Posts tagged five star hotel
Kangna Ranaut, who refuses to be typecast, is having fun with her multiple roles
Meena Iyer | TNN (BOMBAY TIMES; August 29, 2010)
She’s arrives at a five-star hotel coffee shop dressed casually in a pair of skin-fitting blue jeans and a matching blouse. Her curly hair and her large, foreversearching-for-something-brown-eyes give her the quality of a child-woman. Kangna Ranaut is an interesting mix of innocence and equanimity.
Life is currently “very good’’ to her. Her slate is choc-o-bloc. Post the supersuccess of Once Upon a Time in Mumbaai for which she won accolades for her role as a yesteryear actress, it’s raining films and assorted roles in her backyard.
Says Kangna, “I don’t think any other actress in Bollywood has as many films as I do.’’ But, hello, she is not being immodest. In the next six months she has four films slated for the marquee. And unlike many actresses who are content to be typecast, Kangna is fortunate to have a wide array of roles to bite into. In October she’ll be in Sohail Maklai’s racy thriller Knockout with Sanjay Dutt and Irrfan Khan where she plays a journalist. Then there’s Tanu weds Manu where she plays a wannabe girl from small town Kanpur. But, of course, the high point of her career is producers Ritesh Sidhwani and Farhan Akhtar’s Game where this 23-year-old plays an Interpol officer.
“It is by far the most difficult role I’ve attempted,’’ says Kangna. “It was challenging to prepare for this role of a British girl from London who is actually quite like a man in many ways,’’ she says. The reason why she found this role so hard to prepare for is because she had no reference point of a girl who has stayed in London and speaks with a Brit accent. Having said that, the mountain beauty drops a bomb. She confesses that she has seen precisely six-seven Hollywood films in her entire life, and around 25 odd Bollywood films.
“So it wasn’t as if I knew a lot about FBI agents or CIA officials,’’ she points out. “And officers on special duty in our Hindi cinema are very different from their foreign counterparts. Abhinay Deo, the director of Game, helped me a lot by breaking the role down for me so I could interpret it correctly.’’
Kangna says Excel Entertainment (Ritesh and Farhan) were actually toying with the idea of getting a guy for this role. “However, they felt that a guy chasing a guy thing didn’t have that much of a novelty, so they changed it and I’m fortunate that they got me to do the role instead. I had to make sure that I got the body language perfect. There is nothing romantic or sensual about this Interpol officer. Yet my director didn’t want to go overboard with the stiffness and appear like too masculine. Believe me, it was a challenge. And Game is a film that I just enjoyed preparing for. It’s a never-been-seen before character as far as Bollywood goes.’’
It doesn’t stop there. While her contemporaries are falling over each other trying to grab films, Kangna’s booked way for the next year having signed on Priyadarshan’s Hindi adaptation of the Bullet Train; Indra Kumar’s comedy Double Dhamaal; David Dhawan’s Rascals; and, a film with debutant Chiraag Paswan. “Then I have been reading scripts and considering a few more projects. But now dates are an issue because I have signed on a lot of films and all are good,’’ she shrugs. What does one say? Get ready for a Kangna Ranaut film festival. For her the game has just begun.
Before leaving for Brazil, Piggy Chops organised a fab bash for her father’s birthday. Javed and Shabana were excited enough to break into song
Seems like Priyanka Chopra’s is quite a well-knit family, with daddy keeping track of beti’s diet charts and beti reciprocating the love by organising a lavish birthday bash for him at a five-star hotel. How lovely.
It turns out, before flying to Brazil for Fear Factor, Priyanka Chopra arranged for a grand party in a five-star hotel in Juhu for her father Dr Ashok Chopra’s birthday.
Like a loving daughter, Priyanka personally planned and supervised every little detail of the celebration, from arranging the invitee list, sending personal invitations to food etc. Priyanka ensured everything was in order before flying off to Brazil on Wednesday.
Confirming this, Dr Chopra added, “I am blessed to have such a darling daughter. She even sent me a watch, which landed at my doorstep on Monday morning.”
The doting father took a moment to praise his son as well and said, “My son Siddharth played the perfect host. He has completed a course in Hotel Management, and that worked I guess.”
Dr Chopra’s close friends attended the party, which was held on Monday evening. Guests from Bollywood included the likes of Javed Akhtar, Shabana Azmi, Mona Kapoor, Shahid Rafi (Mohd Rafi’s son), Neetu Chandra and Khayyam amongst a few others.
