Monthly Archives: December 2018

Katrina Kaif on Thugs of Hindostan failure: Disappointment is always good as it wakes you up

Katrina Kaif believes the takeaway from disappointment is that it gives a reality check to the people involved in the film.

Aamir Khan and Katrina Kaif in a still from Thugs of Hindostan. Image via Twitter

Katrina, whose last feature Thugs of Hindostan failed to register a strong performance at the box office and was panned by the critics, said something went wrong with the film.

Last month, her Thugs… co-star Aamir Khan had taken “full responsibility” for the film’s failure.

“I know Aamir has spoken on the matter and it has really hurt deeply and personally. Disappointment is always good as it wakes you up little bit again. In case of Thugs… it was not for lack of trying, something just went wrong in case of Thugs of Hindostan. You need to have guts and urge to try things and be prepared it may or may not work,” Katrina said in an interview here.

The actor is looking forward to the release of her next Zero, in which she plays a troubled movie star, Babita.

Katrina said it is hard to tell how a film will do at the box office before it hits the screens and in case of Zero she has full faith in director Aanand L Rai.

“With regards to Zero, it is hard to say. You never know from before a film (whether it will work or not). Lot of work has gone into it. It is hard to tell. I believe it is a good film and is a good story.

“Aanand L Rai is one of the finest storytellers in our cinema. His story connects with people. His emotion connect is good. You have to wait till the film releases. You will have the answer…” she said.

Also starring Shah Rukh Khan and Anushka Sharma, Zero opens in theatres on 21 December.

Bigg Boss 12, 16 December, Day 91 written updates: SRK meets contestants; Rohit Suchanti gets evicted

After a call from Shah Rukh Khan’s Baaua Singh on Saturday’s episode of Bigg Boss 12, the contestants were curious to know who it was. Clearing their doubts, show host Salman Khan revealed that Shah Rukh was talking to them as his character from his upcoming film Zero, and will be coming to meet them the next day. Upon hearing this news, the contestants couldn’t contain their happiness and eagerly waited to meet the charismatic actor.

Shah Rukh Khan and Salman Khan on Bigg Boss.

In the meantime, Salman interacted with the contestants. He created some tension about the eviction. Next, he played a game where the contestants had to identify the person that they thought had said a particular statement about them and throw a cupcake on that person. Later there the Appy Fizz caller of the week asked Karanvir why he had been unable to form a bond with any of the contestants in the house. After Karanvir gave an explanation about it, Salman pulled his leg saying he did not have any purpose or any strategy in the game.

Finally, Shah Rukh made an appearance and both, Salman and Shah Rukh set the stage on fire with their electrifying performance on the track, ‘Issaqbaazi’. They also played a quirky game where both of them had to sell a product without knowing what it was. The most entertaining part was when both the Khan’s had a question-answer duel during which they revealed little known and facts about themselves.

Post this, the duo interacted with the contestants together and all the housemates were elated on seeing Shah Rukh. Soon after Deepak became the centre of attention as Salman told Shah Rukh that Deepak can imitate him very well. On Shah Rukh’s request Deepak enacted the dialogue from the movie Don and also gave a fun dance performance on Dilwale’s ‘Gerua’ which created ripples of laughter. Shah Rukh also pulled Deepak’s leg by asking him to translate one of his famous dialogues in English and Deepak did a decent job at that.

Shah Rukh gave a motivational speech as he promoted his movie Zero saying that being ‘zero’ was not the end of possibilities, but was a new opportunity. The contestants are asked who was ‘Zero’ and who was ‘Hero’ in the house. The contestants expressed their views and both the Khans agreed with Sreesanth when he said that he was the biggest Zero and it was a new beginning for him as he had taken up acting in movies. After Shah Rukh left, Sreesanth and Romil were called for the ‘Sultani Akhada’ task. Both of them explained why they were better than the other. Sreesanth won the first round of Verbal Dangal and Romil won the second round of Dumbbells.

After an entertaining evening, it was time for someone to leave the Bigg Boss house. Salman asked everyone to guess who were the two safe contestants among Karanvir, Somi and Rohit and most felt that Karanvir and Rohit were safe. However, their guess was wrong because it was Rohit who got evicted.

Ali Zafar hopes Manto releases in Pakistan: ‘This generation must get to know its literary heritage and heroes’

Pakistani actor-singer Ali Zafar hopes Indian filmmaker Nandita Das’ Manto is released in Pakistan as he feels the new generation will get a chance to know about the Urdu writer Saadat Haasan Manto on a deeper level.

