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Bollywood Baatein

Anoop Kumar

(This article is sponsored by Monique Kornfeld, Esq.)

Year 2008 was an eventful year for Shilpa Shetty. She is looking forward to a fresh start and plans to start a new business venture this year. Interestingly Shilpa who usually performs on New Year eve preferred to spend time with her family.  She celebrated New Year with her beau Raj Kundra and Family in Spain. Shilpa was in the beautiful city of Puerto Banus in Marbella, Spain. She says, "I can't describe the beauty of the city and its culture. There were orange trees in our villa in full bloom which I happily plucked and gorged on." Speaking about Spanish tradition of celebrating New Year she says, "They say you learn something every day and at 12 Midnight on New Year's Eve, at a restaurant, I learnt how the Spanish bring in their new year. 12 seconds before the clock struck twelve they gave us 12 grapes called the 12 grapes of luck to eat one by one for every second before we screamed Happy New Year. It's not easy to eat them all but the more you eat the luckier the year is, it was a new experience."


Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra's much talked-about Delhi 6 has a large cast of distinguished actors.But the most delicate demanding and sensitive actor on location was…no, not Sonam Kapoor but a dove named Masakali who not only serves as the romantic leitmotif in the plot but also became a favourite of the entire cast, specially Sonam whom the dove became unbreakably attached to, almost like Mary's little lamb. So crucial was the dove to the film and its unit that a whole song was written and composed in its honor. The song Masakali is sung by Mohit Chauhan whose voice A R Rahman had used in Rakeysh Mehra's Rang De Basanti.Speaking on the genesis of the dove song Rakeysh says, "The song was not really meant to be part of the narrative. I mean, who would think of putting in a song about a dove in a film like Delhi 6? It just happened. When I came to the pre-climax portion of my script I was stuck. I needed a continuity link taking the narrative to its finale."

Neil is all set to start shooting for Madhur's forthcoming film Jail. Known for his realistic films Madhur has asked his new hero to shed weight and get six pack abs to for his character. Neil plays leading character in Jail and has already started working towards it.  Neil has lost weight and working out regularly. "I have been asked to lose weight for the role." says Neil. So how much excess weight he has to shed? "Actually, I have been asked to have a lean and sinewy look for the role. I have developed some muscles. I am going the six-pack way for the role."Speaking about Madhur, Neil says, "Just like his other films Madhur has done extensive research Jail too. He has crossed all boundaries with this film. I am like an Eklavya. I am very focused as a human being when I have a teacher like Madhur before me. I am extremely passionate about my roles. I choose my work only by the director. He is the captain of my ship. For me it is important that at such an early stage of life, I need to mould my career correctly. I become even stronger when I work with such directors. I believe that I have to work hard not waste my own as well as the director's time because of lack of concentration."


After having the likes of John Abraham, Rakhi Sawant and gang doing their bit towards the prevention of the unethical treatment towards animals, it's the turn of the  actress Jiah Khan to do her bit for the same.And what more could be a better occasion that the auspicious festival of Makar Sankranthi. The ad has Jiah Khan dressed as a wounded bird wrapped in kite string and next to the tagline 'Cut the Glass-Coated Manja, Not Birds' Wings".The ad was shot by the ace photographer Farrokh Chothia.While on one hand, the festival means lots of happiness to one and all, on the other, its really sad news for the birds because when 'manja' falls on trees and electric poles; it cuts through the wings of birds that become entangled in it.While glass coated manja might be effective at cutting an opponent's kite line, it is also deadly for thousands of pigeons, crows, owls and other birds who become entangled in it.Speaking about the ad, Jiah said "Glass-coated manja is a public health hazard and causes an excruciating death for birds that get entangled in it.We're asking participants in the Makar Sankranthi contests and all kite-flying competitors to immediately stop using glass-coated manja and to conduct their sport in a way that isn't deadly to humans and wildlife."


The intended Hindi title Slumdog Millionaire: Kaun Banega Crorepati for Slumdog Millionaire has now been shortened to Slumdog Crorepati, thanks to copyright curbs placed on the film by the producers of the world- famous game show. Says the film's casting director Loveleen Tandon, "It was a decision taken by the producers Fox Searchlight, and we had nothing to do with the title of the Hindi version being altered. There was a problem with the branding." Otherwise everything connected with the international game show Who Wants To Be A Millionaire including the sets and music were copyright-purchased for Slumdog Millionaire.Infrorms Loveleen, "The first thing that Celadore Films who produced Slumdog did was to acquire the rights for the Who Wants To Be A Millionaire since it's such an integral part of the film."Speaking on the dubbing Loveleen who has supervised the Hindi dubbing says, "All the actors from the original English including Anil Kapoor, Irrfan Khan and Ankur Vikal dubbed the film. We got a boy from Chembur Pradeep Motwani to dub for the male lead Dev Patel. I didn't want any exaggerated dubbing. I wanted a young unspoilt voice, hard to find since Mumbai boys become smoking and drinking."

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