Talking about the party, Dr Chopra said, “Shabana and Javed sang the song Chhod Do Aanchal Zamana Kya Kahega, from the film Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi). Then I sang Khayyam’s composition Jeet hi lenge baazi hum tum from Shola Aur Shabnam. It was a fun-filled evening. We were in the hotel singing and joking till 2 am. I don’t know how to thank Priyanka.”
And how old are you, Mr Chopra, we asked shamelessly. “Well, I just completed my 21st year,” he replied. Aww!
Embarrased by female aspirants cueing up for the auditions of his assistant’s film and terrified of his building society having issues, Prakash Jha moves office to a suburban five-star
The shy and reticent Prakash Jha is writing his next film Aarakshan (Amitabh Bachchan, Ajay Devgn, Manoj Bajpayee) in a five-star hotel in Juhu. Reason: his office in Andheri has been taken over by hordes of girls who visit it for photo shoots for Jha’s assistant’s debut feature.
The take-over is so complete that Jha has virtually no place to sit in his own den. “I come to the office and find shoes and clothes of girls on my desk,” he says.
“Hardly would I get someone to keep them down that a few of them will barge into my cabin and ask, “Main kaisi lag rahi hoon?, ‘ye joote kaise ghain?’, ‘ye kapde kaise hain?’. Pray, what am I supposed to tell them?” wonders Jha.
These girls even troop into the room adjacent to Jha’s cabin and start changing at the drop of a hat. “It wouldn’t be wrong to say that I am seeing live auditions going on.”
Also, the building in which his office is located had started to get testy with the flurry of girls invading his office.
“They haven’t objected as yet, but they could. They are definitely curious to know why there is such a traffic of girls.”
Feeling terribly embarrassed about the whole saga, Jha left his office a week back. “How could he concentrate on his work? Fashion parades and inane questions never excite Jha,” says a source from Jha’s office.
“I now work from a hotel in Juhu,” he confirmed. Yeah, write, Mr. Jha.
In February next year, Yash Raj Films plans to celebrate the 800th week of running the film at Maratha Mandir
The many-hued Shah Rukh-Kajol love story, Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (DDLJ) will complete 800 weeks at Maratha Mandir in February next year. Yes, a spectacle it indeed is. Manoj Desai, owner of the theatre has no plans of discontinuing the screening of the film.
And why would he? Not after DDLJ producer Yash Chopra has decided to organise a mega celebration in February 2011, when the film completes 800 weeks of running.
|A show of DDLJ at Maratha Mandir|
Like most Yash Raj projects, this event too is being planned at a large scale and preparations have already begun. On Monday, Yash Chopra called up Manoj Desai to tell him about the plans he had for the celebration. Says a source, “The celebration will either be held at Maratha Mandir or at a five-star hotel.”
The invitations are soon going to be sent out to the cast and crew of DDLJ. Kajol would hopefully bring her second child along since she is due this September. The source adds, “DDLJ keeps getting better; it is like old wine. The magic of this evergreen romance keeps pulling audiences to Maratha Mandir.”
February 2010 saw the film set a record by completing 750 weeks of running. Apparently, Yash Raj Films wanted to celebrate this year. “Somehow, things did not fall into place this year,” reveals the source.
Directed by Aditya Chopra, DDLJ opened to full houses and rave reviews all over the world on October 20, 1995. Since then, it is the longest running film in the history of Indian cinema.
Manoj Desai said, “Yes. Celebration ki baat hui hai. Right now I am out of town. When I am back, I will further talk to Yashji about this.” However a Yash Raj Films spokesperson denied any such plans.
Asin landed herself in an awkward position when she ran into Dhoni and his wife in Sri Lanka
While MS Dhoni seems to have moved on with his newfound nuptial-life with Sakshi Singh Rawat, Asin is apparently still recuperating from her loss. Recently, when the actress ran into Dhoni and his wife Sakshi in Sri Lanka, she was caught in an awkward moment, where she had no option but to wish the newly married couple a happy life and walk off.
An insider reveals, “Asin has been in Sri Lanka for almost three weeks shooting with Salman Khan for Anees Bazmee’s Ready. The Indian cricket team is also in Colombo for the Test series. Coincidentally, Asin and Dhoni are put up in the same five-star hotel.
Asin was aware that Dhoni and his wife are staying in the same hotel. Asin made sure (to the best of her ability) not to cross their way.” But destiny had different plans.
