Monday, January 28, 2008

Ileana rejects Rajini’s Kucheludu

Director P Vasu is remaking a Malayalam film in Tamil and Telugu with Rajinikanth and Jagapathi Babu. The film is to be titled as Kucheludu in Telugu. Aswini Dutt is producing the Telugu version of the film.

The latest we heard is that Ileana was offered to play female lead in this film, but Ileana rejected the film on personal grounds.

Then Nayanatara was approached and lucky Nayana signed for this film. Nayanatara is doing her third film with Rajini- Chandramukhi, Sivaji and Kucheludu.

Megastar likes those half a dozen films

Megastar Chiranjeevi acted more than 140 films in his career so far. Megastar says that he most likes his Khaidi film with director A Kodanda Ram Reddy, the film that turned the common star to Super Star.

Apart from that film, the following half a dozen films brought good recognition as an artist-1. Subhalekha, 2.Jagadeka Veerudu Athiloka Sundari,3.Vijetha, 4.Rudraveena, 5.Tagore and 6.Indra.

Krishna - Collected 17.9 Cr. in just two weeks
Krishna is the flick starred by Ravi Teja and Directed by V V Vinayak is stated to have collected Rs.17.90 Cr. in a span of two weeks, Trisha is the heroine of this movie and music of which is composed by Chakri being jointly produced by Danaiah and Kasi Vishwanath.

"I'm too young to get married!"- Nagma
Though it looks incredibly silly, you still can't help but admire Nagma and her whacky sense of humor.

It is a well-known fact that Nagma and her younger sister have lot of difference in terms of their age. But the younger sister has comfortably got married and has settled down in matrimonial bliss. Just before the marriage, Nagma announced that it was only a matter of time before Jyothika returned to films because she is too good at acting to give her career up for the sake of her family.

Now, after a daughter, Jyothika still seems very happy to be a housewife and has shown no interest in returning to films yet.

But when asked about her own marriage plans, Nagma confesses that she still has lots of things to do and goals to accomplish before she even thinks about getting married.

When she declared that she mentally feels that she is still a bit too young to settle down in a marriage, the media wasn't sure if she was serious about it!

Chiru rushes to Rajashekar's residence
Megastar Chiranjeevi rushed to the residence of Rajashekar and Jeevitha ass soon as he learnt about the attack on them. Chiranjeevi fans attacked the family of Rajashekar at Punjagutta when they were returning from Bhimavaram.

Chiranjeevi went to Rajashekar's residence along with Allu Aravind. Chiranjeevi met the two daughters' of Rajashekar and enquired bout their health.

He is now waiting for Rajashekar and Jeevitha to return home. They are now at TV9 studio taking part in a live show.

Bhoomika Interview

Bhumika chawla Interview, Bhumik, chawla Interview At a time, when new girls walk into Hindi films in the skimpiest of clothes, this actress made an unconventional debut in a glamourless, salwar kameez-clad role with Tere Naam. Having seen immense success down South, the actress is choosy about her Hindi films.

In a free-wheeling chat, Bhumika Chawla talks about Family, her next release and her life in the film industry …

Excerpts from the Interview:

Family - Ties of Blood is the much-awaited film from AB Corp Ltd and this is your first film with them. How excited or apprehensive were you while doing the film?

I wasn’t apprehensive at all. In fact, I had a great time. It was also a very good experience for me to be working with such big names from the Hindi film industry. This was my second film with Amitji after Dil Jo Bhi Kahey and it was a treat to work under the direction of Rajkumar Santoshi, a maker everyone wants to be associated with.

You seem to be the most fortunate actor to have worked with Amitabh Bachchan in two films out of your six Hindi films till date.

Yes, I consider it my privilege. (Smiles) I am the chosen one.

How did you feel when you had to face the camera with him for the first time?

