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Rajamouli Gets The Never-Before Honour Of Best Director From The Prestigious New York Critics Circle

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Rajamouli Gets The Never-Before Honour Of Best Director From The Prestigious New York  Critics Circle. Filmmaker  & Critics React.

Anurag Kashyap(filmmaker):  “I’ve been saying it from the beginning how much the West loves RRR. It’s not just validation for him , it’s great news for cinema from India as it brings attention to everyone. My congratulations to him.”

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Raja Sen(critic) :  “This is an astonishing achievement for the RRR director. Clearly his craft and vision is being embraced by the American critics. If RRR had been India’s official entry to the Oscars, it would probably have won Best International Feature Film. Now, with wins like this, the director has awards season momentum on his side. I would not at all be surprised if Mr Rajamouli gets nominated for some major Oscars. RRR might even win a few.”

Hansal Mehta(filmmaker):  “This is  definitely something to be proud of and maybe one more step towards an Oscar nomination.”

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Pritish Nandy(producer, writer, critic, analyst):  “I am not surprised. As movies go global, the power and magic of what different cultures are producing is bound to attract the Western world which has been till now isolated within the boundaries of its own creative universe. Suddenly they have discovered new experiences via the coming of OTT which offers everyone instant access to global content. One day they are taken in by Narcos from Colombia. Another day Parasite from Korea sweeps them off their feet. Then Roma from Mexico bags the highest nominations at the Academy Awards since Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon from China. Money Heist from Spain. Squid Game from South Korea. Fauda from Israel. All are huge successes. It’s now India’s time. Rajamouli may have opened the gates of the world to a new wave of South Indian cinema emerging as the new craze in the world market. It has already taken India by storm and overshadowed traditional Bollywood. Now there are new worlds to conquer and clearly Rajamouli is leading the charge. It’s a fantastic moment. Time to celebrate the rediscovery of South Indian cinema as a major art form, and hopefully as a new driver of the content market across the world.”

Prabhudheva(actor, choreographer, filmmaker): “ Incredible! Such  an  honour for us all. Superb superb, he is  the  correct person to get it, his hard work and  passion  have paid   off.It’s  just  terrific.”

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Mayank Shekhar(critic):  “I have been saying  this for a while: This recent discovery of SS Rajamouli by film buffs in the West (or Japan)—but in the US, to be precise—is not just unprecedented, it mustn’t also be taken lightly. This organically started with serious American movie-buffs hit by a rock, with RRR, on Netflix—taking that love on to projecting the film in mainstream cinemas, followed by screenings of Eega. Back in India, the movie—in the mould of a Manmohan Desai bromance; using scale and technologically to enhance the masala genre—was a huge hit, because the audiences had been pining for such loud, visceral entertainment. In Hollywood, where the superhero and blast-fest spectacles have been reduced to soulless, assembly-line productions, filmed for the sake of continuing franchises—RRR showed the power of raw emotions, and an unabashed, ‘unironical’ display of songs and dances, movie-action, and movie-madness. It also signifies film fans accepting, or at least publicly celebrating diversity, in the American mainstream. The NY Film Critics’ award for best director, equally unprecedented, reflects just that. My prediction is that the way things are going, the next step for Rajamouli would be to helm a Marvel/DC production, or its equivalent. Upon release, if I’d said that RRR would be strongly running for Oscar nominations—no one, including me, would have believed it. But that’s exactly where we are, in a globally connected world of viral entertainment. Could this be the ‘Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon’ moment for Indian cinema? Who knows!”

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Karan Johar Moves Alia Song From Switzerland To Kashmir

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Rocky Aur Rani  Ki Prem Kahaani

The  romantic duet in  Karan Johar’s Rocky Aur Rani  Ki Prem Kahaani  which was to be  shot in Switzerland and which was  delayed  due to the film’s leading lady Alia Bhatt’s motherhood, is now being relocated to  Kashmir.

Purely out of  the  love for  new mom Alia.

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Says a source in the know, “Karan loves Alia  like his own daughter. He would do anything for her. He postponed  the  release of Rocky Aur Rani Ki Prem Kahani as the love duet could not be shot before Alia’s maternity leave. Karan had decided to shoot the song in Switzerland  after Alia’s maternity love. But now he has relocated the song to Kashmir  as Alia doesn’t want to leave her  baby girl behind for  long stretches.”

And as Karan Johar argued, snow is  snow. How does it matter whether it is  Switzerland or Kashmir?

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This  song would be Karan Johar’s tribute to  his  idol Yash Chopra. Alia would be dressed in chiffon sarees while  Ranveer, for  a change, would be seen in  formals.

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Bobby Deol’s Switchover To Villainous Roles

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Bobby Deol

After  Prakash Jha’s webseries Ashram where Bobby  played a sleazy  godman, and Love Hostel  where  he was a ruthless assassin,   he is playing the villain to Ranbir Kapoor in  Sandeep Vanga’s  Animal.

