Saturday, November 22, 2008

Samir Karnik gets Oscar invite for 'Heroes' script

Director Samir Karnik is over the moon after he got an Oscars invite for a copy of the screenplay of 'Heroes' for its archives.

Karnik received the letter from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, informally known as the Oscars, Friday morning.

An elated Karnik told IANS: 'I'm sending them the script right away. I can't believe that the Oscars archives has invited our screenplay. Maybe because it is an original screenplay. That's why they invited it.'

The scripts in the Oscars collection are made accessible for research purposes to student filmmakers, writers and actors.

Impressed with Preity Zinta's performance in 'Heroes', Karnik is all set to cast her in his next film 'Formula No.44'.

'She was wonderful in 'Heroes'. Now we're keen on casting her in a diametrically opposite role of an action-heroine in 'Formula No.44'. She has never done action before. She'll be quite cool in it because she's half a tomboy.'

He has already finalised Bobby Deol, Vatsal Seth and Sohail Khan for the new film.

'I've already written half the script. My core team is already in place. And Binod Pradhan will be my cinematographer as long as he wants to work with me. Right now my producer Vikas Kapoor is keen on getting the project in place. We're co-producing the film.'

'Thenavattu' strictly for the brain dead

Cast: Jeeva, Poonam Bajwa, Ganja Karuppu, Ravi Kale
Music: Srikant Deva
Cinematography: Vetri
Direction: V.V. Kathir

'Thenavattu' (chutzpah) is a tale strictly for the brain dead. For the second time in a little over two months Sun Pictures have come up with a film that seems sillier than their controversial maiden venture.

Director V.V Kathir has filched a few scenes from earlier hits without any sense whatsoever, with ridiculous results.

The film is all about a rustic blacksmith Kootai (Jeeva) who makes sickles for a living.

For no apparent reason, the protagonist lands up in Chennai with a sidekick (Ganja Karuppu) in tow to manufacture the deadly weapons for a gangster Kailasam (Ravi Kale).

Suddenly a buxom belle Gayathri (Poonam Bajwa), a music teacher, enters the scene and promptly falls in love with the sickle-maker.

Soon, there are others - an assorted bunch of politicians, cops and others who drag the story towards a climax wherein the gangster's son molests Gayathri resulting in a vendetta.

The senseless storyline makes one wonder how Jeeva, who has been doing only offbeat sensible films, accepted this assignment.

The cast, direction, music and comedy deserve to be ignored.

Mallika Sherawat on the cover of Grazia

Mallika Sherawat on the cover of Grazia . Really she looks cute in black dress.

Friday, November 21, 2008

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Namitha breaks up with her boyfriend!

Hot, voluptous and sexy Namitha broke up with her long lasting boy friend Bharath Kapoor. Both Namitha and Bharath Kapoor have been romancing for a couple years but looks like they are going through some problems. While Bharath Kapoor shifted to Mumbai, Namitha became busy with her shooting shedules.

She is couple of movies in tamil and two movies in telugu. She is doing Jaganmohini and Billa in telugu. Namitha is right now in Bangkok shooting for Prabhas Billa.

With her dare to bare attitude, Namitha has made it big in tamil film industry and is starting her second innings in telugu.

Michael Jackson 'converts to Islam and changes name to Mikaeel'

The singer, who was raised as a Jehovah's Witness, converted to Islam in a ceremony at a friend's house in Los Angeles.

He is said to have sat on the floor and worn a small hat while an imam officiated.

According to The Sun, the ceremony took place while Jackson, 50, was recording an album at the home of Steve Porcaro, a keyboard player who composed music on his Thriller album.

The former Jackson 5 star was counselled by David Wharnsby, a Canadian songwriter, and Phillip Bubal, a producer, who have both converted.

A source said Jackson had appeared a "bit down" and added: "They began talking to him about their beliefs, and how they thought they had become better people after they converted. Michael soon began warming to the idea.

