Posts tagged chennai
The star choreographer dragged to court as wife files petition challenging his ‘illicit’ relationship with Nayanthara
Actor, choreographer and film director Prabhu Deva’s life lately reads like a Kollywood flick. His wife, Latha Prabhu Deva aka Ramalath, filed a petition on Monday with Chennai’s family court seeking to re-unite with her husband, her advocate P Anandan told the paper.
Prabhu Deva and Nayanthara were reportedly planning to get married shortly. Latha has accused Nayanthara of preventing Prabhu Deva from giving anything to her and her children for their survival.
Latha quoted several recent reports linking Prabhu Deva and Nayanthara. One such report announced that Prabhu Deva and Nayanthara were selected as the ‘Best Couple of the year 2010’ by a magazine published in Hyderabad.
|Prabhu Deva and Nayanthara|
Stating that she has been subjected to serious mental agony and torture by such reports Latha alleged that Prabhu Deva is deserting his family and neglecting her and their two children. “Even for monthly expenses Prabhu Deva is not giving any money,’’ Latha said, accusing Nayanthara of preventing him from doing so.
Latha said that whenever Prabhu Deva visited his house Nayanthara would call him up and pull him away. Even when his son passed away, Prabhu Deva, at Nayanthara’s insistence, left the place the very next day.
Worse still, she revealed that lately Nayanthara would directly call her, demanding her to accept their relationship and to give her consent for their marriage.
Nayanthara also spread rumours in the film industry that she had gifted me Rs 3 crore and 180 sovereigns of gold jewels, including a necklace worth Rs 85 lakh, to agree to this marriage. This is a great insult to the family Latha added.
She said that after Prabhu Deva became a hero and a director, he started behaving in a different way. It was in 2008, when directing the Tamil film Villu, that he developed a relationship with Nayanthara. Thereafter the cinematic relationship turned into a real-life one.
|Latha filed a petition in Chennai seeking to re-unite her husband with her and their two children. Pics show Latha in front of the court.|
There have been unconfirmed reports that Prabhu Deva and Nayanthara had even secretly tied the knot in Hyderabad, she also alleged. Prabhu Deva’s parents, who supposedly never liked Latha, had encouraged the “illegal relationship” and joined hands with Nayanthara to harass and torture her.
Latha married Prabhu Deva in the year 1995. It was a “love-cum-arranged” marriage, she claimed. The couple has three children. Their first son, Basava Raju alias Vishal, passed away from cancer in 2008. It has been a difficult time for this family.
The South star, who idolises Devsaab, schedules a special screening just for him at a multiplex in Juhu
Rajnikanth’s latest blockbuster Robot might have a million fans swooning over him at the moment but few are aware that the actor happens to be a huge fan of Dev Anand’s.
And guess what? Rajni has organised a special screening of Robot for Anand this evening. The South star is very keen that his idol Devsaab watches his film.
A source said, “Rajnikanth is organising a special trail for Devsaab at a multiplex in Juhu. Rajni’s office personnel called Devsaab’s manager and told him that Rajni sir is keen that Devsaab watches the film.
The manger took the details and spoke to Devsaab. A little known fact is that Rajni has immense respect for Dev Anand.
In fact, when his wife Latha Rajnikanth organised a major event in Chennai earlier this year, she invited Dev Anand to it as a special guest. During this visit, Devsaab went to Rajni’s house and they interacted for quite a long time. This is where they became friends and now he wants Devsaab to watch the film.”
It seems the admiration is mutual because Devsaab instantly agreed to Rajni’s offer. When contacted, Dev Anand said, “Yes, my manager Mohan told me that Rajni had called and that he has organised a show for me.
I will obviously go. I believe that the film is a huge hit. He has a massive fan following.
I had gone to Chennai in April this year, where his wife called me for an event. I met him there and we became friends. He told me that he was making this picture and was busy with it.
At the event, he spoke very highly of me and I talked about him. It would be nice to watch his film and catch up with him.”
But even Superman finds it hard to catch up with Rajni; he is THAT fast!
