News Round-Up: Kangana Fails to Understand Mental Illness, Kat Lands a Big Role, Varun and Sara in a Comedy

Kangana through Rangoli just said something so shocking I have to point it out and correct it. And on the other hand, two bits of casting that make me happy, Kat and Sara both get good parts.

Kangana on Mental Illness

Kangana and Rajkummar’s film Mental Hai Kya is getting some push-back because early looks make it seem as though it treats mental illness as a joke. Various respectable Indian mental health advocacy groups are giving statements. On the one hand, I am always irritated when groups protest before the film has even come out. On the other hand, mental illness really does need a better image in India, I’m much less offended by these groups jumping on the bandwagon for publicity than I am when it is some made-up ethnic or religious group.

And then Rangoli went on twitter and I lost all faith in Kangana’s ability to sensitively portray mental illness:

Just so you have background, The Live Laugh Love Foundation was following along the lead of the Indian Medical Association and the Indian Psychiatric Association. They are a small advocacy group for mental illness founded by Deepika Padukone. But they are the only ones being addressed in these messages, the larger community of mental health professionals who are objecting are ignored.

Deepika founded TLLL after coming forward and publicly speaking about her depression, her clinical medical depression. Which Kangana/Rangoli is here simplifying to feeling sad after a break-up and now cured through proper wifehood. Both insulting mental illness, and implying that all a woman needs is to be a wife for all her problems to be solved. Oh, and stupidly obviously wrong in terms of Deepika’s personal life, she was overcome with depression in 2014, when her career and personal life were in a good place, years after her Ranbir break-up. Nice of Kangana/Rangoli to re-write Deepika’s life in order to fit within her tidy narrative of depression-marriage.

She is also, weirdly, treating Deepika’s involvement in TLLL as “brand ambassador”. An odd way to treat advocacy groups, as though they are just another business that would hire you to do an add campaign. And a strange way to treat Deepika, who founded this organization, as though she was just the pretty face on top of it, as though she doesn’t really care about the issue.

The whole thing is strangely addressed towards Deepika. The reference to the Karni Sena is a reference to the protests she faced during Padmavat. But TLLL, the foundation, didn’t face those protests. And why pick only this group out of all the mental health organizations that filed protests? There’s a narrative here of “poor Kangana being picked on by Deepika” which is just WEIRD.

Oh, and of course it then ends by making herself into the victim because she was “accused” of mental illness. Very strange how it tries to say Kangana understands these issues more deeply than Deepika, someone who is actually publicly suffering from a mental illness. And very strange how her argument is that she understands the difficulties because she herself received the terrible insult of being accused of having mental illness. Which is the point! That it shouldn’t be an insult!

Just, once again, UGH Kangana!!! UGH! I am excited to see how her producer Ekta Kapoor is going to clean this up, and how (if at all) Dips will respond.

(I wonder if I will get a whole bunch of long angry tweets from people who didn’t read the article like I did the last time I posted something on Kangana?)

Kat and Akshay Reunited!

I’m excited about this! Akshay is doing a cop film with Rohit Shetty, and Katrina Kaif was just confirmed as playing his wife. Not his heroine, but his wife. I am thrilled! Kat gets a good role, Akshay will be playing a mature part with a wife, and we already know they have great chemistry together.

Sara and Varun Together with David Dhawan!

I am pumped about this! Not so much about Varun doing another semi-remake with his father, but very excited about Sara co-starring. She can really do comedy well, and David Dhawan’s comedies work best with a strong female comic lead. That’s why all his greatest ones were with Karisma. This is supposed to be a remake of one of his great ones, Coolie No. 1.

32 thoughts on “News Round-Up: Kangana Fails to Understand Mental Illness, Kat Lands a Big Role, Varun and Sara in a Comedy

  1. I didn’t read entire tweets, because Rangoli writes only nonsense, but I hope with all my heart Deepika won’t answer. I hope she learnt from Alia’s situation, that talking with Kangana and her gang is useless, and it only causes other problems.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I hope the Indian Psychiatric Association and the Medical Group respond, both to enforce that they were the groups that made the complaint, not Deepika, and that it is NOT OKAY to imply depression comes from break-ups and is fixed by marriages.

