News Round-Up: So Much ACTUAL News Today! SO HAPPY!!!!

I don’t know what it was, maybe it was just the holidays or maybe it was Padmavat/Padmavati driving everything else away, but the past month or so it has felt like there is no “actual” news.  Like, no one is officially announcing anything, no one is bothering to do even the littlest bit of investigation to find out about a fact, it’s all just reporting of people having opinions.  But no more!  A new era has dawned and there is SO MUCH actual news today!

Sooraj Pancholi and Mallika, what to do when you are no longer famous

Sooraj Pancholi is opening a dance academy.  Which I guess is a reasonable thing to do.  He is opening it for underpriveleged kids who dream of dancing.  Which I am not sure is a real thing, or if it is only a thing in movies.  More importantly, this is a very savvy career decision.  Makes us all feel nice about him, and reminds us that he is a decent dancer.  And changes the conversation about him personally from “Sooraj Pancholi, his parents’ marriage is a disaster and his girlfriend killed himself” to “Sooraj Pancholi, charitable and a good dancer!”  And it is very Being Human, I am going to assume that either he got the idea from observing Salman’s strategy during his career/personal downturn, or Salman actually suggested it to him.

Less smart is Mallika’s career downturn strategy.  Of turning into some sort of French hanger on at red carpets.  I assume she is being paid to show up and add color to events by being pretty and glamorous, which is a thing I have heard is very common at Cannes in particular.  She has also apparently acquired a French “husband”.  And now they are both being sued for non-payment of rent at their luxury flat.  The whole thing sounds very messy and kind of makes Sooraj Pancholi’s life look clean and organized.

Image result for mallika cannes

(Here’s Mallika at one of her many appearances at Cannes 2017)

 

Another Film Gets Censor Clearance

NOT Padmavat, a different one which has been waiting a lot longer, Sunny’s film Mohalla Assi.  It had a trailer release in 2015, was ordered to make numerous cuts for language hurting communal sentiments, appealed appealed appealed, and is finally cleared.

I find it interesting partly because the producers did a way way way better job of handling the delay.  The submitted in a timely fashion, clearly, if there was only one trailer and now promo campaign really started when the stay was put in place.  And then they stopped everything and waited until it was cleared before cranking up the promotions again.  No strange panicked rush for approval, no need to get everyone in the industry to give an opinion, they just handled it themselves like adults.

Oh, and the topic seems like it could be something that actually does take a stand and make a statement, the filmmakers weren’t courting controversy just because they thought it would look pretty when women’s skirts spun around.  It’s a satirical film about the commercialization of religion, that takes on the whole Ayodhya/Ram Janmabhoomi movement in the late 80s.  So yes, I can see why it made the censors nervous.  And I applaud the filmmakers for making this film in the first place and standing their ground and insisting on it coming out without cuts.

Image result for mohalla assi

(Oh, and his co-star is Sakshi Tanwar, the soap opera star who was the mother in Dangal)

 

Parineeti Signs a movie

Yaaaay, Parineeti has another good role!  She already signed Housefull 4 post Golmaal Again, which was a so-so career decision.  The Housefull movies are great networking opportunities, everyone has a great time on set and leaves the best of friends and eager to work together again.  But they aren’t exactly actress showcases.

But this film seems like a great idea!  Kesari, the Akshay starring and Karan produced historical about Sikh offices in a Victorian era battle.  Parineeti gets a high profile heroine role, opposite Akshay, and gets to work for Karan Johar too.  All around brilliant career decisions.  Would be nice if she were working with someone a little closer to her in age, but we can’t have everything.

Image result for housefull akshay

(Akshay is supposedly on board for Housefull 4 too, so the networking may have already taken effect, if he liked how Parineeti came off in early meetings for that film, maybe he suggested her name for Kesari)

 

Rani Prepares for PR

Another actual news story!  Yash Raj is leaking details of Rani’s promotional plans for Hichki.  Starting on Makar Sankrati, a religious holiday, because she wants an auspicious start.

Now, I believe that Rani does sincerely want a religious start.  I have heard that, in her own very quiet way, she is deeply religious.  But it is also a nice traditional flip to the promos, off-setting the untraditional idea of a strong female star playing a strong female character and taking the lead in the promos.  Especially a strong female star who “should” be home with her husband and daughter.

Also, she is coincidentally starting her promos in Ahmedabad, which just happens to have it’s massive kite flying festival on Makar Sankrati.  At least, “coincidentally” as the Yash Raj PR is trying to spin it.  So I am getting more of an idea that Rani sort of wanted maybe an auspicious start (I mean, why not?  She is coming back to film post-birth, this has got to be a little nervewracking, anything that might make her feel more confident is kid), and the Yash Raj PR team figured out that starting with kite flying in Ahmedabad would be a great visual, and then spun the whole story in a nice traditional religious kind of way.

 

Okay, there’s like 8 more stories I want to cover, but I will start with these so we can all easily discuss them here, and then discuss the others on other posts. Such an exciting day!

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28 thoughts on “News Round-Up: So Much ACTUAL News Today! SO HAPPY!!!!