Meena Iyer (MUMBAI MIRROR; October 03, 2010)
If you join the dots from S Shankar’s first film Gentleman (1993) to his latest Robot (2010) you’ll notice a common thread. For one, he has the finger on the pulse of the mainstream cinegoer. Plus, he knows how to embellish his work with gloss and grandeur at a scale still unimaginable by most filmmakers.
Real Indian palaces, heritage sights, Machu-Pichu, seven wonders of the world…he’s exploited them all long before Bollywood found their address.
But to grant the devil his due - his movies are not just special-effects ridden; there is a definite plot with a message. Also, the budgets get more phenomenal each time.
His first blockbuster Gentleman (1993) (with its iconic Chik paku raile number that introduced the world to Prabhu Deva’s dancing skills) brought a new style of filmmaking but his 90s protagonist is just a different avatar of Bollywood 70s phenomenon - Salim-Javed’s ‘angry young man’.
Quite like Amitabh Bachchan, Shankar’s hero has invariably been taking on the system, film after film. But where he leaves his contemporaries way behind is his technical wizardry. A fact just reiterated by his latest Robot (Endhiran, Tamil).
Comparisons to West
Two days after the release of the Rs 150 crore film, Kollywood’s Shankar is drawing comparisons to none other than James Cameron.
Both are August born; both spare no expense when it comes to their budgets and cinematic vision. And quite like Avatar, the highest worldwide grosser, Robot too has opened to a thunderous start.
The filmmaker himself remains remarkably modest about being “India’s Cameron quotient.” “Stop pulling my leg,’’ he says. “I don’t need any more spotlight on me than that is already there,” he laughs.
But with an enviable track record of seven of the biggest hits in Tamil cinema, Shankar is on the verge of rewriting history with his eight one. Trade sources confirm that Endhiran, has broken the record of the highest box office collections for a Tamil film - the film, they say, will cross the Rs 250 crore mark.
Decoding the director
So what’s Shankar all about? Born in a fairly affluent family in Kumbakonam, Tamil Nadu, he worked as a quality control supervisor till the movie bug bit him. On a telephone call he still introduces himself as, “Hi I’m Shankar, the director,’’ and when you incredulously ask him why he says that, he replies, “my films and I are twins, joined at the hip.’’
But while his on-screen heroes are the robust Robinhood-rascala amalgamation, Shankar himself is the anti-thesis. He’s more like a quiet mouse on set, rather than like a megalomaniac wielding the megaphone. And he lets his ADs have a field day liaising with Bollywood beauties and the crew.
But quiet demeanor apart, with his baseball cap and huge sun-shades, Shankar is the boss. He has worked with the legends of Tamil cinema - Kamal Haasan (Indian) and Rajnikanth (Sivaji-The Boss, Endhiran-Robot) but is neither in awe of his subject nor does he doesn’t brook any interference.
As he says, “Rajnikanth is the ultimate for any film-maker. His demi-God status aside, he’s the most obedient actor I’ve worked with. He doesn’t leave the set once he reports for work…and he still maintains a child-like curiosity about everything related to a film.’’
What makes him work
One of his assistant directors says the secret of his success lies in his engineering background - he goes about fixing each nut and bolt step by step while filmmaking. Robot was originally planned five years ago with Priety Zinta and Kamal Hasan.
The monies didn’t drop at that point. It was then revived with Shah Rukh Khan. Story goes when Shankar went to Orange County (with his wife, son, daughters Aditi and Aishwarya and team of writers) to give SRK a detailed narration, he had every colour scheme, every frame and other minute details worked out. SRK was visibly impressed but the deal fell through and the Rajni came on board.
He is also a tough cookie to please. A stickler for punctuality, years ago, when Manisha Koirala (Indian, Mudalvan) walked in just a few minutes late on a couple of occasions, he had turned shades of purple. And one has seen him lapse into complete silence after he and the Nepali actress had a slight altercation about a scene.
Of course all this doesn’t compromise his work relations. The next morning, he sorted the matter with Manisha and shooting progressed at a brisk pace.
A simple man
In personal life he’s a plain-dresser. Though he arrives in a high-end automobile (he earlier drove a Merc but after his association with SRK, switched to a BMW) he has no shenanigans attached to his name. He’s the kind of guy who has no hesitation to eat food at roadside joints, goes about his work-home-work routine and shuns parties save for the occasional awards function.
