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Yahoo! Movies Review: Himmatwala

HimmatwalaCast: Ajay Devgn, Tamannaah, Mahesh Manjrekar, Paresh Rawal

Direction: Sajid Khan

Rating: **

The problem with Sajid Khan’s ‘Himmatwala’ is the director can’t make-up his mind whether he wants to make a spoof or whether he wants to recreate the nostalgia of the 1980s. The film thus hangs in a precarious balance vacillating between the two extremes.

Ravi (Ajay Devgn) is a street fighter who discovers that his widowed mother and sister are in dire straits in his native village. He returns to Ramnagar to avenge the death of his father and seek justice for the people of his village. Sher Singh’s (Mahesh Manjrekar) daughter is equally spoiled and walks around the village in very small dresses, brandishing a whip. The spoilt brat soon falls for Himmatwala Ravi and is then swishing around in salwar-kameez plotting her father’s downfall.

A very typical Bollywood revenge saga like this one in the hands of a better director could have become a laughter riot. Sajid Khan however, hopelessly grapples with the treatment finally completely losing track by the climax. The dialogue-baazi quite often doesn’t have the desired effect, the action sequences look very Rohit Shetty style and the humour falls flat quite often. Even Ajay realizes that his jokes are not that funny and even mentions it more than once in the film.

What works for the film is basically Ajay who seems completely convinced with the flimsy script. It’s as if his presence is enough to make the film a Rs 100 crore enterprise. Tamannaah looks good and shows enough flawless skin in the ‘Tathaiya Tathaiya’ and ‘Taki Taki’ song, to ensure they will become the most popular songs of the year.

Why we start the film with the ‘Thank God It’s Friday’ song or why we suddenly throw in a totally redundant item song, is completely beyond comprehension. Farah had very deftly handled the rebirth saga and turned it on its head in ‘Om Shanti Om’ to deliver a complete entertainer, unfortunately Sajid completely fails to do the same.
Source - movies.yahoo

First look: Raanjhanaa

Pic Courtesy: Twitter
The first look poster of Dhanush-starrer Hindi romance Raanjhanaa was released.

"The official first look of Raanjhanaa. A beautiful journey. I took against all odds. Happy Holi," Dhanush posted on his twitter page. 

The film also features Sonam Kapoor, Abhay Deol, Swara Bhaskar, Deepak Dobriyal and Mohammed Zeeshan. 

Directed by Anand Rai, the film is currently in post-production. Produced by Eros International, it is scheduled to release on June 28. 

Oscar-winning composer A.R. Rahman has composed the music. 

Meanwhile, Dhanush is currently busy shooting for Tamil comedy Naiyaandi.

Ajay's surprise visitor on the sets of Himmatvala

Ajay's surprise visitor on the sets
Sanjay Dutt who was shooting in the neighborhood came especially on the sets to watch Devgn dance on the song 'Taki o Taki Re'which was being shot. When asked Dutt about his visit to the sets of Himmatwala, he said, "Ajay and I are like brothers..and since I was shooting for Policegiri in Ramoji Rao, I took some time off from the shoot especially because I wanted to watch Ajay dance for 'Taki O Taki (laughing).."

Ajay's Taki
‘Taki O Taki Re’ is choreographed by Farah Khan and Devgn shot a part of the sequence of the song with his leading lady of the film Tamannaah in Jaipur.A source close to the team said, “It’s a very 80’s dance number and Ajay was seen quite comfortable with the steps. He has his own style of dancing and has given the ditty his best. We are sure that Ajay’s dancing will leave all of us thrilled.”

Sonakshi's disco look
Sajid Khan is all set to make you groove to the 80’s style in his disco song ‘Thank God It’s Friday’ which has Sonakshi Sinha in a vintage sequined golden dress and headband which strikingly resembles Parveen Babi’s look in the song ‘Pyaar Karne Wale’ from the film Shaan. And the other look where she is wearing Black tight pants, jacket and boots is inspired from Sridevi’s disco look from Chaalbaaz.

Himmatwala revisted
The Mahurat shot had Ajay Devgn delivering the very famous power packed dialogue “Na main dilliwala, na mein CBI wala, ek behen ka bhai hu, ek maa ka beta..Himmatwala!..” Zareena Wahab & Leena Jumani who play Devgn’s mother and sister respectively along with Mahesh Manjrekar were also a part of the scene.

Himmatwala revisted
Sajid wanted everything to go perfect in the very first take as he is a little superstitious about the Mahurat shot and wanted to incorporate it in the film as it is without any edits or retakes. And much to everyone’s excitement, everything went off as it was planned as this was the 1st time that a Mahurat Shot was broadcasted live on such a humongous platform” quipped a source on the sets.
Himmatwala revisted
Ajay Devgn, Director Sajid Khan, Producer Vashu Bhagnani, Disney UTV's Sidharth Roy Kapur, Music Directors Sajid Wajid, Singer Mika and Lyricist Sameer were all present to witness the occasion.

Amitabh Bachchan to collaborate with Bally Sagoo again for an album?

Amitabh Bachchan recently wrote on his blog that he met music producer and artist Bally Sagoo.

Big B and Bally had collaborated for an album,Aby Baby, in 1996. Now, 17 years later, they discussed the possibility of revisiting the album.

When contacted, Bally, who is currently in Mumbai, confirmed their meeting. He said, "I am lucky that Amitabh Bachchan is a close friend. I met him two-three days ago to give him my new album and we discussed Aby Baby. It was good meeting him and I would love to do Aby Baby 2 with him."

