Rakul Preet opens up on working with Allu Arjun, Amitabh Bachchan, Ajay Devgn

Rakul Preet is one of the most diverse actors who has worked in several industries and with several mega superstars on different films, through her career. No contemporary of hers has the kind of portfolio that she has, with a myriad of movies like 'Runway 34' with actors like Amitabh Bachchan and Ajay Devgn, 'Sarrainodu' with Allu Arjun, 'NGK' with Suriya, 'Marjaavan', 'Kick 2' with Ravi Teja, 'Cuttputlli' with Akshay Kumar amongst others.  As much as exciting these projects appear because of the star cast, they can certainly make a young actor feel pressured. But somehow, Rakul Preet has a different take on the same. In a recent conclave that she attended, while talking about her experience working with big stars, she says “There is no pressure in working with these prolific performers from the industry. I feel that we often take this for granted, that if there is any work, there should be pressure. When there is a lot of passion, when you worked so hard to do this specifically, you stood in lines for auditions, met several people”. Also Read: Rakul Preet Singh expresses gratitude for the love she received in Chennai She further continued, “Today, when I am in that moment and if I come under pressure, then either I don’t deserve to be there or there is something wrong. Because when you have that moment you make the most of it. Meanwhile, on the work front, the actress has enjoyed a very successful 2022 with back to back five releases of films like ‘Thank God’, ‘Chhatriwali’, ‘Runway’, ‘Doctor G’, ‘Cuttputli’. Also Read: BTS Stars! Rakul Preet Singh's top 5 looks decoded

24 March,2023 07:07 PM IST | Mumbai | mid-day online correspondent
Rajkummar Rao

Exclusive! Rajkummar Rao: We need a 'Pathaan' but also need a 'Bheed'

Rajkummar Rao whose film 'Bheed' directed by Anubhav Sinha releases today shares his thoughts about the film inviting judgement even before the trailer release. The actor shares memories of the lockdown, speaks about his other upcoming projects Sri, Mr and Mrs Mahi, Guns and Gulaabs and much more. Speaking about the controversy surrounding the film he said, "I try to do things that are different, close to my heart and tell good stories. We know we have made a film that we wanted to, it has turned out better than we imagined. We had a couple screenings and have been getting a great response from the audiences. I was shooting in Ahmedabad and was very busy so I had no idea what was going on (during the controversy) and didn't want to know either because our film is very different from what people were thinking." Sharing moments from the film that stayed with him even after the shoot he said, "It's Pankaj Kapurji's character because he's playing a migrant worker and representing millions of people. His character's hardships and struggles, even my character Surya Kumar Singh is somebody who wants to do the right thing but he has to be within limits, everything has to be under the law. The conflict between Pankajji and my character has really stayed with me." While the actor has a good mix of OTT and theatre releases, the Shah Rukh Khan, Deepika Padukone and John Abraham starrer 'Pathaan' came as a ray of hope for films hitting the big screen after a lot of unexpected failures. Rajkummar said, "I'm so happy that 'Pathaan' did great at the box office. We all love Shah Rukh sir and were rooting for the film to do well. We have to make 'Pathaan' but we also need a 'Bheed' both kind of genres should work, that's why its called cinema, there's a variety of filmmakers and stories that need to be told." Watch video to know more! Also Read: Rajeev Khandelwal recalls how Pradeep Sarkar convinced him to join a baraat

