Mumbai Diary: Monday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
Rapping it up in style
Amid all the hype around Ranveer Singh's upcoming film based on rappers from Mumbai's slums, we chanced upon one intriguing exchange. On Instagram, Singh, who will be playing underground rapper DIVINE, wrote on another rapper, Naezy's post (also featured in the film) leaving a single-line comment that read, "Bantai Bacchi Bhamai". A phrase from the popular song Mere Gully Mein, it has also featured in Gari-B Ki Kahaani, a viral video that familiarised Mumbaikars with Tadpatri Talkies, an entertainment group known to leave their audiences in splits.
One of their fans then replied to Singh's comment saying, "Dhandha karke kamaaye," — lyrics from the comedy group's spoof video. And this became sort of antidotal to the leading actor's efforts in subtly using social media to promote his film, as netizens switched their attention to the Tadpatri boys. "It was funny to see that our fans responded to Naezy's line with one of our catchphrases," Sidharth Raveendran, video producer and performer from the group, told this diarist.
Nandita Das's biopic on famed writer Saadat Hasan Manto received a warm response in India. However, with our neighbours, the film isn't quite sitting well. Now, following Pakistan's ban on the movie, a man named Saeed Ahmed — who consulted the director through the course of production — has organised a silent protest in association with the Lahore Press Club today.
Das took to social media to convey her gratitude and said, "I am overwhelmed by the spontaneous support it has garnered from so many around the world." But it also made us ponder about the irony of the fact that 60 years ago, Manto's works were prohibited in the country. Will they ever agree?
All set to go to New Jersey
Director and writer Aditya Kripalani is sure to win the feminist vote. The indie filmmaker of Tikli and Laxmi Bomb fame, which trended on a popular streaming website for almost a month, is now back with Tottaa Pataaka Item Maal, a female-centric film themed around the impending fear of rape that looms large over Delhi.
Upon hearing that it has been selected for the Garden State Film Festival in New Jersey, Kripalani told this diarist, "Getting selected for this festival is very exciting. It is in its 17th year and it's a moment of pride for us to be screened there alongside other kickass films from 2018."
Fact is stranger than fiction
Who among us doesn't dream of living the lives of our favourite book characters? But when the choice is a thriller based on financial crime, things can get out of hand, as it did, in the case of a Union Bank of India employee.
A newspaper reported that Nabarun Majumdar embezzled close to Rs 300 crore and upon being interrogated, said author Ravi Subramanian's book was the inspiration. When this diarist reached out to the writer, who was initially shocked, he said, "Aren't there better characters to get inspired from? There are good and bad bankers in my book. Why couldn't he have got inspired by the good guys?"
Embrace the past
The beauty of a vintage object can often be inexplicable, just like the joy of owning a piece of history is. And Astaguru, an online auction house based out of Kala Ghoda, has been making this possible for collectors for a while now.
And, we found out that they are all set for the very first textile auction that will feature ornate Pashmina shawls handcrafted by artisans from the 1800s.
A shawl from the collection
Speaking about what encouraged the move, Tushar Sethi, CEO of the auction house, told this diarist, "Shawls are an important aspect of textile, tapestry and India's textile history. We are constantly expanding our portfolio and this was the perfect entry point in this segment."
MP Sanjay Raut beckons someone in the direction of Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray at a promotional event for his upcoming film on the late Sena supremo Bal Thackeray. Pic/Ashish Raje
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