Thursday, November 12, 2009

Beyond The Beyond Just another WordPress weblog The Real Preity Zinta

*Bollywood actress, minor sports mogul and sometime human-rights campaigner Preity Zinta has discovered Twitter.

*This woman is so searingly intelligent that she is currently in Harvard taking a business-school course in mergers, acquisitions and negotiations. Why an actress would want to suffer in this odd way is a little beyond me — presumably it has something to do with the fortunes of her cricket team. Because she owns one.

*The other thing I don’t get about Preity Zinta is that she somehow thinks that Bollywood-beat gossip writers should be factual reporters. Anyone who’s ever glanced at a Bollywood publication knows that this idea is like pushing a rope uphill. Nothing about Bollywood is factual. The ticket receipts, the attendance records, the financing system, the crores of rupees paid to #1 actresses, they’re all completely opaque and/or invented out of whole cloth.

*Furthermore, the business about which glitzy actress is having an affair with whatever guy — they were seen getting out of a limo together, they were spotted sharing a malted ghee milkshake at Pop’s Chocolate Shop — no sane human being would take that tittle-tattle seriously for a nanosecond. It’s all hokum. Anybody who knows anything about Bollywood knows it’s all about feudal family arrangements. It’s about the starkly necessary business of multigenerational filmi clans having star children. The swoony romance stuff is all there to sell tickets to rubes somewhere in deepest darkest Andhra Pradesh.

*Preity Zinta, who is not a star-child from a filmi clan but a former psychology-major who can actually act, dance, and probably even sing (Bollywood song tracks are dubbed, so there’s no telling), has been in the film business for ten long years. She’s a huge professional success. And yet she doesn’t seem to comprehend her situation at all — in her world, there’s an imaginary Bollywood press corps where they write respectful, factual articles about her charity work. How would that even be possible?

*There’s something endearing about it. Her endless feuds with the jackals of the press corps have a kind of Gandhian unworldliness. It’s like she plans to wear them into submission through the process of dripping her integrity on them. It’s sort of amazing.

*Then Preity Zinta discovered Twitter. Of course there was a fake Preity Zinta on Twitter who had 140,000 followers, convincing the gullible that he was Preity through the simple stunt of quoting things she said in tabloid interviews. So Preity fell on this malefactor like an anvil, and she had him beaten off the premises of Twitter with a broomstick, but now she’s got her own Twitter outlet. She is visibly trying to figure it out. Judging by her typos, she’s got a Blackberry.

*Mostly she blows kisses at her fans, but she also factually describes the daily life of Preity Zinta. That part is super weird. It’s phantasmal. Preity’s 140-character diary is much more odd and entertaining than the imaginary sequin-spangled life that people imagine entertainers lead. No, it’s all about the life of an ethically rigid, burningly ambitious, relentlessly upbeat, obviously lonely Type A Indian overachiever who lives out of her suitcase and sleeps maybe six hours a night. Preity’s Twitter stream is a confessional orgy. I don’t think Preity’s best friends in Bollywood have ever been this close to Preity.

*Various pandits have been blogging from Bollywood for some time now — Amitabh Bachchan’s blog is very dignified and interesting, it’s mostly about ethics and philosophy — but Twitter has opened Bollywood up like a zipper. There’s Karan Johar, Shah Rukh Khan, Aamir Khan, Priyanka Chopra, Mallika Sherawat (in Los Angeles, no less), but nobody in the booming Bollywood Twitter scene beats Preity.

*I’m quite the fan of media-convergence, but I’ve never seen a phenomenon like this. Following Preity Zinta’s Twitter stream is like having Preity crash on your couch. You want to pat her on the head and feed her a buttered chapatti. It’s beyond any fan-star relationship. It’s some new form of global sociality.

*Take it away, Miss Zinta:


Ok no more silly tweets :-) have a big Merger and Acquisition assignment tomorrow so i have to prepare now …. need to focus on positives.

@vahishta He wrote the completely FABRICATED and FALSE story about me and somebody called Vikram Chatwal and till now i have to deny it. :-(

@puredesiness he does not need to see me to write rubbish ! Thats my point…. thats what yellow journalism is all about !