24 March,2023 05:51 PM IST | mumbai | Natasha Coutinho D'souza
Pic Credit: PR

Gumraah director says 'it's been the best experience working with Aditya-Mrunal

Debutant director Vardhan Ketkar, who has been an assistant director on films like Dabangg (2010), Brothers (2015), Mubarakan (2017), etc., shares about his working experience with Aditya Roy Kapoor and Mrunal Thakur in his directorial debut film Gumraah, which is set to release on April 7th. Director Vardhan said, 'It was a huge responsibility, but the way these guys performed, it just made my life easier. Working on this project was like a dream come true and since the trailer is out now, it feels like another dream coming true. It's been the greatest experience of my life which I can't even describe in words. You can imagine my nervous being my debut film with such talented actors and I'm really grateful for this. With Aditya, he is so involved and prepared with the script that he challenges me to do better. Mrunal completely dives in and have faith in the process and she did a good job. Ronit sir is stellar performer. So I genuinely had a great experience working with all three different kinds of actors. It's a team game which makes a film happen and everybody's involvement makes it the best it can happen.’ ‘Gumraah’ stars Aditya Roy Kapur in a dual role along with Mrunal Thakur, who will play the role of a lady cop for the first time. Aditya Roy Kapoor shares, 'We did so many night shoots in the film, but Vardhan was always energetic throughout, even in the morning; he never felt asleep. Vardhan did such a great job with writing two characters that felt different. Toh Agar woh page par hai toh automatically half your work is done as an actor.’ Also Read: 'Gumraah' trailer out: Aditya Roy Kapur looks promising in a double role, Mrunal Thakur plays a tough cop Mrunal Thakur, in praising director Vardhan Ketkar, adds, 'He is one of the directors who is very focused and crystal clear in his mind about what he wants from his actors and the kind of takes he need. There were times I went to him saying I don't think I could do this, he motivated me saying you got this. Sometimes my voice used to go sweet and he always reminded me to be firm as a police officer.’  

24 March,2023 05:50 PM IST | Mumbai | mid-day online correspondent
Ranbir Kapoor. Pic/Yogen Shah

Ranbir Kapoor: 'I have never felt that I'm better or worse than anybody'

Bollywood star Ranbir Kapoor has seen more highs than lows in his career which spans over 15 years. However, the actor believes that his failures have always taught him more than his success and that he's running his own race. Ranbir made his acting debut in 2007 with 'Saawariya'. He was then seen in hits such as 'Bachna Ae Haseeno', 'Wake Up Sid!', 'Rockstar', 'Barfi!', 'Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani', 'Ae Dil Hai Mushkil', 'Brahmastra: Part One - Shiva' and 'Tu Jhoothi Main Makkaar'. Asked about when did he feel he's a star, Ranbir told IANS: 'My first film itself was a very big disaster, the disaster-ness was celebrated but somewhere as an actor and artiste I had a deep conviction that flops and hits won't matter to me. That gave me confidence.' 'I have never felt competitive towards anybody. I have never felt that I am better or worse than anybody. I feel like I am running my own race. I feel like I have very strong views on how and what I want to do in my life, the kind of films I want to do.' 'The kind of characters I want to portray and of course I am going to see a lot of failures.' Ranbir believes that 'failures have always taught me more than my successes.' Also Read: 'Tu Jhoothi Main Makkaar' Box Office: Ranbir Kapoor's film collects Rs.109 Cr 'Whenever your films work, I promise you the only feeling you get is 'phew!' till the next one. But when you have failure, you understand, you introspect and come to perspective.' He added: 'I have had a very blessed 15 year career and I have a lot of self confidence in myself that I am the best ofcourse I don't like to put that energy out and say it but I tell myself I am the best because that keeps me going.' Before making it big as a Bollywood star, Ranbir worked behind the camera as an assistant director for filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali in the 2005 film 'Black' starring Amitabh Bachchan. Does behind the camera experience gives more edge to an actor? Ranbir said: 'More than being in a film school, I learnt from being on a film set. When I assisted Mr. Bhansali in 'Black' that one year period that taught me so much about movies. I was seeing actors like Amitabh Bachchan and Rani Mukerji perform. I was seeing Mr. Bhansali direct a movie.' That experience really 'grounded' Ranbir. He added: 'I come from a little bit of a sheltered film family so going out - and Mr. Bhansali is a hard task master, if you make a mistake he will reprimand you in front of everybody - I think that kind of training was important for someone like me. So, it prepared me for any failure in the world.' This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/ reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever  

