Category: Bollywood

Unadulterated stories from Bollywood

Pahalaj Nihlani Chopped Out, Prasoon Joshi Is New CBFC Chief

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It has finally happened…

Pahlaj Nihalani has been removed from his post as that of the chairman of the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) and Filmmaker Prasoon Joshi will reportedly replace Mr Nihalani as the new chairman of the censor board by next week.
Although Pahlaj Nihalani had taken over the office as the chairperson of the CBFC in January 2015, he has been embroiled into several controversies and his blatant comments ever since.
The controversies started as soon in 2015 when he chopped intimate scenes in the James Bond film SPECTRE. Next in line was Udta Punjab where objection was put on various scenes.Next Mr Pahlaj blocked Lipstick Under My Burkha on grounds of the film being ‘lady-oriented.’ He also objected to the word ‘intercourse’ which was used in one of the mini trails of Shah Rukh Khan’s film Jab Harry Met Sejal. The latest controversy involved in Nawazuddin Siddiqui’s Babumoshai Bandookbaaz as the board had demanded 48 cuts for his film.
Hope the new CBFC chairman would take some lessons from the past and the Censor Board would act like a mature board and take decisions in accordance to what’s right and wrong. 
All the best Mr Prasoon Joshi

Gimmickry Thy Name Is Film Promotions

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Rewind yourself to the olden times when if a new film was released, one would only get to know it through the show timings in the newspaper or through the big colourful hand painted posters in front of the cinema halls. That was the only promotion any film would get and still they went on to complete 25 weeks or 50 weeks at the box office.

Now, fast forward to the present times where film promotions have become more like a marketing thing in the film making aspect. Now you have directors announcing on social medias about their films going on floors in year 2035…and then during the shooting of the movies, we get to see the snippets of it on either the actor’s insta stories or some small peek which goes viral on the social media within few minutes.

And once the film is completed, oh God the line of promotions is so big that it goes on even when the film is released. So, you have like the actors promoting the film on all sorts of reality shows or the soap operas on the small screen. And if all this is seemingly less, they rope in their industry friends and make a dubsmash video or the industrywallahs start tweeting on their twitter handles showing their so called ‘excitement ‘for the upcoming movie. The teaser of the film first is unveiled, then the poster, then one or 2 songs and finally the trailer of the movie is released in some big way in some lavish auditorium or stadium and mind you it’s just the trailer!!!

But even all this excitement built up and promotional gimmicks, why do these films only run a week or so? Why do they get erased so quickly from the minds of the audience unlike the earlier movies? Are we overdoing the promotions, or are the story lines so weak that all these marketing gimmicks are needed? Can there be any movie which can run without these promotions and just on their story and still do well… time to introspect…

Eros Looking For Buyers of Its Film Portfolio

Filmi Files Bureau

Well, Indian movie industry is surely going places whether it’s our films, our actors or even the way we market our films, we are all over the globe and day by day, we are growing. The latest addition to this growing bandwagon is the movie production and distribution giant EROS INTERNATIONAL who boasts of having films like Bajrangi Bhaijaan, BajiRao Mastani and Dabang in their kitty.

 News is that Eros International is in discussion with Apple, Netflix and Amazon to sell the rights of their 3000 plus film and music library. The deal could worth be around $1 billion as quoted by The Economic Times. Earlier Eros had attempted to buy the film and music library from Sony, Star India, Viacom and Zee.

 Although neither Eros or the other 3 have declined to comment on the news, however the shares of Eros International shot up more than 16% Monday on the reports of the talks. Let’s see what the future holds.

Movie Review: ‘Jab Harry Met Sejal’

If you are content to simply bask in the company of a middle-aged Shah Rukh Khan and half-his-age Anushka Sharma, the two attractive leads who star as Harinder Singh Nehra aka Harry, a Punjabi, and Sejal Jhaveri, a Gujarati, then this romance is for you. Otherwise, you would be questioning your motive for sitting through this film.

