrat Bharucha who play Sonu and Sweety here, have been fixtures in all Ranjan’s films so far. Bharucha still looks like she might have the potential to do something different, but Aaryan, who showed some spark in the first PKP, is tiresome and hammy now.

Sunny Singh, who was in PKP2, delivers an off-the-mark performance here as a duh-ish Titu, although the director’s intent seems to be to portray him as naïve and golden-hearted, not dumb.

Sonnalli Seygall and Ishita Raj played horrid girlfriends in the two PKPs. Seygall has a few seconds long cameo here as one of Sonu’s female human playthings, while Raj has a longer role as – wait for it, c’moooonnnn, try guessing – a horrid girlfriend. Raj is the only breath of fresh air of the lot.

The opening scene of Sonu Ke Titu Ki Sweety features Sonu lecturing a man with a monologue of a length that is designed to remind us of the extended monologues assigned to Kartik Aaryan’s characters in PKP 1&2. Thankfully this one is much shorter, but it serves as a teaser to the formulaic story that follows. The inside joke is also amusingly self-important considering that while this actor and director have enjoyed some success, they have yet to enter the mainstream consciousness.

From that opener, the film cuts to Titu weeping over a girlfriend who has accused him of invading her privacy because he accessed her Tinder account. Sonu goes into a detailed description of the scheming harridan that she is. We are only minutes into the film, and already a cloying repetitiveness has set in.

Cut to the opening credits accompanied by a song called ‘Bom Diggy Diggy’, during which Sonu and Titu drum the bums of dozens of women who shake those butts in vibratory movements aimed at the camera, each other and the boys.

What comes next is from the same old mould, just much louder, more garish and even more open about its contempt for women than Ranjan’s earlier films.

When Titu asks his parents to find him a bride, Sonu asks why he needs to marry when he could just change his cook, they have already bought a new washing machine and dishwasher, and alternative arrangements could well be made for sex. I guess you have to grant it to Ranjan for frankly acknowledging what most Indians do not: that these motivations are indeed what prompt many men to marry.

The lack of pretence continues all the way up to the song playing along with the end credits, when Sonu, Titu and Sweety dance together to the Yo Yo Honey Singh track ‘Chhote Chhote Peg’. “Itne der se baitha bas mind main tera padd ra hoon (all this while I have been reading your mind),” a male voice sings as Sonu stares pointedly and reductively at Sweety’s almost bare breasts, because hey, that is where a woman’s mind resides, I guess?

While the director makes no bones about his desire to cash in on the deep-seated resentment towards women among a section of the film-viewing audience, I doubt whether the homosexual undertones of the Sonu-Titu bhaichaara were planned. Sonu’s lurving gaze could be read either way, but what else is one to make of the song Tera yaar hoon main playing as a moony Sonu watches Titu with Sweety?

Tu jo roottha,

Toh kaun hasega.

Tu jo chhoota,

Toh kaun rahega.

Tu chup hai toh,

Yeh darr lagta hai.

Apna mujhko,

Ab kaun kahega.

Tu hi wajah tere bina,

Bewajah bekaar hoon main.

Tera yaar hoon main.

Tera yaar hoon main.


If you are displeased,

Who will laugh?

If I lose you,

Who will I have?

When you fall silent, I get afraid,

Now who will call me his?

You are my reason,

Without you I am nothing.

I am your friend.

I am your friend.

Commercial Hindi cinema sorely needs a homosexual romance, but not an unwitting one. The impression of a gaymance in Sonu Ke Titu Ki Sweety comes not from a well-meaning director’s deliberate intent. It is a product of poor acting and writing.

It is possible that Ranjan may make a better film some day, once he recovers from his raging hatred towards women and realises that in giving vent to that feeling, he is also repeatedly portraying men as manipulable fools and cowards.

The unfortunate part of Sonu Ke Titu Ki Sweety is that in small patches – especially in a scene in which Ishita Raj’s character Pihu is re-acquainted with Titu’s family – it shows a penchant for humour and good timing. Mostly though, this is a tacky, trite recycling of a recipe that has brought box-office success twice to this director. Why bother writing an original script when a photocopy machine is at hand?

