Some narratives are always fresh. Even today we can speculate whether Sita was genuinely attracted to Ravan or whether it was Stockholm Syndrome. So we can look forward to watching Raavan in which Abhishek Bachchan’s character abducts Aishwarya Rai as an act of vengeance. Presumably she falls in love with him. But the Raavan interviews are near mythical too. Here is Aishwarya saying that through the shoot of Raavan she and Abhishek were kind to Vikram, their co-star. They took care to include him in their post-work plans. Then she adds quickly and fascinatingly, that these interactions stopped outside their bedroom door. Some narratives are always fresh.
It is annoying to feel protective towards Frieda Pinto. But really, how can we bitch the girl out when there are full-page stories about her role in You Will Meet, the new Woody Allen film, exclusively in terms of her make-up and clothes. Here’s one exhibit. A quote from Sunil Doshi, the director of Lumiere Movies — ‘Everything from her clothing and make-up to her overall demeanour has been well attended to. This is a serious makeover and it is evident that our girl is here for the long haul.’ What fabulously unthreatening expectations we have of our ladies.
Ever wondered how Salman Khan is always a hit? Can’t say Twitter provides any explanations for the deep loyalty of his fans but his page does provide serious entertainment. Pictures of lost slippers, dogs, amusement that he thought someone calling out to a dog was calling out to him. Not to mention the surreal charm of someone tweeting ‘Bhishum bhishum dhishum dhishum dhard ahaaaaaaaaaaaaaa dishkayon’. The best recent tweet has to be his ingenuous question whether Kites is really not spelt Kytes since the Roshans have the numerology fetish.
Ever seen bouncers and snaking queues at a book launch? This unprecedented event was spotted at a party celebrating the launch of Rahul Mehta’s short story collection Quarantine. At the launch proper many guests had been startled at the wit and charm of the author (in comparison to his rather sombre book). At this party though, he was outdazzled by flocks of gay men. A stray, straight guest babbled nervously and unnecessarily, “I just came because Random House invited me. Not that I mind ‘them’. As long as they are decent.”
‘My mother bribed me with Cerelac’
Does being a twin detract from your sense of individual identity?
We’re physically similar, but as individuals we’re poles apart — if I’m upset about something, I’d keep it to myself. Tapur is more emotive. I may come across as the stronger person, but the one who appears strong is usually weaker on the inside.
How has your definition of love evolved?
You should never judge a book by its cover, but unfortunately models always are. I’ve only truly been in love once. I was completely selfless — thinking of him before myself, tolerating things I normally wouldn’t, while people kept wondering what the hell I was up to. But I wouldn’t have been the person I am if it weren’t for such instances.
How did your grandfather (Hrishikesh Mukherjee) react to you modelling?
I was a science student from a typical Bengali family where education is paramount, so I wasn’t modelling full time until I graduated. But I never used my grandfather’s name to get work. This is why he respects me.
Does professional rivalry ever interfere in your personal equation with Tapur?
The fact that we are twins is also our USP. I won’t deny that there is competition, but it’s healthy. When we started out, people did try to create a rift between us. Once they realised we weren’t overtly ambitious and just modelling for fun, they backed off.
As a model, does the minute focus on your physical appearance make you insecure?
When I gave my class 12 exams, even my baggy pants didn’t fit me because my mother would bribe me with Cerelac (I love it!) to make me study. Clothes are just an accessory; your personality should shine out. I’ve tried wearing bikinis just because everyone else was doing it at that time, and realised that it is not for me. It doesn’t suit my personality or my age now! Some people carry them off even when they’re 40 because of their structure, but I don’t think I’m one of them. I live to eat!