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Saturday, October 6, 2007

Kareena dumped Shahid for Films?

Shahid Kapur and Kareena Kapoor's story is known to all by now. The latest buzz is that Kareena dumped Shahid because of her career, which she gives top priority.

Kareena is still Bollywood's hot and sexy actress. Yet, when paired with her real-life boyfriend on screen, she has done very poorly.

A close Bollywood source says: "Kareena and Shahid were very much in love for the past couple of years but they were a flop on screen. "China Town ", "Fida" and "Chup Chup Ke" went down without a whimper. Then Shahid hit the jackpot with "Vivaah"."

The source adds: "Kareena realized that together they are a flop, and hence, started searching for someone else. Finally, it seems she has settled for Saif Ali Khan. Nowadays, Saif and Kareena are often seen together and they are very comfortable with each other."

Shahid was in Toronto for some time for a shoot but he returned to Mumbai on October 1.

Since then, he hasn't met his friends and has kept a low profile. The source reveals that the chocolate boy-actor is very upset with his break off, while Kareena is calm and composed.

Shahid and Kareena came face to face yesterday for the shooting of the remaining portions of "Jab We Met".

The source says: "Both were good and there were no cold vibes. Shahid did not express that he was affected with the break-off. But he left as soon as he was done with his part of the shoot. The two did not even exchange pleasantries."

But is Kareena safe with Saif? The latter's love life doesn't portray him as a steady partner at all. He married Amrita Singh, who was 10 years elder to him; they have a son, Ibrahim, and a daughter, Sara. When "Hum Tum" sent Saif's career rocketing, he left Amrita and fell for Roza.

When Roza parted ways, Saif was seen a lot with Bipasha. There were rumours that something was on between Saif and Yana Gupta.

And now, finally, Kareena's in his life. Hope the two know where they are going from here, both in their personal and professional lives.

Amrita made Bebo and Shahid split??

There are speculations galore about why Shahid Kapur and Kareena Kapoor have parted ways. The logical deduction is that Shahid was doing no good to Kareena's career.

Some say the increasing closeness between Kareena and Saif is the cause behind the widening gap between Kareena and Shahid.

Others have spotted yet another angle to the story --- Shahid's friendship with "Vivah" coactress Amrita Rao.

After debuting with "Ishque Vishque", Shahid has been most successful when paired with Amrita. The audience has accepted the jodi whole-heartedly.

Shahid-Kareena tried their level best to pull off their off-screen magic on screen too with "Fida", "36 China Town" and "Chupke Chupke". But they never made an impact.

It is an open secret that it was Kareena who played an important role in fetching Shahid roles. But despite his success individually, could never strike the chemistry with Kareena in their films.

For one, they never tried to hide their four-year love-hate relationship, except for one private moment with was captured on a cell phone.

Kareena had then dragged a well-known English daily to court for printing the lip-locked moment with Shahid.

Sources say "Jab We Met" was the nail in the coffin of the relationship. It is believed that things went astray between them in the last three months. Kareena is at a crucial crossroad in her career and just can't afford another flop.

It became necessary for her to detach herself from a budding star. Her closeness to Saif Ali Khan during the shooting of "Tashaan" only made things worse. It may surprise many but the piece of news now doing the rounds is that it was Shahid who first pulled the plug.

As of now, the two have chosen to stay mum about their personal lives. After all, any public statement could adversely affect the box-office results of their yet-to-be-released "Jab We Met".

I was madly in love with Zeenat : Dev Anand

Suddenly, one day, I felt I was desperately in love with Zeenat — and wanted to say so to her! To make an honest confession, at a very special, exclusive place meant for romance.

I chose the Rendezvous at the Taj, on the top of the city, where we had dined together once earlier.

No setting could be more appropriate, I thought, than a quiet candlelit table in the corner, the candle throwing its gleam on Zeenat’s face, just as the glow of her cigarette-lighter had lit up her face when I first met her.

The dimmed lights of the city below, shining out of the darkness, would certainly light up the romance of the moment.

I called her up to say, ‘Zeenie, I want to go out on a date with you tonight.’ ‘But aren’t we already going together to a party tonight?’ she asked me.

