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“I wish I could approach the happiest  moment of my life with more positivity,” Aditya Narayan On Parenthood During The Pandemic

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Singer-anchor  Aditya Narayan  remembers  that  exact  moment when he  found  out his wife Shweta  was pregnant. 

“I was shooting for Indian Idol in Daman and  when we came back to Mumbai  my wife Shweta was behaving  strangely, lots  of moodswings  and all. I had never seen  her  like this in the past. I told her to get herself tested for pregnancy.  She  told me to stop pulling her leg. ‘Just because  I am a little moody doesn’t mean I am pregnant.’ But she was,” Adtya  laughed.

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Aditya  says he is  very happy . “I’ve always  loved children. I always wanted my own  child…no make that ,children;and  when  you find the  ideal life partner you want  children  all the more.”

However with the  joy comes the  trepidation. “ There is  anxiety. I mean, even if we weren’t living in scary times there would’ve been some anxiety about being parents  for  the  first time. But now all the more. We’ve to be very careful.”

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 Aditya had planned  for parenthood from  before  marrige. “The  good part is, I had made plans  for parenthood  from before we got married. I knew we would need  more space, a bigger house . Firstly because Shweta came  with her belongings  and needed space. Secondly  because  we were sure we wanted  children “

Aditya feels there is added stress. “Kaam toh karna padega. Bills have to be paid. At the same time the  Covid has become  highly  contagious  though  very very mild. Plus being in front of the camera you are  the only one  without  a mask because  you can’t shoot with a  mask. It’s scary : while I am shooting the air-conditioning is  circulating  the same air. All this is  weighing on my mind ,more so now when soon I’ll be coming home  to a  baby.”

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Luckily  Aditya has  a large house that’s almost ready. “There’s an extra room for me where  I will be quarantined after I return from shooting.To have  your newly born child in  the next room… It will be  very tough to keep myself away. But kya karen? Waqt hi kuch aisa hai.I will have  to get  myself tested regularly.Shweta and I  will be very careful. I wish I could approach  the happiest  moment of my life with  more positivity.”

Aditya  grew up as a single child, hence pampered?  “My parents definitely pampered me as  best as they could. You  know, my father started  getting his fame and  fortune  only after I was born. My parents have  really struggled to bring me  up  well. I didn’t  feel  like  I was living affluently. But my parents deprived me  of nothing. They did their  level-best to give me everything I wanted.  My father was stricter than my mother because he came from a very humble background and  knew what it was like to be in need constantly. My  mother was an air hostess  on Air India  .She got me small gifts  from all over the world. Yes they took good care of me.I am ever-grateful to them.”

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So is  Aditya  going to be a strict parent?  “I don’t have  it in me  to be strict with my child. But I will make  sure it  is disciplined. I will  definitely  inculcate the values that I  grew up with: that  you need  to be focused and consistent  in  order to get anywhere  in life. It doesn’t matter what  he or she would want to be. But  one must be iron-willed and  determined to get somewhere  in life. The good  part is, I’ve always  led  a focussed  life , so my child would emulate  my lifestyle.I always hero-worshipped  my father. So I   presume  my child will do the same with me.Shweta will be  the strict parents. I’ve seen her with my dogs  and with children. She will be a wonderful mother.”

Aditya  started  off as a child actor. But he didn’t miss out on   a normal childhood. “Honestly I wouldn’t want it any other way. Because  all my experiences  during  my  childhood have  helped me  to  be the  person that I am.I’ve done  all the normal things as a child while working. Maybe  I haven’t done as much  of  it as other children. But I had  a   healthy childhood specially from 13-18 when I has taken a break from show business to focus on my secondary education.”

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Aditya  and Shweta  are  now  looking forward  to parenthood. “The baby is  due  anytime now in February. We will be very stringent about  the baby’s safety. Apart from me everyone else  will be home-confined including the staff. It will be a  little  difficult for me  to keep a distance from my wife and  child. Even though Iwill be in the same  house I will be in another room. What to do? If there is anyone jeopardizing  my  child’s safety it will be me. I have to work.Life has  to go on.I will  have monitors  in my  room to  see  my  wife and baby. It will be tough. Let’s see how  it goes.”

He plans to   cut down on  his workload  after  the  baby is born. “I am trying to  finish my pending work before the baby is born.  But glitches keep happening: curfews, cancellations, restrictions. I am grateful I  planned for  a bigger house. We will  be shifting  in  a month. I’ve studio set up at  home also. I will stay at home as much as  I can. Thankfully  I don’t need to step out for  music recordings. But I am cutting down on live shows. Travelling is very scary. Shooting  for a reality show is preferable,given that  one is  confined to  one place.But performing live  for thousands during times of Covid? No thanks!”

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Shabana Azmi Breaks Her Wrist, Flies To  Budapest For Spielberg

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Shabana Azmi

Shabana Azmi’s commitment to  getting it right, no matter what it takes, is  by now beyond legendary. She  is known to go to extreme lengths for her  characters, the   quick-reference what-Shabana-can-do-for-a-role film being Shyam Benegal’s  Mandi where she had put on 30 kgs to look like  a  ‘Madame’ and  convey her message  in  a  brothel.

 Now , Shabana  flies to Budapest on the  night  of 8 February  in spite  of having broken her wrist.

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“What  to  do, I have to.I’ve to shoot another schedule  of my second season of  Halo(the series  produced by  Steven Spielberg) . There is no way I can postpone  it. I am very upset with myself. It  was such an  unnecessary accident. I was in Jindal . I took a jump and landed with a  fractured wrist, ”  says Shabana  angrily.