Apparently, Asin was shooting for almost 12 hours a day and was returning to the hotel only late at night. (Yes, the film does need that much work; Asin wasn’t avoiding returning to the hotel). So, all this while, she had not bumped into Dhoni or his wife.
But one morning, when Asin was to leave for her shoot, she bumped into Sakshi, followed by Dhoni.
She promptly congratulated the couple, casually spoke for a few seconds and quickly left, saying she was getting late. The awkwardness was clearly visible on Asin’s face,” adds the insider
As for Dhoni, the cricketer seems to have mastered the art of making polite expressions. The insider says, “Dhoni was normal and casual while greeting Asin. Sakshi (oh, we forgot about her!), who was also present, just exchanged a few pleasantries with Asin and then everyone went their way. Asin to her shooting location, Dhoni to his game. Asin remained unavailable for comment.
|MS Dhoni with wife Sakshi Singh Rawat|
Selling chips and waiting tables at a five-star hotel fuelled his drive to succeed, says Boman Irani
For the multi-faceted actor, acting wasn’t his first love. Before he was bitten by the acting bug, Boman was a well known photographer and theatre artist. But everything did not come easy to him. From selling chips to waiting tables at a five-star hotel, Boman has done it all.
Boman started his livelihood by selling wafers at his Grant Road bakery. For 12 years, he went about his daily life with just one wish – to become a photographer. ”It used to bug me that I couldn’t even afford to take my family for a proper holiday. I didn’t have any professional knowledge and getting a photographer’s job in a magazine was out of the question. So armed with a Pentex K1000, I started going to various maidans of Mumbai, looking for subjects,” he says.
Boman started shooting interschool cricket matches which helped him make some money. After saving a bit, he decided to take his family for a holiday to Ooty but returned disappointed. “With that much money, we got below average rooms in a hotel. This wasn’t the life I wanted for my family,” he recalls.
With renewed vigour, he took up photography on a full time basis. He went to Pune and took aerial shots of a bike race. His luck changed when the editor of a bike magazine bought all his pictures and recommended him to cover the Boxing World Cup which was incidentally going to take place in Mumbai. “I was at my wit’s end on how to gain access to the boxers as I wasn’t affiliated to any media house. So he suggested that I approach Aspy Adajania, the Chairman of Bombay Boxing Association and ask him for an official photographer’s job,” he says.
But when Boman went to meet Aspy, he was told that official photographers are not needed. “He looked at me and asked if I have ever shot a boxing match. I said no and told him that I will practice.” The boxing match was six months away so he asked Boman to practise and then come back. “He asked me to go for Western Indian Finals at the university stadium.
So I shot various pictures and went back to him,” he adds. Boman was in for a surprise when he went back with the pictures. “Aspy had the contract letter ready and an official photographer’s jacket too. He didn’t even look at the pictures. I took a lot of pictures during the Boxing World Cup and I was paid an unbelievable amount of money for some of the pictures I took. Not only that, cheques were sent to me for the next six months, whenever my pictures were used,” he reminisces.
Circle of life
Since then, life changed for Boman. New avenues opened up and it was only by virtue of being a photographer that he came in contact with theatre and finally films. Life came full circle when he worked in Homi Adajania’s Being Cyrus. His father gave Boman his photography break. “To find one’s calling is perhaps not the easiest thing in the world, but probably the most important,” he concludes.
The buzz is that Shriya Saran and Rana Dagubatti are a couple. Rana, a rising Tamil star who is set to make his Bollywood debut in Rohan Sippy’s Dum Maro Dum starring Abhishek Bachchan and Bipasha Basu, was spotted with Shriya at a five star hotel in Hyderabad and they looked completely in love.
A source close to Shriya informs, “They are both very well known in the South film industry and they have been painting the town red after they were introduced to each other at a film party a few weeks back.”
The love birds have been spending quality time together at every given opportunity. Adds the source, “It’s a budding relationship and they are keen to know each other better before they can go public with it. But yes, it was definitely a case of love at first sight.”
Despite repeated text messages, Shriya did not respond. Rana Dagubatti could not be reached for comment.
|Rana Dagubatti||Shriya Saran|
He’s no star, he’s not made any blockbuster, so why is half the industry chasing Azam Khan? Here’s the reason
A Bollywood Quiz question: Who is the most sought-after Khan in the industry today? If your answer is Shah Rukh Khan, Aamir Khan, or Salman Khan, sorry you have got it wrong. The name is Azam Khan. And this Khan, mind you, is being chased by Bollywood for all the wrong reasons.