Sorry guys i am getting carried away !The power of the pen can make you lose perspective and write any thing you feel like ! ((((<—– yup))))

I am scared to talk to a guy, forget sitting next to one. If Parag from Mumbai Mirror sees me he will write i am having an affair with him !

Journalists who are using my tweets to write articles pls pay me 3000 rupees. One poor child can be educated for a year ! No more free bees ! ((($64.42? What’s the address, Miss Zinta?)))

Guys i am not leaving films and nor are films leaving me ! Shootings will start in Feb and i will be all over the place i promise….

@rahul1701 No days off for me. Did a virtual climb (Mt. Everest Simulation) with a team of 5 people today and came 1st…. yippie ! Amazing ! (((Boy, I’ll say. What the hell is she doing inside a virtual simulation of Mount Everest?)))

For all the people who love me, I love you too ! For all those who have nothing nice to say about me…. well nobody’s perfect !ha ha ha !

@rameshnswamy I follow my heart ! People will always find fault and be negative, one has to look within for inspiration :-)

People blend better than Governments! My class is full of wonderful people frm all over the world and i am learning so much frm all of them. (((She’s taking a business class in the Yale Business School as she writes this. I wonder if any of her classmates are tweeting the goings-on.)))

In am having such a good time here. No one judges me here or asks me stupid questions and there are no pretensions :-) Finally I breathe ! (((Can you imagine finding existential freedom in a Yale business class? That’s normally one of the most stifling environments imaginable.)))

Someone from class asked if i could show them some bollywood moves… i said “small crowds give me stage fright!” ha ha ha !

@yashduggal Because it is the no.1 business school in the world ;-) !

Thankyou to all my fans for ur love and encouragement! Sorry if i cannot reply this week…Pls understand i am going crazy doing homework !

My day starts at 5am and finishes at 11:30pm ! Its a lot of hard work but i sleep with a smile. My class has top CEO’s, Bankers, Lawyers etc..

Being is school is like being a bird in the sky ! I feel so proud to be an Indian ! Most of the professors and students are Indian here ! :-)

Just finished with class and a group discussion, I feel like i am reborn.There is always scope to learn and invite new experiences in life !

Doing a course in Negotiations and The Deal Process !

good night everyone ! I need to work hard otherwise i will be seen as a dumb actress …. and that cannot happen so wish me luck ! muaah !

Stepped into the Harvard campus with the biggest smile ! Saw my course and homework and got a heart attack ! Now i am the official book worm!

Nobody grows old by merely living a number of years, people grow old by deserting their ideals… Samuel Ullman.

@shubhas Have you seen the way photographers attack you when they see you ! Poor Amisha was caught in the line of fire ! Its so sad ! (((That would be actress Amisha Patel, presumably.)))

@gijuthomas82 Tell me who else would have the guts to take it easy with films and start something new with cricket ? I like to take chances! (((Paul Newman and his obsession with race-cars comes to mind. Actually, a lot of rich actors take up weird hobbies — Roy Rogers used to sell fast food.)))

@peace_kudos Yellow journalism is when the journalist writes by hearing chinese whispers rumour as opposed to facts. News should be true !

@19abby They colonised us for years …….. This is our way of saying we can come there whenever we want too !!!! ha ha ha !!!! (((You go deshi girl.)))

All the best India ! Men in blue better rock tonight !!! There is nothing like WINNING !!!! Nov 8th from web

@pratikjammy87 of course i am real !!!!!!!!

@saurabhtrue I Dislike Yellow Journalism! In India any one can write anything and as actors we can do nothing !

My Motto in life………….. Yesterday is the past, Tomorrow is the future, Today is a gift…. Thats why we call it the “PRESENT ! ”

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Kamal to chair international meet

Kamal Haasan sets the path, once again. The ‘Universal Hero’ will chair an international ‘Media and Entertainment Business Conclave’, orgainised by the entertainment division of FICCI in Chennai.