The song Eer Bir Phatte from the 1996 album was a hit and we're sure that fans of the superstar would love to see him release another album.

While these are just initial talks, it could lead to something concrete in the near future. In fact, if it materialises, the album will have Big B crooning to today's contemporary music styles.

Bally added, "I'd like to take it forward from the last album and give it a different touch. This one will have today's style of music, in the sense that we will use a lot of house, techno,  dubstep — genres that are big today."
Source - times of india

Shah Rukh, Katrina and Pitbull to perform at IPL opening ceremony



Superstar Shah Rukh Khan, the co-owner ofKolkata Knight Riders, will reportedly add glamour and extravaganza to the opening ceremony of the sixth edition of Indian Premier League (IPL) with his performance.

SRK's 'Jab Tak Hai Jaan' co-star' Katrina Kaif is set to join the actor for her maiden performance in Kolkata and the organisers, Red Chillies Entertainments Pvt Ltd, have also roped in international rapper, Pitbull.

The ceremony will take place at Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata on April 2.

"SRK loves the city of joy and he is already very excited to perform there. Katrina will be performing there for the first time. When Pitbull was told that he is being invited to perform at the opening ceremony of IPL and SRK would also be performing, he agreed to come immediately," a source said.

The organisers are also planning to include flying drummers, Chinese percussionist and fireworks to make the ceremony a lavish affair.
Source - times of india

Ranbir Kapoor doesn't want to clash with Salman Khan

Abhinav Kashyap may be wanting to takeSalman Khan head on by releasing his film Besharam on the same day as Khan's Mental but if rumours are to be believed the film's lead Ranbir Kapoor is shying away from direct competition with the industry's numero uno.

As per reliable sources, when reports of Salman planning to release his film on October 2 started appearing, the date that is already secured by the producers of Besharam, Ranbir suggested that they move the date whereas Abhinav was adamant.

'Why should we move our date?' he was heard saying. Speculations are rife that Salman wants to take on both, Ranbir and Abhinav.

While Salman and Ranbir share a history of sorts with their blow-hot blow-cold relationship, Abhinav reportedly had a fallout with the Khans during the making of Dabangg.

Well, if Salman sticks to his plan and goes ahead with the release on October 2, it can be an opportune moment for Ranbir to prove his star power at the box office.

Also, his film is an out-and-out commercial, but looks like he is chickening out from the situation and doesn't intend taking the risk.
Source - times of india

Sanjay Dutt's conviction leaves Bollywood shocked


The Supreme Court upheld Sanjay's conviction under the Arms Act for illegally possessing weapons, and sent him to five years' imprisonment.
Sanjay Dutt's conviction by the Supreme Court in the 1993 Mumbai blasts case has left the Hindi film industry in shock and dismay. Filmmakers like Mahesh Bhatt and Karan Johar are sad about the judgment for the "good-hearted" man, who has been entertaining movie-goers for the past over three decades. (Pics: Bollywood tweets suppport for Sanjay Dutt)

The Supreme Court upheld Sanjay's conviction under the Arms Act for illegally possessing weapons, and sent him to five years' imprisonment. (Read: Sanjay Dutt convicted in 1993 Bombay blasts case, gets 5 years in jail )

Filmmakers and actors took to Twitter to share their views on the conviction. Here's what they had to say:

Mahesh Bhatt: Heart Broken. Just heard that Sanjay Dutt has to go to jail for five years. I expected mercy! Alas, it did not happen.

Kunal Kohli: The real planners of the 1993 blasts are sitting safely in Pakistan. Till they are brought to book, justice will not be served. The 1993 blast case should not be made about Sanjay Dutt.

Karan Johar: I am truly shattered to hear of Sanju's sentence... the nicest guy I have known just doesn't deserve this. My heart goes out to him.

Vishal Dadlani: I stand with Sanjay Dutt, always will. He's my brother. He made mistakes, but he's served more than his time, in terms of mental stress. I am not contesting or denying the law, but it breaks my heart that he has to face this. He has done so much, so selflessly for so many! When I barely knew him, I needed some personal help in a family matter. I just asked, and Sanjay went above and beyond duty to help. I'm not denying the law. But am I not allowed to feel sad for a friend?

Shekhar Ravijani: He's the most loved person in the business. One of the nicest people I know. Man with a big heart. My brother. I am with Sanjay Dutt.

Ashish Chowdhry: There are bad guys, there are nice guys. Sanjay Dutt most definitely is the latter. By far he's the kindest and nicest guy I know. I'm really sad.

Aftab Shivdasani: Sad to know the verdict on Sanjay Dutt, my heart goes out to him and his family. He was a fighter, is one and will always be one.

Dabboo Ratnani: Shattered to hear about Sanjay Dutt. Love him. He is like my elder brother and has a pure heart of gold. God give him strength.

Celina Jaitly: I am shocked to hear the verdict on Mr. Dutt. My heart goes out to the Dutt family. We all love you Mr Dutt.
Source - ndtv

Aamir's different avatars

There has been buzz about Aamir’s new project and if reports are to be believed he will be playing a female character in a venture that could be titled ‘Zindagi Muskuraye’.

Aamir Khan's new avatar
Men have atleast once in their life waited for a woman to get ready. As woman take all the time on the earth to look their best, our very own Aamir known to be the perfectionist that he is follows similar thoughts.


Aamir Khan is not only particular about his performance but makes sure he has the exact look that the role demands.

SOURCE - movies.yahoo

Bipasha’s quality time with family



Over the last couple of years Bipasha has been bonding with her family more. She adores her dad and mom and never misses a chance to be with them.