"An imam was summoned from the mosque and Michael went through the shahada, which is the Muslim declaration of belief."

Last year his brother, Jermaine Friday, suggested Jackson would convert having taken an interest in Islam since Friday's conversion in 1989.

"When I came back from Mecca I got him a lot of books and he asked me lots of things about my religion and I told him that it's peaceful and beautiful," said Friday.

"He read everything and he was proud of me that I found something that would give me inner strength and peace.

"I think it is most probable that Michael will convert to Islam.

"He could do so much, just like I am trying to do. Michael and I and the word of God, we could do so much."

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Mani Ratnam chooses his Hanuman

Mani Ratnam’s project with Aishwarya Rai, Vikram, Prabhu, Priyamani and Karthik is shaping up really well. It was mentioned in these columns just a few days ago that Prabhu plays the role of Vibheeshanan in the film. The actor, who is seen sporting a beard these days, has raised many an eyebrow over his role.

Now the buzz is that Karthik, who had been in hibernation for long, will play the role of a forest officer. In terms of the epic Ramayana, on which the story is based on, Karthik’s character is akin to Hanuman’s role. It may be recalled that Mani Ratnam churned out two mega hits in the past with Karthik. One is Mouna Ragam in which he played a guest role and the other is Agni Natchathiram where he co-starred with Prabhu.

Ameer to remake ‘Bale Pandiya’ with Ajith

Ajith Kumar has been an actor who doesn’t get down with several flops on lines. He has the ability of taking back to the way of success with just one film and thats his USP. Right now, he isn’t so happy with ‘Aegan’ directed by Raju Sundaram as the film has witnessed moderate results. However, he is so desolate about Gowtham stepping out of his project. On the pars, he is quite excited since Sivaji Productions that was supposed to churn out his project with Gowtham is in talks with Dharani to direct the next film. As everyone knows, his 50th film would be directed by Venkat Prabhu who shot to fame as a director with Chennai 600028 and Saroja.

Ameer has planned to remake the yesteryear comedy classic of Sivaji Ganeshan titled ‘Bale Pandiya’ starring Savithri in female lead and M.R. Radha in a prominent role. Ajith has shown his consent in gearing up with this project and nothing has been confirmed till the date….

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Southern Siren Sada to debut in Bollywood

With the entry of Bollywood heroines down South, many began to wonder what would happen to our native beauties. But now with the success of top heroines like Genelia (Telugu), Asin and Sada (both from Kollywood) making a mark with their released and yet-to-be-released films, Southern beauties have definitely started to arrive -- in Bollywood.

Sada, one of the top-rung heroines from the South with films in Malayalam, Tamil, Telugu and Kannada, is all set to burst on Hindi screens very soon. Though not in the limelight like Asin, she was noticed in Aparichit, the Hindi dubbed version of Anniyan (Tamil), which swept the box-office a couple of years ago.

Based on her performance in Aparichit, she signed up for four Hindi movies, of which Khallballi -- Fun Unlimited (with Nikhil Dwivedi as the hero) will be her first release on November 28th. The other films she has signed are Click opposite Shreyas Talpade, Love Khichdi starring Randeep Hooda and Raja Bundela's Sirf Romance -- Love By Chance.

Director Ajay Chandok, whose first directorial venture was Nehlle Pe Dehla (Sanjay Dutt, Saif Ali Khan, Bipasha Basu), commented, "While hunting for the right face in this film which is dominated by close to three dozen comic actors, Sada fit the bill perfectly. She had to be someone who would stand out in the crowd.

She gets the glamour quotient with her role as Nikhil Dwivedi's romantic interest." In the meanwhile, Asin is eagerly awaiting the release of Ghajini (in the making for over 2 years), the movie for which Aamir Khan beefed up his physique, and she's also shooting for London Dreams starring Ajay Devgan and Salman Khan.

Divya with Actor Arya’s Brother

After Vaaranam Aayiram actress Divya Spandana will be seen in the movie Kadhal 2 Kalyanam. Divya will be acting with actor Shahir, who is the brother of actor Arya.