But his budgets are the opposite. Ask him about why his budgets always get more prominence than his reviews, and he says, “I don’t know the intention of the press when it highlights the budgets of movies. In my movies the money has always been well-spent. In Robot, the animatronics used is of the same calibre of The Jurassic Park, Terminator and Avatar. And since it was also done at the Stan Winston Studios in the US, the SFX cost huge money. I only put my money where my mouth is. Robot needed high-end technical effects. If Indian cinema had a wider release, then I would have spent at least half of what Avatar did on SFX. However, I’ve always believed in bringing in something new via technology in every film of mine. And it is because of the novelty element that my films have a repeat value.”
“I think it’s wrong to talk about my movie budgets constantly. There is an equal amount of blood and sweat invested in the effort. The film took two years to make and we had a huge foreign crew involved. Every member of my unit and the foreign crew has worked so hard on this film that the money pales in comparison to the effort put in.’’
The journey ahead
Fair enough, but one wonders whether it is personal angst that is responsible for the Robinhood characters he writes. Says Shankar, “I’m a common man. And I’m fully aware of what is happening around me. As a journalist you have a pen that you use to highlight injustice. As a director, I have another medium to do exactly the same.’’
But the films he patronises are vastly different from the ones he makes. A self-confessed Mani Ratnam admirer, the other three films that have left an indelible mark on him are Ashutosh Gowarikar’s Lagaan, Farhan Akhtar’s Dil Chahta Hai and Raj Kumar Hirani’s 3 Idiots. “When I’m in between scripts the only things I make time for are watching movies,” he says.
And though his movies leave gadget freaks gasping, he’s technologically challenged in real life. “All the technology is reserved for my films. I don’t even know what hidden features my cell-phone has,’’ he laughs.
As he gets into his vehicle to visit the local Chennai theatres for reactions, he adds, “People want to know what I’m making next. I usually have some idea stashed away in my head for my next film even before the earlier one has wrapped.
In 17 years I have directed 10 films. I guess I have been prolific. But, this time around I want to wait for the hangover of Robot to subside. What I really need at this point is to splash some water on my face, clear my head and go for a long drive and feel the breeze blow.’’
|(L) A still from Boys (R) Aparichit|
|(L) Sivaji-The boss (R) Robot|
By Taran Adarsh, October 1, 2010 – 10:12 IST
One, it’s difficult to conceptualize and execute a film like ROBOT.
Two, when Rajnikant’s name comes in the credits, one cannot hear anything for the next two minutes. His name is greeted with a thunderous applause, whistles yells and cheers. Such is the charisma of this superstar. Rajnikant is the Boss. The real Badshaah.
ROBOT, directed by Shankar, is a Rajnikant Express that transports you to a world you can’t envision. Rajnikant’s feats are legendary by now. In ROBOT, he goes a step further. The Robot in ROBOT not only follows orders of his creator, but also cooks, fights, romances and wonder of wonders, has a lengthy conversation with a mosquito and scan loads of books/magazines and an entire telephone directory in a second. Yes, you read it right!
|BY BOLLYWOOD HUNGAMA.COM
That’s not all, this Robot is Superman + Spiderman + Terminator + Godzilla, all rolled into one. There’s more to this Robot. It can replicate itself, wage a vicious battle, turn into an Anaconda or a monster ball and wipe off an entire army. Whew! Known for larger than life canvas, ROBOT is Shankar’s most expensive and if I may say so, his most imaginative film thus far. And who better than Rajnikant for the pivotal role!
Final word? A Rajnikant film is an event and this combo’s [Shankar - Rajnikant] new outing ROBOT is sure to strike like Tsunami. Let me make it short-n-sweet. If you miss ROBOT, it’s YOUR loss!
Location: Chennai 2010. Mission: Creating a robot Chitti. Purpose: To help the society. Development time: 10 years. Special Features: A human who is not born, but is created. He can dance, sing, fight, is water and fire resistant. He can do all that a human can and more. He feeds on electricity. He takes instructions literally. Where a human can lie to save himself, this robot cannot lie.
