News Round-Up: Saaho Weird, Karan Sigh

Two little stories, which are both important enough to merit discussion. But not, like, a lot of discussion. From me that is. You can discuss all you want, I’m just saying this is going to be a short post.

Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy Leave Saaho

S-E-L have been my favorite composers at least since college. They don’t work together that often, because they each have their own independent careers, but when they come together it is always spectacular. They did Dil Chahta Hai, Lakshya, Kal Ho Na Ho, the new Don, Lucky By Chance, Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, Mirzya, and on and on. They’ve worked in the south in the past, hiring them for Saaho was a good move towards making it a bit more of a cross over hit (familiar names in the north) and a sign that this film was going to be something special, because S-E-L can pick and choose their projects.

Also did Raazi. Speaking of which, this is another group of young outsider talent that Karan sponsored and which respects him, but is never talked about. Karan noticed them and brought them in to the mainstream with Kal Ho Na Ho, and in return they have chosen to score multiple Dharma films.

Saaho, as we know, has been delayed and delayed and delayed. For reasons that are unclear, we never got an inside story from the set or anything that might explain it, just had a trailer release with an announcement there would be many more, and then there were no more trailers. Filming has been going on for almost 2 years now. And, strangest of all, no one seems busy with filming besides Prabhas, the male star. The female lead Shraddha is doing tons of other movies and personal appearances and so on, she is either done with her part long ago or hasn’t started. Ditto Jackie Shroff, who is supposed to have an important role. They just announced yet ANOTHER release date, 15th August, over 2 years after filming began. And days later we have S-E-L announcing through their shared twitter handle that they will not be doing the music after all:

What’s super interesting is that right after that they got a twitter message from UVCreations, the producers of Saaho:

I believe the message, that is, S-E-L seem like good people to work with, the same directors/producers are constantly calling on them. But it is also saying something that the production house is going out of its way to make sure there is no blame put on the composers who are leaving the project. Which makes me think the project must be in real trouble if they are putting the composers over it.

Shankar Madhavan’s official explanation, when reached by phone, was:

The music company wanted to add a few songs from external composers. We are not very comfortable with that. Normally, we prefer to remain the sole composers of the film. That’s why we decided to opt out.

I believe him of course. Why would he lie? But again, this is all very troubling for the film. That the music company has been allowed to take so much control is not good, where is the filmmaker defending his product? And most of all, that they are finalizing the songs NOW, 2 months before release, is really not good. And now S-E-L are out so they will have to start from scratch for music, with only 78 days left until release.

And this, I assume, is why Saaho has been delayed all along. The kind of confusion and disorganization and too many cooks problems we see here. S-E-L should have been able to express their concerns and have them addressed before they felt the need to just leave the project. And if someone had been on top of working with them and understanding their needs all along, things would never have reached this point. I can picture similar situations with the stunt coordinators, the special effects studios, all the little tedious parts of a film that need attention if things are going to run smoothly.

Karan and Another Talk Show

I think, unfortunately, Karan is in a bit of a “hair of the dog” fallacy point. People are tired of his persona and he keeps doing the same kind of things and thinking that will help instead of make it worse. He already announced his Netflix relationship show, now there are rumors he is looking at a talk show focused on talking to Star Wives about their lives, their families, their parenting. (story here)

I can see the basic logic here. On the one hand, people are fascinated with star families, we can all see that. And on the other hand, Karan thinks giving people an inside look will help us see them as people with their own struggles and so on instead of hating them for their privilege. That’s all fine and dandy.

But the problem is, people are hating on Karan, and the star families, because they are over-exposed. It doesn’t matter if you change the details of the exposure at this point, any exposure at all is a bad thing. So hopefully this show fades away into rumor-land and never actually happens.

29 thoughts on “News Round-Up: Saaho Weird, Karan Sigh

  1. I have been waiting and waiting and waiting for Saaho. Now it looks as if Prabhas is going to follow his smash Baahubali saga with a mash-up. Not his fault of course, but I’m afraid everyone will think so. Megastars are targets. I wish he’d just move on to another film, start PR’ing about it, build anticipation. This way, if Saaho tanks, it’ll make less of a noise in the background of new movie cacophony. If it triumphs, well, so much the better.


    • I haven’t been following the story since the beginning, but what other folks here told me is that Prabhas made a commitment to this director for his next movie back when Bahubali was still filming. The director hasn’t done anything on a grand scale before, when the commitment was made Prabhas was just one of many Telugu actors and this would be just a nice small film.

      I suspect that after Bahubali, every one felt the pressure to take advantage of the options they have now, bigger budget and bigger cast and bigger concept, but hadn’t really thought through what that would look like or how to make it work. So it’s not Prabhas’ fault really, he was just honoring a commitment, but it is a result of his involvement in the film. And probably if he were less of an easy going nice guy, he either would have pulled out of the film and saved them all from the situation, or taken some measure of control and tried to keep it on track when he saw the director was out of his depth.

      On Tue, May 28, 2019 at 8:46 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:



  2. Unfortunately for Prabhas, “easy going guy” and “taking some measure of control” don’t go together. I suspect he’s a lot less upset about the Saaho fiasco than I am. A few beers, shooting hoops with friends. It’s all good.

    But for those of us nail-biters down here on Earth…What’s the rest of the story? Is it possible they’ll shelve the movie altogether? Or re-cut it into a good film with a bankable star and compelling story? Smart Hollywood Academy Award winners do that all the time. Rather than immediately go into another over-produced, over publicized blockbuster that usually disappoints, they do a couple of interim art films, capitalizing on the anticipation for their “brand” until exactly the right Oscar follow-up comes along. I know Saaho is a multi-dubbed extravaganza, but maybe after two Baahubalis, Prabhas fans will welcome him acting, fighting and romancing again as his wonderful old self.


