By Bollywood Hungama News Network, October 28, 2010 – 12:55 IST
Whistling Woods International (WWI) is all set to branch out and set up its campus at Jhajjar in Haryana. This will be the institute’s second facility in India, after its campus at Filmcity in Mumbai.
During his recent visit to Mumbai, Mr. Bhupinder Singh Hooda, Chief Minister, Haryana along with his delegation of high-level government officials visited the institute and interacted with Mr. Subhash Ghai and the team at WWI. Mr. Hooda was impressed with the filmmaking techniques, the course structure and the state-of-the-art facilities offered at WWI and described the institute as an excellent place for students to learn from the best. He said that Mr. Ghai was marching ahead of time as he felt strongly that the real competition for resources would be in the field of education and skill development; and that the areas and states blessed with quality education would be the real leaders in the time to come. He was delighted that a campus with this vision would be available to the students of Haryana and adjoining states.
Speaking on the occasion and complimenting Mr. Hooda for his visionary approach in the field of education and other areas, Mr. Subhash Ghai, Founder and Chairman, Whistling Woods International said, “Haryana has made tremendous progress under the leadership of Mr. Hooda and the whole of India is appreciating it. Haryana is a state with huge potential, with young budding talent. This institute will give an opportunity to these young aspiring film-makers to chase their dreams.”
The institute is being set up in a 20-acre sprawling campus at Jhajjar in Haryana and will provide world-class film, television, animation and media education. The integrated model will also include space for shooting floors, studios and various commercial complexes. With a planned investment on the project of over Rs.100 crore, the institute campus will be ready within three years. This institute will cater to the whole of North India, including Punjab, Rajasthan, Delhi, Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, and Jammu & Kashmir besides Haryana.
Delhi boy Suraj Sharma, 17, will play Pi Patel in Ang Lee’s upcoming adaptation of Yann Martel’s best-seller ‘Life of Pi’
|Suraj Sharma, 17, will be playing the lead role in Ang Lee’s upcoming Life of Pi|
Yes, India has much to rejoice about as Ang Lee has chosen 17-year-old newcomer Suraj Sharma to essay the role of Pi.
Suraj lives with his mathematician parents in Delhi. He has no previous acting experience and was cast following an extensive, months-long search. Over 3000 young men auditioned for the part.
Lee, whose many other honors include an Oscar nomination for his direction of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, and whose Sense and Sensibility was a Best Picture nominee, will shoot Life of Pi in 3D, utilising groundbreaking techniques to capture the story’s epic scope.
Life of Pi is based on Yann Martel’s beloved book, one of the biggest publishing events of the past decade. The book has sold over seven million copies worldwide and continues to sell over 1,000 copies per week and has won the prestigious Man Booker Prize, and was a New York Times bestseller for over a year.
Yann Martel had this to say: ”I’m thrilled that Ang is adapting Life of Pi to film. He’s a brilliant, versatile director, with a stunning visual sensibility. He can capture the most intimate emotion as well as the most dynamic action. He’s the perfect filmmaker to bring Pi’s epic journey to the screen”
Life of Pi will take the audience through a young man’s incredible adventure – at turns thrilling and spiritual; joyous and harrowing; humorous and tragic. Audiences will follow Pi Patel as he travels from an exotic zoo in India on a voyage across the Pacific, where he survives a shipwreck and is cast adrift in a lifeboat with a Bengal tiger as his only company. Adrift in an endess expanse of ocean, Pi struggles to survive and train his companion, landing on a magical island that offers the two their only respite on their desperate journey.
|(From left) Ang Lee with Suraj Sharma|
Commented Ang Lee: “It has been a daunting and exciting process to develop a motion picture that brings Yann Martel’s fascinating, mind-boggling story to the big screen. Casting the sixteen-year old Pi was particularly challenging. We searched throughout India for a young man who had the innocence to capture our attention, the depth of character to break our hearts, and the physicality needed to embody Pi on his journey.
“Suraj is Pi,” Lee continued. “During his audition, he filled the room with emotion, much of which he conveyed simply through his eyes. His natural ability to believe and stay in the world of the story is a rare treasure.”
Vijay Singh, CEO, Fox Star Studios India says, “We are hugely excited that Ang is adapting the international best -seller Life of Pi. The fact that it will project Indian talent on the Global platform makes it doubly special. We are glad to have the young and talented Suraj Sharma on board for this exciting project. With it’s thrilling plot and groundbreaking 3D techniques, Life of Pi will be a hugely anticipated film in India.”
The film will begin production in January 2011 in India and Taiwan. Twentieth Century Fox will release the film on December 14th, 2012.