Rasika Dugal and Nawazuddin Siddiqui in Manto

Nandita had tweeted that she was disappointed after learning that Manto did not get clearance for release in Pakistan.

However, Pakistan’s Information and Broadcasting Minister Fawad Chaudhry has extended help, while an online petition by writers and artistes has urged Prime Minister Imran Khan to lift a ban on its screening.

On his part, Ali, who has worked in Indian films too, tweeted in support of the movie.

Saw Manto on Netflix in Pakistan. Thoroughly impressed by the nuanced direction by Nandita Das and brilliant depiction by Nawazuddin Siddiqui. This generation must get know Manto on a deeper level and own its literary heritage and heroes. I hope it releases here,” Ali wrote.

The movie follows the most tumultuous years in the life of the writer and those of India and Pakistan where Manto inhabited and chronicled. The film also features Rasika Dugal and Rajshri Deshpande.

After ban on film Kedarnath, now Uttarakhand minister says govt might ‘vet’ movie scripts before allowing shooting

Dehradun, Uttarakhand: After the Sara Ali Khan and Sushant Singh Rajput film Kedarnath was banned in several Uttarakhand districts, a state minister said the government would henceforth consider reviewing a movie’s script before granting it permission to shoot. Kedarnath is the debut movie of Saif Ali Khan’s daughter Sara. It was shot in Kedarnath and shows the love story of a spunky Brahmin girl and an affable Muslim porter.

Sushant Singh Rajput and Sara Ali Khan in a still from Kedarnath

Uttarakhand tourism minister Satpal Maharaj said that while the state government is committed to promoting Uttarakhand as a shooting destination, it also wants to honour the sentiments of people who have faith in Lord Kedarnath. He said the shrine holds great importance for crores of Hindus and added that it is unfortunate that some scenes in the movie “were found to be objectionable”. He said that going forward, the state government would consider vetting a movie’s script before allowing shooting in Uttarakhand if it pertains to “sensitive issues.”

The screening of Kedarnath has been banned as a precautionary measure to avoid “disruption of peace”. The movie, set in the backdrop of the June 2013 natural tragedy that killed thousands of pilgrims in the temple town of Kedarnath, was released countrywide on 7 December.

The trouble began with the launch of the movie trailer on 12 November. Be it priests of the Kedarnath temple, pro-Hindu organisations or BJP leaders, the trailer was met with vehement disapproval and sparked protests across the state.

Consequently, the state government set up a four-member committee comprising Tourism Minister Maharaj, home secretary, information secretary and DGP to examine the objections against the film. The committee members watched the movie and met Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat on Thursday evening, a day before its release. In the meeting, it was decided that the state government would not ban the movie and instead leave the decision to district administrations. District magistrates were informed about this by late evening and they promptly passed orders banning the film, citing threat of disruption of peace.

Of the hilly state’s 13 districts, only seven have movie theatres and Kedarnath has been banned in all of them. These districts are Dehradun, Haridwar, Pauri, Tehri, Nainital, Udhamsingh Nagar and Almora.

The movie’s detractors have cited the following objections with its content: the female protagonist, a Brahmin, falls for a Muslim youth. Many BJP leaders have claimed the movie is surreptitiously promoting ‘love jihad’. Protesters claim the movie’s tagline ‘Love is a pilgrimage’ hurts Hindus’ religious sentiments. They also contend that the kissing scene in the movie, the lead couple’s romance and “vulgar” dance sequences set in the holy town are unacceptable. The male lead’s character is that of a Muslim youth who carries pilgrims on his back to the temple town. Protesters claim no Muslim can be found doing this in Kedarnath.

High courts reject bans

Nainital High Court told the petitioner’s advocate they should not watch the movie and they are actually publicising the very work they want banned by making an issue out of it. This petition was filed by Dehradun-based activist and convener of Uttarakhand Raksha Abhiyan Swami Darshan Bharti. Gujarat High Court called the petition a publicity stunt and imposed a fine of Rs 5,000 on the petitioner Prakash Rajput, president of International Hindu Sena.

The petition in Bombay High Court was filed by two local lawyers. Legal representatives of the movie’s producers as well as the Censor Board opposed the petition, which contended that Kedarnath’s story is imaginary and an “untrustworthy tale of love” between a Muslim youth and a Brahmin girl.

State Congress spokesperson Garima Mehra Dasauni said that while the Congress is in favour of promoting shooting in Uttarakhand, it is important to ensure that the said movie does not hurt religious sentiments. She said instead of banning the entire movie, it’s advisable to remove the objectionable scenes from it. Also, she contended that the movie’s name should be changed from Kedarnath to something else as it’s not a religious film but a romantic one.

