March 11, 2014 196 reads 0 comments
Tired of comedy shows encashing in on cross-dressing antics? Sunil Grover has decided to go easy on the gender benders, and on his show "Mad In India", he will now play two roles - the popular female avatar Chutki and a brand new avatar as a boy named Sabjee.
"The idea is to expand the bandwidth of the humour from gender differences to a more broad-based appeal. It is hoped that Grover's kid-avatar Sabjee would become as popular as Grover's female avatars," said a source.
"Mad In India" is on a damage control spree. The show makers have roped in cricketer Harbhajan Singh for a tete-a-tete with Grover, who will appear before the cricketer as a child eager to learn the ropes of the game.
"The producers wanted Grover to come on the show as Chutki to interview Harbhajan Singh. But Grover doesn't want to make the cross-dressing the show's talking point. Hence, the child," said the source.
March 5, 2014 693 reads 0 comments
Actor Aamir Khan has left people at Bihar's Gehlaur village upset as they were under impression that the second season of his show "Satyamev Jayate" would begin with an episode on 'Mountain Man' Dashrath Manjhi. However, Star India's CEO Uday Shankar says there was never any such plan.
Aamir's show on social reform started on a high note, but an uproar of protest has broken out in Gehlaur village where once lived Dashrath Manjhi, who hand-chiseled a road through a rocky hill to connect his inacessible village to the nearest town.
Manjhi's family and the villagers claim they had a different impression about the show, following Aamir's recent visit to the village.
"Aamir Khan visited us on Feb 25 and told us that the first episode of his serial was dedicated to Dashrath Manjhi. We were all glued to the television in the community hall in our village at 10 a.m.," said a villager.
"We were sorely disappointed when the episode aired was about something else. Why did he visit us with the promise that the episode would be about our village hero?" he said.
When confronted with the villagers' protests, Uday Shankar, CEO Of Star India, said: "There was never any plan of an episode on Dashrath Manjhi this season. We ended season one of 'Satyamev Jayate' with an episode on Manjhi. And before we commenced the new season, we felt it would be a good idea to pay a tribute to his memory and the triumph of the human spirit that he signifies. Hence, Aamir's trip to Gelhaur."
Meanwhile, Manjhi's fellow villagers have more reason to feel disappointed. The film on Manjhi's life "The Mountain Man", directed by Ketan Mehta, lies unsold and unreleased many months after completion with no indication or hope of a release in the near future.
Mehta had wangled the privilege of shooting a film on Manjhi's inspirational tale from two other filmmakers, Neerraj Pathak and Manish Jha after fighting arduous legal battles with Pathak and Manjhi's family members.
With much fanfare, actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui was signed to play Manjhi. The actor spent months in Manjhi's native village in Gaya living out Manjhi's heroic endeavour.
When asked about the status of "The Mountain Man", Nawazuddin said: "I am not sure about what is happening with the film. We've completed the shooting. You will have to have ask Ketan Mehta when the film is releasing."
While Ketan Mehta refused to respond to the release query, he lauded Aamir for visiting Manjhi's family.
January 18, 2014 1645 reads 1 comments
"Dance India Dance 4 (DID)" is nearing its end, and choreographer Feroz Khan, who co-judges the dance reality show, is now in no mood to take any slip-ups by contestants lightly.
Be it costume slip-ups or prop mismanagement - things he would have let go off earlier, will also be looked at with intricacy, he said.
"Now the end of the season is here. We don't let any mistake go by now. Whether it is costume or prop, we make sure to look into every small detail. The performances have to be perfect in everything," Feroz told IANS.
He co-judges the show with fellow choreographers Mudassar Khan and Shruti Merchant.
The team of the dance reality show was present in the capital recently to create a buzz for the upcoming finale Feb 22, as well as thank the viewers for their undying support to the show.
"There is already a buzz for the show. We got to know that we get about 25-30 lakh votes which means that people like the show. We were here (Delhi) to thank everyone," he said.