She says that she has been away from her family ever since she turned 16 and this is a perfect time to spend time with her family.

'This is one rare photo she had put up on her social networking site. She says that she loves to wear the bikini and has been a fan of it since she was a kid.
Source - yahoo movies

National Film Awards announced


Actor Irrfan Khan has won the best actor for his performance as athlete-turned-dacoit in Paan Singh Tomar at the 60th National Film Awards announced today.

Paan Singh Tomar, which has been produced by UTV Software communications Ltd. and directed by Tigmanshu Dhulia, also won the best Hindi feature film.

In non-feature film category, the award for the best film has been conferred to Shepherds of Paradise (Gojri and Urdu) produced and directed by Raja Shabir Khan.

In the category of best writing on cinema section, the book Silent Cinema in India - A Pictorial Journey (English) written by B.D. Garga and published by Harper Collins Publisher India has bagged the top honour, whereas P.S. Radhakrishnan has been conferred the award for the best film critic.

In the feature film category, a total of 38 films from 14 languages have been selected for the 60th National Awards. Chittagong (Hindi) and 101 Chodiyangal (Malayalam) have shared the Indira Gandhi award for the best debut film of a director.

The award for the best popular film for providing wholesome entertainment has been shared by Vicky Donor (Hindi) and Ustad Hotel (Malayalam).


The award for the best director has been conferred on Shivaji Lotan Patil for the film Dhag (Marathi).

The award for the best actor has been shared by Irrfan playing the title role in Paan Singh Tomar and Vikram Gokhale for the film Anumati (Marathi).

The award for the best actress has been conferred on Usha Jadhav for her performance in Dhag (Marathi).

The award for the best supporting actor has been conferred on Anu Kapur for the film Vicky Donor.

The award for the best supporting actress has been shared by Dolly Ahluwalia for the film Vicky Donor and Kalpana for the film ThanichallaNjan (Malyalam).

The best child artist award has been shared by Master Virendra Pratap for Dekh Indian Circus (Hindi) and Master Minon for 101 Chodiyangal (Malayalam).

The award for the best male playback singer has been conferred on Shankar Mahadevan for the song Bolo Na from the film Chittagong. The award for the best female playback singer has been conferred on Samhita for the song Palakein Naa Moon Don from the film Aarti Anklekartikekar (Marathi).

The award for the best screenplay writer (original) has been conferred on Sujoy Ghosh for the film Kahaani.


The award for best screenplay writer (adapted) has been conferred on Bhavesh Mandalia and Umesh Shukla for the film Oh My God.

The award for the best dialogue has been conferred on Anjali Menon for the film Ustad Hotel (Malayalam). The award for the best lyrics has been conferred on Prasoon Joshi for the song Bolo Na from the film Chittagong.

A special jury award has been conferred on Rituparno Ghosh and Nawazuddin Siddiqui for the films Chitrangadha (Bengali), Kahaani, Gangs of Wasseypur, Dekh Indian circus and Talaash (Hindi).

The award for the best choreography has been conferred on Pt. Birju Maharaj for the film Vishwaroopam (Tamil).

In the non-feature film category, Vikrant Pawar has got the best director award for the film Kaatal (Marathi). The award for the best debut film of a director has been conferred to Lipika Singh Darai for the film Eka Gachha Eka Manisa Eka Samudra (Odia).

Shumona Goel and Shai Heredia for the film I Am Micro (English) and Vasudah Joshi for Cancer Katha (English) have been selected for special jury award. Timbaktu (English) has been awarded as the best film in the environmental category and Dreaming Taj Mahal (Hindi and Urdu) has been conferred the award for the best promotional.

The national film awards jury was led this year by filmmaker Basu Chatterjee.
Source - yahoo movies

Sridevi's English Vinglish goes to Germany

Gauri Shinde's English Vinglish is a film that has opened linguistic doors in its scriptural context by showing the protagonist overcoming her inhibitions regarding the English language.

But the film seems to be crossing the language barrier beyond the screenplay. We now hear English 
Vinglish is being dubbed into German and released in the country next month. 

Confirming this development, the film's producers Eros International said, "We are releasing English Vinglish (EV) in a dubbed German version in the country with 20 prints in May 2013. Not only that, this weekend EV is releasing in 7 screens in Hong Kong with Cantonese subtitles, with 29 shows a day, this is the widest opening any Indian film has ever got in HK. What's also interesting is they are also screening the film at The Directors club screen, which is like Red lounge and Hindi films are not released in these screens ideally."

Reacting to the film's release in Hong Kong with Cantonese subtitles and to the dubbed German version, Sridevi said, "I am very happy and I hope EV is dubbed and released in many other languages as it will find a sense of identification with all non-English speaking people across the world."

Adds director Gauri Shinde, "I am thrilled that our film is setting out to achieve what it tried to say within the storyline. To break the linguistic barrier, and to make a communication across countries and communities. To bring closer different people from all over the world and bridge the gap between cultures. It's great to see this movement happen. I'd love for as many people to watch it as possible."

