News Round-Up: Ajay Reaps Rewards, Varun Averts Violence, Sara Signs Second

Nothing super interesting to discuss today, but some little bits of things to throw out there for all of us to chew on (now I am imagining myself as a zookeeper throwing news meat to my pack of lion-commentators to fight over and masticate down to nothing).

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News Round-Up: Karan is Good to His Staff, Ajay is Good to the Audience, and Hirani is Good to Our Ears

Happy Saturday!  I am cooking cooking cooking (new stove is hear and I have 5 pumpkins!), and also running back and forth to the movie theater, so no time for a real deep post.  But at least I can throw up a news post!

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TGIF: Let’s End the Year With Movie Stars! Movie Stars and Puppies!

When I was putting together the post for last Friday, I ran across a photo of Salman with a puppy.  Which lead me down a bit of a movie-stars-and-puppies rabbit hole.  And what a lovely way to enter the New Years weekend, with a bunch of movie star and puppy photos!

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Action Jackson: A Manga Crossed With Tarentino and Mixed to a Southern Beat

This was just a fun, silly movie!  Which was perfect, because I had a friend over and she said “I’ve had a bad day, let’s watch a fun silly movie.”  My first vote was Dil Aashna Hai, but she wanted something a little more current, so we ended up with Action Jackson.  Which I somehow missed in theaters and hadn’t gotten around to seeing since.

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Ajay Versus Karan: Why Always the Drama When Ajay Has a Diwale Release?

I thought Ajay couldn’t top suing Yash Chopra’s widow days after his death, but this is pretty bad!  Not that he’s actually necessarily in the wrong, just like he wasn’t in the wrong last time, but it’s just turning into a whole thing again which isn’t going to help anybody’s film.

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News Round-Up: Ajay’s Next Movie, Anil Will Work with Arjun, and Early Box Office for Dishoom/Late Box Office for Sultan

I’m really excited about these super early rumors for Ajay and Anil’s next, even though they contain basically no substantial content, so I am reporting them anyway!

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Omkara: Man! That Was Depressing!

I knew it would be!  I remember getting all depressed when I read the play back in college, and it was even worse watching it being acted out by a bunch of actors I really liked.  No wonder it has taken me years and years and years to get around to finally watching it.  But then moviemavengal posted on it and pointed out that Ajay is SMOKING HOT, and that was enough to finally get me to check it out!

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New Shahrukh Movie Before January, THANK GOD!!! Also, some other stuff

I was alerted to this news story by moviemavengal‘s twitter, feed and it made me so happy!  And then to fluff up this post, I found some other random upcoming film news floating about the internet.

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Boring Industrial Inside Baseball stuff

Notice how I put the really exciting picture at the top so we would remember why this really matters?

So, currently, the highest Shahrukh movie on the all time gross list for India is number 5.  NUMBER 5!!!  The shame of it!  Ahead of him is PK, Bajrangi Bhaijaan, Bahubali, and Dhoom 3.  The whole list is here on wikipedia.

Now, you know what all these films have in common?  They are all from the past 5 years.  And the film at the top is usually from within the past 2 years.  In America, we are used to that, the top grossers are always fairly recent, but in India that wasn’t always the case.  Mother India set a box office record in 1957 that stayed in place for 3 years until Mughal-E-Azam surpassed it in 1960.  Mughal-E-Azam held the record until Sholay beat it in 1975.  Sholay  held the record until Hum Aapke Hain Koun came along in 1994.  Hum Aapke Hain Koun was toppled quickly by DDLJ in 1995.  Then DDLJ lost it’s crown to Kuch Kuch Hota Hai in 1998.  That record held until 2001 when it was beaten by both Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham and Gadar: Ek Prem Katha.  Gadar held the record until 3 Idiots in 2009, at which point everyone breathed a sigh of release because they could start pretending Gadar never happened (very very problematic messages in that film).  And then 3 Idiots held the record for a long time, by a big big margin, until it was finally beaten by Chennai Express in 2013.  All Shahrukh fans cheered and celebrated and laughed in the faces of their Aamir-fan friends, or at least that’s what I did.  Truly, it was a magical time!

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(Shahrukh, take a bow!  You earned it!)

And then about 2 months later, Dhoom 3 came out and Aamir was on top again.  It stayed up there for a year, until PK came out, and then Aamir had the two top spots.  PK is still up there, but Bajrangi Bhaijaan did really well this summer and came close to beating it.  And Bahubali, of course, is a huge deal since it is the only non-Hindi film up there (although it was distributed by a Bombay based production house, Dharma, which is very important in terms of overseas awareness and national reach in India).

So, on the micro-level, this just means we all need to buy as many tickets for Dilwale as humanly possible in order to return Shahrukh to his rightful ranking.  I don’t care if you are actually seeing Star Wars, you buy your ticket for Dilwale!!!

But on a macro-level, in terms of global trends, economics, and the future of the industry, what does all of this mean and where does it come from?

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Will Salman now get married?

(Image above from santabanta.com)

So, Salman’s appeal was approved!  He has been cleared on manslaughter charges in the 2002 reckless driving case.  A triumph for something, certainly, if not exactly justice.

Now, I could talk about the issues with the court system in India, the price of fame and the power of money, whether punishment or reform is the purpose of the criminal justice system, and so on and so on, but I don’t really care about all that.

No, much more important, is: will Salman now, finally, get married? He has claimed for years that he wants to get married, only he couldn’t think about it with this court case hanging over him.  Now that it has been resolved, time to place your bets!

This isn’t to say that I actually believe Salman has been putting off marriage because of jail.  After all, Sanjay got married twice while waiting for his charges to resolve!  But it was certainly a convenient excuse for Salman to pull out for the past 12 years every time things started to get serious.