We have become friends now. But my first shot for Dil Jo Bhi Kahey was with Amitji. As I played a doctor, in the scene, I had to tell him about his wife’s condition who had been hospitalised. I had rehearsed my lines thoroughly and when I was certain of not making an error, I walked onto the sets and was ready to give the shot. But when I came face to face with Amitji, I forgot my lines. I think this happens with everyone who comes within his proximity. Embarrassed, I apologised and said, ‘Please give me two minutes’. He replied, ‘Don’t worry. Take your time.’ I went to a corner, practiced my lines again and before going back to give the shot, thought to myself that there are two ways about doing it: either I make mistakes and go on giving 20 takes or think that I am facing another actor and not a big personality like Amitabh Bachchan. I thought the second one was a good idea and I went ahead. To everyone’s surprise, the shot was okayed in the first take and Amitji was impressed. He said, ‘Very good’.

You didn’t have any inhibitions about him after that.

Of course not because after that we bonded and became good friends. But before that I was a little perturbed. Who isn’t? He is such a big name, a thorough professional and a great human being.

Bhumika chawla Interview, Bhumik, chawla InterviewWhen I was shooting with Abhishek Bachchan for Run, not once did Amitji visit the sets which was quite surprising. So,I never had the privilege of meeting him then. My first meeting with him was when I was invited by Abhishek for holi at their house. Since I don’t party much and had just one Hindi release to my credit, nobody recognised me there. I went in quietly and introduced myself to Amitji. He was gracious and after sometime when I went back to say goodbye, he said, ‘My child, don’t leave so soon. Enjoy yourself first.’ But since I was feeling awkward in the crowd, I left quietly after sometime. Next I met him was for a few minutes before starting the shooting of Dil Jo Bhi Kahey in Mauritius.

And like so many, you too seem to be one of his fans …

Who isn’t? Amitji is so brilliant. I am amazed at his energy and determination. For a 64-year-old, he can put any youngster to shame with his enthusiasm and punctuality.

That’s true. This is your first film with Rajkumar Santoshi. Was he a tough task master?

On the contrary. Rajji is such a perfectionist. He would explain each shot in such detail. He is like a school teacher. Very systematic. He took care of every detail like the lights, setup, costumes, etc. He would not tire even after 10-15 retakes but would go on till the shot was to his satisfaction. When I was not getting an emotional scene right even after ten takes and kept putting glycerine in my eyes, he came to me and said ‘Think this is happening to you in real life. Feel the pain’ and next, the shot was okayed.

For him, work is worship. When he is on the sets he hates to be disturbed or distracted. Neither does he want his artistes’ attention to be diverted. If there is disturbance or people are moving around on the sets while he is canning a shot, he prefers to wait till the commotion is over so that he and his artiste can concentrate on the scene. As for me, I have always wanted to work with him after watching his Lajja. I liked the way he brought out the characters and the trauma of the women in the film.

Bhumika chawla Interview, Bhumik, chawla InterviewAlso this is the first time you have been paired with Akshay Kumar. How was he as a co-star?

Akshay is a nice person, so full of life. Even when everyone was tired and stressed out after a day-long shoot, he would bring life into the atmosphere with his jokes ad light-hearted banter. He is also very helpful. I had great fun working with him in Family.

What was your equation with Aryeman? Did he remind you of your days as a newcomer?

Aryeman is a young boy, and like Akshay, full of life. The guys had a great time together. As an actor, he is amazing and it doesn’t feel like this is his debut film. Unlike me in Tere Naam, he was very carefree and calm. Moreso because the film is produced by his father Keshu who is a fabulous man.

With so many people in the cast, do you think you had enough scope for performance?

I don’t think anyone has any reason to complain as all got equal footage in Family. I am playing Akshay’s wife who stands by the family in good and bad times. When Rajji narrated the story to me, he said think of such a situation in your household. It can happen with anyone and I liked it so I took it up. Also working with Amitji, Rajji and Akshay was an added incentive.

Your debut film Tere Naam was a huge success. But since then you have had just six releases to your credit. Any other actor in your place would have gone on a signing spree …

I like it that way. I prefer going slow and doing good work. I don’t want to be seen all over the place, doing all sorts of films. Neither do I want to get typecast in a role. If you notice, I have portrayed different characters in all my films so far. I am also fortunate to be doing good work down South. All this keeps me busy all the time. But since I don’t party much and am not a Page 3 person, people hardly know me.

