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December 2006 - January 2007


News from Bollywood

by Kishan Sharma

Producer Nari Sippy (N.N. Sippy) died in Mumbai at the age of 75 years. He had the heart problem and was admitted to the hospital. He produced super hit Hindi films like Kalicharan, Gumnaam, Woh Kaun Thi, Paras, Haar Jeet, Chor Machaye Shor, Fakeera, Devtaa, Ghar, Sargam, and Meri Jung. He also gave break to popular people like Subhash Ghai and Jaya Prada.

Subhash Ghai celebrated his 32nd wedding anniversary and the 28th anniversary of his production house, the Mukta Arts Limited, and launched seven new films. Incidentally, since actor Salman Khan has patched-up with Subhash Ghai after several years, he will be starring in one of these films to be directed by Subhash Ghai himself.

Actor Ajay Devgan has decided to direct a film that will have his wife Kajol as one of the leading ladies. It is expected that Ajay will himself be playing the lead role opposite Kajol and an another heroine.

Actress Elizabeth Hurley will marry fiancé Arun Nayar in Rajasthan in March 2007. There will be English ceremony in Gloucestershire and two days later, there will be a Hindu ceremony in Rajasthan.

Actor Rajinikanth is the only Indian actor charging around 25 to 30 crores of rupees for a film. He is acting in “Sivaji”, directed by Shankar and is said to have broken his own earlier record of charging 15 to 18 crores of rupees per film.

Actor Kamal Sadanah launched Victoria 203, a remake of the super-hit film Victoria No. 203 produced and directed by his father Brij Sadanah, with Ashok Kumar and Pran in the main roles. Now, it will be Anupam Kher and Om Puri alongwith Jummy Shergill and Amrita Arora, while the film is to be directed by Annant Narayan Mahadevan.

Miss Universe Zuleyka Rivera not only pays frequent visits to the studios where actor Salman Khan is shooting, but makes her presence felt at his house also. Salman Khan also took her as a pillion rider on his motor bike at around 3 in the morning after the Eid party at his house.

Whereas Shah Rukh Khan, Rani Mukherjee, Akshay Kumar, Sushmita Sen and Sunil Gavaskar have paid the stamp duty on their brand endorsements, many others including Sachin Tendulkar, Aishwarya Rai, and Dia Mirza have refused to pay stamp duty to the Government, inviting action against them under rules.

Jaya Bachchan, actor and MP, reprimanded Aishwarya Rai for having arrived late at the dinner at the Bachchan residence. Stunned Aishwarya was at a loss for words and just giggled and hugged Jaya and also promised that it would never happen again. When Aishwarya tried to reason with Jaya about work commitments, Jaya shot back, “Aren’t we all working ?” Bachchans are known for being sticklers of punctuality and they never arrive late or make anyone wait. Amitabh Bachchan, Jaya, Abhishek and Shweta were all waiting for Aishwarya to come over the dinner.

Ram Gopal Verma Ke Sholay is in the news for different reasons. Amitabh Bachchan is playing Gabbar Singh in the film which was earlier played by Amjad Khan in Sippy’s “Sholay”. Ram Gopal Verma has replaced Katrina Kaif with Sushmita Sen for the role of Radha, which was earlier played by Jaya Bachchan. Now, Delhi High Court has issued restraint order on a suit filed by Sascha Sippy the grandson of G.P. Sippy, who had produced the original Sholay. The High Court in its order has restrained Ram Gopal Verma from releasing the film.

Incidentally, Jeetendra’s daughter Ekta Kapoor has launched Sholay in Bhojpuri with Jeetendra playing the Gabbar Singh. The film is being called Gabbar Singh and Ekta plans to release her film on the same day when Ram Gopal Verma Ke Sholay is released. Bhojpuri super star Ravi Kishen has been signed for the film.

Ram Gopal Verma Ke Sholay has another big change. Earlier it was announced that Asha Bhonsle and Himesh Reshammiya will sing the popular song “Mehbooba Mehbooba” sung earlier by R.D. Burman; but suddenly the song has been recorded in Sunidhi Chauhan’s voice. This has upset and angered Asha Bhonsle. Reaction of Himesh Reshammiya couldnot be obtained.