Khan, a former executive director of K Sera Sera and the brain behind One More Thought Entertainment, which helmed such ambitious projects as Vinay Pathak-starrer Dasvidaniya, Khalbali Fun Unlimited and Phoonk, allegedly owes over Rs 20 crore to people across the industry.
Mirror has learnt that he owes money to so many people and organisations that now there is list of his creditors that almost everybody in Bollywood readily recognises. At the last count, this list had 123 entries.
|Azam Khan in blue with Pervez Damania, Vinay Pathak and Shashant Shah; (below right) the Q7 Audi Khan drives despite his debts|
There are more than 20 cases of bounced cheques, misappropriation of funds and cheating filed against Khan in various courts of Mumbai. He owes money to film trade magazines, dubbing studios, poster and vinyl printers, camera hire outfits, even laundrywallahs and caterers. Several well known Bollywood outfits like K Sera Sera, YT Entertainment, Celebrities Management, and Nine Winds Media, too have payments stuck with Khan.
And that’s just Bollywood. Khan has a big casualty to his credit in construction business too. Nilufar Damania, businessman Parvez Damania’s sister-in-law and late Vispy Damania’s wife, who was on the board of Sonata Realty Private Limited with Khan, has filed a complaint at the Oshiwara police station accusing Khan of cheating and forgery of valuable securities.
The funniest story going around Bollywood is how Khan hops around the town in some of the most expensive cars - an Audi Q7 and a Merc S Class - while his cheques bounce all over the place “for lack of funds in his accounts.”
He also maintains a large office on Veera Desai Road and owns a plush 17th-floor apartment in Windermere, Oshiwara. The nameplate of the house carries his wife’s name.
But before we get into Khan’s extravagant lifetsyle and the misery of his victims, a little bit about the man’s past.
Barely two years ago, Azam Khan was one of the most sought after men, in the usual positive sense of the term, in the film industry. He had just started his own production house, One More Thought Entertainment, and his spanking new office in Andheri was a beehive of activity.
At a glittering launch party, Khan paraded nine well known directors who had signed up for the fledgling production house.
These included Jagmohan Mundra, Kundan Shah, Sangeeth Sivan, Ajay Chandok, Ravi Rai and Ashwini Chaudhary. “We are determined to provide a canvas to these directors who are brimming with unique ideas, stories and new concepts. We intend to produce twelve movies in two years,” Khan told the gathering.
Everybody believed him and not without reason - at K Sera Sera, Khan had overseen a number of major films like Sarkar, D Company, Risk, Darna Mana Hai, Ek Haseena Thi and Ab Tak Chappan. But Khan’s time at K Sera Sera now seems like another era.
One More Thought Entertainment’s first film to be released was the Marathi language Tingya. This was followed by a joint production called Dasvidaniya starring Vinay Pathak and then Phoonk, directed by Khan’s old friend Ram Gopal Varma, released.
However, things went quickly downhill for him thereon.
Except for Tingya, which was a ready-made Ravi Rai film that One More Thought merely presented, almost all other films got embroiled in bitter disputes because of non payment of dues.
Ajay Chandok-directed comedy Khalbali Fun Unlimited; and My Name is 340, another One More Thought production, could not be released depite being almost ready.
When we contacted, Vinay Pathak, who co-produced and acted in Dasvidaniya, he said: “What can I say about a man who has duped us of our money and deprived us of our first film as producers? We don’t have even a print to show for it. He is completely unreachable for any kind of negotiation.”
|Windermere (r) at Oshiwara where Azam Khan (l) lives on the 17 floor; poster of Dasvidaniya, one of the films Khan’s One More Thought Entertainment produced|
Shashant Shah, the director of Dasvidaniya, sounded equally frustrated. “Forget about the profit, he still has to pay us 50 per cent of the cost. He owes us around Rs 1.3 crore. He hasn’t paid the professional fees to my writer, music director, editor, cameraman, including me and Vinay Pathak. Even spot boys haven’t got paid.”
While at one point Khan offered to pay Shah Rs 30 lakh, the cheques that were issued bounced. Shah said he does not mind the losses. “But I want my film back. The rights for Dasvidaniya are still with him.”
Kailash Kher, who scored the music for Dasvidaniya is waiting for a payment of around Rs 15 lakh. “I sent a legal notice to him. He verbally promised to pay my dues, but never did. He is a smart guy. He didn’t let my cheque bounce but stopped the payment saying there wasn’t enough money in his bank account. I wonder how he can afford to move around in expensive cars if he doesn’t have any money to pay us.”