Where he has a razor sharp memory and can memorize an entire telephone directory by just running through the pages, he cannot understand human emotions. Dr. Vasi upgrades Chitti’s processor and simulates human emotions without realizing the repercussions. Chitti gets transformed. He can now feel and the first feeling that he discovers is Love. Will this love come in the way of Dr. Vasi’s purpose of creating Chitti? Will Dr. Vasi’s own creation destroy him?
A title like ROBOT automatically puts tremendous responsibility and pressure on the director’s shoulders. And ROBOT is not merely a display of VFX, but it also has soul, a story to tell. At first, ROBOT comes across as a clash between the virtuous [Rajnikant] and wicked [Danny Denzongpa]. But ROBOT changes gears in its post-interval portions as the focus shifts to the creator [Rajnikant] and his creation [Rajnikant].
It’s a Rajnikant film and it would be incomplete if his loyal fans don’t get to watch his stylish actions and feats. Thankfully, ROBOT showcases it all. He can glide on the railway tracks, run horizontally on a moving train, transform into an Anaconda, can swallow helicopters and even fire at people with his fingers, without using a pistol. These are truly clap-trap moments!
Even otherwise, the screenplay is really well penned and absorbing. While the film is a super ride from start to end, it’s the penultimate 25 minutes that leaves you awe-struck and speechless. You can’t imagine a Hindi film having such an out of the world climax. There will be pandemonium inside theatres when the climax unfolds, I am sure. Let me confess, it’s the mother of all climaxes!
Only thing, Shankar could’ve controlled the length of the film. It could’ve been shorter by at least 10 to 15 minutes, which includes doing away with a song or two. Of course, like all Shankar movies, the songs are filmed most imaginatively on exotic locales, but what’s the point of having songs if they act as speed breakers?
That Shankar ranks amongst India’s best directors is well known by now and ROBOT only cements the fact. His vision and execution of the difficult subject deserves the highest praise, in fact distinction marks. He not only dreams big, but the outcome is incredible too. A.R. Rahman’s music doesn’t compliment the content of the film, but like I pointed out earlier, every song has been filmed exquisitely. The action and chase sequences are outstanding [Yuen Woo Ping, action choreographer in the MATRIX and KILL BILL sequels, was the stunt coordinator]. Visual effects are spectacular [Stan Winston Studio, the studio behind JURASSIC PARK, PREDATOR, TERMINATOR, IRON MAN, AVATAR, provided the animatronics technology]. Cinematography captures the grand production values with precision. The locations of Austria, Machu Picchu in Peru, U.S.A. and Brazil only enhance the visual appeal of the film. The sets are mind-blowing. Dubbing is near-perfect.
ROBOT is a Rajnikant show from start to end. And no other actor, not from Bollywood at least, would be able to do what he does with such amazing ease. Aishwarya Rai Bachchan looks stunning and acts most convincingly. Danny Denzongpa is efficient, as always. The remaining actors enact their parts well.
On the whole, ROBOT is a crowd-pleasing and hugely mass appealing tale of android revolution with a thrilling plot, rich and imaginative screenplay, super action, astounding effects and most importantly, Rajnikant, who is the soul of the film. It’s the Big Daddy of all entertainers. Miss it at your own risk!
By Subhash K. Jha, September 28, 2010 – 13:20 IST
There is no honour in honour killings. And there is certainly none in the censor board clamping down on the dialogues and scenes depicting this gruesome age-old ritual that has lately made a comeback into our lives.
The censor board has clamped down heavily on the dialogues and visual of Priyadarshan’s Aakrosh, a film on honour killing. Ironically, the Aakrosh producer Kumar Mangat’s earlier film Omkara which replicated the visual and vocal violence of the same North Indian backwater town as Aakrosh got away scot-free with its abusive soundtrack and visceral violence.
But then as the producer Mangat explains, “We had agreed to take an Adults certification for Omkara. We want a UA (for children under parental guidance) for Aakrosh.”