  1. Oh Parineeti, I’m still a big fan but I still worry. I’m relatively optimistic but Housefull heroines are not something to be aspired to after a decent role in Golmaal again, so I worry. Nargis was in the last one after all (but so was Jacqueline)…so we’ll see. Parineeti and Akshay could be good, despite the age difference, and it will be interesting to see her in a 19th century period piece. The Twitter cracks about Karan Johar’s announcement with a picture of Akshay instead of her were pretty funny.

    Watched Rani’s interviews with Anupama and Rajeev and she does seem like such a “normal” person and whatever she’s done, her image has always maintained a wholesome gloss which I think comes from her natural personality (and I guess her spiritual and familial grounding). I’m not super-excited about this film,for her but I think she and Vidya are two women gracefully and fiercely controlling the narrative about their careers and just getting the job done with interesting character-driven roles and sincere and likable public personas.

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    • I worry about Parineeti too! I don’t know why, she just seems to be someone I worry about more than love or hate or any other emotion.

      Rani, I don’t worry about. She seems very in control and feet on the ground.

      On Wed, Jan 10, 2018 at 11:19 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • Remembered that she’s doing Sandeep Aur Pinky and the first looks look good and it’s a good director so I’m reassured. I think she’s probably looking forward to doing a light film where she might get to be kind of sexy and that’s why she’s doing Housefull. She’s still young and getting fit seemed like such a personal accomplishment for her she wants to get all the perks, too. Even though I don’t like the context that made her do it, I don’t blame her for enjoying how it increased her options. The Kesari role will be serious no doubt…so her range of choices going forward is quite good…so phew…I can sleep tonight;)

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        • If we look at Housefull as “a nice chance to get to know important movers and shakers of the industry in a relaxed environment/a chance to wear pretty clothes/a paid vacation to a foreign land for 6 weeks”, it doesn’t sound that bad. Heck, sign me up!

          On Wed, Jan 10, 2018 at 3:28 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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    • I am torn about the censor board. On the one hand, it is extreme censorship and censor powers, higher than I have heard of in any country besides, like, Iran. But on the other hand, feelings run so high about films in India, it is kind of good to have an official body in charge of it, instead of just random decisions by state governors or police.

      On Wed, Jan 10, 2018 at 11:46 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  2. Rani sounds really annoying after marriage. She’s always snapping and cracking lame jokes. Of course, the questions also contribute to such responses from her, but I’m just not liking her persona now.

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  3. love to see Rani back in movies..Parineeti a good actress but signs really ridiculous movies i just want to see her in a good movie..wasn’t Mohalla Assi supposed to be released a year or two back??

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    • Yep, that’s what this news story said, the first trailer came out, it got stopped by the censors,a nd then it has been in limbo ever since. But not this ridiculous limbo like Padmavat, where there is a news story every day and they kept up the PR campaign even knowing the censors hadn’t released it and so on. Once the censors put it up for review, they just stopped promoting the movie and patiently waited for the situation to resolve.

      That’s what I found really interesting, Padmavat was acting like it was life or death to get it to come out soon and keeping up the interviews and trailers and stuff. Instead of doing what basically every other movie has done in that situation, just pause and wait for censor clearance before release.

      On Wed, Jan 10, 2018 at 12:21 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • it was not just about the censor clearance but was also about death threats coming from karni sena and every political party being quite about it..but then again established directors do have a habit of going to the media and complaining about the board like in Udata Punjab .i did not find the movie that great but it got the exposure it wanted from all the hue and cry.But in Padmavati the controversy was just baseless .First Bansali and crew get beaten up because there is some alleged song sequence between Khilji and Padmavati which i’ve no clue where they got that idea then deepika gets death threat..so bad when a movie gets banned on the basis of just speculation.i sooo want to see the unedited version..it wont be no fun watching the movie with cuts but i still would watch it if i ‘m able to

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    • I clicked over right away to learn more about SRK. It looks like the “Meer Foundation” might just be him? But he never talks about it and his name is nowhere on the website. There also isn’t an “About Us” or “History” section on the website, nothing to indicate who they are, just what they do. And, of course, Meer was his father’s name, so it would make sense.

      More importantly, is Elton John single right now? Could Shahrukh set him up with Karan?

      On Wed, Jan 10, 2018 at 1:46 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • I follow the Meer Foundation on Twitter–mainly because I harbor a secret dream of working there one day. It’s not so far removed from my current job. So far it’s inactive–could mean it’s just him and a couple associates, or that whoever’s managing the organization just isn’t into social media.

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        • If it is just Shahrukh, they don’t really need publicity. I am guessing he can pay straight out of pocket for enough simple medical treatments of acid burns to keep the foundation going for decades. So why publicize? They would only need to be sure they are able to find enough people who need their services, not volunteers or donors. Which of course is why they need to hire you, to make sure they have the right connections to reach the people who need their help. Similar to Being Human, when I’ve checked out their website it’s pretty clear that they don’t need money or anything like that, the only reason it is publicized is to help with the clothing sales, and to make Salman look good. Paying for operations and so on, that’s just coming out of the almost limitless Salman Khan funding.