24 March,2023 05:41 PM IST | Mumbai | IANS
Laaga Chunari Mein Daag

Kunal Kapoor: Pradeep Sarkar was gentle, loving and fun

Actor Kunal Kapoor who was part of Pradeep Sarkar's 2007 release 'Laaga Chunari Mein Daag,' also featuring Jaya Bachchan, Rani Mukerji, Konkona Sen Sharma, Anupam Kher and Abhishek Bachchan, recalled working with him in a conversation with The filmmaker, best known for his movies ‘Parineeta’ and ‘Mardaani’, passed away at a hospital early on Friday, his wife Panchali said. He was 67. Also Read: Rani Mukerji reacts to 'Mardaani' director Pradeep Sarkar's demise, says, 'It's like losing a family member' Kunal said, "Working with Pradeep da was one of the best experiences I’ve had. He was an incredibly passionate filmmaker. He pushed you hard to give your best, and at the same time was gentle, loving and fun. The memories I have of working on ‘Laaga Chunari Mein Daag’ with him, are ones I’ll always cherish." 'Laaga Chunari Mein Daag' was the story of a small town girl Badki (Rani Mukerji) from Banaras who moves to Mumbai to earn an honest living for her family back home. Eventually, Badki becomes an escort, taking only wealthy men as clients. When her kid sister Chutki (Konkona Sen Sharma) comes face to face and her double life is revealed the 2 sisters are in a confrontation that none of them expected - the whole family is thrown in to a tumultuous storm. Everything threatens to explode in their faces leaving a trail of destruction. Kunal had played the role of Vivaan Varma and was paired opposite Konkona's character. The news of Sarkar's demise was shared on Twitter by Bollywood director Hansal Mehta. Sharing a photo of Sarkar on the micro-blogging site, Hansal tweeted, "Pradeep Sarkar. Dada. RIP." According to media reports, Sarkar was on dialysis and his potassium levels had dropped severely. He was rushed to hospital around 3 AM after his condition got worsened.  Also Read: Rajeev Khandelwal recalls how Pradeep Sarkar convinced him to join a baraat    

24 March,2023 04:49 PM IST | mumbai | Natasha Coutinho D'souza
Pic Courtesy: Instagram

Sara Ali Khan heads to Delhi for shoot of Homi Adajania's 'Murder Mubarak'

Sara Ali Khan is buzzing with activity as she has a tight schedule with multiple projects lined up. Amidst fulfilling her varied work commitments Sara Ali Khan was seen checking off to Delhi for the next schedule of Homi Adajania's 'Murder Mubarak'. The actress is also seen promoting 'Gaslight' off lately which is all set to release on 31st March 2023 on Hotstar. She was seen leaving for Delhi for her second shoot schedule of Homi Adajania's 'Murder Mubarak'. The shutter big spotted the actress at the airport and she was seen dressing up comfortably and casually. As she chose a cute white crop top paired with light blue ripped jeans and stylish sneakers. She had her hair beautifully cascading down her shoulder, which gave off a casual and carefree feeling. The no makeup look exuded natural beauty and made her look as refreshing as the breath of fresh air. Her casual yet stylish appearance suited her easy going demeanor, which is adored by her fans. Also Read: Throwback Thursday: 'Gaslight' director Pawan Kripalani on working with Saif Ali Khan and daughter Sara Ali Khan The actress posted a boomerang on the story where she was seen blowing flying kisses to the camera as she departed to Delhi. It was captioned as ‘Bye Bye Mumbai, Time to @homster the (Bird emoji) is (Flying airplane emoji)’. Sara Ali Khan has been setting trends and expressing her sense of style with her relaxed yet stylish outfits. She always looks effortlessly gorgeous in every outfit she chooses to carry. She is loved by her fans for her relatability and carefree personality and not to forget her chic outfits! On the work front, she will be next seen in Pavan Kirpalani's 'Gaslight' which is stated to be released on 31st March 2023, Homi Adajania's 'Murder Mubarak', Ae Watan Mere Watan, Laxman Utekar next opposite Vicky Kaushal.  