Once again, it’s hard to put too much hate on a film that clearly tries hard to dazzle its fans, but the elephant in the room here is clearly the script. Yes, this is a wonderful film to gawk at as the locales in Europe are beautiful, but you will find that you are doing just that. The plot meanders on multiple occasions and the characters, especially Sejal, is given some of the most atrocious dialogues that make you chuckle inadvertently.
Sejal is a tourist in Europe, who at the airport on her way back to India, realises that she has lost her engagement ring. Disappointed, dejected and defiant, she opts out of the group to search her ring. She ropes in her tour guide Harry in her endeavour. The premise, albeit cliched, and the setting promise an entertaining romance. But alas, it is nowhere palpable.
Imitaz Ali’s latest oeuvre seems to be mounted on an outdated, perfunctory script packed with cardboard thin characters, silly conversations and a weak plot that lacks depth, drama and the seriousness of a heart-felt romance. This makes the entire narrative seem forced and pretentious, and loses connect with the audience.
Added to the anguish are the performances. Though both the lead actors are ace performers, Shah Rukh does not seem to get out of his comfort zone. His performance lacks lustre and freshness. Anushka matches Shah Rukh with her energy levels but together their on-screen romance lacks chemistry and chutzpah. Her accent is fake and inconsistent.
Aru Krishansh Verma as Harry’s friend along with Evelyn Sharma as his love interest has nothing much to offer. Chandan Roy Sanyal as Gas, the illegal Bangladeshi immigrant thug, does have his moments of on-screen glory.
Director Imtiaz Ali seems to have taken the easy route assuming that a film with Shah Rukh Khan will automatically work. The film sorely lacks drama, interesting twists and freshness. It trudges along on an even keel throughout. The first half is watchable as it establishes the setting and characters, but the post interval half drags needlessly.
The songs “Hawaayein” and “Radha” are melodious and well-picturised, but do nothing to enhance the experience.
The film expectedly boasts of good production values and the cinematographer captures the beauty of Europe with utmost sincerity.
Overall, good actors cannot uplift a poor script and a ‘When Harry Met Sejal’ suffers from that and a lot more. With low entertainment quotient this one fails to appeal. (IANS)
Our Ratings: **

From Farts To Toilet: Is Bollywood Breaking Barriers? 


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Aren’t the titles of the films going really quirky and different? Imagine telling a movie illiterate person, oh I went to see ‘Fan’ or ‘Tubelight’… that poor chap would be wondering as to what’s so special seeing the basic things of existence. And now we are all geared up to see ‘Toilet’, funny indeed… you use it every day and infact see it more than you see your sweetheart, but yes you would be seeing ‘Toilet’. But this is not what are article is all about. It’s actually about how things that were perceived taboo earlier are slowly coming in the mainstream cinema. 


Remember ‘Hum Dil Chuke Sanam’ and how coolly Ms Ash made fun of Sallu’s name as ‘Sameer, Hawa ka Jhoka’, which was a taunt at the fact that he farted in front of her. But on second thoughts how many movies ever since have actually shown the lead actors farting, c’mon its natural phenomenon, but still films are scared of showing it… scared of the smell it would generate? 

There are many things which were still considered a taboo or shame showing in movies but with the new breed of directors and writers and their innovative thinking, some of them are now being considered normal. Flashback yourself and think that had you ever seen the concept of ‘sperm donor’ in movies… shh what are we talking sperm and all that… but with movies like Vicky Donor and various web series, now we actually find the idea practical, it’s a way of helping the childless couple and in a way creating awareness. And talking about Sperms, the next thing which is haww so shameful to show in a movie is Oral Sex. Isn’t Sex an integral part of our lives and what’s wrong in showing the various forms of sex, thanks to films like Delhi Belly where the lead actor was actually shown going down on his girl rather than being on the top, we actually saw a little ‘different’ aspect of it even though it was not shown fully, but yes it was a change after all. 

And how many of us have actually seen frontal nudity in films? We go ga-ga when the man shows his 8 packs or when the heroine strips down to her bikini, but people there is more to that and it seems impossible that we shall see a full Monty in movies soon. But hopes are alive… one day …one day!!

Sex leads to think us about relationships and yes, the concept of ‘live-in’ are now being shown pretty commonly in movies and so are the ‘gay relationships’ with Mr Karan Johar contributing to it in a way, how can we forget ‘Kanta Ben’ looking all shaky and shocked seeing SRK and Saif in the same bed! But why is a gender discrimination here also, if Gays are shown why are we still scared to touch the topic of ‘Lesbianism’. After all, if men have feelings don’t do the females have and the one film that dared to show it was ‘Fire’ although it is still considered parallel cinema. Waiting for that day when Lesbians would be shown in a main stream masala movie.