Priyadarshan and Suniel Shetty to reportedly reunite for a multilingual project after nine years

Filed under: BollyWood News,Views on News — admin @ 5:43 pm

Veteran filmmaker Priyadarshan and actor Suniel Shetty, best known for their blockbuster collaborations in Hera Pheri and Chup Chup Ke to name a few, will reportedly reunite for a multilingual project after nine years. The duo’s last film together was the 2009 Hindi comedy De Dana Dan.

The upcoming yet-untitled project of Priyadarshan and Suniel will mark their seventh association together. The film will also mark the comeback of Priyadarshan to Bollywood after his 2013 drama Rangrezz, which didn’t fare well at the box-office.

“I’m doing movies soon. Even though I wasn’t there for four years, the media has kept me alive. I’m signing some exciting projects in the next few days, one of which will be a multi-lingual film. Besides Hindi, Tamil and Malayalam will be the premium languages of the movie that I would be working on next,” Suniel Shetty told the media, in a group interaction in Chennai, without divulging further details about the film.

“I have received a few offers in Tamil and Telugu industries. But generally what happens is people keep offering negative roles for action heroes. I don’t want anything negative. I don’t want to hit Rajinikanth sir in a movie by playing a badass role. The only ‘real’ negative character I’ve done in my career is Main Hoon Na,” he said.

Suniel made his debut in Kollywood through the Jeeva-directed 2001 romance drama 12B, where he shared screen space with Jyotika. Although he hasn’t played a full-fledged role in Mollywood yet, he has been part of a handful of Malayalam films with his special appearances including Priyadarshan’s comedy-drama Kakkakuyil.

Talking about his penchant for south films, Suniel said, “I have always been fond of south Indian movies. 90% of my films have been remakes of south films. There’s a genuine emotion that’s binding the story in films being made here. The sincerity with which they prepare the script never ceases to amaze me. I’m really glad that today there’s no such thing called ‘regional cinema’. It’s Indian cinema now.”

Suniel said his comeback to the showbiz world last year through the fitness-based reality show India’s Asli Champion was very demanding. “I also found the process very exciting and challenging since I had an opportunity to work with the common people and the show was about wellness and fitness,” he said, adding that he’s currently working on a massive show on wellness which ‘will benefit every little child in the country.’

Pari, October: How new-age producers are changing and reinventing mainstream Bollywood tropes

Filed under: BollyWood News,Views on News — admin @ 5:42 pm

At the heart of the nepotism debate in Hindi cinema is the fact that privilege and connections can make careers. Often, those who hold the purse strings to make a film — the producers — are considered the most powerful. Most established film producers have film legacies.

In the past five years, a growing number of outsiders, from personal and professional backgrounds that have nothing to do with film, have impacted mainstream Hindi cinema. For the lack of a better term, we call them the new-age producers — those who bankroll, build and contribute to films at more levels that just financing and exhibition.

With this new lot finding a footing in the industry, the role of a producer has evolved to take on creative, managerial functions. They put a film together from start to finish — from locating a suitable, appealing story, to script development, to finding the cast and crew, to post production, and finally, the pre-release process of marketing and promotions. Driven by a love for good cinema, these producers are armed with newer ideas on how things should be done. They also look beyond conventional tropes in terms of backdrop, narrative, context and acting.

Varun Dhawan in October. Image from Twitter/@filmfare

Ronnie Lahiri, the producer of Shoojit Sircar’s Vicky Donor, Madras Café, Piku and the upcoming October, serves as a good example. Lahiri and Sircar’s banner Rising Sun Films has graduated from successful commercials to homegrown Indian stories that have found audiences consistently. They operate with a content-first approach to films. “Shoojit and I begin evaluating if a story idea can indeed become a film. Once we decide on the merit of a story, we engage with the writer (often Juhi Chaturvedi). For us, writing is a long process spread over a year with discussions and evaluations. For films like Pink, Madras Café and now Udham Singh, given my background in history, I am completely engaged in developing the script. We run a tight ship till this stage. Once the script is in place, we come up with a wish list of actors. But I always begin with the thought that there might be no star for this film, and it must hold up with Shoojit’s repute.”

A script before star is not common in Bollywood, where a film is often sold based on the star’s name.

“We would like to draw from how Brad Pitt, George Clooney, Matt Damon and Christian Bale have supported good films, that they lend their star power to tell important, non commercial films,” Lahiri explains. “That’s how we can do good content, by giving a film visibility with star power. That’s how we have worked with Varun Dhawan on October. We haven’t changed our script to accommodate Varun. He has lent his face to our film. It’s a good blend of our creativity and Varun becomes the commercial face, which gets more people to come in.”