Barely days after Mumbai Mirror reported on Indian Idol singer Rahul Vaidya filing a case at the Versova police station against TV producer Gajendra Singh for non-payment, the singer has been paid his dues.
When contacted, Rahul Vaidya said, “Yes, I have got my balance dues. So many people called me when they learnt about this issue. The money was delivered to my house.
I have always believed in the power of the pen but you get to know it better when it happens to you personally.
Today, I believe in the power of the pen even more than before.”
There are ‘pen’alties for repeating yourself, Rahul! Just kidding.
Akshay Kumar is in ‘payback’ mode. According to a source close to Akshay has already donated nearly Rs 50 lakh to Being Human in one swoop.
And we hear that Akshay intends to double that amount before the year is through. Reveals a source, “For years, Akshay has been working for various causes.
But he has always been wary of transferring funds to charitable institutions. Now in Being Human, Akshay has found a charitable trust that he can trust.”
The story goes that Akshay’s decision to donate such a big amount stems from the fact that Salman did a cameo in his co-production, Tees Maar Khan, free of cost.
Furthermore, Akshay has even informed Salman of his availability for any event related to Being Human. “Bas mujhe bolna aur main haazir ho jaaonga,” he has told him.
Veteran actress Sharmila Tagore is known to be picky with signing films but a lesser-known fact is that she makes exceptions for people she is fond of. And it turns out, Deepika Padukone is one of them.
Sharmila will be seen in the Imran Khan-Deepika Padukone starrer, Break Ke Baad, in which she plays a single mother to Deepika. Deepika and Sharmila share a very special mother-daughter relationship in the film.
And acting must come naturally to both since both Deepika and Sharmila are very fond of each other. The two first met on the sets of Love Aaj Kal, which Saif Ali Khan produced.
Deepika bonded with Sharmila and apparently when the mother’s role was being finalised for Break Ke Baad, Deepika suggested Sharmila’s name.
When contacted, Deepika said, “I was very excited to know that Sharmilaji will be playing my mother in the film. I respect her immensely, and feel she is one of the finest actors of India.
I am humbled that I got a chance to share screen space with such a great actor.”
Kunal M Shah (MUMBAI MIRRROR; October 28, 2010)
The Director Lovely Singh will remember his recent trip to Hyderabad for some good reasons, but more importantly, some very unpleasant ones.
When he landed up on the sets of Golmaal 3 in Hyderabad to meet his friends Kareena Kapoor and Tusshar Kapoor, Lovely was oblivious that the two had planned to gang up against him.
Later that day, both Kareena and Tusshar told Lovely that the hotel he was supposed to stay in, was haunted.
That night, minutes before falling asleep, Lovely found two `Nimboos’ on his bed. The next day, he found blood in his toilet. And on the third day he started hearing weird noises, like that of a girl crying.
Only later did Lovely realise that these were all pranks and that Kareena and Tusshar had planned them.
A petrified Lovely said, “I could not sleep for three nights. Even Ajay Devgn teamed up with Tusshar and Kareena. The worst was when they hid a walkie-talkie behind the AC that made weird noises.” Wait, that’s not been mentioned; are you sure there was a walkie-talkie Lovely?
Angry at the way his son was portrayed in Sangeeth Sivan’s 332 Mumbai To India, Kundan Raj stormed out of its screening
On Tuesday, producer Sangeeth Sivan and his crew went to Patna and organised a screening of their film 332 Mumbai To India for Rahul Raj’s father. But Sivan hadn’t expected what followed.
The father Kundan Raj was very angry after watching the film and he stormed out of the venue threatening the makers that he will not allow the film to be released.
Our source said, “Sivan and director Mahesh Pande wanted to show the film to Rahul Raj’s father so that he could support the film. But Kundan Raj went against them. He was not happy with the way his son was portrayed in the film. So he walked out of the venue.”
When contacted, Sivan said, “I think he is talking like a father, who is not happy at the slightest deviation from who he thought his son was. The fact is that he had held 13 people hostage in that bus for a brief period of time and that too with a country-made gun, which could only fire one bullet.
So, I presume that Raj must have done something that scared these 13 people for a while. This is what I have shown in the film. I was not in that bus, so I have taken the cinematic liberty to show that.
I never said that my film is a documentary on Rahul Raj, so Kundan Raj has the right to think what he thinks. He said that he was sure there was no one on the upper deck of the bus when Rahul Raj was shot. Kundan Raj got angry but there is little I can do about this.”
Ram Charan will make his Bollywood debut with Faruk Kabir’s Welcome to the Jungle and will play a role that was first offered to Hrithik Roshan
Chiranjeevi’s son Ram Charan is all set to make his Bollywood debut.