Khalbali Fun Unlimited was abandoned with just three more days of shooting to go. Payments to everyone associated with the film, right from the artistes to technicians to the direction crew, are pending.
With cases now escalated to the High Court, a substantial number of litigants have all but given up hope.
Raju Shah of YT Entertainment, who presented several of One More Thought productions, is a distraught man. “In order to recover my Rs 7 crore, I have already spent around Rs 50 lakh in lawyers’ fees, stamps duties and court fee. I am very depressed and my family is also very disturbed. We are suffering a lot,” he said.
On at least one occasion, Khan came close to landing in jail. On the night of May 24, he was traced to a suburban five-star hotel by the Rajasthan police who wanted to arrest him.
They were acting on a complaint filed by K Sera Sera against Khan in Ganganagar. “We helped Rajasthan police track him. But when we went to arrest him at the hotel, he produced a transit bail,” said API Desai of Santacruz Airport police station.
Sanjay Lai, the MD of K Sera Sera, refused to reveal the money Khan owes to the company. “We have filed a case against him in the High Court. We are in the process of recovering the money.”
After days of efforts, Mumbai Mirror caught up with Azam Khan at his spacious office which once housed One More Thought Entertainment.
It is now the office of Ionic Realty, another construction firm in which Khan has an interest. Not a sign of One More Thought Entertainment remains – the company has officially submitted a winding up petition.
“Yes, there are cases against me, but a cheque being dishonoured does not necessarily mean I don’t intend to pay. I don’t dispute that I owe people money, but in several instances, they have failed to deliver the service required of them so I stopped payment on the post-dated cheques I had issued them,” said Khan.
Only some of the bigger companies One More Thought owes money to can take the matter to its logical conclusion. The others have been left with, well, a thought to ponder.
By Kunal M Shah (MUMBAI MIRROR; May 01, 2010)
Something definitely seems to be brewing between South African batsman Herschelle Gibbs and actress Payal Rohatgi. The two met for the first time at the IPL Awards after-party some days ago and things have moved pretty fast since then.
Mumbai Mirror had reported the encounter between them, about how Payal openly flirted with the cricketer, who was accompanied by colleague Andrew Symonds. Eyewitnesses said that Payal was playfully throwing peanuts at Gibbs, who didn’t seem to mind the attention at all.
Now it emerges that the two met for a dinner date the very next day at a five-star hotel in south Mumbai.
Our source said, “The night they first met at the IPL Awards after-party, Payal was heard calling Gibbs ‘cute’ and they seemed to instantly click. They exchanged numbers and the next day they met for a quiet dinner.
But when they reached the hotel, they realised that a lot of media people were positioned at the entrance because some cricketers staying at the same hotel were leaving that night.
So Gibbs and Payal made a backdoor entry at the restaurant. After some time, even Adam Gilchrist joined them for dinner. Gibbs and Payal have been in touch on the phone and through SMS. In fact, Payal is now going to the West Indies, where the T-20 World Cup has just kicked off, to cheer for Gibbs.”
When contacted, Payal Rohatgi did not deny her meeting with Gibbs. “Yes, we had dinner together,” she said. Asked whether she was going to the West Indies to support Gibbs, she said, “Herschelle and I are in touch. He wants me to be there and I might go, depending upon my schedule. However, I am not sure if I can make it.”
Poonam Mahajan Rao, who did not attend her brother Rahul Mahajan’s reality show wedding to 21-year old Bengali model Dimpy Ganguly, will once again skip another happy moment in his life.
Rahul is hosting a grand reception at a five-star hotel in Kolkata today, but Poonam will not be a part of the function.
When asked why she did not attend the much-publicised wedding ceremony, Poonam had earlier told Mumbai Mirror, “I prefer to sit at home rather than make a show out of things.” Explaining why she decided to stay away from the reception today, she said, “I will be in Nashik. I have a very important programme to attend.
It has to do with the 60th anniversary of a magazine, which my father (late Pramod Mahajan) used to write for. Mohan Bhagwat (RSS chief) will also be there. After that I have a meeting in Jalgaon for three days. Then I will head to Aurangabad for the municipal corporation election.”
But the speculation over Poonam’s absence from the wedding and the reception refuse to die down. Does she approve of Dimpy? And is she in touch with Rahul? “Rahul is my brother. I will always be there for him. My work related meetings are very important to me because I have a professional life as well. I am in touch with him as well as Dimpy,” said Poonam.