The two-day conclave, beginning on November 18, seeks to present a comprehensive report on southern entertainment industry and expose delegates to the global developments, trends and opportunities in the entertainment industry.

“International film industry is keen on joint ventures with us and there will be a sizable presence of global players as well. The aim of the conclave is to identify and seek redressal of issues facing the entertainment and performing arts industry,” Kamal Haasan said.

“A wide range of issues will be discussed with leading actors, technicians and other media personalities. The meet will provide a forum to take up regulatory issues with the State and Central governments,” he said.

The event to be inaugurated by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi will see over 500 participants, including Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni and other Central and State Ministers.

“It is a conclave to bring different Indian States and their entertainment industries together. South Indian film industry has a dominance over others in terms of the number of films produced. But, it is not adequately represented yet. This conclave will shift the focus of the world to south Indian films,” Kamal said.

He added: “It is the first step towards networking global film industries and this will be held subsequently in other southern States.” Media advisor to FICCI P Murari and others were present.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Prabhu Deva recommends Nayan for all his directorials?

Actor-choreographer-director Prabhu Deva and actress Nayanthara were rumored to be dating. But it looks like they have gone far ahead unable to be stopped by anyone. It is heard that the duo have planned to get married soon after Prabhu Deva’s next film.

Recently, the choreographer has started recommending Nayanthara for all his directorials. Some sources say that Prabhu Deva wanted to pair up Nayanthara with Salman Khan in the Wanted sequel. Regrettably, the macho refused pairing up with Nayanthara as he prefers Asin for the film.

Similarly, Prabhu directing ‘Jayam’ Ravi for a film produced by AGS Entertainment was announced recently. But then, as he recommended Nayanthara for the film, Ravi requested Prabhu that he’s assertive towards any actresses he prefers except Nayan. Prabhu Deva had apparently stated that he will back off from the project unless Nayan isn’t given the role.

Well, now ‘Jayam’ Ravi is getting more offers after the Peranmai success.

Kamal Haasan turns 55, Fans wish him Happy Birthday!

The legendary Kamal Haasan turns 55 today. Millions of his fans worldwide have wished him HAPPY BIRTHDAY and paid a tribute his outstanding contribution to Indian Cinema during the last 50 years. At the age of 55, Kamal Haasan completed 50 years in Indian Cinema. He had made his debut as a 5-year-old Child Actor in 1959 movie, "Kalathur Kannamma".

Kamal Haasan shot into fame as a child artist. He won the "National Film Award for Best Child Artist: in his debut film "Kalathur Kannamma". He acted with veteran Tamil Actor Gemini Ganesan in that movie. He also acted in several other Tamil films as a child actor with Sivaji Ganesanand M. G. Ramachandran.

Kamal Haasan's journey continued after that and he started acting in 1972 in some movies as a supporting actor. The period 1970-1980 was the most successful period of Kamal Haasan's life, as he gave smashing hits in Tamil, Malayalamand Hindi.

Kamal Haasan later established himself as an Actor, Script Writer, Producer, Director, Lyricist, Playback Singer and Choreographer. He also owns the production company, Rajkamal International.

Kamal Haasan won several awards and honours, including National Film Award and Filmfare Award. He has been a role model for millions of fans worldwide. There is not such act, which Kamal Haasan cannot do. He is the master of all. His contribution to theIndian Cinema will be remembered forever. Let's wish him a very very Happy Birthday and pray for his long life!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Rambas BMW becomes the talk of the town

Ramba, the actress with thunder thighs is now a proud owner of a BMW latest model which is said to be a worth of Rs 1.53 crores.

The actress has gained this gift from one of her endorsement company owners and is said to be on cloud 9 these days.

With the international recognition gained by her from her latest release “Quickgun Murugan”, Ramba has gained limelight in the international arena. Magicwoods which is an international recognized home ware Canadian company, has signed her for a high quote and as a token of respect has presented her with a BMW car.

But south Indian cinema industry is buzzing with the news that Ramba has gained the gift from her secret boyfriend who is said to be a millionaire in Canada.

Is this true Ramba?