While talking about exploring new markets Kumar Ahuja, President – Business Development, Eros International says, “In the last one year, we have had some major releases in Japan including Robot, Sivaji, Ra.One and now Om Shanti Om. In fact, Ra.One and Om Shanti Om were sold to Japan in December 2011 itself and we planned the release of these films in a phased manner with Ra. One releasing last year followed by OSO’s release which was locked a few months back. All this has taken meticulous planning and is definitely not a hasty decision on our part. Eros has been the front runner in exploring new territories for Indian films and we continue to develop new markets for our old and present releases”.
Source - hindustan times

Anushka Sharma shortlisted for Steven Spielberg's Kashmir film



Anushka Sharma has done in five years what no Indian actress could do in decades of their career — make it to the shortlist for a Steven Spielberg movie. At just 24 years of age and with only seven movies to her name, Anushka is the frontrunner for the legendary Hollywood filmmaker’s next movie on Indo-Pak affairs, for which he just came visiting.

She is currently the talk of the town thanks to this international achievement, even as Speilberg remains tight-lipped about the final cast of his film. “We have finalised a script ... but we’re still trying to figure out the casting, locations and who’s going to direct it,” AnushkaSpielberg said in a session hosted by actor Amitabh Bachchan in Mumbai. If all goes well and Anushka is finalised, she’ll get to share screen space with actors such as Denzel Washington, Bradley Cooper and Richard Gere.

This isn’t the only feather in her cap. The model-turned-actor, who got lucky right at the outset when she got to star with Shah Rukh Khan in her 2008 debut — Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi, also has over 10 endorsement deals in her kitty, including some plum projects with big moolah involved.

Industry insiders who have worked with her say everything seems to be working in her favour. “Anushka bagging anything stupendous is not a surprise. She is one of the finest and nuanced talents of our fraternity,” says director Maneesh Sharma, who worked with her in Band Baaja Baaraat (2010), which was a superhit. Celebrity brand manager Manish Porwal says, “She is a great package of talent and good looks. She is certainly knocking on the door of the top three in Bollywood.”

Film expert Atul Mohan adds, “She made the right choices and was lucky to be working with big banners. If this Spielberg film works out, there’s no looking back for her.”
Source - Hindustan Times

Sanjay Dutt: 'Hirani will direct Munna Bhai 3'



Mumbai, March 16 -- There's a new twist in Munna Bhai's life. A few days ago, the makers of the hit franchise announced that Rajkumar Hirani, who directed Munna Bhai MBBS (2003) and Lage Raho Munna Bhai (2006), would be replaced by Subhash Kapoor, of Jolly LLB fame, to direct the upcoming third part.

But now, in a surprising move, the film's lead actor Sanjay Dutt, informs us that Hirani will continue as the director of the Munna Bhai franchise.

"I am happy that it's (Munna Bhai 3) shaping up now because it had to happen ultimately. I just want to clear on one thing: Munna Bhai 3 is going to be directed by Raju Hirani. The fourth part will be done by Subhash (Kapoor)," says Sanjay, adding, "That's what I wish and want."

Ask Sanjay if Hirani is definitely helming Munna Bhai 3 and he reasserts his point, "Yes, it will definitely happen like that (with Hirani as director)." Subhash was roped in to direct Munna Bhai Chale Delhi as Hirani was apparently too busy with the Aamir Khan-Sanjay-starrer P.K.

It's believed that Sanjay is personally keen to complete the Munna Bhai trilogy with Hirani at the helm. "He had even discussed the film with Raju sir when they were shooting for P.K. in Rajasthan," says an industry insider.

Talking about why the film's third installment has taken over six years and is yet to be made, Sanjay says, "It has to go beyond Lage Raho... but I think Raju and the team has cracked the idea this time. It makes me feel good that people still want to watch Munna Bhai after such a long time."

When we contacted Subhash to ask him about this new development, he insisted that he is directing Munna Bhai 3. Hirani, however, remained unavailable for a comment.
Source - Hindustan Times

Om shanti om gets a big release in Japan!

Mumbai, March 14 -- A few days ago, we reported that Farah Khan was upset with distributors of her 2007 film, Om Shanti Om (OSO) - Eros International - for not promoting the film well ahead of its release in Japan on March 16.

And now, news is that Eros International has planned a series of promotional activities to market the Shah Rukh Khan-Deepika Padukone starrer. In fact, the Japanese distributors are assisting them to promote the film too.

"They have organised flash mobs and the Indian Embassy in Japan is also throwing a party for Farah, where many senior Japanese officials will be joining her," says a spokesperson from Eros.

The production company also claims that OSO will have a wider release than any other Bollywood films that have opened there. "Normally, Indian films release in two or three screens in Japan, but we have managed to get 15," adds the spokesperson.

Kumar Ahuja, senior vicepresident, business development, Eros International explains further, "Shah Rukh enjoys a cult fan following overseas, including Japan, and the showcasing planned for the film there reasserts his global appeal. We are confident that OSO will be well received on its release."

Farah, who left for Japan on March 12, will be staying there till the release. She says, "I'm happy that Eros is taking OSO to another level. It's fantastic that six years after its release, it continues to entertain audiences across the world."

Source - Hindustan Times

Happy birthday Aamir Khan', wishes buddy Salman Khan



Aamir Khan is expected to be in Switzerland on his birthday where he is shooting for 'Dhoom 3'.

New Delhi: If reports are to be believed then Aamir Khan is not celebrating his 48th birthday with his family as he is in Switzerland shooting for his Christmas release 'Dhoom 3'. The film has Katrina Kaif working opposite him.

The actor is known to be a perfectionist and is expected to leave no stone unturned to make his character believable. John Abraham had played the hero in the first installment of the franchise while Hrithik was the hero of the second edition.


Aamir Khan is identified as someone who has a very give and take relationship with media. It was evident during his TV show 'Satyamev Jayate' when he used social networking sites to the fullest. Some of his friends and well wishers took to Twitter to express their happiness on his birthday.