The movie is under the diction of Milind Rau, who is Maniratnam’s first assistant. Actress Divya Spandana started with the film Kuthu and now she has come a very long way.

'Endhiran' shoots at 'Dasavatharam' locations

The Rajinikanth starrer 'Eindhiran' is being shot in certain locations where K. S. Ravikumar canned his 'Dasavatharam'.

At a grand set erected at Tandiarpet, director Shankar and Rajinikanth were spotted on Wednesday shooting some important sequences. However Aishwarya Rai was not present.

It was at the same venue that the tsunami scenes of 'Dasavatharam' were shot by by K S Ravikumar and Kamal Haasan, a few months ago.

The place has been guarded by security personnel. The details however have been kept under wraps.

Shankar had earlier filmed a song sequence in Peru followed by some European countries. The second schedule took place in Goa.

Produced by Ayngaran International, the movie would have musical score by A R Rahman.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Vin Diesel to make a comeback in 'xXx 3'

Hollywood actor, writer and filmmaker Vin Diesel will reunite with director Rob Cohen for the third instalment of the action-thriller series xXx: The Return of Xander Cage.

According to, the screenplay for the movie will be penned by Michael Ferris and John Brancato of Terminator 3: Rise of The Machines and upcoming Terminator: Salvation fame.

Where in Cohen directed the original in 2002, the second instalment xXx 2: The Next Level starring Ice Cube was directed by Lee Tamahori.

Diesel is also set to make a comeback in a new instalment of his other franchise Fast and Furious next June.

Veteran Tamil film villian M N Nambiar dead

Veteran Tamil film villain and stage artist M N Nambiar passed away in Chennai today after a brief illness. He was 92.

Nambiar was suffering from age-related ailments for the past four months and breathed his last at his residence, family sources said. He is survived by his wife, son and senior BJP leader Sukumaran Nambiar, and a daughter.

Born on March 7, 1919, in Kannur, Kerala , Nambiar was one of the most sucessful stars of Tamil cinema and perhaps the only actor, who remained active for six decades. He also acted in Telugu, Malayalam and Hindi cinema, besides Willam Burke's English film Jungle (1952) with Rod Cameron.

Nambiar had acted with almost all top stars of Tamil cinema like M G Ramachandran, Sivaji Ganesan , Gemini Ganesan, Rajnikanth and Kamal Haasan . His famous films include Aayirathil Oruvan, Ambikapathi, Missiyamma, Nenjam Marappathillai, Thooral Ninu Pochu , Thigambara Samiyar, Sarvadhikari, Manthrikumari, Enga Veetu Pillai and Arasilankumari. He acted in more than 1,000 films.

Nambiar had also acted in Velaikari, written by the reformist writer and DMK founder C N Annadurai and directed by A S A Sami.

After becoming popular in Tamil films, he started his own drama troupe Nambiar Nataka Mandram, which staged many plays.

A deeply religious person, Nambiar was an ardent devotee of Lord Ayyappa of the famous Sabarimala shrine and visited it for more than 65 years, which earned him the title Maha Gurusamy.

Recently, AIADMK leader J Jayalalithaa had visited the veteran and sought his blessings on the occasion of her 60th birthday.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Shahrukh Khan, Sachin Tendulkar at Their Kids School

Shahrukh Khan, Arjun Rampal, Sachin Tendulkar and Farhan Akhtar
gain boasting rights as the coolest dads on the block, while recently at a Children’s Day event at Dhirubhai Ambani International School

Kangana trapped by dirty people

While her Fashion has released and turned into a box office success, Kangna Ranaut too is happy with all the accolades coming her way in spite of Priyanka Chopra being the central protagonist. As she now gears up to participate in the promotional campaign of Raaz – The Mystery Continues, she gets candid about the months gone by.

She makes a shocking revelation that she was surrounded by 'dirty people' who tried to harm her physically as well as mentally. Over to the pretty girl who doesn't mince words while disclosing what went wrong in her life over the months gone by.

