Compiled by Poorva Rajaram
The puppets are back
One of the pleasing results of the recent churning in the film industry is that anybody can dream of becoming a star. Moving past the well-known daughters, there are actresses who land up because of exotic nationalities, southern film industry credentials, MMS appearances or television pull. So, we had a moment of soft nostalgia when we heard Ahana Deol, 26, a fashion designer, was being launched in the industry by mother Hema Malini. And since the world will internally combust if all stars are selfmade, give it up for a glimpse of pushy “back-in-thosedays” stage mom puppeteering.
Put the cooking show in the fridge
Apparently, Saif Ali Khan is all set to replace Akshay Kumar as the host of Masterchef India. And this is, apparently, the right fit according to the show’s producers because Saif is an avid foodie. This otherwise impeccable logic only collapses when you note that Masterchef is not really about cooking and much more about a famous host. In other words, what will Saif do if he cannot contrive a cloyingly gregarious personality? Acting might be involved, we suspect
Sequelitis has again struck in its mystifying manner and we have to deal with the prospect of Kaminey 2. One that promises to be only a sequel in title and “freshly scripted”. Shahid Kapur will be back, presumably glad to have his second ever non-paediatric role after the original movie. However, even the usual quota of zippy Vishal Bharadwaj songs can’t compensate for the absence of Priyanka Chopra, whose kickass vigour was the best thing about Kaminey.
All for a good wife
Kannada actor Upendra is tired of “showcasing things rudely and in a harsh manner”. He’s hoping to transition into an older and wiser actor with his soon-to -be-released film Shrimathi. Cast opposite his real-life wife Priyanka, his character is falsely accused of sexual harassment and his wife helps him get through the trauma. Upendra insists that his wife is his biggest support system even offscreen. Perhaps Shiney Ahuja inspired the film.
‘I hope I can draw crowds like Bollywood stars’
WHO Born in Brazil, Giselli Monteiro was an international model before she stepped into Bollywood with Love Aaj Kal opposite Saif Ali Khan. Even though she auditioned to play Khan’s Caucasian girlfriend, she bagged the second lead in the film, Harleen, a Punjabi girl. She was recently seen in Red Chillies’ Always Kabhi Kabhi.
By Shinjini Datta
When were you first told that you look like an Indian woman?
My father used to say that I have Indian features. He used to sing a song to me that had the word ‘India’ in it. I don’t recollect it now. Once, an Indian model in Paris told me that I could easily be mistaken for an Indian. I was curious. So I wanted to come to India. It is a compliment to be told that I look like an Indian woman. Indian women have beautiful eyes. I am assuming that I have great eyes too.
What is your idea of a typical Bollywood star? Do you see yourself fitting into that mould in the future?
You’re putting me into trouble now (laughs). I don’t have an idea as to how an ideal Bollywood star should be, but perhaps the likes of Shah Rukh Khan, Kajol and Priyanka Chopra fit into that mould. As for me, I hope I too can draw crowds some day. My Hindi has improved, but I don’t get to talk in Hindi much.
The media has often called you a ‘timid’ girl. Is there any truth to that perception?
I do take my own sweet time to open up. But once I do, you can see different shades of me.
You have been an international model for quite some time. Do you think Indian models can give their international counterparts a run for their money?
Yes. I have met a few Indian girls at international fashion shows. They are beautiful with lovely eyes. But a place like Paris prefers tall girls.
Living alone comes with its share of challenges. Who do you turn to in times of distress?
No matter how bad the situation is, I make it a point to speak to my mother. I tell her about my problems in the funniest way possible. I’m not sure if it is her voice or the way I tell her about my problems that makes me feel better. On the other hand, a heart-to-heart chat with dad takes me back to the good old days spent in Brazil.