GS Rana, manager of Prabhat cinema, one of the oldest theatres in Uttarakhand’s temporary capital Dehradun, said members of a pro-Hindu group paid a visit Thursday before the movie was banned and demanded that Kedarnath’s posters be removed. He said the theatre received the district administration’s notice regarding the ban in the evening and hence the movie was not screened. He pointed out that theirs is a single-screen theatre and the last-minute ban meant the establishment did not earn a single penny on Friday.

Darshan Bharti, whose petition seeking ban on the film was rejected by Nainital High Court, said the movie’s makers have tried to play with the sentiments of the Hindus by showing a love story of a Muslim porter and a Brahmin girl. He asserted it was nothing but ‘love jihad’ and a country-wide conspiracy.

Sacred Games 2, Akshay Kumar’s Kesari shoot likely to get hampered owing to Vanity Van Association strike

Mumbai: Opposing Maharashtra government’s tax regulation, Bollywood Celebrity Vanity Van Association will go on an indefinite strike from 10 December, a move likely to affect shooting of Akshay Kumar’s Kesari and Netflix’s Sacred Games 2. The “Non-cooperation movement” against the state government by the All Camper Van Owner’s Association-which has 250 vans under it-will leave around 500 workers with no jobs and hit over 5000 workers who earn on daily wages.

Kesari first look (left), Netflix's Sacred Games. Images via Facebook

Ketan Rawal, President, All Camper Van Owners Association, said their client roster includes A-list stars like Ajay Devgn, Saif Ali Khan, John Abraham, Arjun Rampal, Kangana Ranaut, Sonakshi Sinha, Taapsee Pannu, Disha Patani.

“Ajay is shooting for his home production Tanaji, Kangana’s shoot is on, Saif is doing Sacred Games 2, John’s Batla House Mumbai schedule will begin now. Arjun is doing a web series, Sonakshi and Taapsee are both shooting for a film with Akshay. So everyone is busy with shoots right now. If the vans aren’t available, the shooting will be hampered. Honestly, we are feeling bad. I’ve been in the industry for 25 years and believe the show must go on but we are being harassed a lot,” Ketan Rawal told PTI.

The association is opposing Maharashtra government’s rule which charges tax for each vanity van at Rs. 5,000 square meter, amounting to Rs. 1,25,000 per annum.

Ketan Rawal said requirement of the vans will be high for films, especially in places where there is no make-up room, such as for Sacred Games.

“Sacred Games is being shot in Dharavi. They are shooting at real locations, on the streets. There’s no make-up room facility there so how will they be able to shoot? Naturally they would require the vans. Karan Johar’s Kesari shoot is on too. They are saying if the vans don’t come for five days they’ll incur losses of RS 5 crores,” he added.

“The association said they have communicated their decision to the actors and are awaiting a response from the government. Our intention is not to halt Bollywood shooting, we are feeling bad but we are now helpless. It’s our request, with folded hands, to understand and cooperate with us,” Ketan Rawal said.

Kedarnath: Vashu Bhagnani, Pooja Film Company alleges failure to act on complaint against proprietors

Bombay High Court recently took cognizance of a petition which claimed that the police were failing to act on the criminal charge made against the proprietors of Kedarnath. The accused included director Abhishek Kapoor and Rohinton (Ronny) Screwvala, film producer and managing director of Unilazer Ventures Pvt Ltd, reports Bar and Bench.

Sushant Singh Rajput and Sara Ali Khan in Kedarnath. Screenshot from YouTube

The petition claimed that the initial complaint had been registered with the Economic Offences Wing and despite personal visits and frequent reminders, the complaint remained neglected. The complaint claimed there was fraud and breach of trust by the accused parties which resulted in the loss of over Rs 15 crore.

The petitioner, Pooja Film Company and Vashu Bhagnani, stated that the distribution rights of Kedarnath were passed on to Screwvala’s company despite Bhagnani already being on board. After KriArj Entertainment Pvt Ltd (KEPL), the initial producers of the project, ran into financial difficulties, it entered MoUs with both Pooja Films and Srewvala’s company to help back the project. Bhagnani and Pooja Films thus invested Rs 15.6 crores into the film on condition of right of pre-emption, ie, the first right of refusal when it comes to production and distribution rights of the film.

However, following KEPL’s forfeiture from the project, the petitioner found out that all rights for the film had been signed over to GSP completely.