‘Of course we are. But let’s just go there only for a brief while, say ‘Hi’ to the gathering and then quickly disappear!’ It was an order, but very lovingly conveyed.

She was quiet.

‘H-e-ll-o’; I said.

‘Yes I am listening.’

‘Is that a date?’ I asked.

‘If you so desire. See you then.’ And she hung up.

I picked her up. Together we went to the party. The first person who greeted Zeenat from a distance was a drunken Raj Kapoor, with a gallant drawl. ‘There she is’. He threw his arms around her exuberantly.

This suddenly struck me as a little too familiar. And the way she reciprocated his embrace seemed much more than just polite and courteous.

She quickly bent down to touch his feet, and then gave me an embarrassed look. Raj grasped my hand in a very tight grip, like never before, as if trying to make amends for some wrong he had done, suddenly overflowing with affection.

A hint of suspicion crossed my mind. A couple of days earlier, a rumour had been floating around that Zeenat had gone to Raj’s studio for a screen test for the main role of in his new movie Satyam Shivam Sundaram.

The hearsay now started ringing true. My heart was bleeding.

‘You are breaking your promise,’ Raj was now telling Zeenat in his drunken joviality, ‘that you will always be seen by me only in a white sari.’

More embarrassment was writ large on her face and Zeenat was not the same Zeenat for me anymore. My heart broke into pieces.

I wanted to leave the party at once and go off somewhere alone, to be just by myself, so that I could swallow the humiliation thrust on my ego.

But a struggle within me transformed itself to a ‘hell-with it all’ attitude and prompted me to say goodbye to a relationship which, though had been non-committal emotionally on both sides, had been honest all the same.

There was no space in it for professional dishonesty.

The painting I had made of her showed signs of cracking. The evening delivered a blow to my personality, and my dominating spirit.

I had decided on the spur of the moment to tell Zeenat for the first time how much I loved her.I quickly detached myself, convincing myself that I had blundered, taking too many things for granted….

I had prepared her for the world and she was free to go into the arms of anyone who would help her further her ambitious dreams….

I closed my eyes. Zeenat still remained beautiful in my eyes with an honest soul. And Raj, a passionate filmmaker.

Excerpts from Dev Saab's autobiography Romancing With Life.

Onir announces his next film

Since the release of Bas Ek Pal, filmmaker Onir has been involved in conceptualization of number of projects with My Brother's Bride and remake of Chashme Baddoor being the fore runners.

While his ambitious project You and I, which was touted to be Karisma Kapoor's comeback film, has been put on hold, Onir has started work on his next film which deals with Human Trafficking. The film will be produced by Siddhi Vinayak Creations while UNODC (United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime) would be the knowledge partners for the film.

"The interest in the subject started from an article about the use of Child Jockey in the camel race", says Onir when questioned about his motivation for doing the film. "The more I did the research, the more horrified I was at the atrocities."

He surely must have heard of human trafficking earlier as well, isn't it so? "I am not denying that. In fact it will be untrue to say that I was not aware of human trafficking, but sometimes something moves you deep inside and propels you into action. That is what happened."

Rattling down some statistics, Onir says, "I was shocked when I got to know about the numbers. Do you know that illicit trade in humans is valued at an estimated $32 billion? Also, according to UN estimates, 600,000 - 800,000 individuals are trafficked across international borders each year? While South Asia is home to the second largest population of these internationally trafficked persons, India itself is a country of origin, transit and destination."

"I realized that it was happening in different form all around and something needs to be done. What better medium than cinema to bring the issue forward?" questions My Brother Nikhil director.

What was his line of action when he finally decided to take the plunge? Replied Onir, "I immediately got in touch with Mr. Ansar Burney who was responsible in a major way for doing hidden camera operations. He had exposed the racket to the world and finally got the use of Child Jockey officially banned in the Middle East. It was inspirational just to be interacting with him. Next I am participating in the conference called 'Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking in South Asia' this month. This is being held in Delhi and is again hosted by UNODC."

Since the film is topical, Onir is leaving no stones unturned to get the right minds working on the research for the film. He is being joined by writers Aftab Alam and Ajay Mongiar. The film's script will be ready in another three months after which the casting and shooting dates would be decided.