Feroz's own filmography includes choreographing Bollywood numbers like "Maa da laadla" from "Dostana" and "Move your body" from "Johnny Gaddaar". He has also worked as an assistant to ace choreographer Farah Khan.
He admits that Bollywood projects have taken a backseat for him while "Dance India Dance" is on. But he said that his clients understand it.
"I had initially thought that I will take out time. But once I realised how much time this (DID) takes , I knew that I will not have the time to look into anything else. I did have some projects which I have kept on hold...everyone understands you once you form a good rapport with them," he said.
To add to the list of his achievements, the choreographer was also recently featured in the latest commercial by Apple for iPad Air. The company wanted to feature real people who use their iPad on a regular basis and were impressed with Feroz, who does most of his work on his iPad.
"For their commercial, I directed and choreographed a portion in Agra with 40 more dancers. The Apple team was present there and were fascinated with the way I work. Later, they called me from America and even interviewed me," he said.
January 18, 2014 1953 reads 0 comments
Newcomer Parichay Sharma, who will soon enter TV show "Aur Pyaar ho Gaya", says he quit his regular corporate job as a human resource (HR) official for his love for acting.
He always wanted to act.
"I want to continue to act for the rest of my life now, since this is what I had always wanted to do. I was in an HR firm, I quit that job and chose this career," Parichay told IANS in an email interaction.
After being involved in theatre for two years, Parichay participated in "Splitsvilla 6". He attributes his break on television to the training which he got from the reality show.
"I have this break today because of my stint with reality TV and that has made me confident enough to face the camera. I have done theatre in Delhi during my college days. I had always wanted to act...it was just that being in Delhi, I never got a chance," he said.
With the aim of doing "all that it takes", Parichay left his family back home in Delhi. He made sure he was in shape to be able to try his luck for fictional content on TV.
"I lost a lot of weight. I was 110 kg (at one point). I have left my family behind (in Delhi) and I came with an intention to give it all that it takes. This gave me a lot of confidence by itself," he said.
It is his passion for the craft that drives him to work non-stop.
"If you have a passion for something, you will work towards it. If my days had 48 hours, I would have liked to work for 40 hours straight," he said.
The 27-year-old is also looking for a break in Bollywood but he wants to be slow and steady.
"I definitely would like to see myself in Bollyood, who wouldn’t...but I’m going to take one step at a time and crawl towards it," he said.
January 18, 2014 2254 reads 0 comments
Small screen actor Rajat Tokas, who plays the male lead in "Jodha Akbar", says he is soft spoken in real life but did not face any problem playing the "authoritative" character.
"Akbar was very authoritative and bold and in reality, I am very soft spoken. But Akbar had the help of his ministers and even I get that help during the shoot when I am playing Akbar's charater and that makes it easy for me to play the character," Rajat told reporters at the launch of "Jodha Akbar" e-book and mobile game at Karjat.
The 22-year was asked what attracts him to the role of the Mughal emperor.
To that, he said: "Akbar was well aware of anything and everything. He had everything - money, fame and power.
"The best part about him was that he knew how to use the power. He believed in planning and always made plans in advance. I like that about him."
Rajat launched the "Jodha Akbar" mobile game, while Paridhi Sharma, seen as Jodha, launched the show's e-book at an event here.
Unfortunately, Rajat has not tried his hands at the game as yet and won't be able to play it anytime soon either.
"I haven't played the game yet and I have an iPhone so I won't be able to play it since iOS doesn't have the mobile game. But I will try to play on my friends' Android phones. Once it's available on iOS, I will download it," he said.
Usually actors are dressed as their characters at press conferences, but Rajat made an exception due to an injury that he suffered a few days ago.
"I got an injury on my foot. I got it treated, but I was still facing a lot of problems. I couldn't wear my jooti because it was made of leather and it hurted me.
"I had to go to Delhi to get it treated properly. It's not healed properly, and that's why I chose to wear cushioned sandals," Rajat said.