Lulia Ventur is where Times of India is putting its money.  Eastern European, been seen with him for years, he said something in a interview a few months ago about a family tradition of marrying outside his culture, and supposedly he bought her a house.

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However, on the downside, she may already have a husband.  I am sure a lawyer who can get a manslaughter charge to go away could also disappear an inconvenient husband.  Again, though, it worked for Sanjay (his current wife may have been only about 75% divorced at the time of their wedding).

But I say, why not think outside the box!  For example, Sangeeta Bijlani, Salman’s very first documented girlfriend.  A former Miss India and a movie star, they dated back in the early 90s when both their careers were on the upswing.  They broke up for unclear reasons (possibly he was cheating, possibly she just wanted to be married and he wasn’t ready), and she went on to marry Mohammad Azharuddin, the Muslim Captain of the Indian Cricket team who was banned from playing thanks to a match-fixing scandal.  Apparently, her type is Muslims-at-the-top-of-their-profession-who-become-targets-for-possibly-too-extreme-punishments.  Also, Emraan Hashmi is playing her husband in the upcoming biopic Azhar (lucky him!  Emraan will make him even hotter than he was in real life).  She is being played by Nargis Fakhri (poor her).

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Now, Sangeeta got divorced back in 2010, so she is on the market again.  She has stayed friendly with Salman, even visited him just now to congratulate him on getting off the charges.  Is this the beginning of a campaign?  One of those reminders that all the reasons they broke up in the first place now longer matter?  I like the idea of someone age appropriate, someone with history with him.  It would be sweet, like those high school sweethearts that reunite decades later!

After Sangeeta, of course, came Aish.  Can you imagine the scandal if they got back together?  It would be the biggest thing since ever!  Frankly, I don’t know if the industry could survive, the camps would become so hard drawn it would be impossible to actually put together enough of a crew to get a film made.  But even if it led to the end of Indian film as we know it, the scandal would be so juicy, it would almost be worth it!  It even almost makes sense, the Bachchan’s certainly keep Aish on a tight leash, whereas the Khans let their daughter-in-law’s do whatever they want!

Plus, while Abhishek has a better family, Salman is the better catch just for himself.  And, as Aaradhya’s mother, she’s got a lifetime connection to the Bachchan’s whether or not the marriage lasts.  I could see Aish taking a calculated risk, and she definitely seems like the one-that-got-away for Salman, who would take her back in a heartbeat!  Especially if she managed to play into his savior complex!

Speaking of scandal, what about Kat?  What if she still loves Salman and only moved on to Ranbir because she thought he would never be ready to be married?  Plus, Salman’s family looooooooooves her and the Kapoors, apparently, do not.  Ranbir actually moved out of his family home to live with her, which is a pretty big sign, considering no man in his family has moved out of that house in the past 60 years.  But can you imagine the end of Kuch Kuch playing out in real life, but with Salman playing Shahrukh, Kat playing Kajol, and Ranbir playing Salman?

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But then there is my dream relationship.  What if Salman sincerely didn’t want to get married until the court case was settled?  What if he has been secretly hiding emotions in his heart for a long-time friend and, now that the sword hanging over his head is lifted, he will rush to her side, finally confess his emotions, and the music will swirl and they will be on a mountaintop!  So, stick with me on this:

What if he has been in love with Karisma Kapoor for the past two decades?

Picture it: they meet on the set of Nishchaiy (1992) for the first time as semi-adults.  She is just barely 18, he is dating Sangeeta.  They become friends, more than that, he becomes her protector and defender onset and off (all of this so far is more or less true).  He breaks up with Sangeeta a few years later, but by then Karisma is old enough to date and has started a relationship with Ajay Devgn.  She breaks up with him, he moves on to Kajol, and meanwhile Salman is sewing his wild oats.  Right when he is ready to get serious again, Karisma starts dating and becomes engaged to Abhishek Bachchan.  Salman, around the same time, starts a serious relationship with Aish.  Abhishek dumps Karisma weeks before the wedding.  Meanwhile, Salman and Aish’s relationship implodes.  Karisma has already moved on and started dating Sanjay Kapur, heir to a wealthy Delhi family, known for his polo playing and his drug charges.  Salman starts dating 19 year old Katrina Kaif.  Karisma’s marriage quickly turns into disaster.  After two children, she returns to Bombay, where she is quickly welcomed back by her old friend, Salman Khan, who breaks up with Katrina around the same time.

So, all of the above is actually true and accurate, but imagine this interpretation.  What if Salman has been in love with her for years?  What if, in my lovely fanfic, Sangeeta broke up with him because she could sense he was in love with someone else, but by then Karisma was already with someone.  What if he started dating Aish in a desperate attempt to forget Karisma and Abhishek’s relationship?  What if Aish figured it out and confronted him, thus leading to the massive nervous breakdown that caused the very manslaughter accusation of which he was just exonerated?  What if, never having recovered from having been rejected for Karisma, Aish’s whole marriage to Abhishek is just some obscure form of revenge, by getting the one man Karisma couldn’t get in revenge for her taking the one man she wanted?

What if Salman has been quietly waiting for Karisma to work through the last tangles of her marriage, afraid to speak his mind while she was still technically another man’s and while the threat of jail hung over his head?  What if the music swells and they look in each other’s eyes, and suddenly….

 

Okay, so I know this is mostly me being crazy and reading too many romance novels, but after surviving her parents’ very public separation, supporting her whole family as a teenager, then being dumped by her first boyfriend, jilted by her fiance, and destroyed by her husband, I just want Karisma to be happy!  And what could be better than to marry the one man with the power, fame, and, frankly, terrifying insane temper, to make all of that go away?