Actor Dhanush in Lord Muruga based remake movie

Dhanush is all set to turn into Lord Muruga ! We are talking about his next film to be directed by Subramaniyam Shiva who gave him that super hit Thiruda Thirudi, in which he will play a cameo.

The untitled film produced by R Mohan (the man who first introduced mosquito mats under the brand name Good Knight in India), is a remake of the off beat Malayalam super hit Nandanam written and directed by Ranjith. It was the debut film of Prithviraj and Navya Nair, a beautiful love story and showed the power of a devotee of Lord Krishna of Guruvayur.

In the Tamil version Prithviraj will do what he did in the original and Nadodigal girl Ananya will play a devotee of Lord Muruga. It is the only change that writer Viji who is doing the script is making to suit the Tamil Nadu nativity, as Lord Muruga is a very popular deity in the state.The shoot of this film will start in Palani from the third week of November.

Priyamani excited about Puneet's Raam

Actress Priyamani (Priya mani), who entered Sandalwood through the Puneet Rajkumar starrer movie Raam, has bagged another offer in Kannada even before the release of her first film. The actress will be seen alongside Golden star Ganesh in his untitled Kannada film, which is a remake of Vijay-Jothika's Tamil film Kushi.

Buzz up!
Priya's second Kannada film will be produced by Chandrashekar and directed by Mussanje Maathu fame Mahesh. Earlier, the actress had many opportunities to star opposite Ganesh. But she could not accept them due to some reason. Now, Jothika’s character in the original has prompted her to accept the role.

The South Indian actress, who is all excited to work with Ganesh, is eagerly waiting for the release of her first Kannada film Raam. "Once Raam releases, people will know who I am. I won’t even be able to ask auto drivers to drop me home because then they’ll know where I live,” Times of India quotes her saying.

Priyamani knows five languages - Kannada, Telugu, Tamil, Malayalam and Hindi. And she is known as 'pancha baashe taare' for she has acted in all these languages. However, she is disappointed over not dubbing herself for Raam, despite knowing Kannada.

Presently, the actress is shooting for the Telugu film Pravarakhyudu. She has already completed the shooting of her debut Bollywood film Raavan, which is directed by Mani Ratnam. She is now hoping that this movie would be her stepping stone
for Bollywood. She says, "I’ll know where I stand in Bollywood after Raavan’s release. If it works out, fine. Otherwise, I’m as happy working in the south."

Amitabh honoured with Lifetime Achievement Award

Mumbai, (ANI): Cine icon Amitabh Bachchan was felicitated with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the 11th Mumbai Film Festival on Thursday for completing 40 years in the film industry. The festival, which concluded on Thursday, hosted over 200 films from 56 countries.

Buzz up!
White Lightnin' directed by Dominic Murphy was adjudged the best film
at the festival. The annual event's budget was boosted with 40 million rupees from Reliance Big Entertainment, a division of the Reliance ADA Group.

Greek filmmaker Theo Angelopoulos was also honoured with a Lifetime Achievement award. Fellow actor Dev Anand's production house
Navketan films, was also felicitated for completing 60 years in the film industry.

Speaking to media persons on receiving the award, an excited Bachchan shared the award with his colleagues of the film industry.

"No person can rise in his talent without others support, especially in this industry. Unless you have the support of others, you are nowhere. So, I would like to congratulate everybody of the film industry, who supported me from director to music director
, assistant, spot boy, all my leading ladies and all my leading men that I had the good fortune to work with, because of whom I was able to spend so many years in the industry," said Bachchan.

He also thanked the people of India for their unconditional support and love.

"I do want to thank primarily the people of my country for giving me their love, their support, their affection and their prayers on many an occasion, trial and tribulation that I have gone through and I truly feel very, very humble in their presence. May they continue to like what we do and hopefully the few years that are left in my career, may they continue to enjoy what we do," Bachchan added.

Actress Preity Zinta described Bachchan as a 'wonderful actor'.

"There is nothing you can say about Mr Bachchan because he has been acting before I was born and he is a wonderful actor. You always get to learn with him," said Zinta.