It has been three years since Tere Naam. When you look back today, how do you review your career?

I was lucky to bag Tere Naam as my debut film. It was the remake of the Tamil hit film Sethu featuring Vikram. Like its original, it did well in Hindi too. It was a wonderful experience doing the film though my role was sans make up and glamour yet it was a perfect launch pad for me.

This was followed by glamorous roles in films like Run, Dil Ne Jise Apna Kaha and Silsilay…

In Run, I played the role of a gangster’s sister with whom a headstrong guy falls in love. It was almost similar to that of Nirjara in Tere Naam. I had the opportunity to work with good people like Abhishek Bachchan and Mahesh Manjrekar but unfortunately the film didn’t do too well. Again Run was a remake of a Tamil hit with the same title which was a huge success there. It was even dubbed in Telugu.
I did Dil Ne Jise Apna Kaha only for Salman Khan. It was directed by his brother-in-law Atul Agnihotri. Silsilay was about the lives of four women and I played a fast-rising Hindi film actress whose live-in relationship with the man who groomed her for a film career is about to break-up. The story was about the coming together of the women in an act of solidarity.

Dil Jo Bhi Kahey followed next.

For the first time, I played a doctor in the film. Entirely shot in Mauritius, it was about the cultural conflicts that exist in the society. It was fun to be working with newcomer Karan Sharma. He is a very simple and hardworking guy. Revathy too was very warm. And what else can I say about Amitji?

You began your acting career with South films. Now that you have established yourself in Hindi films, do you plan to bid goodbye to regional films?

Never. I will continue working down South till the day I decide to quit acting forever. I am indebted to South films.

You saw immense success there. Tell us more.

I have always wanted to be popular. And so I participated in a lot of extra-curricular activities where people would notice me. Nine years ago I had come to Mumbai for the first time and my cousin insisted that I send my portfolio around. Thus started the rounds for work. I began with commercials and music videos, before South films beckoned.

My first film in Telugu was Yuvagudu but it was the success of Kushi that flooded me with offers and appreciation. Also starring Pawan Kalyan, it was directed by SJ Surya for producer AM Ratnam. Okkadu, opposite Mahesh Babu, again created records followed by NTR Junior-starrer Simhadri which was a blockbuster. NTR Junior is a hot star in Andhra today and I also did Samba with him. Autograph with Ravi Teja is the remake of the Tamil film directed by Cheran; Snehamante Idera with Nagarjuna, YKS Rama Raos Vasu with Venkatesh, Vasu and Badri are some of the other films.

Missamma, the fun-filled Tamil film, also featuring Shivaji and Laya, was directed by the National award winning director Neelakanta. It was his film all the way.

Back home, what are the films in the offing?

I have a couple of releases. There is a thriller titled Benaam with Ajay Devgan to be directed by Anees Bazmee. In theatre director Feroze Khan’s Mahatma v/s Gandhi, Akshaye Khanna is my co-star. It is produced by Anil Kapoor. I also have Jai Chiranjeevi in Telugu opposite Chiranjeevi.

You recently went out of your way to help the victims of the July 26 deluge. What was the experience like?

I did not know the impact of the floods till I watched a television report and I was terribly upset looking at the condition of so many people who suffered huge losses. That is when my friend Bharat and I decided to do something rather than sit and discuss the situation. Firstly we got in touch with Sanjay Nirupam since we were not aware of how to go about it. He helped us to raise funds and instructed about the places which needed immediate help. We collected and distributed things like rice and pulses in the most-affected areas like Kalina, Vakola and Jogeshwari.