Source - IBNLive

Karan Johar compares his next to Jab We Met



With 'Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani', Karan Johar hopes to revisit the formula love story

The uncrowned king of family entertainers himself hasn't made an archetypal love story since the 1998 film, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai. ‘Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani’ however, he insists, revisits the same space. "I would define the film as a perfectly formulated formulaic love story. After Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, ‘Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani’ can be put in the same bracket," he says.

When the Kareena Kapoor Shahid Kapoor starrer ‘Jab We Met’ released, the two actors had already broken up in real life. The film however, went on to become a raging success. Now, another former-real-life couple, Ranbir Kapoor and Deepika Padukone, will be seen together in Karan Johar's upcoming production, ‘Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani’ (YJHD). The filmmaker says, "After JWM, we haven't had a quintessential love story in Bollywood. In the past few years, we've seen a slew of masala action entertainers and experimental cinema. We've had films like Dabangg, Agneepath and Rowdy Rathore but in the process, genuine love stories took a back seat."

Ask if the film is a homage to yesteryear director Nasir Husain's brand of rom-coms (as widely reported), and he clarifies, "Not exactly. It's not influenced by a particular kind of film, but it does channel the basic essence of romance in Hindi cinema." Karan adds that Jawaani Hai Deewani tries to understand the emotions of a man in his 20s as he tackles life, love, ambition, friendship and happiness.

Given he's a director; we wonder how involved he was with the film as a producer. "I can't take any credit for it. It's completely Ayan's (Mukerji; director) baby. My involvement has been limited to lending financial and moral support. Otherwise, it belongs to Ayan, Ranbir, Deepika and also Aditya (Roy Kapoor) and Kalki (Koechlin)," he adds.
Source - movies.yahoo

Call letters issued Recruitment against Scouts & Guides Quota/Liluah

Call letters issued Recruitment against Scouts & Guides Quota/Liluah

Kareena Kapoor, the perfect daughter-in-law

One has to give it to Kareena for redefining the term 'commitment' in her real life.That she is a dedicated actress is something that will be vouched by one and all in the industry. But full brownie points to her for being a dedicated wife as well as daughter-in-law. 

The same was evident when she attended Saif's cousin's pre-wedding function in Bhopal, despite having an erratic work schedule.
 

Kareena is surely managing her married life quite well. 


Source - hindustan times

No further hike in railway fares and freight charges: Bansal - The Hindu


The Railways have decided to absorb the hike in diesel prices for bulk purchasers and not pass it on to passengers and freight customers.
Railway Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal on Monday ruled out any hike in freight and passenger fares in the wake of oil marketing companies raising diesel prices by Re. 1 per litre for its bulk purchasers.

In his budget proposals, Mr. Bansal raised freight charges by almost 5.79% across the board to raise Rs. 4,200 crore during 2013-14 to offset the estimated rise in its fuel bill by Rs. 5,100 crore. He passed on the entire burden on the consignors.

He, however, absorbed the estimated hike on the passenger segment of about Rs. 800 crore though he had more than made it up by raising other charges, including reservation fees and surcharge and clerkage charges and tatkal booking rates, which together are expected to yield Rs. 850 crore in the next fiscal.

The Re. 1 hike in diesel prices is expected to put an additional annual burden of Rs. 300 crore on the Railways during the next financial year.

The Railways suffered a burden of Rs. 3,300 crore due to a hike of Rs. 10.8 a litre for diesel for bulk purchasers in January.

Taking into account the hike in electricity charges, the Railways have estimated their fuel bill to go up by Rs. 5,100 crore.

The fresh hike in diesel prices will push the bill up by Rs. 5,400 crore, but Mr. Bansal told reporters that there would be no fresh hike in fare and freight prices.

The proposals he announced in Parliament need to be ratified by both Houses of Parliament and a mid-way revision would necessarily need to be first moved in Parliament.

Mr. Bansal also declared that the Ministry would review the situation to adjust the fuel component on a six monthly basis.
Source - The Hindu

Shah Rukh - Katrina to perform live again



In February this year, Shah Rukh Khan performed with Katrina Kaif at a high profile show in Muscat. This was the 'Jab Tak Hai Jaan' couple's first live act together.The latest is that the two are once again being roped in for another show. This time, they will shake a leg in Dubai. 

Sources close to the show say that the event managers are looking at October 24 as the possible date. At least three local organisers are in talks with Mohammed Morani whose company will helm the show. Talking about another Shah Rukh-Katrina show on the cards in Emirates, Morani said, "The response to Shah Rukh and Kat's last performance was terrific. And enquiries are in progress for such a show in October in Dubai."
Interestingly, Shah Rukh's arch rival Salman's show with Priyanka Chopra in Dubai in December 2012 had eventually left a rather large hole in the organisers' wallet. The Dubai organisers seem to be on a safer wicket with Shah Rukh.

"Shah Rukh and Katrina's show in February was a goods commercial decision. We would like to capitalise on that," said a member of the events team.
Source - Times of India

Mira Nair to re-release Salaam Bombay after 25 years



Mira Nair's ode to the city's underbelly turns 25 this year with a re-release. So where is the motley crew today?

Salaam Bombay, Mira Nair's debut film that won many international accolades including the Camera d'Or and the Prix Publique at the Cannes Festival, is turning 25 this year and to commemorate this, PVR is re-releasing the landmark film on March 22.