24 March,2023 04:36 PM IST | Mumbai | mid-day online correspondent
Mrunal Thakur. Pic/Yogen Shah

Mrunal Thakur: Challenging to play a cop in 'Gumraah'

Actor Mrunal Thakur says it was challenging to play a cop in her upcoming film 'Gumraah', a role that she has tried to deal with responsibly. The crime thriller is the Hindi remake of 2019 Tamil hit 'Thadam' starring Arun Vijay and Vidya Pradeep. 'Gumraah' features Thakur as a cop while Aditya Roy Kapur will be seen in a double role. The 'Jersey' actor said since her role of a cop demanded her to sound firm she was unsure if she could pull it off, primarily because of her soft voice. "When you play a cop there is a responsibility. For the first time, I have played someone, who is firm. It is difficult to play a cop. But the way my character is written is interesting. There are a lot of shades, there are a lot of ups and downs. It was challenging," Thakur told reporters here at the trailer launch of the film. "There were times when I would go to Vardhan (Ketkar, director) and tell him, 'I don't think I can do it' and he would say, 'you got this. And sometimes my voice is sweet that we had to be firm'," she added. The actor said she also took notes from her family members, who have been police officers to flesh out her character properly. My family belongs to police department and it was nice to go back to them, take some anecdotes, listen to their stories and implement in my character," she added. Thakur, who garnered wide critical acclaim for her performance in "Love Sonia" and "Sita Ramam", said she is grateful to writers for penning powerful roles for female actors and hopes this trend continues. "There are strong women personalities out here, who do not get the recognition... It feels good to be in the centre (of the poster in 'Gumraah'), who wouldn't want to? It's about time. We need to change the definition of how Indian actresses were treated role-wise and not the other way. It is lovely to get such powerful roles and I hope there are many more to come," she added. Speaking of comparisons with Tabu and Rani Mukerji, who have played cop roles in two different films, 'Drishyam' and 'Mardaani' respectively, Thakur said, she looks up to both the actors and hopes she has done justice to her role in 'Gumraah'. Watch: Gumraah Trailer: Mrunal Thakur On Being Compared To Tabu and Rani Mukerji | Aditya Roy Kapoor "I look up to Tabu ma'am and she is the goddess I worship. One of the reasons why I want to do 'Gumraah' is when I heard the story, I could picture only Tabu ma'am. This is something I want to explore, this space and this genre. "I have never been part of a thriller movie and this is a film, where you will sit at the edge of the seat, your mind will be at play. I am happy they are comparing me to Tabu and Rani ma'am, I hope I do justice," she said. The film follows the story of a murder investigation by the police, who find two lookalike suspects (Aditya) claiming to not know each other. For Kapur, the challenge was to make the two characters look different. He also credited writers Aseem Arora and Ketkar for making his job easy as an actor because they had written it as two different characters. "What was interesting was the character needed to feel very different and we couldn't play with the look and you will realize it when you see the film. So, we had to find a way to make them speak differently... I did some diction classes to bring about the difference in the way they speak," he said. Also Read: Mrunal Thakur drops a crying photo on her Insta story, says 'It's okay to be naive and vulnerable' Aditya said 'Gumraah' pushed him to tap into a space as an actor that he had not explored in his 15-year-long career. He also said even though two of his projects, 'Malang' and web-show 'The Night Manager' have been successful thrillers, he was excited to explore the genre again with 'Gumraah'. "When you do a film that has worked in that space like 'Malang' came out and this ('The Night Manager') was in that space, (then) you want to do more of it. Having said that, you don't want to keep repeating yourself. What I found with this ('Gumrah') was that the role was exciting. It was an opportunity to push myself to do something I had not done before. So, it all added to that," he said. Produced by Bhushan Kumar's T-Series and Murad Khetani's Cine1 Studios, 'Gumraah' will release theatrically on April 7. This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/ reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