Born on October 11, 1942, Amitabh Bachchan first gained popularity in the early 1970s as the 'angry young man' of Bollywood, and has since become one of the most prominent figures in the history of Indian cinema.

He has won numerous major awards including three National Film Awards and twelve Filmfare Awards. He holds the record for most number of Best Actor nominations at the Filmfare Awards.

He is married to actor Jaya Bahaduri and they have two children Shweta Nanda and Abhishek Bachchan.

Suriya's ‘no’ to Sinhala director

CHENNAI / COLOMBO: Kollywood actor Suriya on Thursday denied that he has been roped in to act, along with south Indian actress Simran, in a film directed by a Sinhalese, Suresh Kumarasinghe, and said that he had no idea that he was acting in any Sinhala movie.

“I am doing films only in Tamil and Hindi,” he told Express and that he had not been approached by any Sinhala filmmaker.

He said these days he was shooting only for Tamil film ‘Singam’ by director Hari.

In his statement, issued after Sri Lankan Tamil Protection Movement coordinator Pazha Nedumaran made an appeal to the actor to “reconsider” as the people of Tamil Nadu were “shocked” , Suriya said he, too, was “shocked”.

He said the news emanating from Colombo was wrong and gave a list of projects that he has been signed up for including a Hindi film by Ram Gopal Varma plus a film to be directed by A R Murugadoss.

But talking to Express in Colombo, Kumarasinghe said all plans were afoot for Suriya to act in the film and that Indian film director Balu Prakash was to come to Sri Lanka on November 5/6, but that he has postponed the visit to November 12 because there “might be some political problems”.

Kumarasinghe said if Suriya backed out, they would be on the lookout for another actor. Actress Simran, who was also named by the Sinhala director, quoted in the report, however, was not “reachable”.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Is Gopika pregnant?

When noted South Indian actress Gopika (who married Dr. Ajilesh in July 2008), was seen during July 2009 with convex shape (indicating "baby bump" or pregnancy) rumour mills started "confirming" that she is pregnant. When asked for confirmation at that time, Gopika laughingly revealed that it was a get up for her forthcoming Malayalam flick Swantham Lekhakan (Swa Le),in which she plays a pregnant woman.

Coincidentally, other reports indicate that the actress and her husband are really planning to become parents. In a recent interview during Kerala Piravi, Gopika had stated that the couple plan to start a family soon. Gopika also reportedly told her dad Anto Francis the happy news that he will be a grandfather soon. Confirmation is awaited.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Trisha taking her bollywood debut seriously

South Indian actress Trisha is all set to begin shooting for her Bollywood debut Khatta Meetha. She recently returned from New York to Chennai to meet her family before the shoot starts. She was shooting with Simbu for Gautham Menon’s Vinnai Thaandi Varuvaaya. The actress is now back to Mumbai for Priyadarshan’s film.

Though Trisha has not dubbed for her Tamil and Telugu films, she floored Akshay Kumar when she was able to converse with him in fluent Hindi. Looks like she is taking her debut very seriously and is preparing to dub for her Hindi films.

Himesh's 'Radio' a hit before release!

Himesh Reshammiya's 'Karzzzz' had released on 17th October 2008. Exactly a year later Himesh Reshammiya can be seen promoting his next film as an actor, composer and singer- 'Radio'. There is a difference in excitement this time around though. In case of 'Karzzzz', he was riding high on the success of his debut flick 'Aap Kaa Surroor- The Moviee' (2007) which had turned out to be an unexpected success. It had seemed that Reshammiya had truly arrived as Bollywood's complete entertainer. Naturally, everyone associated with 'Karzzzz' was 200 percent sure that they had a winner in hands.

However, this was not the case to be as the film turned out to be a major box office disappointment. Released on a huge print count at thousands of shows a day, the film saw poor percentage occupancy. Word of mouth spread fast that the film had failed to attract audiences and even though in absolute terms, the film did bring in its crores, it was the theory of relativity that played spoilsport. The film was labelled flop even before the opening weekend came to a close. Result? The film didn't even reach its audiences which relied on word of mouth as well as trade perception.