You and Bharat seem to be in the news lately …

Bhumika chawla Interview, Bhumik, chawla InterviewYeah. I like his company. I was introduced to Bharat by Satish Kaushik who thought I needed to learn yoga for a healthy living. Bharat Thakur is a yoga teacher and has written some books on the subject. He also runs institutes in India and abroad and has people like Satish Kaushik, Anil Kapoor, Sunita Kapoor, Katrina Kaif, Tara Sharma, Akshaye Khanna and some industrialists amongst his huge clientele. Though I don’t like to reveal much about my personal life, all I can say is the Bharat is a good friend with whom I can discuss anything under the sun. He understands me very well. There are times when we only play ludo, monopoly, chess or other such games for hours together or we watch television or films and are not bored in each other’s company. What I want to say here is that we are very comfortable being together without any frills. Destiny will decide our future. But right now we are happy as we are.

Nagababu meets select fans of Chiru in Guntur
Actor Nagababu met over 500 selected fans of his brother and megastar Chiranjeevi at a meeting held at a pipes company on the outskirts of the city on Friday. A majority of the fans were from SC, ST and BC communities, it is learnt.

Nagababu said SCs, BCs and STs could utilise the service programmes of his brother which were not confined to any particular community. His brother’s main aim was that all communities in the society should live amicably, he said.

Two mediapersons were sent out of the meeting. Later, when newsmen asked him when the megastar would take the plunge into politics, Nagababu said he too was awaiting the decision of his brother.

Jalsa Audio Rights

The audio rights of Pawan Kalyan’s ‘Jalsa’ were bagged by Aditya Music. Surprisingly, the music company had paid almost double the rate of a popular hero’s film audio, which was released recently. However, the music company sources are not revealing the exact amount as the right was bagged at a fancy rate. A gossip is making rounds that Devi Sri Prasad gave extraordinary music for the movie after a long gap. It is worth mentioning here that all the films of Pawan Kalyan were musical hits. Moreover, the gossip that the audio was extraordinary raised the expectations on the movie and earned a lot of craze. The stills which were released recently appeared greater than Pawan Kalyan’s ‘Khushi’ recently. All these factors hiked the craze among the people. The Telugu audiences had to wait till the end of February to listen to the music of ‘Jalsa’.

The latest flick of Pawan Kalyan, ‘Jalsa’, is getting the final touches. Presently some patch work is being done at Annapurna Studios. The producer is making efforts to release the film on March 27. With this the film would wrap up its shooting. The film has music from Devisri Prasad, his first-ever combination with Pawan Kalyan. The audio of the film would hit the stands in the end of February. Allu Aravind is producing the movie on the banner of Gita Arts with Trivikram Srinivas wielding the megaphone. The film would be a complete entertainer with action backdrop.

Mr Medhavi Review

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Title: Mr Medhavi
Cast: Raja, Genelia, Sonu Sood, Suman, Tanikella Bharani, Brahmanandam, MS Narayana, Dharmavarapu Subrahmanyam, Suman Shetty, Gundu Sudarshan, Duvvasi Mohan, Gundu Hanumantha Rao, Hema and others
Credits - Camera:Sunil K Reddy
Art:KV Ramana
Presents:G Madhusudhan Reddy
Producer:Bodduluri Rama Rao
Story, screenplay, dialogues and direction:Neelakanta
Banner:Lifestyle Art Pictures

Director Neelakanta comes up with a good one with Mr. Medhavi. He is different from other directors and he has proved this yet again with this film. Mr. Medhavi is a directors' film all the way.

Vishwaksen (Raja) is an orphan and is taken care of by a kind-hearted soul – Sankaram master. The teacher gives him shelter in his house and also gives him education. He also imbibes in him some good values.

Vichu becomes friend with a girl Swetha (Genelia) who has come from Canada and joins his school. They become god friend but the girl goes back to Canada after about two months.

But Vichu cannot forget Swetha and keeps dreaming about her all the time. He completes his MBA and lands a plum job in a big company run by Suman. Suman's daughter comes to India to set up a big pharmaceutical company. She is none other than Vichu's childhood friend Swetha.

Vichu works as her project manager in setting up the pharmaceutical company. He wants to make Swetha fall in love with her and uses his intelligence to try and make her say 'I Love You' first.

Swetha gives him a big shock by saying that she is in love with Anu Sood and wants Vichu to help her in winning his love. But Vichu actually tries to spoil her love by trying to portray him as a bad person. Swetha then uses all her intelligence and manages to bring about a change in the attitude of Vichu. She teaches him the values of human relations. The film ends on a happy note with Swetha uniting with Vichu.