Awareness is also being spread in the form of making movies which cater to a certain section of society like in the case of My brother Nikhil, where AIDS was discussed or for that matter Taare Zameen Par which dealt with the problem of Dyslexia which is something not talked about it so openly, but yes, these movies are breaking the barriers. Movies are not only generating awareness about superstitions in fairly dominant religious country thanks to movies like PK and OH! My God, but upcoming movies like Toilet- Ek prem Katha takes the social mission of ‘Swatch Bharat’ forward. 

When movies were just considered a mode of entertainment where you could forget about your life problems and just enjoy, the new trend is breaking barriers in making us sit and think and in a way making us aware, but there is still a long journey ahead and hopefully one day it would be achieved.

Special Article: Needless Debate On Nepotism & Talent


 
By Apoorva Raturi

Nepotism has been an ongoing topic of discussion for many this year. The term used to describe the mind-set of a few who believe that they are privileged and that they deserve certain perks because of the family they are born in, was used by Kangana Ranaut in an episode of Koffee with Karan, which then triggered a fire amongst the people within the Hindi film industry and opened ground of discussions amongst the fans as well.

As she tagged Karan Johar as the “Flagbearer of Nepotism” and “A Movie Mafia” on the show, the entire industry rose to how the actress had questioned the judgement of a well-established filmmaker who was known to have given chances to many Bollywood biggies.

What followed was a public backlash from KJo that acted like fuel to the fire and led to the common people talking about the preference that is given to those who already have a Bollywood connection. With mixed reactions over the issue from various levels of the society, many actors came forward stating their opinions too, while some decided to stay mum.
While actors like Arjun Kapoor, Shraddha Kapoor, Alia Bhatt have played safe, Ranbir Kapoor, openly went on record to say that he is a “disarming product of nepotism” and a few others chose to scream at the top of their voice taking digs at Kangana and not just stopping there but going on to say in front of thousands that “Nepotism Rocks”.

The IIFA act by Varun Dhawan (son of filmmaker, David Dhavan), Saif Ali Khan (son of actress, Sharmila Tagore) and Karan Johar (son of late filmmaker, Yash Johar) had further got the entire nation by surprise. When the three big names of the industry boasted of how they had been born with a silver spoon and that it “Rocked!”
Viewed by millions of people, the three self-designated privileged men were flaked by the common people on social media. What they termed as a ‘Joke’ was clearly not taken down well by those who looked up to them. Owing to such reactions, Kjo, Varun Dhawan and Saif Ali Khan decided to make public apologies to anyone and everyone who had been hurt by their humour.

Saif even further, went down to pen an Open Letter on Nepotism which led to more backlash than what its actual purpose of calming everyone down was. He said that biologically a person was much more competent to do what his ancestors had been doing and so justified how acting was in his blood and that he was obviously supposed to follow his ancestor’s footsteps. Kangana retaliated back with a witty response saying that if the profession of the ancestors determined the value and capabilities of a person, then she would have been instead farming rather than have made a place for herself.

This ongoing war of words is something that seems will not calm down easily. With the struggles that the people who have no connections in the industry whatsoever face to those who feel it’s their birth right to be able to get a place in the industry is both a matter of opinions due to the background that they belong and also the connections that they are easily available to. As for many common people like us, Talent has just become a word that has lost its meaning in this whole feud.

Parmanu Is An Interesting Film Based On True Incident: John Abraham

Actor-producer John Abraham, who is coming up with a film Parmanu – The Story Of Pokhran, says that it’s entertaining but based on a true story. Parmanu – The Story Of Pokhran is based on the nuclear test conducted at Pokhran in 1998 when BJP leader Atal Bihari Vajpayee was the Prime Minister.

Asked if this film is somewhere a tribute to the leader, John said, “I think it is an interesting film. Atal Ji was one of the greatest Prime Ministers we had, but this is film and it has to be entertaining. Neither we are political nor are we showing anything in the film which is overtly political. We have just tried to make an entertaining film.” He added, Parmanu – The Story Of Pokhran is a very entertaining film but a true story which happened in India.

How did subject came to him? “This subject had come to Prerna and Arjun (Of KriArj Entertainment). When they came to me with this subject I liked it and then we developed it in-house. We were very fortunate as the script finally shaped up really well,” said John. The 44-year-old actor said “we are very careful in selecting only good script, because audience in today’s date looks for only good content.”
Asked to comment on the then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, John said, “He was a visionary, he had the great vision and if we can talk about India shining, it’s only because of him. We want to give credit to our army personals and scientists who are responsible for the super power that India is today.”


The film also features Diana Penty and Boman Irani in lead roles. (IANS)