>> We love nothing more than watching a rip-roaring film over the weekend and this week’s fare Bol Bachchan did not disappoint. Abhishek’s hilarious reprisal of his roles as both Abbas and Abhishek had us giggling in the aisles. And going by the rest of the audience at PVR, we weren’t the only ones.
“Rohit (Shetty) and I spent a lot of time working out the two characters because although they are twin brothers we wanted them to be poles apart in their characteristics,” said the young Bachchan when we spoke to congratulate him on his performance.
And what was it like working on the film? “Shooting with the whole crew of Bol Bachchan was a complete blast. Although the work was very tough it’s hard to believe that we managed to finish the film and it hardly felt like work. Rohit loves a playful atmosphere on set and makes the shoot very memorable,” he said. About his neighbour and friend Ajay Devgn he was even warmer.
“Apart from our boundary wall, we share a great rapport. AJ is like an elder brother to me and I someone rely on a lot. He’s always been there for me and gives me very good advice. He’s a true friend and a brilliant co-star, one that I’ve learnt so much from. And owe a lot to as well.” We could not help asking Bachchan if he’d lend the vowel-challenged Devgn a few of his.. er vowels. “He can ask me for anything and I would be more than ready to give it. That’s the kind of friendship we have. He’s done me such a huge service by giving me Bol Bachchan and I will always be indebted to him,” said Abhishek deadpan.
>> Word has it that in the most stunning beach side getaway home stakes in Alibaug, Sunny and Anu Dewan’s five-acre beachfront property under construction currently is a serious contender for the top spot.
“It’s been designed by architect Nowzer Wadia and they’re sparing no detail to make it stunning,” a friend informs. “It will be ready early next year.” Expect a great housewarming party or 20 when that happens.
>> We have written before about poet, writer, film producer and one time Rajya Sabha member Pritish Nandy before. As editor of the Illustrated Weekly amongst the many things he did, Pritish also raised the level of graphics and page design.
And now, we are delighted to be the first to present a visual poem from his new book of poems Stuckon 1/Forty. (Amaryllis) to be released on July 21 at Crossword, Kemps Corner. “Remember the Brazilian concretismo movement?” says Pritish. Poems to be seen as well as read.
Balraj Sahni Productions
>> Of all the many of Bollywood’s endearing facets surely top of the list are the sons of great film families who are committed to keeping the family banner flying high. The most striking example of this is of Karan Johar, who not only revived his father the much-respected late Yash Johar’s Dharma Productions, but also went on to more or less define what modern multiplex cinema was all about.
Adi Chopra is another shining along with the progeny of the Anands, the Sagars, the Deols and of course, the Kapoor clans. It is no easy to task to take a legendary production banner and make it relevant and successful to a totally new generation and yet retain its identity and core values. This was brought home to me when my enormously talented and distinguished uncle Parikshat Sahni, son of the late actor Balraj Sahni dropped in for a cup of green tea. Every one has a favourite uncle and Parikshat is ours. Who would not hero-worship a swashbuckling dynamo of a relative who appeared to be streets ahead of his contemporaries? After graduating from St Stephens College with honors, Parikshat studied film making for seven years in Moscow, where he had worked as assistant to Sergei Fyodorovitch Bandarchuk during the making of War and Peace. On returning, he wrote and acted in the critically acclaimed Pavitra Papi and subsequently he also acted in movies like Tapasya, Kabhi Kabhi, Sher-Shivaji, Lage Raho Munnabhai, Eklavya and 3 Idiots along with noteworthy serials like Barrister Vinod, Gul Gulshan Gulfaam (DD) and Heena. Parikshat informed us that along with his acting in films and teleserials, he is also now functioning under his Balraj Sahni productions, writing, producing and directing TV serials, films and documentaries. Recently his TV serial for DD: Kalpana under this banner won the best serial of the year award in the SFC category in 2009. And on the anvil, are a film script to be shot entirely in Himachal and a serial called Meri Ma. Balraj Sahni Productions! Lots is expected from that banner, and going by Parikshat’s determination and commitment — lots will be delivered!
Photos: Shah Rukh Khan, Shweta Bachchan at Karan Johar's book launch
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Photos: Karisma Kapoor, Preity Zinta, Shraddha Kapoor at Mumbai airport
Spotted: Anushka Sharma and Diljit Dosanjh at Mumbai studio