Saturday, January 16, 2016

First half of January ends on a bad note for Bollywood

It seems the first half of January has ended on a bad note for Bollywood. First Amitabh Bachchan and Farhan Akthar’s much anticipate film WAZIR has failed to set the box office ringing. 

The movie that comes from the house of Vidhu Vinod Chopra and brilliant writer Abhijat Joshi, the combination that has given hit films like 3 IDIOTS, MUNNABHAI SERIES, PK has failed to live up to the film buffs expectation. The movie has managed to collect under Rs 40 crore – a major setback for the film industry given that it was a big budget film with writer Abhijat Joshi alone charging Rs 2 crore! 

Besides financial loss at the box office Bollywood also lost two of its prominent veteran film personalities.

On January 14, popular character actor Rajesh Vivek, recognized for his role of the astrologer Guran in Aamir Khan-starrer LAGAAN and as the postman in Shah Rukh Khan's SWADES expired in Hyderabad due to heart attack while shooting a South Indian film. He was 66. 

A student of National School of Drama, Rajesh Vivek came into prominence with his act as Ved Vyas on iconic TV show Mahabharata. 

Paying tribute to the actor Aamir Khan in his tweet said, “Yesterday we lost someone from the LAGAAN family.... Rajesh Vivek. You will always remain in our hearts Baba. Your spirit, your energy and your love for humanity will always inspire us. Love.” 

On January 15, eminent filmmaker Anil Ganguly, famous for making family social dramas like Jaya Bachchan’s KORA KAGAZ, Rakhee’s TAPASYA, Anial Kapoor’s SAAHEB etc passed away on Friday at his residence after a brief illness. He was 82.

Anil Ganguly was in the league of brilliant filmmakers like Gulzar, Basu Chatterjee, Sai Paranjape etc who were experts in dealing with the emotions of common man. 

Anil Ganguly’s both KORA KAGAZ and TAPASYA focused on women issue and both fetched National Awards as Best Film.

Indian films yet again fail to impress Oscar Jury or is it sheer disparity?

Once again Indian films send in various categories for the prestigious Oscar Awards competing in the 88th Academy Awards have been booted out from the final list of nomination by Oscar jury. 

Besides COURT, India’s official entry in Best Foreign Film Category being discarded from the Oscar nominations, the fate of other Indian films in the Oscar race is also dismal. 

Malayalam movie JALAM, Kannada film RANGITARANGA, Indo-Australian movie SALT BRIDGE and Konkani movie NACHOM-IA KUMPASAR, which were competing in various categories including Best Original Song and Best Original Score too have been shown the door.

What is amazing is that debutant filmmaker Chaitanya Tamhane's critically acclaimed Marathi film COURT that has won National Award and many international awards was chosen for Oscar race after lot of care and debate overlooking competent films like BAAHUBALI, MARY KOM and MASAN 

In addition to avoid lobby the government had even employed an unbiased jury to yield a fruitful result but all efforts seems to have gone in drain. 

What is surprising is that the film COURT despite winning the hearts of International film critics, as many raved the movie revived the style of legendary filmmaker and Oscar Award winner Satyajit Ray style of film making, has failed to impress the Oscar jury. 

So the million dollar question is - are Indian films really so bad that in the 88 years of Oscar Awards journey, not a single Indian film has been worthy of an Oscar Award? 

And only a handful Indian films viz. MOTHER INDIA, SALAAM BOMBAY and LAGAAN could reach the prestigious top five positions in the Best Foreign Language Film category!!! 

What is interesting is that the though the Academy Awards Committee admired Indian film wizard Satyajit Ray for his unique style of film making and even revered the legend by bestowing him with the Honorary Oscar in 1992 for Lifetime Achievement but NEVER selected his film in Best Foreign Language Film category!!! 

Hence it may sound hard to believe but the fact is the ‘West’ still hesitates to accept India at par with them!!! What say readers????

Kapil Sharma's 'Comedy Nights With Kapil' shifting to new TV Channel?

It’s official that stand up comedian Kapil Shama’s most hilarious show 'Comedy Nights With Kapil' is going off air from January 17, 2016 and will be replaced by another comedy show titled ‘Comedy Nights’ to be anchored by ace standup comedian Krushna Abhishek, nephew of popular Bollywood actor Govinda and a celebrated name in TV industry for his slapstick comedy. 

Confirming the news a source close from the Color TV said, “It’s true that Kapil Sharma is quitting the show. Along with him his entire team i.e. comedians Ali Asgar, Sunil Grover, Kiku Sharda etc are also packing off from the show. However, only Navjot Singh Sidhu, will continue to be a part of the new show.”

Informing about the new show he said, “The new show will be shot on the same set used by Kapil Sharma and shall include comedians Bharti Singh and Sudesh Lahiri giving support to Krushna Abhishek.” 

So the million dolor question is Kapil Sharma planning to re-launch his 'Comedy Nights With Kapil' on any new TV channel. 

Briefing media about his future plans Kapil Sharma revealed that he is not the one to give up. 

Miffed at the indifferent attitude of the channel against his show Kapil said, “I slogged day and night and gave my best to make the channel a success but alas after being at the peak of stardom the channel abruptly took us off just because they wanted to promote their other comedy show Comedy Nights Bachao.”

He added, “Our show has been loved by the nation and had literally become a habit for viewers hence I am not going to sit quite. I will be back within a short time.”

Kapli Sharma informed, “We are in talks with top TV channels Star Network and Sony Entertainment Network and once the deal is stuck with either of the two channels; my show 'Comedy Nights With Kapil' will be back!”

Is Akshay Kumar switching to serious cinema?

Bollywood top star Akshay Kumar recognized for his action and comedy films seems to be switching his track from the regular run of the mill typical Bollywood masala potboilers to doing movies that are socially relevant and have a message. 

Bowled over by the subject of his recent film AIRLIFT that depicts the humane service of the Air India personnel who played a lion’s share in evacuating 1, 70,000 Indians stuck in Kuwait in 1990 during the Iran- Iraq war, Akshay Kumar says, “The movie is truly heartrending tale. When I heard the script I wondered what if I was struck with a similar fate and tears rolled into my eyes.”

He confides, “And these tears where not the typical Bollywood KABHI KHUSHI KABHIE GHAM kind of tears but the one that ooze when your heart is melted gravely. Hence I nodded to do the film despite the movie lacking routine Bollywood item songs and comedy.”

Besides AIRLIFT the latest news is that Akshay Kumar has also nodded to play the lead in the Hindi remake of Tamil blockbuster KATHTHI, directed by A R Murugadoss. 

Reports claim Akshay Kumar, who recently donated Rs 90 lakhs to drought-hit farmers in Maharashtra, was quite pleased by the script of KATHTHI that deals with farmers committing suicide due to corporate encroachment. 

When asked about his negative role in Rajinikanth starrer ENTHIRAN 2 (ROBOT 2), Akshay says, “Well I have nodded for ENTHIRAN 2 only because the movie has a striking message and filmmaker Shanker is known for exposing the flaws of the society.” 

What’s more Akshay is also planning to produce a Female-centric film. In a recent interview he candidly confessed, “I have been pondering of making a women oriented a film. I also have a script since long but I have been searching for the right actress and I think I have found one in Nimrat Kuar, my co-actress in AIRLIFT, who made her Bollywood debut opposite Irrfan Khan-starrer THE LUNCHBOX.”

Akshay Kumar says he finds pride when people like his film like BABY, he says, “I feel proud when people like IPS officers appreciate my roles in films like BABY. I know such movies do not yield huge money at box office but slowly an audience for such movies is growing at a rapid speed and this gives me solace.”