Shot in real locations and featuring non-actors, the international project chronicled the life of street children, drug-pushers, pimps and prostitutes of a red light area of Mumbai. The narrative weaved in the murk and grime of the Mumbai underbelly while following the life of a Krishna aka Chaipau—a young boy who runs away to Bombay to earn money. In the film, Nair deploys a Kubrickesque colour scheme, and a Hitchcockian mise-en-scene but the end product is a style that is unmistakably her own.

The film that went on to win the National Award and an Oscar nomination in the Best Foreign Film category, starred Shafiq Syed as young Krishna, and launched the career of Irrfan Khan. It also had Raghuvir Yadav and Nana Patekar in key roles.

"It's absolutely thrilling to bring 'Salaam Bombay!' to a new generation of young people. The story is as alive today!" Nair said. An elated Irrfan said: "It will be as fresh as it was back then... I am sure people will enjoy watching the movie."

Shafiq Syed
While many from the cast have made it big either in Bollywood or television, the child actor who won a National Award for his role as Krishna / Chaipau in Salaam Bombay now drives an auto on the streets of Bangalore. When Mirror caught up with him, he retorted that the film is now a closed chapter: "I have forgotten everything. I don't understand what this brouhaha about the film turning 25 is all about. I didn't get any good acting offers after the film. I was unemployed for a long time and even now as an auto driver I find it difficult to make ends meet. I have four kids and now all I want is to give them proper education. I had penned a script on my life and struggle post-Salaam Bombay, but no producer is interested. Maybe some day I'll b able to tell my story to the world. "

Irrfan Khan
Originally chosen to play one of the main kids in the film, 18-year-old Irrfan debuted with a one-scene role as a scribe as he was too tall to 'fit into the group'. Today he has quite a few international projects in his filmography: ...Namesake, ...Spiderman, Slumdog... , Life of Pi.

Raghuvir Yadav
The role of Chillum remains the most acclaimed role of this Silver Peacock Best Actor Award winner. Apart from this, two of his other films, Lagaan and Water also got Oscar nominations in the Best Foreign Language Film category for Yadav, who now leads a relatively quiet life.

Sanjana Kapoor
The film saw one of the rare big screen appearances of Sanjana Kapoor in a role of a Western journalist. The theatre person has been the driving force behind Prithvi Theatre, until she launched Junoon recently.

Nana Patekar
The actor who played the role of Baba, the pimp, was one of the few known actors who worked in the film. Since then, his powerful performances in Parinda, Prahaar, Ankush, Khamoshi: The Musical won much critical acclaim while his role in Krantiveer won him the National Award.
Source - timesofindia.

भागलपुर के दादामुनि


100 years of hindi cinema


हिंदी फिल्मों के विकास में अतुल्य योगदान देने वाले स्व. अशोककुमार -जिन्हें दादामुनि भी कहा जाता था- जब छात्र थे, तो हर वर्ष अपने भाई-बहनों के साथ गर्मी की छुट्टियां नाना सतीशचंद्र बनर्जी के भागलपुर स्थित राजबाटी हवेली में ही बिताते थे। भागलपुर के प्रथम बैरिस्टर रायबहादुर राजा शिवचंद्र बनर्जी उनके परनाना थे। उनके राजसी ठाठ थे। उनके पुत्र व प्रसिद्ध जमींदार कुमार सतीशचंद्र बनर्जी उनके नाना थे।

अशोक कुमार की भतीजी व तिलकामांझी भागलपुर विश्वविद्यालय के स्नातकोत्तर मनोविज्ञान विभाग में प्रोफेसर पद पर कार्यरत डॉ. रत्ना मुखर्जी बताती हैं, अशोक कुमार की माता थीं लूना बनर्जी। 13 अक्टूबर 1911 को अशोक कुमार का जन्म राजा शिवचंद्र बनर्जी के आदमपुर स्थित भव्य राजबाटी नामक बंगले के श्याम-घर में हुआ था। यह कमरा चमचमाते काले संगमरमर से डेकोरेटेड होने के कारण श्याम-घर कहलाता था। दादामुनि का बचपन तो यहां बीता ही था, किशोरावस्था और युवावस्था में भी वे गर्मी की छुट्टियां मां के साथ यहीं बिताते थे। यह क्रम 1918 से 1943 तक चला। फिर फिल्मों में व्यस्तता बढ़ गई, तब अवसर मिलने पर वे यदा-कदा ही यहां आ पाते थे।

लूना बनर्जी के पिता ने राजबाटी का एक खूबसूरत भवन उन्हें दहेज में दिया था। लूना के पति एडवोकेट कुंजलाल बिहारी जब खंडवा से पत्नी और बच्चों के साथ यहां आते, तो उसी भवन में रहते थे, लेकिन उन्होंने उसका मालिकाना हक नहीं लिया। लूना बनर्जी घर की बड़ी पुत्री थीं। उस समय प्रथम प्रसव ननिहाल में ही होने का रिवाज था। अशोक कुमार ननिहाल के पहले नाती थे। इसलिए जब उनका जन्म हुआ, तो राजबाटी आतिशबाजियों, शहनाई और पुत्र जन्म के गीतों से गूंज उठा था। नाना ने खूब दान दिया। उनकी देख-रेख के लिए कोलकाता से डॉक्टर व नर्स बुलाए गए थे।