Sounding discernibly upset from Chennai the prolific Priyan, says, “This is the first time in my entire career of 25 years and 81 films that a film of mine has got into censor trouble. And I am not amused. On the one hand, I am accused of selling-out to mindless comedies. None of my supposedly mindless comedies have ever got into trouble. On the other hand, when I make an issue-based film it gets stuck. How will I do something meaningful when our moral guardians don’t seem to believe in my vision?”
Priyan admits there are shocking scenes of violence in the film. But he feels they are indispensable to the theme.
Argues the director, “How can I put across a social issue without hard-hitting visuals? Let the film go to the revising committee. My producer Kumar Mangat and I are not accepting any cuts.”
Priyan insists Aakrosh occupies the entertainment space and he wants it to be accessible to young viewers. “It is hard-hitting. But not an offbeat experimental film. We want younger generations to watch the film, to become aware of the frightening reality that surrounds their existence. Unless we let younger viewers grow aware of the reality we can’t change the aberrations in society. So yes, I won’t settle for an A certificate. Let me make films that have a social purpose. Or I go back to making De Dana Dan.”
So that Jhootha Hi Sahi releases on time, Abbas Tyrewalla is burning the midnight oil with Rahman
A R Rahman might be the toast of the Indian music industry, but Abbas Tyrewalla has had to face the brunt of working with the Academy Award winner.
His film, Jhootha Hi Sahi, will be releasing in a couple of weeks. However Abbas is travelling with Rahman to finish the background score all over the world.
Our source said, “Rahman left for his world tour, which started on the 11th of this month. However, the background score of Abbas’s film, Jhootha Hi Sahi is yet to be completed. So Rahman called Abbas over to Boston, where he was doing a show and then travelling all over.
Rahman finishes his concert and in the night goes to a local recording studio and records the background score for the film. Imagine travelling all over the world and recording a score in bits and pieces? They have already visited around seven cities, which include London, LA, Boston, New York and Vancouver, apart from Mumbai and Chennai, where work on the soundtrack had initially started.”
When contacted, Madhu Mantena, the producer of the film, said, “I don’t think Abbas is complaining at all. I am. He is having a ball travelling all over and working with a world-class talent.
However, for me as a producer, it is touch-and-go as the film is releasing on October 15, and the overseas delivery has to go on the 7th of October. The last part of the film has turned out to be toughest. However, it’s Rahman’s magic and so, we are not complaining.”
Sonu Sood gave up a lucrative engineering job to pursue acting, a risky decision supported by his mom
Sonu Sood is enjoying the attention for his role as Cheddi Singh in Dabangg but few know that before making it big in Bollywood, he’d found his calling in Chennai and started his acting career with a Tamil film. His turning point in life came when he left the security of an engineering job for films.
My mother strongest
“My mother was my constant guide when I decided to step into unfamiliar territory. I remember she was desperately waiting for me to come back to Punjab after four years in Nagpur (where I studied engineering). But when I told her about my acting aspirations, she was quick to tell me that I should follow my dreams,” says Sonu. Thus started his ordeal to make it big in the film industry. “I used to go to the offices of directors to drop my portfolio and they wouldn’t even glance at it. I would sulk and my mother quietly listened to my rants and told me to hang on. She started writing letters to inspire me, despite our talking frequently over the phone.”
It was his acting in Tamil and Telegu films which brought him recognition and opened doors in Bollywood. But before all the stardom, he had to learn the language. “I was at my wits’ end when my director told me that I have to learn Tamil. Just when I was thinking of giving up and returning to Punjab, I got an unexpected gift in my mail. It was a book on mastering spoken Tamil which my mother had sent. I would sit with the book every night, noting down the difficult words, conversing in Tamil with the assistant directors. Gradually, my language improved,” says Sonu.
When days are dark
Now whenever he is upset, Sonu takes out his treasure chest filled with the inspirational letters and reads them over and over again. “I now understand why she wrote those letters. She knew that she won’t always be there to hold my hand. This was her way of showing that she is always there,” says Sonu, who lost his mother two years ago. “It made me realise that I was lost without her. She was my source of strength,” he concludes.
