Thursday, April 30, 2015

How did the Raj Kapoor and Manna Dey Jodi germinated

Pyaar hua ekraar hua, Ye raat bheegi bheegi, A ja sanam madhur chandni mein hum… Ae Bhai Zara Dekh Ke Chalo….

Guess what is common in these super hit songs? Well you have guessed it right they are all hit songs of legendary actor cum filmmaker Raj Kapoor but on focusing little more you will observe that all these songs are sung not by Mukesh, considered the voice of Raj Kapoor but they are all sung by the great genius and versatile singer Manna Dey.

So how did Manna Dey and the Raj Kapoor Jodi germinate? Well it was surely not an easy task but thanks to music director Shanker (of the Shanker-Jaikishan team) and Raj Kapoor’s insistence that did the trick.

Raj Kapoor who had an ear for good music was overwhelmed by the classical genius of Manna Dey and it was he who first trusted Manna Dev and offered him the popular dream sequence song Ghar Aaya Mera Pardesi …. in AWARA.


However the acid test came when Raj Kapoor tried to promote Manna Dey in other production house. The movie was AVM’s CHORI CHORI and the song was Yeh Raat Bheegi Bheegi…..

Music director Shanker in an interview informed, “Actually film producer Avichi V Meiyappan (AVM) first choice was Mukesh but I and Raj felt Manna Dey will do better justice to the song so were started recording with Manna Dey in his absence but to our surprise on the day of recording AVM sahab landed in our recording room and was quite angry. Where is Mukesh? He demanded.”

 “However Raj Kapoor insisted on Manna Dey and to calm AVM Sahab Raj Kapoor convinced AVM Sahab that if he does not like the song then he will re –record the song in Mukesh’s voice at his own expense,” added Shanker.

“But when AVM sahab heard the song he was bowled over and ordered all the songs to be sung by Manna Dey,” a delighted Shanker informed.

May 1, marks the birth anniversary of Padma Bhushan and Dada Saheb Phalke Award winner Manna Dey; Ragaa.Com pays him our humble homage. 

Kashmir C.M. visits Mumbai to entice filmmakers to rediscover Kashmir

From the time ‘Color’ invaded Indian Cinema filmmakers have headed to Kashmir to explore it enchanting lush green meadows, snow clad mountains, dazzling rivers, tranquil lakes, splendid gardens on the silver screen. The audience too has been dazed by the serene beauty of Kashmir and has thronged cinema halls in large number.

Thus from the 60’s to the 80’s filmmaker have exploited Kashmir to the hilt. If you watch films of these eras you will find that they are packed with extensive shooting in Kashmir. The craze for Kashmir was such intense among filmmakers that if not all but every second film had at least one song shot in the bewitching valley.


Few remarkable movies that have made Kashmir immortal on silver screen include super hit films like JUNGLEE, AARZOO, KASHMIR KI KALI, JAB JAB PHOOL KHILE, KABHI KABHI, NOORIE, SILSILA, BETAAB, HEENA, the list is endless.

However after the state got tangled into the ugly terrorism filmmaker took a backseat. Nevertheless some thinking directors made hard-hitting moves condemning terror in the state of love and peace. Movies like ROJA, DIL SE, MISSSION KASHMIR, YAHAAN, etc. did dare to shoot in the valley despite threat from terrorist.

Now with election in Jammu and Kashmir and the formation of the new government the Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed has arrived in Mumbai, the domicile of Bollywood, to promote the state as a prime tourist destination and shooting location for movies.

According to reports Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed is holding an interactive sessions of leading tour and travel operators along with top notch filmmakers from Bollywood at Mumbai’s renowned Hotel Taj Land’s End.  

The objective of the meeting is to entice tour and travel operators and filmmakers to rediscover the State as a prime tourist destination and ideal location for shooting of national and international films.

R. Balki takes a break with Amitabh Bachchan; approaches Arjun Kapoor for his new film

R. Balki, the creative genius filmmaker who gave some really out of the box movies with star of the millennium Amitabh Bachchan like CHEENI KUM, PAA and SHAMITABH seem to have dropped the idea of making his fourth film with Amitabh Bachchan.

Readers may recall after the SHAMITABH debacle there were rumors of Bachchan and Balki forgetting the failure of SHAMITABH and combining together with a brand new innovative subject that would yet again challenge the histrionics of Bachchan.

But recently the filmmaker has announced that he has decided to take a break with Amitabh Bachchan and make a light hearted comedy on the lines of movies made by the legendary filmmakers like Hrishikesh Mukherji’s (CHUPKE CHUPKE, GOL MAAL) Basu Chatterji (CHHOTI SI BAAT, SHAUKEEN), Sai Paranjape (KATHA, CHASME BUDDOOR) and others.


Briefing the media Balki informed media men, “Amitabh Bachchan is always my first choice. Working with Bachchan is an experience that cannot be experience in words but I want to take with Bachchan and make a soft and light hearted romantic comedy.”

R.Balki has approached young actor Arjun Kapoor for the lead but has still not finalized the heroine. Insiders believe Balki does not want to take risk by introducing a new heroine. Instead he is in look out for a successful actress who could accommodate dates with Arjun Kapoor.


Meanwhile Arjun Kapoor is quite exited to work with R. Balki, who is known to be a task master and delivers hits. Speaking to media Arjun Kapoor confirmed the news about staring in the Balki’s forthcoming film.

“I am quite passionate to work with Balkiji because all my recent films like ISHAQZAADE, 2 STATES and even FINDING FANNY have been intense love stories. In contrast Balkiji’s film is a light-hearted love story with lots of laughs hence I am eager to start working in the film, “informed Arjun Kapoor.

According to sources close to Balki the film is sure to start this year!