"To be honest, I got everything very soon in my life but personally my life was going through too much of trauma. I was really trapped by dirty people and they wouldn't let me concentrate on my work. They tried to harm me both physically as well as mentally," states Kangana while refusing to name any individual(s).

"Those were indeed bad times. My sister went through an accident (exactly two years back her sister Rangoli was attacked with acid, allegedly by a rejected suitor). So I had so many issues to take care of. And sometimes your work is not always your priority. So I kind of took time to sort out my personal life and then later on I got back to my work," Kangana talks about the period preceding Fashion, a Madhur Bhandarkar film and Mohit Suri directed Raaz – The Mystery Continues which she signed after a hiatus.

Promotion of Raaz – The Mystery Continues has now kick started and the songs would be unveiled on the satellite channels soon. The film features Kangana along with Emraan Hashmi and Adhyayan Suman and is directed by Mohit Suri.

Terminator man is the villain of Peraanmai - Exclusive

The six feet five inches former Mr. Universe Roland Kickinger who did the role of the killing machine in Terminator Salvation - The Future Begins, is playing the villain in the Kollywood movie Peraanmai. The film is being currently shot in Vagamon. Roland Kickinger is quite excited about the greenery in the forests. That was just what director Jananathan told him when he offered him the role, in Los Angeles — that he would be wonderstruck by the beauty of Kerala. Kickinger will replace Arnold Schwarzenegger in the next of the Terminator series, the fourth. He is scheduled to play the T-800 character in the next two sequels too.

The 20 days spent shooting for Peraanmai is unforgettable, says Kicker. The fact that there are no pucca call-sheets as they have in Hollywood surprises him. He was as tight-lipped about his role in Peraanmai as that of Terminator Salvation, except to say that it was a tough role, shooting in forests and tough terrain. Roland Kickinger has acted in Terminator Salvation, Street Warrior, Disaster Movie, See Arnold Run, Lethal Weapon 4, Andre: Heart of the Giant, Candy Paint, Shoot or be Shot, 15 Minutes of Fame, Gone to Maui and Skippy. His special skills include Professional Wrestling, Boxing, Karate, Sword Fighting, Motorcycle, Water & Snow Skiing, Firearms, Horseback Riding, Ballet, Snorkeling, Volleyball, Tennis, Soccer, Golf, Swimming, Cycling, Weight Training, Power Lifting, and Gourmet Cooking.

Peraanmai is a high budgeted film produced Ayngaran International. Jananathan is directing this film. Ravi dons the tough role of a forest officer. Tanshika, Saranya, Vasundhara, Liyasri and Varsha are the heroines of this film and all are newcomers. The story of Peraanmai is about the struggle of one man determined to save deprived tribes. Director is using latest cameras with advanced technology to shoot fight and chasing scenes. Jananathan chose around fourteen Hollywood actors to make a special stunt sequence.

Actor Arun Vijay got arrested

Actor Arun Vijay was shooting in Ko Man Islands near Pattaya City when he and the cinematographers got arrested by the Thai army.

They were there to shoot for the movie Malai Malai and they decided to shoot in Ko Man when they heard about the exotic location and they got arrested for it.

The location manager and the producer had to come and explain the story before they were let go. The shooting was stopped as well.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Mumaith Khan confirms her love track

"Mumaith Khan", yesterday in a recent interview said that she is truly in love with a guy and is planning to settle in one years tie. She kept the name of her lover as a secret and said that the name will be disclosed when the right time appears.

Meanwhile, there is already a buzz in tollywood that she is in love with comedian turned Actor Ali’s brother (Khayyum) and is in neck deep love with him. Adding to this gossip, Mumaith electrified the news by saying that she is planning to bid good bye to the cinema industry and will focus on her personnel life after marriage.