On finding something amiss in the final edit of Abbas Tyrewala’s Jhootha Hi Sahi, the composer added two songs to the soundtrack at the very last minute
Watching the final edit of friend Abbas Tyrewala’s Jhootha Hi Sahi, turned out to be dissatisfactory for A R Rahman, who is known for being a perfectionist. The composer found something amiss and made an impromptu decision to record two more songs for the film.
After watching the final edit of the film in Chennai recently, Rahman added one song to be played during the start and end credits of the film and another one that will be the title song of the film. Rahman has now sent the songs to his friend Tyrewala.
When contacted, Tyrewala confirmed the news and said, “Rahman felt that the film needed one song and deserved one song. For me, the album was done and we had seven songs in it but now we have two more making the total number nine.
The album will be releasing soon. Rahman felt that for the start and the end titles we should have a romantic track instead of just music. The song has a few English, some Urdu and a few Punjabi lyrics.”
Apparently, Rahman had suggested that the film should have a title track on hearing that the film was called Jhootha Hi Sahi. Tyrewala added,”He said that the film deserved to have a title track. He said, ‘I don’t care where you use it, whether you use it in the background or not but the film deserves it.’ In fact, he was in London at that time.
He booked a studio there and recorded it himself. We finalised the song on the Internet. It’s very nice of him to do it since he was in the middle of so many things.”
Coincidentally, Rahman has been busy dealing with the mixed response to his Commonwealth Games 2010 track. Wonder if that is prompting him to be extra careful with Tyrewala’s film? Of course, it could be friendship too.
The Tamil superstar’s daughter Soundarya married Chennai-based realtor Ashwin Ramkumar yesterday
All that glittered on Friday morning in Chennai, was indeed gold. The city saw the lavish wedding of Tamil superstar Rajinikanth’s younger daughter Soundarya with Chennai-based realtor Ashwin Ramkumar.
In a traditional brahmin-style wedding between 7.30 and 9 am, organised at the Rani Meyyammai Hall, Soundarya (looking dazzling in traditional jewellery and red silk) tied the knot with Ashwin. The groom too looked rather dapper and quite visibly proud of his choice.
|Father of the bride Rajinikanth leads the couple during one of the ceremonies|
Rajinikanth, who was seen sporting a turban and a traditional attire was seen with wife Latha, greeting top political leaders, including Union Home Minister P Chidambaram. Amongst Bollywood celebrities, Boney Kapoor and Sridevi, Kamal Haasan and Gouthami, Mani Ratnam and Suhasini, were seen at the wedding.
Abhishek Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan (who calls herself an ardent Rajnikanth-fan and will soon be seen in Robot with him) attended the engagement that was held on Thursday evening but couldn’t make it to the wedding. The reception was held late on Friday evening.
Last year, Chief Minister Karunanidhi felicitated both Kamal Haasan and Rajnikanth with the Tamil Nadu Government’s Best Actor award and there have been reports that the two stalwarts may be seen in Mani Ratnam’s next. Let’s hope they had ample time to discuss the possibilities, if any. But for now, let’s wish the newly weds a happy future together.
|Sridevi and Boney Kapoor bless the newly weds|
|Kamal Haasan and Gouthami bless Soundarya and Ashwin|
The Tamil legend has reportedly refused interviews to promote his film
Meena Iyer | TNN (BOMBAY TIMES; September 4, 2010)
Even as Bollywood’s biggest stars go from door to door like travelling salesmen giving interviews to promote their films, the Tamil supremo Rajnikanth, who enjoys the demi-God status in Tamil Nadu, and who is inarguably Asia’s biggest box office draw, has reportedly refused to give media interviews to promote his next film The Robot (Hindi) and Endhiran (Tamil).
A source says, “Rajni hasn’t done interviews for a long time. And he has also been busy. September 3 was his daughter Soundarya’s marrige which Aishwarya and Abhishek Bachchan attended in Chennai. And Rajni has told the Robot producers that he will see the film and then decide whether he wants to do any interviews. And as far as the South goes, he is not doing any interviews there at all. He doesn’t believe in that exercise.”
Apparently, Rajni’s 63,000-odd fan clubs keep a watch on his movies and the public of Tamil Nadu is fully aware of his upcoming films. So he doesn’t feel the need to knock on the media doors for publicity.
This must be the true definition of starpower!