अशोक कुमार के परनाना रायबहादुर शिवचंद्र बनर्जी पश्चिम बंगाल के वर्दमान जिले से भागलपुर आकर स्थानीय आदमपुर में बसे थे। उन्होंने लंदन से बैरिस्ट्री की थी और कई मुकदमों में विक्टोरिया सल्तनत को जीत दिलाकर अंग्रेज सरकार के खास बन गए थे। यही कारण था कि ब्रितानी सरकार ने उन्हें रायबहादुर की पदवी से नवाजा था। यहां वे रायबहादुर राजा शिवचंद्र बनर्जी के नाम से लोकप्रिय थे। आज के आदमपुर मुहल्ले का एक विस्तृत हिस्से पर उन्हीं की मिल्कियत थी, जो गंगा घाट स्थित शिवालय से आदमपुर चौक से आगे तक फैला हुआ था। इसके अलावा भागलपुर के पिस्ता, सहरसा के पचगछिया आदि में खेती योग्य भूमि, आम के बगीचे और पोखर भी थे। आय इतनी अधिक थी कि बैलगाड़ी पर रुपये-पैसे लादकर राजबाटी लाए जाते थे।

उनका निधन होने पर कुमार सतीशचंद्र बनर्जी के कुशल प्रबंधन में राजबाटी का राजसी वैभव कायम रहा। इनकी तीन पुत्रियां लूना, बीना, सुजाता और एक पुत्र श्रृषचंद्र बनर्जी हुए। पुत्र श्रृष शानू बनर्जी के नाम से जाने गए। कुमार सतीशचंद्र बनर्जी के गुजरने और जमींदारी प्रथा खत्म होने के बाद उनके पुत्र शानू बिंदास हो गए। उन्हें घुड़दौड़ व अयाशी की लत लग गई। वे अपने परिजनों, जिगरी दोस्तों व नौकर-चाकरों के संग कोलकाता जाकर महीनों महंगे होटलों में रहते और रेस में भाग्य आजमाते थे। इसका अकूत खर्च पूरा करने में खेतिहर जमीन, पोखर, जंगल सब बिकने लगे।

भागलपुर विश्वविद्यालय में स्नातकोत्तर बांग्ला विभाग के पूर्व विभागाध्यक्ष और बांग्ला के सुप्रसिद्ध साहित्यकार डॉ. विनय कुमार महाता के अनुसार, अशोक कुमार के ननिहाल के परिवार के एक अन्य वारिस शीला के पुत्र टुलु बाबू तो उनसे भी एक कदम आगे बढ़ गए। उन्होंने लक्ष्मी इंशोरेंस चिट फंट कंपनी खोल ली और भारी नुकसान होने के कारण दिवालिया हो गए। इस तरह धीरे-धीरे राजबाटी का राजसी ठाठबाट बीते दिनों की बात हो गई। बाद में शानू बनर्जी और उनके परिजन राजबाटी के प्रबंधन का भार यहां एक केयर-टेकर के जिम्मे सौंपकर कोलकाता जा बसे। राजबाटी आज भी आदमपुर में शान से खड़ा है, लेकिन उसके मुख पर वह रौनक, वह जीवंतता नहीं है, जो तब थी।
SOURCE - Jagaran

Every Indian Should Watch - 'The Attacks of 26/11’ Movie review


The dreadful terror attacks on November 26, 2008 that rocked not just the city of Mumbai but also the entire nation, have indeed left an indelible scar on each and every one of us. The ghastly episode shook one and all leaving us emotionally drained. ‘The Attacks of 26/11’, a film by Ram Gopal Varma, recreates the terrifying events on celluloid. The filmmaker has categorically said that the film is a tribute to the incident and rightly so, for he has been able to sensibly weave sentiments attached to the event. 

Nana Patekar has essayed the role of the then Joint Commissioner of Mumbai Police, Rakesh Maria, to unfold the events that had occurred on that ill-fated night.

A pensive Nana as Rakesh Maria initiates investigations by connecting the chain of events to unravel - how the attackers stepped onto the shores of Mumbai, the strategy they employed to execute their plan of killing as many people as possible, how the Mumbai police force and the government dealt with the terrorists – in a very crisp yet in-depth manner. The focus keeps shifting back and forth from Rakesh Maria to the actual events with the former reflecting deeply and presenting his insights over the happenings.

He briefs the viewers about what is going to unfold, ponders on the details of the dreadful event, and comes up with valid reasons to support his actions. In its running time, the makers have focused on covering the entire episode of the Mumbai attacks till the death of Ajmal Kasab in 2012.

The movie superbly throws light on the many aspects of terrorism in a mature and moving way. The film highlights how the ulterior motive of the terrorists is self-centred, their philosophy is hypocritical and how no one can escape the deadly paws of terrorism. For example, there is a sequence showing the attackers incessantly shooting the innocent crowd at the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus and how they spared none - be the burqa-clad Muslim women, the Hindu priest, the rich and the poor, the foreign nationals, children and even animals.

It is a film that is completely performance driven. I would like to throw a word of praise for the casting director here. Debutante Sanjeev Jaiswal, as one of the two key members of the cast, has worked extremely well to portray Ajmal Kasab`s character onscreen. For Nana, this film substantiates the fact that he can pull off thoughtful, powerful and serious roles like a pro.

After a string of flops, for RGV (who had earlier delivered successful films like ‘Satya’, ‘Company’) this is a comeback of sorts. `The Attacks of 26/11` will help the filmmaker redeem the ‘brilliant director’ tag. Now I know why he said that this film has been his most challenging project till date. Because recreating terror and its aftermath on celluloid is no mean feat! 

Rating: 12345

Source - Zee News

Pratyusha Banerjee as Anandi in Balika Vadhu, leaving Balika Vadhu

Actress Pratyusha Banerjee, who plays Anandi in popular TV serial "Balika Vadhu", which is currently heading for a highpoint, is leaving the show. She says there is no reason behind it, but the channel claims it is due to "hectic shooting schedules". 