      On Mon, Apr 22, 2019 at 12:26 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • I think everybody should just ignore those tweets, because even if Psychiatric Association answers it won’t change a thing. We all know that Kangana and her sister don’t listen, won’t change and won’t apologize. Any answer will only make them be in the news and repeat the same rubbish and that’s what they want. Igonoring is the answer. Alia answered and did it change something? Nothing. Kangana saw her attack works, and started attacking Alia’s mother and father.
        I’m so angry when I read about Kangana and Rangoli’s shenanigans, because they write pure lies, and nonsenses and I feel like commenting but then I realize that they are crazy and stupid and my answer won’t change the situation, and I feel frustrated.

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        • Although it doesn’t actually make people want to watch her movies. Her films have been on a steady slide for the past 2-3 years, really since Tanu Weds Manu Returns. I don’t think her behavior necessarily harms her films either, it just seems to have no effect at all, people accept it as Kangana being Kangana.

          On Mon, Apr 22, 2019 at 4:26 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • I don’t really care about her movies, it’s the “Kangana is the greatest feminist of India” that makes my blood boil. And people buy it! And it’s always the same song: she is a feminist, she has 3 national awards, so she can’t be wrong, and y’all should do what she says.

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      • Sounds like she can turn on a dime, super sweet and quiet and nice, and then slowly passive aggressively turns horrible. I guess if you never cross her, she stays nice and pleasant and everything. But if you do, watch out!

        On Mon, Apr 22, 2019 at 2:37 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • But, she would suddenly claim anyone to be her ‘silly ex’. I don’t get why anyone agrees to that risk. If I’m not wrong, Shahid or Saif too had a bad experience with her during Rangoon promotions.

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        • Oh, that’s a really good point. I wonder if her co-stars have started getting careful about not leaving an opening for anything. Only interacting at work with other people in the room and so on. All Hrithik did was a few texts and inviting her to work parties, and he’s still paying for it.

          Liked by 1 person

          • At least Rajkummar is in a fairly safe position. He’s a total outsider, no nepotism possible. He’s in a committed relationship with someone who is also a public figure and able to speak up for herself if need be. And his talent is so obvious that I can’t imagine any accusation in that regard would carry weight. So long as he makes sure to take basic precautions that would allow him to disprove any harassment claims, he is maybe okay.

            On Tue, Apr 23, 2019 at 11:24 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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            Liked by 1 person

          • That does sound right, he is indeed on the safe side. But, Kangana being Kangana can come up with a story of any extent. It’s always better to be safe than suffer later, knowing her history.

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          • Infact, I can say with confidence that within next 2-3 years, she’ll run out of co-actors and directors who’re ready to work with her, or producers who’ll put money on her.

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          • You’re probably right. This film was finalized and almost completely filmed before the Manikarnika situation exploded. I don’t know what they are doing on Panga, her next movie, but at least that is with a female co-star and female director. And it was also signed and filming started before Manikarnika. Nothing has been signed or planned since then.

            On Tue, Apr 23, 2019 at 11:32 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • I guess time will answer that. But, I don’t think even female filmmakers would be willing to work with her. She took credit for Manikarnika from Krish, that didn’t really have anything to do with him being male. If she continues doing so, why would even female directors take the risk?

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          • One thing to think about with the female directors is that they can’t afford to be as picky as male directors. Setting aside Kangana in particular, a female director is more likely to be forced to take whatever actor is willing to be in their film than a male director is, just because they are women. Could be her working with female directors now is a sign of her slide professionally.

            On Tue, Apr 23, 2019 at 11:44 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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            Liked by 1 person

          • That’s true, unfortunately. But, okay, if not directors, are even producers willing bring so much negativity to their project by what Kangana says in her interviews?

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          • I can’t imagine they are. Ekta is in a somewhat similar position, she is trying to get the reinvented Balaji films off the ground (remember her last movie as producer, Laila-Majnu, couldn’t even manage to get an international release), so I could see her thinking “we’ll do a small film with Kangana, she still has a pretty big name, it will be good”. But that was before the Manikarnika thing, and now this tone deaf statement about mental illness that is just going to backfire onto the film. If I were a producer watching this, I would be thinking “not worth the risk”.