The film is neat and clean. The comedy is also good. Dharmavarpu and MS Narayana come up with some good comedy. The performance of all the artists is very good. Genelia comes up with another good performance. Raja and Anu Sood are also good.

Music by Chakri, the cinematography and direction together make the film a good clean family entertainer.

Chiranjeevi House

Swagatham Review

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'Swagatam' is probably one of the much-hyped films of Jagapati Babu in a very long time. It has our hero and two heroines, Anushka and Bhoomika and good dosage of sentiment and the usual triangular love story. Only this time, it is set abroad '€“ in the US, to be precise. After having been bombarded with Europe and Australia in most films, the US suddenly appears different and visually appealing. Probably because not many films have been set there in a long time.

The film happens to be the 75th film of Jagapati Babu. It is a huge budget film unlike most of his films in the recent past. He has co-produced the film and has decided to distribute it himself in the US. Naturally, the expectations have been very high. To be fair to Dasarath, he does not disappoint. In the sense that it is what one would typically go to watch in a Jagapati Babu movie.

Dasarath starts off in a novel way as far as a Telugu film is concerned. His story is set in the US, he has a heroine who is a part-time event manager and runs a boutique simultaneously. For a change, she is not all over our hero. Instead, she tries to keep her family together and clear her loans. Bogged down by family issues, Shailu (Anushka) has little time to look at the bright side of life. She is forever hassled and has a temper that frightens people.

In comes KK or Krishna (Jagapati Babu) into her little world. And with him, he brings cheer into her otherwise dull life. Suddenly, her problems are solved in a jiffy and she takes to the guardian angle in her life. Of course, he having a daughter Janu about the age of her nephew-son Chikoo, does not deter her from falling for him. But there has to be trouble in the la la land. So, in comes the twist in the tale in the form of KK'€™s wife Vidya (Bhoomika). Like in most films with a triangular love story, one of the characters has chronic leukemia. Thankfully, Dasarath spares us and does not fall into the trap of using a rather lengthy scientific name.

As the clock ticks away, we are taken on a short trip into the past. This is another aspect of KK's life and it shows how love happens between KK and Vidya and how they get married. This is the part that Dasarath handles rather well and this part of the film is his completely. KK in the past happens to be a self obsessed, bossy and disciplinarian businessman who meets Vidya of Jalaja Rao Marriage Bureau. Instead of finding a match for him, Vidya match fixes KK and they end up marrying each other after a short courtship.

Now who has the terminal illness and who dies in the end and who gets who, makes up the rest of the film. Jagapati Babu, Anushka and Bhoomika carry off their roles nicely. Arjun as the misunderstood brother-in-law of Anushka is perfect as the NRI doctor and friend of KK. Sarat Babu, Rama Prabha, Dharmavarapu Subramanyam, MS Narayana, Ali, Sunil '€“ all have small roles, but fit their parts well and provide the laughs.

Music by R P Patnaik is not extraordinary, but there is a remix version of Piya tu ab to aaja, which the young audience may like. For the rest of it, it suits the storyline, though it does not make any long-lasting impact. The scenes in the US have been well-shot and the beauty of the North American capital is shown in a colourful palette.

Dasarath takes an entire sequence from Michelle Pfeiffer-George Clooney film One Fine Day, is inspired heavily by Shah Rukh's Kal Ho Na Ho for the first part. We cannot blame him though, as they are the mushiest of the mushy films that you can get. Yet, he holds his bit, thanks to the second half.

However, we cannot say it is something that we haven't watched before. Actually, Dasarath puts together many borrowed pieces to complete his puzzle. It comes with all the trimmings and the sweet and bitter taste of a rich, gooey chocolate cake. It is a sincere effort, but again, it may or may not appeal to everyone as it becomes a bit trite as it progresses.

Cast: Jagapati Babu, Anushka, Bhoomika


Producer: Aditya Ram with Jagapati Babu

Music: R P Patnaik

Director: Dasarath

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