Tera Kya Hoga.. will have live bands playing songs

Devdas on hold, without much pre-meditation Sudhir Mishra has started shooting a start-to-finish quickie. The film will be completed in 40 days. "It's called Tera Kya Hoga Johnny. I was supposed to do it after Devdas. I started shooting it immediately because Devdas got delayed” informs Sudhir Mishra.

In Tera Kya Hoga Johnny, Sudhir again returns to his favourite creative haunt. The streets of Mumbai. "I've done films on Mumbai earlier. It's in the mood of my Iss Raat Ki Subah Nahin and Dharavi. It's set at a time when Mumbai wants to be Shanghai. Who gives a shit about a street kid named Johnny who sells coffee on the streets of the cruel city?"

The 13-year old protagonist is played by Sikandar who was one of the main characters in a film called Shadows Of Time. "It was a strange film by a German director Florian Gallenberger in Bengali. My casting director saw Sikandar and he was on." The film will have live songs. "We'll have film songs that the protagonist Johnny likes played and sung impromptu."

This is the first time that Sudhir Mishra is directing a film with a child in the lead. "You can't over-direct a child. Let him be. His emotional responses come from within. Nowadays the caliber of child actors has truly improved."

Sudhir Mishra's film also has Neil Mukesh, Karan Nath , K.K . Menon and Sudhir's favourite leading lady, Soha Ali Khan. Exults Sudhir, "Soha is wonderful. She comes so well- prepared on the sets. And once my Khoya Khoya Chand releases Soha would really have arrived."

The release of the film has been postponed. "It's now 14 December. We can't compete with Saawariya and Om Shanti Om as far as the number of prints and theatres are concerned. We want to give Khoya Khoya Chand a big release. It's not an intimate film like my earlier films. It's an epic of sorts."

The film also stars two filmmakers Anurag Kashyap and Aditya Bhattacharya. "I had earlier cast Aditya as a politician in Hazaar Khwaishen Aisi".

The shooting of Pritish Nandy Communications Devdas now begins in Novemeber. Chandramukhi is yet to be cast. "The actress who signs on will have to trust me to create substantial space for her, just as Madhuri Dixit trusted Sanjay Bhansali."

Abhishek Bachchan acts funny in Om Shanti Om

While all are aware about a galaxy of stars making an appearance in Om Shanti Om, the latest buzz in the town is around Abhishek acting funny on the film's sets. Well, strictly for the camera!

Describing the situation in the film where Abhishek is said to have got the house on fire, Farah Khan says, "Abhishek is really funny in the scene. He plays himself while attending an award functions. As a nominee, he is shown to be competing with Shah Rukh Khan and Akshay Kumar."

From where does the comic element come in? "Well for that you have to watch the film", comes an obvious answer, "Though what I can reveal is that everyone from Shah Rukh to Akshay to Abhishek are making fun of themselves in the scene."

Farah further informs that it would be for around one to one and a half minutes of screen time that Abhishek enjoys in Om Shanti Om.

Talking about Abhishek's professionalism, Farah says, "Abhishek was quite sportive while enacting the scene. Also, he made an exception for us as he shot till 2 AM in the night. It was quite sweet of him since he just returned from the shoot of another film where he was busy till 10 PM."

Abhishek's guest appearances:

In the past there have been number of films where Abhishek has made a guest appearances. These are Ram Gopal Varma Ki Aag, Shootout At Lokhandwala, Lage Raho Munnabhai, Neal N Nikki, Ek Ajnabee, Home Delivery, Salaam Namaste and Hum Tum. He is also rumoured to be making a special appearance in friend Apoorva Lakhia's Mission Istanbul.

Suniel Shetty signed for Singh Is King

Suniel Shetty is all set to share the screen space with none other than Akshay Kumar in the film Singh Is King directed by Anees Bazmee. The news has come as a surprise for many as apparently, Suniel was adamant about not working with Akshay Kumar because of latter’s so called notorious acts while editing.

Nevertheless, the miracle has taken place. On asking Vipul Shah, the producer of the film, as to how he managed to get both these actors to act together, he said,” Anees Bazmee, the director of the film was very sure that once Shetty listens to the script, he will agree to do the film.”