            On Tue, Apr 23, 2019 at 11:53 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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    • My best guess is that it was Ekta Kapoor that brought him in. This is only the second film she is directly producing herself, it’s a small film but that connection is worth making. Plus Ekta has a reputation for professionalism and so on.

      Also, the filming started and ended on time, no rumors of problems from set. So it sounds like Rajkummar was right in that Kangana was fine to work with and Ekta kept tight control during shooting. She’s opening her mouth now, but lucky Rajkummar is no longer in the same room with her and doesn’t have to listen 🙂

      On Mon, Apr 22, 2019 at 2:19 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  2. “With Kangana’s permission I am sharing her story” ha ha ha ha ha ha ha. Her story that she has kept a complete and total secret and can now be revealed to the world.

    Also, she’s at the forefront of the women’s movement in India?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sisters? I doubt the sister is involved. That twitter account is probably run by Kangana herself. What sister would have so much bitterness for things that are totally unrelated to her and know every single story? Not to mention that she has a small child and other things that probably matter to her more.

      I bet it’s just Kangana hiding behind that account.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. What is this Azure Entertainment that has suddenly burst onto the scene? They coproduced Kesari, Badla and RCE’s upcoming Operation Khukri. They also have various movies coming out with Hollywood studios like Lionsgate and Warner Bros. How does it happen so quickly? Reminds me of Prerna Arora’s KriArj.

    Here’s an interview with the ceo – https://boxofficeindia.co.in/make-double-0

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    • It does sound very KriArj! And also very weird. I did a quick google of the CEO, and he’s on Linkedin? That’s weird, right? Like, I wouldn’t think someone who was CEO of a big company would need to be on Linkedin.

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  4. “At least Rajkummar is in a fairly safe position. He’s a total outsider, no nepotism possible”

    Well, we can never know. Deepika never even worked with Kangana, she is an outsider too, and we are here commenting about her and K.
    Kangana is unpredictable, she can create a scandal from nothing if she wants.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Why do you think Kat & Akshay just “work” so well together? Honestly I would easily accommodate 1-2 average or above average movies a year with this pair, like we did in the late 2000s. I have some theories, please pipe in with yours.
    Is it because Kat’s roles with him till now have generally learned into her mixed heritage and western upbringing? Or because Akshay, of all the major stars, has the kind of facial features and bone structure and height that usually appeals to a western audience, thus making her acting attracted to him feel mire natural to her? Or because neither is a particularly showy actor, neither utilizes much facial expressions, but make up for it in body language? Or perhaps because he looks young for his age – he looks at least a decade younger than the 3Khans – and Kat always looks mature for her age. Not that she looks older than her age, but that the gravitas of her carriage means she can pass for an “old soul” type. Ironically, I thought the PC Akshay pair looked uncomfortably like college code and “uncle”, but this pair feels much better matched, even though Kat is about the same age as PC.

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    • My theory would be a combination of your later suggestions. Their acting styles are well-matched, she feels older and he younger. And I would add that I think they are just comfortable together. I feel like Kat is an actress that is even more sensitive than usual to being comfortable with her director and her co-stars. With Akshay, for whatever reason, she just seems to feel safe. Same with Salman. And with Shahrukh in Zero, but not in JTHJ (I suspect because in Zero they were both working with the director for the first time and starting on an equal footing in that way).

      I also think, in general, Akshay does better with a quieter energy opposite him, whether that is Raveena Tandon or Shilpa Shetty or Karisma. He doesn’t work with Madhuri, barely worked with Kajol, that kind of sparkling wild stunning woman opposite crazy big emotions Akshay is just too rich. Maybe that is also true in the opposite way with Kat? She is better with a bigger actor? Another reason Zero worked better than JTHJ, in JTHJ Shahrukh was all toned down and serious and their scenes together were just bland, in Zero we had the spark of contrast with Shahrukh being over the top and her being calm.

      Like

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