"I have left the show. There is no reason as such. It was a mutual discussion between me and my channel. The talks were on for a few months that I wanted to quit, but they also had to find someone who could take the story forward. Now I think they have found someone," Pratyusha told IANS. 

The replacement will be made with effect from March 4, said a spokesperson from Colors channel. 

"The show is progressing towards the highpoint focusing on Shiv-Anandi's married life. Given the hectic shooting schedules the show demands at this stage, Pratyusha has been unable to commit the required time. Therefore, we have mutually agreed to part ways. We understand Pratyusha's perspective and wish her all the best for her future endeavours," the spokesperson said in a statement. 

Pratyusha stepped into the shoes of child prodigy Avika Gor as Anandi in 2010, when the show, based on child marriage, took a five-year leap. She was chosen through a nationwide poll. 

The current track shows her married to Shivraj Alok Shekhar, essayed by actor Siddharth Shukla. Their chemistry is winning the show a lot of viewership. Hence, one wonders how the viewers will take to her replacement. 

Meanwhile, Pratyusha doesn't have any set plans post "Balika Vadhu". "I don't have any plans at the moment. I will take a break for a month and then see what to take up next," she added. 

Pratyusha, who is from Jamshedpur, has become a known face thanks to the show. She even went on to participate in dance reality show "Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa 5", but she couldn't be on the show for long due to health issues.
Source - hindustan times

Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge's 'Chutki' Pooja Ruparel to star in television series 24

Will Salman make way for SRK, Akshay, Sunny this Eid?



This Eid might be one of those rare instances of a big Salman Khan-starrer not releasing during the auspicious festive period. Trade sources insist that he just might push the film ahead if it isn't ready in time.

Now, recent reports suggest that Shah Rukh Khan's 'Chennai Express', Akshay Kumar's 'Once Upon A Time In Mumbaai 2' (OUATIM 2) and Sunny Deol's 'Singh Saheb The Great' will release at that time.

Shah Rukh's films generally release during Diwali, but this year Hrithik Roshan's Krrish 3 is scheduled to release then. That has lent credence to the buzz about the Eid release. But, says a source, "There is a slight hitch. They want about 15 days of Deepika's dates, which they need to borrow from another producer so that they can complete the film. Only then, will they be able to release on Eid."

There is no official confirmation from both UTV and SRK's office.

Milan Luthria, director of OUATIM 2, is not worried about his film's release clashing with other films. He says, "We had announced our release way back, but it's a free marketplace, and this sort of thing is bound to happen from time to time."

Trade veteran AmodMehra feels multiple releases affect business in a big way. He says, "Gone are the days when two films released on the same day and there was healthy competition. They used to have their own chain of release, but today, multiplexes have changed the business. If there are more than two releases, each film will lose at least 25% of business as shows get divided. As of now, OUATIM2's release is the only official announcement that has come. If Salman does not release his film on Eid, SRK will definitely take that place. OUATIM2 is a good Eid release, but if one of the Khans come on that day, it will be an advantage for them."

About coming with his movie on Eid, Sunny says, "My film is based on a common man's life and Eid is one of those holidays when the aamaadmi is in a much happier space. Since the significance of this festival is also interpreted as a good time to bring people together in harmony and gratitude, we are aiming for an Eid release. The cinema business has changed. Since there are so many cinema halls, two big films can release at the same time. I am sure no one wants to take over anyone's business."
Source - timesofindia

I remember feeling helpless on 26/11 attacks, says Nana Patekar

It wasn't easy to shoot this film at all, Ram Gopal Varma recalls. There were permission issues and sets to be built, but despite all that,Varma's proud of The Attacks of 26/11. "By the end of it, me and Nana (Patekar) had discussed it so many times, that there was nothing left for me to ask him," says Ramu, and with a laugh, Nana says, "He is my director, I should agree with him."

But ask him why he took on this film, and Nana says, "Mujhe laga ke iss film ke zariye main bahut kuch keh sakta hoon. I am happy I did it. This is not an entertaining film, lekin yeh film aapko zaroor sochne pe majboor karegi. And I like such hard-hitting films." For Ramu, the toughest part was collating all the data.

"As a filmmaker, I was really attracted to this event. It was devastating. But when I went there three days after the event, I went just as an observer. I had no intention of making a film for the simple reason that at that time, I had no knowledge of what the incident was about. Two-and-half-years later, when the investigations were completed and all the information was put out in public domain, I had a chance to interact with the officers who investigated the case. Through them, I managed to get to some eyewitnesses. I went and interviewed them, and through the course of their narratives, I got an idea of how to structure the screenplay of my film."

Did he ask any of the witnesses to act in his film? "Leopold Cafe owner, FarzadJehani. I asked him to play himself for the simple reason that there was something very uniquely different about the way he explained the scene. Also, the film is not an adaptation, and other than adapting it into a cinematic format, I had to capture everything into a two-hour film, so I took some liberties in condensing the content, but I have not altered the facts," Ramu explains.

Nana, who plays Rakesh Maria, the commissioner of police, says he drew from his own memoriesof the event, and also, from the research material at hand. "I was in Goa when the attacks happened and I remember feeling helpless. And I am fortunate that through this film I could say something. I am not into politics or anything and film is my medium to say what I want to. I began to think what Rakesh Maria must have felt like at that point, and I did my scenes."

The Attacks of 26/11, produced by Eros International and Alumbra Entertainment, releases today.
Source - timesofindia

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