Circa 2009 and Himesh Reshammiya and Co. have smartened up. This is the reason why the excitement is on a much different scale this time around as it's a month to go before the release of 'Radio'. It's not that the crores which are doing the talking this time around; it's the entire tagging of a 'hit' status much before the release of the film which is giving everyone associated with 'Radio' a feeling of comfort.

In 'Karzzzz', it was an anticipation of a huge box office run that kept the excitement going for its makers. In case of 'Radio', it's the recovery in investment on the table that has kept the makers happy and made them look forward to whatever additional revenue that comes in from the theatrical run.

The deal is as simple as this. The film has been made on a limited budget of 6 crores and this paltry amount had already been recovered from the satellite, home video and music rights. The man at the hot seat, Himesh Reshammiya, has played a smart game of extending his status as a Bollywood leading man. He has even drastically reduced his price as an actor, composer and singer and instead chosen a model where he would be getting a massive part of his remuneration from the profits that 'Radio' could end up making.

If one thought that Himesh would be shying away from admitting to his new game plan then that is not the case. Quite forthcoming about his newfound strategy, he lets the businessman in him come on the forefront as he shares details around the making of 'Radio' and how it could well pave the way for many more films to turn into successful ventures at the box office.

"It's true that the makers have already recovered the entire investment even before the first copy of 'Radio' is yet to be out. We haven't mounted 'Radio' on a huge scale. The demand of the subject is such that it could be made in a controlled budget and yet be given the kind of look and treatment that it deserved. The film has been wrapped up in 6 crores flat. Moreover, that money has already come from all non-theatrical rights like satellite, music and home video. Now whatever the makers get from theatrical revenue, whether from India or overseas would be plain bonus. This makes 'Radio' as a successful venture already. It is now to be seen whether it reaches a 'super hit' or beyond status once it releases this December", says Himesh Reshammiya who certainly has an air of confidence around him as he shares details around the economics of this film directed by Isshaan Trivedi.

Starring Shenaz Treasurywala and Sonal Sehgal as the leading ladies, 'Radio' is all set for a 3rd December release.

Asin opts out of Ashutosh Gowarikar's film

South Indian actress Asin Thottumkal's journey in Bollywood has been a roller-coaster ride so far. She had a dream start in Bollywood with Ghajini but her second release London Dreams is likely to go down the drains if we are to go by the latest box-office collections. She seems to be extra careful now, as she has turned down Ashutosh Gowarikar’s film.

Buzz up!
It is said that Asin has opted out of Khelenge Hum Jee Jaan Se citing date problems. She is said to be not happy with her role in this film by popular director Ashutosh Gowarikar. She was supposed to act with Abhishek Bachchan in the film.

It is said that Asin wanted to work with Ashutosh but was disappointed on hearing the script. She doesn't want to take anymore chances following the lukewarm response to her latest release London Dreams. It maybe recalled that Ashutosh's last release What's Your Raashee? also failed terribly at the box-office.

Well, Asin seems to have turned very choosy!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Wishing Shahrukh Khan a Very Happy Birthday

Bollywood’s Badshah Shahrukh Khan turns 44 today, he was born on November 2, 1965. He is an Indian actor, film shahrukhproducer and television host.

He is married to Gauri Chibber.They have two children, son Aryan and daughter Suhana.

Shahrukh started his Carrier as a television actor. His debut film was Deewana, it was a hit. He has given many hits movies like Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge (1995), Kuch Kuch Hota Hai (1998), Chak De India (2007), Om Shanti Om (2007) , Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi (2008),Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham (2001), Kal Ho Naa Ho (2003), Veer-Zaara (2004) and Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna (2006).

He has won thirteen Filmfare Awards, and was also honoured with the Padma Shri. He was also honoured with an honorary doctorate in arts and culture from Britain’s University of Bedfordshire.

M.K.Thyagaraja Bhagavathar Birth Centenary Observed in Durban, South Africa

Phoenix-based Cultural trail-blazers Deepam Productions hosted a tribute to M.K.Thyagaraja Bhagavathar on Sunday, 01 November 2009 to mark the Birth Centenary of the talented actor and singer who became Tamil cinema’s first superstar.