After his Telugu blockbuster Magadheera last year, the actor has now signed Welcome To The Jungle with director Faruk Kabir, who is in the news for his forthcoming film Allah Ke Banday. Welcome To The Jungle will go on floors on 12th November.
|Faruk Kabir||Ram Charan|
Earlier, it was reported that Hrithik Roshan was to play the protagonist in Welcome to the Jungle, supposedly an action-thriller. And the role required him to perform a lot of stunts. Now that Hrithik is out of the project, Ram Charan has stepped in. The film will be shot extensively in the dangerous Amazon forest.
Our source said, “Many Bollywood directors were wooing Ram Charan to make a debut with their films but Chiranjeevi’s son has chosen to step into Hrithik Roshan’s shoes. Obviously, people will expect a lot from Ram Charan but this also places the actor in the bracket of top stars.”
Apparently, Faruk Kabir met Ram Charan recently and all the details are being worked out. But everyone is trying to keep things under wraps as they’re planning to make a big announcement later. Sorry, guys!
When contacted, Faruk Kabir said, “Yes, things are being worked out and my talks are on with Ram Charan. My producer Ravi Walia and Mushtaq Sheikh met him in Hyderabad and I met him when he was here for the shooting of his film Orange. But it would be difficult for me to confirm anything at this point of time as talks are still on.” Enough said Faruk.
A man called Atif Malik is running a fraudulent ad on the Internet inviting people for a “Break Ke Baad dinner party”. Wonder what he has on mind…
Fraudsters in the media keep redefining themselves with time.
Here’s a shocking example. A few days before Danish Aslam’s Break Ke Baad is set to hit the theatres, a person who calls himself Atif Malik, is running an ad on You Tube (check the link www.youtube.com/watch?v=AY7Ty8E82cs), which says that “A Meet and Greet Dinner party of Break Kay Baad is going to be held on November 12 at Chak 89 Hall, 105 Bond Road, Cr 4 Hg.”
|Imran Khan, Deepika Padukone|
The ad strikes you as a fraudulent one when you realise that the name of the film has not been spelt correctly. The ad spells it as ‘Break Kay Baad’. But it is definitely the Imran-Deepika starrer Break Ke Baad that Atif is referring to; you can clearly see some scenes from the film being run in the background.
When Mumbai Mirror checked with some sources from the actual Break Ke Baad team, the truth surfaced.
A source close to the film says, “How can anybody advertise like this? This is so unethical. Who is the so-called meet and greet party of Break Ke Baad being sold to? No member of the cast and crew is going to attend any event at 89 Hall on November 12.”
The ad mentions that singer Sonu Nigam will make a special appearance at the party. So, we checked with Sonu’s business manager, Ben Thomas about the authenticity of this ad. Ben said, “No. Sonu is not scheduled to make any such appearance on November 12.”
|Paisa Fake-O: The fraudulent add on Youtube|
The official spokesperson of Break Ke Baad said, “We are going to UK around the same time, but we are not aware of this.”
Sorry Atif, no meetings or greetings for you!
Barely a month after Dabangg, its director is demanding unbelievably high remuneration from producers
Agreed, Dabangg was received quite well at the Box Office but it seems director, Abhinav Kashyap has taken it rather too well.
The director has got too big for his boots. While still basking in the Dabangg glory, Abhinav has already started visiting corporate house offices and demanding huge amounts of directorial remuneration. The entire industry is at a loss for words.
A few days ago, Abhinav demanded Rs 10 crore plus from Eros International while negotiating for a film. Says a source, “The Eros International officials were flabbergasted. They had their share of talks, but nothing materialised in the end. In other words, they showed him (Abhinav) the door.”
A few days later, we hear, he had a meeting with PVR. A source reveals, “There, Abhinav demanded an amount between Rs 15 and 18 crore. The PVR officials were as shocked as the Eros International ones, if not more. Nothing happened for Abhinav there either.”
Says a leading distributor (name withheld on request), “You may have made Dabangg but you certainly don’t deserve more than Rs 4 crore, Mr Abhinav Kashyap. Maximum Rs 4.5 crore.
He should not forget that Dabangg chal toh gayi, but it had many loopholes. Moreover, you can’t demand Rs 15 crores for directing a film when you have a track record of just one successful film.”
When contacted, Abhinav did not deny that he had met Eros International and PVR after the release of Dabangg. “I haven’t finalised anything on my next project as yet.
But why only Eros International and PVR? I have met up with the whole world. I met Fox, UTV, Disney and Ashtavinayak too.”
On being questioned about the remuneration Abhinav has been asking for, he said, “This is a very personal thing. It’s not for public consumption.” Eros and PVR might say the same about their money, Abhinav!