YouTube Screengrab. Piku

Just two years ago, Sircar and Lahiri couldn’t find a film studio that would suitably release Pink, the successful social thriller. Which is why they decided to go a step further and distribute it independently. “Prior to Pink, we depended on the studios to market and promote the film. When we decided to distribute Pink, not a safe bet after the success of Piku, we learnt a lot,” Lahiri says. “Now Shoojit and I can decide how to market or promote a film, which is ideal. Revealing an image on social media more than a year before a film’s release, makes no sense. We prefer to save the interesting material for people once a film is set to release, as that serves the purpose (of giving a film visibility).”

A similar mindset is visible at Clean Slate Films, which Anushka Sharma and her brother Karnesh Sharma co-own. Often mentioned in the same breath as his star sister, Karnesh’s role as producer can get minimised. But his journey of turning film producer from a career in the merchant navy reflects a passion for contemporary, modern cinema.

“I couldn’t connect to most Hindi films as I have watched English films and world cinema for most of my life. Anushka and I decided to take production forward once NH 10 happened. Content heavy films that entertain are what we want to make,” he says. Currently occupied with releasing their first horror thriller Pari, Karnesh explains what being producer at a niche, start up company means: “At Clean Slate Films, we tell stories that excite us (Anushka and I). From the story level, we get involved, give our inputs and then get a whole team in place. While a film is on floors, we are involved with all processes right down to pre-production and marketing.”

Anushka Sharma in a still from Pari. YouTube

Pari has been promoted sparsely, with visuals building curiosity. This approach to the film’s marketing varies from the common one-size fits all. Karnesh explains, “Marketing is often pre-decided even before a film has been seen by the team. We work differently. Our discussions with the team on marketing start right from the conception and development stage; as our films are not conventional, there is scope to market them innovatively and we choose to do that.”

Meanwhile, a major name in producing and mentoring the small film with big potential is Aanand L Rai.

Between 2016 to 2018 Rai has co-produced 4 films and two went on to become major hits. Rai also presented Newton, the dark comedy that was India’s Oscar contender. Rai has mentored new filmmakers successfully to tell heartland stories endearingly. Amongst established banners, Yash Raj Films has shown flexibility by making Maneesh Sharma their in house producer for non-typical YRF films, including Dum Laga Ke Haisha. Similarly, Neeraj Pandey has produced films that he doesn’t direct himself but believes make for good stories.

New age producers bring a fresh perspective to what defines commercial cinema. Their success with making films acts as buffers for new directors, writers and ideas that leap beyond the conventional Bollywood gamut. Cinema has to change to tell stories that its audience can relate to. And the new age producer, often an outsider operating in a clannish industry, will play a game changing role in slowly but surely driving this change.

January 22, 2018

Dhadak: Release date of Janhvi Kapoor, Ishaan Khatter starrer postponed to 20 July

Filed under: BollyWood News,Uncategorized — admin @ 1:22 am

Mumbai: Filmmaker Karan Johar’s Dhadak, starring Shahid Kapoor’s brother Ishaan Khatter and veteran actress Sridevi’s daughter Janhvi Kapoor, will be releasing on 20 July.

Janhvi Kapoor and Ishaan Khatter in a still from Dhadak

Johar is backing the film, an adaptation of the acclaimed Marathi film Sairat, through his banner Dharma Productions. He announced the release date on Saturday on Twitter.

Six months to Dhadak, releasing 20 July, 2018. Directed by Shashank Khaitan and presenting Janhvi and Ishaan. Dharma Movies, Zee Studios, Apoorva Mehta,” he posted.

While Dhadak will mark Janhvi’s foray into Bollywood, Ishaan is making his acting debut with Iranian filmmaker Majid Majidi’s India-set movie Beyond The Clouds.

The original film Sairat starred newcomers Rinku Rajguru and Akash Thosar and was produced and directed by Nagraj Manjule.