24 March,2023 04:13 PM IST | Mumbai | PTI
Pic credit: Rajeev Khandelwal

Rajeev Khandelwal recalls how Pradeep Sarkar convinced him to join a baraat

Renowned Bollywood director and writer, Pradeep Sarkar passed away at the age of 68. The filmmaker breathed his last on March 24 around 3:30 AM on Friday. Actor Rajeev Khandelwal who had worked with the late director on 'Coldd Lassi Aur Chicken Masala' shared some precious memories with The actor recalled, "Since the past 5-6 years we had been worrying about dada because he had some health issues, he wasn’t at his fittest. I remember having conversations about his health and fitness where I would tell him to keep himself fit because I want to work with him more. He would just smile and agree. He had been trying to lose weight and look after himself. We would complain to his wife that he is eating unhealthy food and she would tell us to explain to him because he doesn’t listen." Rajeev said that he has vivid memories of Sarkar and him improvising the scenes on set. "He was not one of those directors that you work with and forget. He brought out the best in me, so beautifully and effortlessly. There were so many scenes that we improvised like the ones where I’m in college and creating something. I would just wait for dada’s reaction after every shot. There were scenes where I would just break into a song, some were retained and others had to be edited because of copyright issues. He would just sit behind the monitor and send a flying kiss with childlike excitement. I’m sure he did that with every actor but when you work with him you feel special." He added that they wanted to do a comedy together and Sarkar had reached out for a project which wasn’t one but it didn’t work out.  Sharing a crazy memory from 'Coldd Lassi Aur Chicken Masala' the actor revealed, "There was a sequence we shot in Surat, where I had to get into a wedding and start dancing, to show how crazy a character I was. We had packed up for the day and I was on my way to the hotel when he called and requested if I could come back. He told me that there was a real baarat on the street and he wanted me to join in and dance. I had told him I had taken off my make-up but it didn’t matter to him. I entered the wedding procession and it’s only later that people realised I’m Rajeev Khandelwal." Also Read: Rani Mukerji reacts to 'Mardaani' director Pradeep Sarkar's demise, says, 'It's like losing a family member'

24 March,2023 04:04 PM IST | mumbai | Natasha Coutinho D'souza
Pic Credit: PR

Hritiqa Chheber spills beans on romancing Jimmy Shergill in her debut movie

Hritiqa Chheber, who made headlines when she announced her Bollywood debut, revealed some of the most fun and memorable moments she had while filming Operation Mayfair in London. Speaking about her experience while shooting, she said, 'Frankly, I was quite nervous on sets at first, but then as soon as I faced the camera, all my nervousness just vanished in no time. Acting is my passion, and I literally fell in love with my character because it pretty much resembled me when it comes to being strong headed and giving it all in love. It was an amazing experience all together. ' Talking about her camaraderie with Co-star Jimmy Sheirgill. Hritiqa shared, 'As big of a star as he is, He is one of the most humblest and down to earth human being I’ve ever met. He was always so easy to work with and so supportive. It all seemed like a piece of cake with him. I remember this one scene in where we had to hold hands and have an intriguing conversation and he just said listen to me just look me in the eye and say your dialogue. l and I did exactly was he asked me to do and the entire set was quiet the director forgot to say cut because that scene was so intense and natural. That’s how powerful actor he is, like just by looking him in the eye, the romance automatically started flowing.’ Also Read: Lights, Camera, Conflict: 'Jubilee' trailer showcases world of glamour, aspirations and betrayal Jimmy Sheirgill has last seen in movie ‘Double XL’ which was released in 2022. Jimmy had a cameo appearance in film. The stars Sonakshi Sinha and Hum Qureshi were in the lead roles. He also has upcoming projects like Zakhmi Dill, Auron Mein Kahan Dum Tha, Hate Story 5, Baabul and Mr.Z. For the unversed Hritiqa, will be making her Bollywood debut with a crime drama movie, ‘Operation Mayfair’, in which she will be seen romancing Jimmy Sheirgill on screen. The movie is slated to release on March 24th.  