Khayyum who appeared as a friend to Nagarjuna in the movie SUPER is said to be in awe with Mumaith and is planning to marry her as soon as possible. Ali when contacted neither accepted nor denied this news, but said that his brother is a grown up now and is intellect enough to take serious decisions of life.

'Slumdog Millionaire' gets record start in US

'Slumdog Millionaire', a film about an Indian game show starring Anil Kapoor and Dev Patel, released in the US this week and registered the highest average of any movie during the first weekend.

Fox Searchlight's 'Slumdog Millionaire' grossed $418,000 since it opened Nov 12 in 10 theatres in six cities -- New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Washington, Chicago and Toronto.

The weekend gross was $350,434, with per-theatre average of $35,043. This is the highest average gross by far for any film at the box office.

Following an overwhelming response, a company release said that the film would this week expand to 32 theatres from 10. This includes its release in 10 more cities - Baltimore, Boston, Dallas, Denver, Minneapolis, Philadelphia, Phoenix, San Diego, Seattle and Vancouver.

Based on the novel 'Q&A' by Vikas Swarup, an Indian diplomat, the movie is set in Mumbai and made by British director Danny Boyle. It is the story of Jamal Malik (Dev Patel), an 18-year-old orphan from the slums of Mumbai, who is about to experience the biggest day of his life.

With the whole nation watching, he is just one question away from winning a staggering Rs.20 million on India's 'Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?' show.

But when the show breaks for the night, police arrest him on suspicion of cheating; how could a street kid know so much? Desperate to prove his innocence, Jamal tells the story of his life in the slum where he and his brother grew up, of their adventures together on the road, of vicious encounters with local gangs, and of Latika (Freida Pinto), the girl he loved and lost. Each chapter of his story reveals the key to the answer to one of the game show's questions.

The film has received some rave reviews in the US media. It was the winner of the 2008 Toronto Film Festival People's Choice Award.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

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Actors Rekha & Kamal Hassan to be chief guests at IFFI 2008

Veteran Indian actors Rekha and Kamal Hassan will be the chief guests of the opening and closing ceremonies, respectively, for the International Film Festival of India (IFFI) 2008.

IFFI is scheduled to be held in Goa later this month. Also present at IFFI will be the governor of Goa S.S Siddhu; chief minister Digamber Kamath and the Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Anand Sharma.

S.M. Khan Addl. D.G. & Director of Film Festivals here today.

Actor Amrita Rao will compere on the inaugural day of IFFI. The other film luminary to join on the occasion as special guest will be Telgu actress of Goan origin Illina D'Cruz.

The competition section will witness the presence of 15 films from across the world. These include My Mother's Tears (Argentina/Germany), Rupantor (Transfomration) (Bangladesh), The Shaft (China), Kanachivaram and Mahasatta (India), The Song of Sparrows (Iran), The Red Spot (Japan/Germany), Tulpan (Kazakhstan), Pensil (Malaysia), Ploning (Philippines), Akasa Kusum (Sri Lanka), The Coffin (Thailand) amongst others.

Film India Worldwide is another attraction in the cinema of world section, which will showcase films made by Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) in collaboration with foreign filmmakers. The entries in this segment are Tandoori Love (Switzerland), Death Without Consent (USA), Barah Aana and Chaurasta-Cross Roads of Love (India). The films of Aki Kaurismaki (Finland), John Landis (USA) and Wong Kar Wai (Hong Kong) will be screened in Foreign Retrospective.

Besides, there will be a special tribute to Niki Karimi and Peter Chan.

In addition, there will be 47 films (26 feature films and 21 non-feature) in the Indian Panorama. Films of Dilip Kumar, Lata Mangeshkar, B. Saroja Devi and Tapan Sinha will be presented in Lifetime Classics.

The Festival will also pay homage to GP Sippy, BR Chopra, FC Mehra, Jayashree Gadkar, Raghuvaran, Mahendra Kapoor Jeeva, Sridhar, Vijay Tendulkar and Nabendu Ghosh.

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Actors: Abhishek Bachchan , John Abraham, Bobby Deol,
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