This is not  the first fracture that Shabana has suffered in recent times. Before  the wrist  that’s broken now, she  had broken the other wrist. And  prior to that she  had broken her shoulder.

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“I’m supposed to be  shooting till the 28th  of February. And  it’s all very tough physically rigorous  scenes. I don’t know  how I’m going to do it. I am  really annoyed  with  myself for  being careless.” Shabana sighed  before signing  off.

Knowing her the way I do,I can only say, nothing is impossible for Shabana Azmi.

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Shobita Dhulipala On Her Close Aquatic Connection To Her Character In The Night Manager

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Shobita Dhulipala

Sobhita Dhulipala has constantly tried to  make an  impression  with her intriguing performances and roles. In The Night Manager she  slips into the mysterious role of Kaveri.

Talking about her character, Sobhita Dhulipala says , “There’s a certain intrigue to Kaveri. On better days, you feel like you get a sense of who she is, but you could never be too sure of what she is.”

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   Being a  water  person  Sobhita  enjoyed her character’s aqueous antecedents, “There is a very visible parallel that’s drawn between Kaveri and water throughout the show.They both can be so gentle, so nourishing, but also very tumultuous and deep. Kaveri seems like that. She has this tenderness as well as a current within her.”

Sobhita comes from an aquatic  family and  feels  a deep affinity  to  water. “I have in the past been compared with water’s energy and I thought it was a tremendous compliment. So, to be able to give form to that feeling, that connection I feel with it..it’s great. My father is a sailor. And I spent many of my younger years at sea, also the home I grow up in was by the shore. I also love the name Kaveri and I always thought when I have my own child, I’d name him/her by a river! So, I think there’s, resonance, all of it really comes together for me.”

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The Romantics Adi Chopra’s Show All The Way

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The Romantics 

Netflix’s The Romantics profiling the legend Yash Chopra in four episodes , happened only because Netflix  gave complete creative control to  Yash Chopra’s son Aditya Chopra,  the scion of the Yash  Raj family.

A  source very close to  the project reveals, “If it wasn’t for Adi’s nod, the project  wouldn’t have happened. He not only greenlighted the project, he also personally supervised every aspect of the project. Smriti Mundhra is  on board as the director of The Romantics.  But it is  Adi who decided what  goes, and what  not.”

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Apparently  the  thirty-five interviewees speaking on  Yash Chopra in The  Romantics  were all  personally approved  by Adi Chopra who  also agreed to do his  first video interview ever for the docu-pic on his distinguished dad.

Adi Chopra’s one  and  only print interview was with  film critic/editor  Khalid Mohamed.

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The Romantics starts streaming on Netflix on Valentine’s Day  February 14.

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I’m very excited to be doing my OTT debut: Shahid Kapoor

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Shahid  Kapoor

As Shahid  Kapoor Gets Ready To Make  His Digital Debut, He Takes Time  Off  For A Q & A With  Subhash K Jha

Farzi is your first foray into the OTT space. How would you describe the experience? Is it any different from doing the films for the big screen?

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 I’m very excited to be doing my OTT debut, as everybody calls it. I think I did it because I love  the directors Raj and DK and their work, and I actually really really liked the idea and the concept behind Farzi, the world of counterfeiting . I felt Sunny was a character that was as challenging as some of my most challenging characters as I’ve done yet. So I immediately wanted to do it.

And was it any different  shooting for an OTT series?

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Of course, it’s different because you’re watching the character over five to six hours as opposed to maybe two to two and a half hours. So it’s a deeper, wider opportunity to bring a character to life, that’s it.

 Farzi gave you the opportunity to work with the great Vijay Sethupathi and also the creators Raj and DK. So what was that experience like?

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With Raj and DK, I’ve loved Family Man very much and we’ve met over time and always wanted to collaborate. So I was really looking forward to it. In fact, I asked them if they have a show because they were calling me for a movie because they didn’t really expect… they didn’t think after Kabir Singh,  I’d like to do something like that , or whatever. But I actually asked them for it and probed  for it, and then they actually told me about this concept which we had discussed as a movie earlier.

So why  was the feature   film converted  into a digital series?

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It was just too elaborate to turn into a movie, to fit into a movie. It was only extremely sensible of them to turn it into a show because it deserves that much screen time.

What  was it like working with Vijay Sethupathi?

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With Vijay sir, it’s been a pleasure. And I want to see how people receive the show. He’s a fantastic actor who has always rediscovered himself and given people completely different experiences when he has come on the big screen. So it’s a privilege to have him on the show. And I had a blast working with him.

Shahid, it’s been twenty years since you started as a leading man. How do you look back on your career so far?

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I feel very fortunate to still be here. And I feel grateful that people find my work relevant. I feel there’s a lot more that I would like to do. And I think I am as charged as I was at the age of 21, giving my first shot, as I am today. And I think that’s the best part of the entire journey, that I still am as excited and as curious to get on that film floor and give my next shot. I think that’s what drives any artist.

Tell me about your forthcoming projects?

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I’ve got Farzi coming out on  10 Feb. And then there’s a movie with Ali Abbas  Zafar, which is an action thriller, a  slick action fun film, which will come out in the middle of this year. And then there’s a high-concept quirky love story that I’m doing with Maddock Films, which is directed by a new director. His name is Amit Joshi. It has me and Kriti Sanon in it, and Dharam ji and Dimple ma’am and various other very talented people.

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