An enthusiastic crowd attended the impressive programme at the University Hindu Centre on the Westville Campus of the University of Kwazulu-Natal. Veteran musician and recording artist Madhavan Nair led the impressive ensemble, supported by vocalists Kumaran Raman, Asogan Moodley, Abheran Moodley and Selven Moorthy backed by musicians Kumaran Moodley, George Naicker, Ravi Manickam, George Govinden, Kalayvan Moodley, Soma Pillay and Bharatha Natyam dancers from Natya Kalanjali.

The FREE show compered by the multi-talented Tamil scholar Samalan Sarugaser featured talks by playwright Ronnie Govender and newspaper columnist Devan Nair.

Old favourites like Krishna Mukundha Murare, Dheena Karunagarane, Maname Nee and Manmadha Leelaiyil delighted the audience in a programme that lasted more than 2 hours.


Most fans of Tamil films know only the recent development and innovations in film music. When Kalidas, the first Tamil talkie, was released in 1931 it heralded a new era in the Indian entertainment industry, an era in which dialogue was complemented by songs.

Although many lauded and celebrated the introduction of films with sound and the mellifluous music that became their hallmark, there was a strong and vociferous group that were highly critical of what they termed the corruption of Carnatic music.

To many of the Vidhwans, what the film music composers were doing to music was akin to blasphemy.

What the blossoming Tamil cinema desperately needed at that point was something or someone to bridge the ever-widening gap between Carnatic music and film music. The person who bridged this gap and elevated film music was M.K.Thyagaraja Bhagavathar.

His songs were firm favourites of many subsequent singers, T.M.Sounderarajan heading this list. TMS used to sing MKTs songs and loved them to such an extent that, given the first opportunity, TMS persuaded music composer G.Ramanathan to use the song Radhe Unakku Kobam Aagaathadi for the film Kulamagall Raadhai.

Years later when the great MGR used to go on outdoor shooting trips, he would only listen to songs by MKT. In his early days of cinema, MGR co-starred with MKT in the 1941 film Ashokkumar.

MKT transformed Tamil cinema and redefined film music and became the fledgling industry’s first superstar. He was also the first and only Tamil superstar to achieve cinematic fame by his rendition of Carnatic music.

He was born on 3 January 1909 as Thyagarajan in the district of Mayavaram to his parents, Krishnamurthy and Manikaathammal. As a young boy, Mayavaram Krishnamurthy Thyagarajan showed little interest in studies but a keen interest in spiritual hymns like the Thevaram and Thiruvasagam.

Thyagarajan also was a fan of the stage artist S.G.Kittappa and used to sing his songs – something that his father was not at all happy with. This was because stage artists at that time were seen as immoral and unworthy of respect.

Not finding encouragement, the young Thyagarajan left home without the knowledge of his parents. When his father traced him to Kuddapah, he found that Thyagarajan’s singing attracted scores of people wherever he went.

After much persuasion Krishnamurthy allowed his son to join Mr Nadesa Iyer’s drama troupe as an actor. Thyagarajan gained fame as an actor through his first stage play, Harichandhra and word of the child prodigy spread far and wide. Thyagarajan was only 10 at the time.

Soon thereafter Carnatic Guru Madurai Ponnu Iyengar took him in to teach him the finer nuances of Carnatic music. Six years later Iyengar wanted Thayagarajan to sing solo in a concert and had to do a great deal of persuasion on his former protégé, mirdhangam player Dhakshinamurthy Pillai to play the mirdhangam. Dhakshinamurthy initially refused and eventually reluctantly agreed only because it was at the request of his respected Guru. Dhakshinamurthy was so impressed by the youngster’s voice that, in his speech after the concert, declared that the young Thyagarajan had been blessed by Lord Murugan himself. Dhakshinamurthy then hailed Thyagarajan as Thyagaraja Bhagavathar.