Fast and Furious 9: Ali Fazal to reprise his role in hugely successful action film franchise

Filed under: Views on News — admin @ 1:21 am

Ali Fazal made his Hollywood film debut with a special appearance in the 2015 action film Furious 7, the seventh instalment in the immensely successful The Fast and the Furious franchise. While he did not feature in the 2017 sequel, The Fate of the Furious, there are rumours he might reprise his role in the tentatively titled Fast & Furious 9.

In Furious 7, Fazal had played the role of Safar, an Emirati garage owner and friend of the computer hacktivist Ramsey (Nathalie Emmanuel).

Ali Fazal and Vin Diesel in Furious 9. YouTube screengrab

January 16, 2018

Salman Khan, Shilpa Shetty casteist remark row: Actors receive summons from Rajasthan police

Filed under: BollyWood News,Uncategorized — admin @ 6:36 am

Ahead of the release of Ali Abbas Zafar’s directorial Tiger Zinda Hai, starring Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif, there were reports of the film falling prey to the wrath of community protests. Bollywood superstar Khan and Shilpa Shetty were mired in a controversy where the actors were accused of hurting the sentiments of the Valmiki community for their alleged ‘casteist’ comments on a TV show.

Salman Khan (left) and Shilpa Shetty (right). Images via Facebook

Arjun Reddy Hindi remake: Arjun Kapoor, not Ranveer Singh, reportedly roped in to play lead role

Filed under: BollyWood News,Views on News — admin @ 6:31 am

Last year, in 2017, the Telugu film industry has had a super successful run with most films performing really well at the box office. One of the major hits from last year was Vijay Devarakonda starrer Arjun Reddy which emerged as a huge money spinner with commercial and critical acclaim pouring in. As a trend, this Telugu flick is also going to be remade in other languages. It is reported that Arjun Kapoor has been roped in to play Devarakonda’s role in the Hindi remake.

Arjun Kapoor (left); Vijay Devarakonda in Arjun Reddy (right). Facebook

Earlier it was speculated that Ranveer Singh, Shahid Kapoor have been approached for the film, but according to a report by Deccan Chronicle, the 2 States star will be the main lead.

The Deccan Chronicle report suggests that getting the rights of the Telugu film was a major roadblock, but with “continuous and tireless efforts” that too has been worked out. Arjun Kapoor has also reportedly played a key role in attaining the film’s rights along with producer Murad Khetani.

It is also revealed that the film’s storyline will be a mix of Rockstar and Dev.D. Kapoor, has reportedly decided to not “overburden” the film with his high fee, because the rights have been bought at an exorbitant price, adds the Deccan Chronicle report. The actor is supposed to meet the producer and decide on the dates and other factors later in the month of February.

Directed by Sandeep Reddy Vanga, Arjun Reddy chronicled the life of a surgeon, who turns into an alcoholic after break-up, with severe anger-management issues.

Back to Firstpost Buzz Patrol Bollywood Hollywood South Indian Movies Box Office Movie Reviews You are here: Latest News Entertainment News Padmaavat: Karni Sena disrupts cultural programme at school in MP for performance on ‘Ghoomar’ song

Filed under: BollyWood News — admin @ 6:30 am

A mob indulged in arson in a school to protest a dance performance by a schoolgirl on a Padmaavat movie song during its annual day celebrations, after which four accused were held, police said on Monday.

Around three-four hours after the ‘Ghoomar‘ performance by the girl, a mob of 20-25 persons went to the Saint Paul School around 1.30 PM and began indulging in arson, while shouting slogans in favour of Sri Karni Sena, Jawra police station incharge M.P. Parihar said.

Four persons were arrested while a manhunt has been launched for other suspects, police said.

A still from Padmaavat/Image from Twitter.

Padmaavat has been embroiled in controversy since its inception, and now, after being certified by the CBFC, the movie is supposed to be released on 25 January. The makes of the movie put out a full page advertisement in leading newspapers clarifying the doubts surrounding the movie on Monday morning.

There were also a report by Navbharat Times which said that Deepika Padukone’s midriff will be covered in the song ‘Ghoomar’ before the film hits the theatres on 25 January. The song has been at the centre of national debate over the supposed “wrong, inaccurate” portrayal of the 13th century fabled Rajput queen Padmini of Chittorgarh.

The Rajput Karni Sena, members of the Rajputana royalty have come out in protest saying queens of their community never danced publicly. They reportedly were upset over the display of skin during the song, which they feel shows Rajput queens and Rajput customs in wrong light.

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