But what about the issue that crept between Suniel and Akshay? Vipul Shah responds, “Suniel very categorically denied of any issue between him and Akshay. And now he is on board. Moreover, both Akshay and Sunil are professional enough to see beyond it.”

All said and done, the duo Akshay and Suniel are all set to yet again create a magic like they did in Mohra, Dhadkan, Hera Pheri and its sequel.

Singh Is King is going on floors by the end of October. Pritam will be composing the music for the film.

NFDC to organise Film Bazaar at the IFFI

National Film Development Corporation of India (NFDC), the central agency which promotes the Cinemas Of India with a prime goal to plan, encourage and organize integrated and efficient development of the Indian film industry presents Film Bazaar India’07 – An effective & an interactive platform to promote Indian Films this year through a prominent Business Lounge & a Co-Production Market. The Film Bazaar will be conducted from Nov 24 to Nov 26 in Goa at Marriot Resort alongside the International Film Festival of India (IFFI) scheduled at the same time.

The idea behind Film Bazaar is to provide a proficient stage for prospective buyers & sellers of film rights from India and abroad. As the attendees, visitors and participants in the International Film Festival Of India will be present from different parts of the world, The Business Lounge organized by NFDC which will be open to all content owners & buyers will help the prospective buyers & vendors to interact in a secluded business like ambience hence ensuring them of complete confidentiality. All delegates of Film Bazaar will have access to the International Film Festival of India as well

An interesting Co-production Market, organized simultaneously will offer selected directors/ producers the opportunity to present their feature film projects (in all languages and at any stage of production) to co producers, bankers, funds, sales agents, distributors, TV stations, buyers and other potential financiers from India and abroad. At this Market, 15 pre-selected projects drawn from all over India will be presented to all Film Bazaar participants from India and abroad. The last date for entry of projects in the co-production Market is October 15, 2007.

Miss Nina Gupta, Managing Director, NFDC said “Over the years NFDC has provided wide range of services essential to the growth of Indian cinema in its entire value supply chain in our country. In line with this goal, this year we want to take it a step ahead and offer an effectual medium for the creative and business aspects of this industry to meet and discuss on a global scale. It gives us extreme pleasure to be associated with The International Film Festival of India and plan to make the Film Bazaar an annual affair from NFDC.

Muzamil and Rimi Sen in Horn Ok Please

Muzamil Ibrahim and Rimi Sen are all set to do the double roles in Horn Ok Please directed by Rakesh Sarang. Horn Ok Please will be Sarang’s directorial debut in films; although, he has a long list of tv serials to his credit.

The film has Nana Patekar in the lead role playing a truck driver. Not divulging too many details about the film, Sarang says, “Horn Ok Please is neither slapstick nor dialogue but a situational comedy with lot of twist and turns.” He adds, “Rimi Sen will be seen opposite both Nana and Muzamil, as she plays a double role.”

Excited about exploring into new genre Muzamil says, “The script of the film is amazing and I am looking forward to work with Nana Patekar who I believe is one of the honest actors in the film faternity”.

Horn Ok Please will go on the floors on October 15 and is expected to release by mid of January. Lalit Pandit is the music director of the film.

Amitabh Bachchan endorses another Chyawanprash

Amitabh Bachchan is all set to endorse yet another Dabur India’s product called Chyawan Junior. With Dabur Chyawan Junior, Dabur has ventured into the market of Malted Food Drink. ‘Apun Ka Style’ is a creative idea on which the advertisement campaign of this Dabur Product is based.

Amitabh Bachchan teasing boys in television commercials of various Dabur India products namely Dabur Chyawanprash, Dabur Hajmola and Dabur Glucose-D are very popular among children. Dabur Chyawan commercial has been made by McCann Erickson where Amitabh will be seen taken by surprise when he watches his grandson drink Dabur Chyawan Junior as a morning breakfast in the absence of the latter’s mother. Amitabh says 'Yeh to mummy ka style hai', to which the kid says, 'Yeh apun ka bhi style hai'.

Prasoon Joshi, executive chairman, McCann Erickson India, said that in the whole process of carrying out this commercial, they were very careful about Amitabh Bachchan not being the centre of the attraction. Mr. Bachchan rather has played an advocate who has been a helping hand in bringing creative together.

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