    • I think it was a terrible idea to do another big film right after Bahubali anyway. The next movie is always going to be a disappointment, just accept that and throw something halfway decent out there to get it over with. And then once the bar has been lowered to a normal point, you can try another big film. Only, I don’t think they can recut it into something small at this point, too many promises made and too much money spent.

      Like you say, Prabhas is happy either way. But VERY FRUSTRATING for us. That’s the nice thing about being a Shahrukh fan, however much we care about the success of his films, he cares about 10 times more. Probably very unhealthy for him, all the insomnia and depression and stuff, but it does mean that things come out on time and we always know what is happening.

      On Tue, May 28, 2019 at 9:59 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:


      Liked by 1 person

      • And hasn’t Prabhas some brother or cousin who takes care of his money and stuff? Who would say: hey this movie is a mess, fix it othwerwise we are out?

        This situation wit S-E-L is so strange. I’m sure their music was ready at this point and it’s inexplicable how the makers let them go.

        For Karan – I dislike him, but will watch at least one episode of this new show if it will be available in Italy, and I’m sure I’m not the only one.


        • Prabhas’s cousin is a part of UV Creations which is producing Saaho. So Prabhas is basically working for his own production house. He’s very close to all three producers at UV and he helped promote them a lot when they were just starting out.


          • Maybe they are also nice easy going guys who don’t really care? The twitter response to S-E-L backing out was pretty laid back considering they just lost their composers weeks before release.


        • Yes, the situation with S-E-L is so strange!!!! It’s making me worried about the quality of the music in the film in general. S-E-L usually does the kind of soundtrack that is built in the film and an essential part of the plot. Not always as much as Mirzya, but even in Bhaag Milkha Bhaag I couldn’t imagine the movie without those songs. So, are the Saaho makers changing the plot along with the composers? And all very last minute?


    • I don’t know if I 100% believe that story. I could more easily believe that Yash Raj is making another conman comedy in the spirit of Bunty Aur Babli. I love the original, but you are right, I don’t know if it is the kind of movie that would drive people into the theaters just with the name. And I also don’t think Rani-Abhishek is a pairing that people would get excited about right now. But if YRF is making another movie LIKE Bunty Aur Babli, I am all for it!

      On Tue, May 28, 2019 at 11:49 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:



  3. Is the media spreading fake news based on people wanting to believe any nonsense about Karan or is he actually stupid enough to want to make a show on star wives? First of all, there are hardly any star wives anyway. Who is there apart from Gauri and Twinkle? Maybe Mira and that’s about it. That would make 2 or 3 episodes, not a whole season’s worth of episodes. It’s also exploiting his personal relationships with these people so they come on the show. Gauri has said so many times that she does not want to talk about her husband but would feel obligated for Karan’s sake. So tacky.

    I also think the audience of exhausted of these kinds of shows that dig into celebrities’ personal lives. There really is nothing to talk about after a certain point and they are not going to share their private struggles.

    Since it’s Netflix and they don’t need to worry about audience numbers, he would be better off talking to directors and musicians and other behind the scenes players and bring them on to talk about their popular movies. People who genuinely enjoy film would watch it and Karan can stop looking like a frivolous idiot.


    • If it is really just a three part special on Gauri, Twinkle, and Suzanne, that I would watch. But most likely I think it is just fake news.


  4. To make myself feel better about not seeing Saaho any time soon, I’m searching for a temporary Prabhas fill-in. I thought I’d found one and last nite, I was sure of it. Watched Kadhalum Kadandhu Pogum on Amazon with Vijay Sethupathi and fell in love. He is totally charming as a reluctant rowdy with no family but the street, and Madonna Sebastian (Who?) pretty good as the nice girl with loving parents who falls for him. Sethupathi has slimmed down for this film but, lumpy or lean, his face and movements are as sexy and evocative as Shah Rukh Khan’s, and his acting, dare I say it? more realistically subtle. The ending of the film leaves you hanging but hoping. I wish there was a sequel but thankfully, enuf Sethupathi films are streaming right now to keep me happy for a while. Or at least until Saaho.


    • Prithviraj! Check out Prithviraj! Although he tends to do real thoughtful films, less super fun. How do you feel about sad endings to love stories?

      On Tue, May 28, 2019 at 12:30 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:



    • Maria, have you seen 96? I wasn’t Vijay’s fan but after this film, I started loving him, and now even hearing his voice makes me smile.


          • Yeah, there really isn’t anyone like Shahrukh. Although Vijay has a different kind of a look and is a great actor.


          • I’m sure I’ll check out one of his flicks at some point. It seems if I get into another regional industry, Malayalam or Bengali may be mor my style.


          • Premam! Ohm Shanti Oshaana!!!! you would like them both. And maybe Bangalore Days too. But mostly those.


          • Actually, Telugu might be good for you. They are known for their action movies, but they secretly have the best female focused romances, just completely delightful. Malayalam is known for it’s female lead films, but they also really really love bittersweet endings. You know, the ones where the hero is hit by a truck just as he is about to propose and the heroine is left sitting in the rain waiting for someone who will never come as tinkle-tinkle music plays and the credits role. Telugu romances, they actually get together!


  5. I’ve been in love with Prithviraj since Aiyaa (swoon!) but not all of his other films are as satisfying as that one; or available to me.

    And thanks Angie, for the heads-up on 96. It’s on my agenda for tonight.


  6. Darn! 96 is not available to me right now. Have to add it to Aurangzeb and Vikram Vedha on my Must Watch Later list. And Notebook and one or two others. Actually, I Iike having this list. It means there’s always something for me to watch on those dry Netflix and annoying Amazon days, or when YouTube makes you THINK you’re going to see the movie but it’s really the trailer or a million songs, or something else entirely.


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