Music Director Anu Malik is angry and hurt. There was a claim from G.V. Prakash, nephew of composer A.R. Rahman, that the song “Humko maloom hai” was actually composed by him, but Anu Malik has used it in Jaan-E-Mann. But, the people who made the accusation against Anu Malik have suddenly backtracked.

Recently, actor Abhishek Bachchan is said to have been subjected to strict security check in London by the airport immigration officers. It is learnt that the authorities have ordered strict security checks at all UK airports considering the present situation created by the terrorists. Habitual of getting special treatment in India, the film actors some times lose their cool at such checks. It was reported in Indian press that Abhishek Bachchan lost his cool and said, “should I drop my pants also”; but Abhishek has denied any such happening. Alarmed by reports he has clarified that he neither speaks such language nor misbehaves with the officers who are just doing their duty.

Singer Udit Narayan and his wife Deepa returned to Mumbai from Delhi recently with unpleasant memories. They had gone to participate in a concert, where some organizers not only misbehaved with them but also beat up Udit’s secretary. Udit Narayan has recently come out of the controversy related with his first wife Ranjana. Now, it is learnt that Deepa and Ranjana have become good friends.

Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt are shooting in Pune these days. Based on journalist Daniel Pearl’s life story, the film “A Mighty Heart” is being shot in India. They are facing some minor problems in Pune, but are happy with the co-operation they are getting.

Yesteryear star Mumtaz has been suffering from cancer. It is learnt that the doctors in Mumbai have removed the breast lump. She had lost all her hair and eyelashes. She also gained much weight. She faced the turbulent marriage. She went through chemotherapy which has made her feel sick all the time.

Another yesteryear actress and famous Bharat Natyam exponent, Padmini died of heart attack in Chennai. She was 74. One of the three famous Travancore sisters, Padmini had acted in more than 250 Tamil, Hindi, Malayalam, Telugu and Kannada films, including Jis Desh Mein Ganga Behti Hai, Aashiq, Mera Naam Joker (with Raj Kapoor) and Chanda Aur Bijli (with Sanjeev Kumar). She had also founded the Padmini School of Fine Arts in New Jersey.

It is learnt that actor Sanjay Dutt is very nervous these days. The special TADA court may announce its verdict on any day and people expect the judge to pronounce punishment to the actor for keeping fire arms illegally. He has been visiting various temples and performing “pooja”. He has for the time being stopped shooting for the films. It is also being said that Sanjay Dutt is seeing his Lahore-based girlfriend Nadia Durrani, a divorcee and a belly dancer, these days. He recently told his friends that he loves Nadia and intends to marry her soon.

It is officially learnt now that Abhishek Bachchan will dance with Urmila Matondkar to the famous “Mehbooba Mehbooba” song in Ram Gopal Verma Ke Sholay. Helen and Jalal Agha were the original performers in Sippy’s Sholay. It will be interesting to see that Amitabh Bachchan will be playing Gabbar Singh and would be watching his son dance with Urmila Matondkar.

The entire Kapoor families were present at the Prithvi Theatre in Mumbai to celebrate the centenary of great Papaji, Prithviraj Kapoor. Krishna Raj Kapoor, Shammi Kapoor, Neela, Shashi Kapoor, Randheer Kapoor, Rishi Kapoor, Neetu, Sanjana Kapoor, Kunal Kapoor, Karisma and Kareena were all present on the occasion.

Producer Vinod Doshi passed away recently at the age of 69. He had produced films like Sachcha Jhootha, Blackmail, Nastik, and Faulad. He also presented films like Dil, Beta, Raja, Rajkumar and Bawandar.

Amitabh Bachchan and Abhishek Bachchan will be doing a series of stage shows abroad in July, August and September 2007 together.

Though Hrithik Roshan and Adlabs have said that they are signing an agreement through which Hrithik will be paid Rs. 30 crores for three films at the time of signing the agreement, it is not yet through. Adlabs will make three films in a period of 4 to 5 years, if the deal is really through.

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