Bobby says it is not conscious career decision to play negative characters  but a conscious  decision to play interesting characters. “ I don’t look at  characters as positive or negative.When I watch  films there is always  one character  that stays  with you. I want to play that  character.”

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Prakash Jha’s Ashram proved a gamechanger for Bobby.  He admits finding  challenging roles is tough.  “I am trying. I  am doing Sandeep Vanga’s Animal with Ranbir  Kapoor , Parineeti Chopra. Then I am doing the family film Apne  2 which I am  very excited  about.”

 In an  earlier  interview with  this writer Bobby spoke  about his   long absence  from screen  before Prakash Jha’s Ashram.  “My fans   would ask why I wasn’t being seen on the screen.And I couldn’t tell them it was  because  I wasn’t getting good roles. But my fans  stood by me. They gave me  the strength  to  keep looking for the right roles. Thankfully I found the roles I liked. My new  films have given  me  some new fans. I am  thankful  I am still here. Yeah , I am in a good space right now.”

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Pathaan Collects 55 crore nett in India On Day 1

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Pathaan

YRF’s Pathaan has apparently wiped out all previous records as it collected 55 crore nett in India and recorded the biggest ever Day 1 for a Hindi film. The total collections of Pathaan on Day One is 57 crore nett (Hindi – 55 crore and dubbed versions 2 crore).

It is the widest Hindi release of  all  time in India and also the highest grossing 1st Day for a   Hindi film.It is  also the  highest grosser  on the  first first for a  non-holiday release. Pathhan is  also the highest  opener for Shah Rukh Khan.

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Akshaye Widhani, CEO of Yash Raj Films, says, “It is a historic day for Indian cinema and we are humbled to see the love and appreciation that is flowing for Pathaan globally. For Pathaan to shatter records in this fashion on a non holiday, just proves that the theatrical business is here to stay, provided we make films that entice people to come to the cinemas to witness a never seen before experience that entertains them thoroughly.“

He adds, “We, at YRF, are thrilled with the start that the film has got across India and we are hopeful that Pathaan brings joy to cine-goers globally in the days to come! Pathaan is the fourth film of our YRF Spy Universe and we are thrilled that we have been able to elevate the cinematic experience of audiences with each film from this franchise. We humbly share this moment with all the stake-holders of the film who have given their blood, sweat and tears to give people a movie-going experience like never before.”

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“Professionally, What  A Year It Has Been For Me,” Raveena Tandon On Her Padma Shri

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Raveena Tandon

Raveena Tandon  feels  she is in a dream. “I woke  up  today to the  news that  I have been awarded the Padma Shri by  my Government. I felt all my years  of hard work  has  finally come to  fruition.I can’t wait to get  back to Mumbai.”

Raveena  is  in Bhopal attending a  wedding.  “I woke  up  on Thursday morning to the good news. My husband(film distributor Anil Thadani) who is in Mumbai had no clue about it. I had to inform him that his wife is now Padma Sri Raveena,” she laughs heartily.

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She then grows  melancholic. “The past one year has been a whirlwind  for me. Professionally, it couldn’t get any better. My webseries Aranyak on Netflix  and  then the bigscreen  blockbuster KGF 2 where I played one of the protagonists , became huge  successes.Sadly,it  was  also the year that  I lost my father(well-known producer-director Ravi Tandon). It was  the severest blow of my life.I am still processing the loss. The Padma Shri would have made  my Dad so proud.”

Remind her  she is  still young and already a Padma winner and Raveena expresses  her  happiness. “I guess I am lucky to have received the honour at the  midpoint of my life and career. I am also very happy that M M  Keeravani Sir has  also received the Padma Shri.His Naatu naatu has  the  world dancing to his tune. But even  before Naatu naatu he has done such exemplary work.”

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Getting nostalgic Raveena  says, “I started working when I was 17.I have done every kind of  cinema, balancing out a Chote Miyan  Bade Miya  with  a Shool, a Rakshak with a  Ghulam-e-Mustafa,  a Bulundi and a Khauff with a Daman and an Aks. It’s  always been  my endeavour to be be seen in escapism and  real cinema. Some people think dancing around trees  and  doing the masala  stuff is easy.  It is  not!  In fact  being real on screen is far easier.”

Raveena feels the  good days  are  back in the entertainment  industry. “I saw Pathaan and  I whistled  and clapped the loudest. It is  an out-and-out mass entertainer and bound to revive the  sagging fortunes  of  our industry.  While the Padma Shri is a personal triumph,  the success of Pathaan  is  a happy occasion for the entire industry.So yeah, I am on top of  the world,”

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Raveena’s fans  would like to know her khubsoorati  ka raaz.

She  laughs, “It’s nothing more than sleeping and eating right. I  try to eat  correctly. I have only  organic  food. More  importantly,I am happy and secure in life. If you are content within it is  bound show on your face.”

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