          On Wed, Jan 10, 2018 at 2:15 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  4. I feel Housefull is a baaad idea for Parineeti. But it was probably a sign this and you’ll get Kesari deal as they took long to announce the female lead. She makes bad choices and has difficulty saying no to bad movies I guess. But when you’re a relative outsider, it is harder to say no.

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    • I don’t know if Housefull actually hurts careers, at least of the actresses. Everyone knows it is a terrible role and the responsibility for the success of the film is on the actors, not the actresses.

      On Wed, Jan 10, 2018 at 2:03 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  5. First, Elton John and Karan would make a terrible couple: two divas? I do not think so. Although Elton’s clothes would make Karan’s look sedate.
    Second, I love Rani. She was the first heroine I fell in love with in my first months of watching Hindi film. Her Koffee with Karan appearances are wonderful. So, I choose to believe she is sincere. I hope this “come back” film is good. (I’ve stopped wishing for success because it appears good and success are not connected.)
    Third: I’ve looked up the Meer foundation before as well. I think he does a lot of things through that that he doesn’t discuss. I’m surprised he is taking this award. I wonder how it benefits the charity it recognizes. (or if we want to get cynical we could say that his team has finally convinced him that although it is better not to publicize one’s charitable giving, he must do so people don’t think the worst.)
    Fourth: I know I’m beating a dead horse here (so to speak) but it galls me that NO ONE EVER MENTIONS the age of Akshay’s heroines…..he’s an old actor too!(50) Someone here (I think it was here) that Akshay is in the pocket of the BJP and therefore can do no wrong. Who knows….

    Liked by 1 person

    • Also, I just looked it up, and Elton John is married and has two kids with his husband, so I don’t necessarily want to break up their family. But maybe Elton knows Stephen Fry, my other British possibility for Karan. Oh wait, never mind, he is married too. Why are all the good men taken??????

      I didn’t like Rani much at first, but the more films I saw, the more I came to appreciate her. She is very serious, which makes her less charming in interviews sometimes, but it leads to really excellent work.

      For the awards, I think Shahrukh got something similar from Unicef a few years back. Plus the Legion D’Honor and other stuff like that. My impression is, maybe he sees it as ungracious to refuse them? That it would be a bigger sin of pride to think he is better than the award instead of accepting it? At least for “real” things like this, if it is something like the FilmFare Fashion Award, he probably feels less pressure.

      And Akshay is so good at positioning himself! He is nice moderate likable patriotic Akshay, never makes waves, never offends. I think the age of his heroines doesn’t have any real practical meaning besides his work schedule, he is so committed to working 9 to 5 and only in Bombay, it eleminates more established heroines who don’t want to go along with that. Plus, his films are always so hero focused, there isn’t much to do for a more established heroine (although I was pretty impressed with what Illeana pulled off in Rustom), so they only people interested and available are the young up and comers. But then, most of those reasons or similar ones could be used for other established actors too, and they all get a hard time. Heck, Ajay doesn’t get much grief either and his heroine in Shivaay was NINETEEN!!!!! Somehow action stars can get away with it.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I want to ask one thing. Rani Mukherjee already went to bigg boss/other reality shows for hichki. So how exactly is she starting promotional activities from 14 th?

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  7. Houseful would gross over 200 cr. It would make parineeti in the limelight like in golmaal. So it would be useful to her. Secondly I don’t think she would have a big role in kesari as it’s a war drama. Maybe in flashback scenes showing marriage, courting etc. And end scenes crying or being proud of akshay. So I think it’s a terrible role for her.

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    • Good points. Golmaal turned out to be a great choice for her, a hit film and she had an interesting role in it. Maybe Housefull will as well. Although those films don’t have a history of strong female characters, the way the Golmaal films do.

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  8. I’m so happy for Parineeti. Also it’s good to know I’m not the only one who worries about her. I had no idea she signed houseful.. wasn’t deepika in one of the earlier versions of houseful, it doesn’t harm careers. Also more movies the better I suppose. Uh I don’t know. I hate age difference of this kind (like in kesari) but I’m just going to grin and bear to see her in a great role.

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    • Good point, Deepika was in Housefull in 2010, and right after that signed a bunch of higher profile films with Akshay and Abhishek. It really does help with the networking!

      On Thu, Jan 11, 2018 at 6:06 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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    • I had no idea of that until just, like, last year. But then I saw an article about the Cannes women and one of my first thoughts was “oh, I wonder if that is why Mallika keeps showing up”. There are 3 regular Indian actresses at Cannes, Aish because she has been on the jury and is promoting L’Oreal. Sonam, since she also signed a L’Oreal deal. And Mallika. Aish and Sonam both wear a series of gorgeous elaborate designer original gowns and make a big splash in the international press and so on, and then there’s Mallika who wears regular looking evening gowns and doesn’t get the bigger splash on the red carpet and isn’t being sponsored by anyone. I don’t want to think bad things about people, but it kind of feels like a logical conclusion that she is there because she is working the festival.

      On Thu, Jan 11, 2018 at 7:15 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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