24 March,2023 03:36 PM IST | Mumbai | mid-day online correspondent
Amitabh Bachchan

Amitabh Bachchan resumes work after suffering injury during shoot

Actor Amitabh Bachchan recently got injured while shooting for his upcoming Pan India film 'Project K' in Hyderabad. On Thursday night, the actor announced that he has finally resumed his work. Big B took to his Blog and shared his health update and wrote, "So despite the inconvenience of damaged body .. there must be desire and effort to repair .. which is being done with care and comfort of the Ef and well-wishers, and for which there is repeated gratitude and love .." He also penned that he has not fully recovered and is still being treated for his rib injury. Also Read: Amitabh Bachchan lauds Satish Kaushik as 'most accomplished artist' in heartfelt tribute "Work schedules have been done and the charts start filling up again .. to the joy of the 'moi' .. for there is no better pastime than work ..Yes the rib and toe are in a state of revolt .. but revolts must be tendered with and a solution to be found .. and find we must .. we no, I ," he continued. Amitabh recently revealed that he sustained the injury during the shooting of his upcoming film, Project K, in Hyderabad. The 'Uunchai' actor took to his blog and shared that he has broken his rib cartilage and stated that he is currently taking rest at his home in Mumbai. "In Hyderabad at shoot for Project K, during an action shot, got injured, rib cartilage popped broke and muscle tear to the right rib cage. Cancelled shoot, did doctor consult & scan by CT at AIG Hospital in Hyderabad and flown back home," posted Amitabh. He suffered the injury during an action sequence of the film. He, unfortunately, suffered a muscle tear to his right rib cage. Helmed by Nag Ashwin, Project K is a bilingual film shot simultaneously in two languages i.e Hindi and Telugu across various locations. Deepika Padukone and Prabhash are playing pivotal roles in the film. Apart from that, he will also be seen in Ribhu Dasgupta's next courtroom drama film 'Section 84'.  This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/ reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

24 March,2023 03:13 PM IST | Mumbai | mid-day online correspondent
(Pic courtesy: Twitter)

Rani Mukerji on Pradeep Sarkar's demise: It's like losing a family member

Bollywood actress Rani Mukerji has offered her condolences at the sudden demise of filmmaker Pradeep Sarkar. The filmmaker passed away in Mumbai at around 3:30 a.m. on March 24 after renal complications. Rani, who has worked with Pradeep in 'Laaga Chunari Mein Daag' and 'Mardaani', said, "I'm very very shocked by the news of Dada's passing away. I, in fact, spoke to him just the other day when I had gone to Amritsar, to the Golden Temple where he had called me telling me about my film so we had a long chat, he was insisting to do a facetime call but that day the network was not good so I was unable to video call with him. We were planning to meet this week when I got back but it is just so unexpected." The actress continued, "His wife (Panchali boudi) called me at 4 a.m. when this happened, it is really sad and shocking that dada has passed away like this. Boudi had informed me that he was on remission and he was all ok. He was also shooting these last few days so I don't know how it all transpired in just a matter of a few hours. I'm sure everybody who knows Dada will feel his loss deeply the way I'm feeling it. I had a great connection with him, we've done a lot of work together over the years, so it's literally like losing a family member." Pradeep made his directorial debut with the Saif Ali Khan, Sanjay Dutt and Vidya Balan-starrer 'Parineeta' and was one of the most revered directors of Hindi cinema. Also Read: Tahir Raj Bhasin on working with Pradeep Sarkar in 'Mardaani': He gave me the confidence to act to my fullest potential in my debut film Rani further mentioned: "My heart goes out to Boudi, Ronno and Raya as they were a very close-knit family and to all the people who worked in Dada's production house and those who have been attached to him over the years. It's going to be a great loss for them." "So I'm really very saddened by this because I was meant to meet him soon so I feel terrible about it. You never realise how life is so unpredictable, you speak to a person and the next thing you know is that the person is not there. I will hold on to my last memory of him being so happy and excited for me as he had called me to share the feedback that he was getting for my film and me from all over," she concluded. This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/ reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

24 March,2023 02:59 PM IST | Mumbai | IANS
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