Compiled by Poorva Rajaram
Dance Dance Revelation
If you pause for a moment and flip through a quick mental slideshow of movies from the past two to three years, you’ll realise thatShilpa Shettyhas been counter-intuitively missing from the big screen. Well, she is back with a competent looking ‘film-festival’ movie,The Desire: Journey of a Woman. As the title suggests, it’s about Gautami, a talented Odissi dancer who falls for a Capital A artist called Jai Leang. And the trailer managed to squeeze in what looks to us like a lesbian sub-plot. Brace yourself.
Oops, I Forgot My House Was Haunted
Okay, we are torn between a deepbone fatigue of sequels and the thought of Vikram Bhatt’s Raaz being recreated with its original cast, Bipasha Basu and Dino Morea. However, we are ready to swing our vote to a giant thumbs up for Raaz 3 if someone can promise us the same Udhagamandalam location that gave us chills in the first movie. It could even get better if the franchise becomes self-referential like the smart-alecky Screammovies. (Yes, we know this is not likely to happen.)
Here is a not-so-secret trade secret. Sometimes when we announce that a certain big star is starring in a big movie, you know, just like us, everything explodes in our faces as the film industry decides to play musical chairs. Turns out our excitement aboutChitrangada Singh playing a villain inKrrish 2 was premature. The role is not for a villain and Chitrangada has dropped out clearing the way forJacqueline Fernandez, who has just traded in her month of fame for at least a year.
Knots And Crosses
We would like to offer a humble suggestion. And the news that Ranveer Singh might have switched from dating Anushka Sharma to Sonakshi Sinha only demonstrates the need for our idea. Instead of going through more horribly hagiographic interviews in Simi Selects India’s Most Desirable, we should engage her young guests (expect Lady Gaga) in the mother of all swayamvar shows and just pair off all of young Bollywood with each other. Think of the peace that will descend on the land with no rumoured breakups or hook-ups. We just starting to hear the birds chirp again.
‘Bollywood is an industry of men run by men’
WHO Nagrani was first runner-up in Miss International 2003. Later, she hosted shows like The Great Indian Laughter Challenge on Star One and Khatron Ke Khiladi Season 2 on Colors. She rose to prominence by hosting cricket shows for the 2010 T20 World Cup on ESPN Star Sports and IPL T20. She has also played supporting roles in Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi in 2008 and Dil Bole Hadippa in 2009.
What did your army background teach you?
It taught me that I could survive any situation. I can talk to anyone from any strata of society. I started talking to generals when I was five years old. Also, I changed 13 schools, so change surely doesn’t scare me. In fact, I am confident that I can accept it and turn it around for my good.
What kind of a teenager were you?
I was a miserable teenager as I was so unsure of myself. I always studied in schools in small towns. If we ever went to a city, I was the one who didn’t know about all the cool things. I was always the new girl in school, and that put me under the radar. It was harrowing. I was trying to play catch up every time my father got posted to a new place.
Did winning the Miss India pageant help?
It taught me that I had even more catching up to do. I didn’t even know how to apply kajal when I went there and the other girls were all professional. This was also the first time I had no family to fall back on. But I have this ability to speak my way through everything. And that is why I got noticed, because I could speak so well. I was thrown into the jungle and yet I emerged a winner.
How hard is it for a person with a non-filmi background to make it in Bollywood?
I have always loved attention so I knew Bollywood would be good for me. But it is very hard to make it. It is an industry of men run by men. And you need to massage many egos to make it big. I can’t do that.
You have been a cricket show host on TV? How do you react to all those men who say women should not be allowed on the cricket field?
They are right. At the end of the day, it’s a man’s sport and a woman will never be able to add the same kind of intellectual value. But we double the viewership!
Aastha Atray Banan is a Senior Correspondent, Mumbai with Tehelka.