Thyagaraja Bhagavathar made his stage debut as a lead star in the play Pavallakodi which was produced in 1926. Not confined to any particular drama group

Thyagaraja Bhagavathar’s fame rose rapidly as he was invited to all the major towns within the Madras Presidency (Present-day Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh)

In 1934, MKT made his film debut in Pavallakodi - the film version of his hit play. More than the story or his acting, his rendition of the songs which took Carnatic music to the masses made the film a huge hit and MKT a cult-like figure. Pavallakodi had a total of 50 songs, 22 of which were sung by MKT. People flocked to the cinemas to see his charismatic face and the beautiful rendition of the songs.

MKT often used the same Ragam to convey opposing moods, the most famous of these is the use of the Sindhu Bhairavi Ragam in its perky mood in the song Vadhaname Chandhra Bimbamo to the soul-stirring Bhoomiyil Maanida in a sad mood. Even the harshest critics of film music had to concede that MKT was nothing less than a musical genius.

MKT also amazed Vidhwans with his use of the Charukesi Ragam, a Ragam so complex and difficult and rare that even Saint Thyagaraja had only composed one song in this Raagam. MKT immortalised this Ragam with the song Manmatha Leelai, paving the way for later songs to be composed in this Ragam.

In only 9 films, MKT became an unrivalled star, a career that was rudely halted when he and his friend N.S.Krishnan were framed for murder and jailed for 30 months.

The film fans were saddened and stunned and it took a lot of lobbying to have the two of them released. During his time in prison MKT was saddened by the fact that producers and directors did not bother about him. Those who did contact him only did so to demand the advance amounts they had paid him.

Ironically, during his period of incarceration, his Haridas which released in 1944 ran for three consecutive years through 3 Deepavalis.

On his release MKT found that the film industry had changed rapidly. The industry was under the influence of the atheistic DMK movement and the focus of films had already changed from a religious and moral focus to a focus on social issues.

Shunning the producers who came back to him, Thyagarajan turned producer but was unable to recreate the magic he had enjoyed before his imprisonment.

Having always shown a great reverence for religion and spirituality, MKT’s last days had a strong focus on religion. He undertook many pilgrimages and performed many concerts free of charge for charitable and religious organisations. From 1955 onwards, he visited every major Temple of shrine in South India.

When MKT began to lose his eyesight, he stayed at the Samayapuram Marieamman Temple and sang the Mother’s praise. The then President of the Nadigar Sangam, S.S.Rajendran, offered to take him to Chennai and pay for treatment there but MKT politely refused, saying that the the Mother Marieamman would take care of him.

During the last days of his life, he was suffering from severe hypertension and acute diabetes. Just 10 days before his death, he performed at a concert and delivered the same stunning range he had always done.

With his condition rapidly deteriorating, MKT was admitted to a Chennai hospital on 22 October 1959 but on the afternoon of 1 November 1959, he passed away.

His passing away was a huge loss to his family, his fans and the music world. Sadly, he was never given the recognition he deserved when he was alive and, equally sadly, there were few who then appreciated his contribution to Carnatic Music.

Today, 50 years after his death and more than 100 years after his birth, MKT is still with us through his immortal music that continues to delight music lovers the world over.

Hrithik Roshan’S Guzarish To Dubbed In Tamil||

For those, who expected this hunk to flaunt his muscles in ‘Guzarish’, it’s going to be a big disappointment. Unlike his previous films, Hrithik Roshan will spotting a new look with thick-beard for Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s ‘Guzarish’. Well, the actor has been really putting himself into vivid tasks of performing his role of a physically challenged man. Indeed, he’s spotted moving around with wheelchair for the sole purpose of getting acquainted with this character he enacts.Sanjay Leela Bhansali is pretty sure about turning this film into a big success. According to the sources, he happens to be the first person on the sets and leaves. Even Aishwarya Rai is reported to have got a meaty role to play as her vitality was showcased in films like ‘Raincoat’, ‘Guru’ and ‘Jodha Akbar’.Now the latest buzz we hear is that Sanjay Leela Bhansali is planning to release the film simultaneously in almost all the regional languages: including Telugu and Tamil. It’s worth mentioning that his previous films: ‘Devdas’, ‘Black’ had received great welcome herein Tamil Nadu. As well Hrithik’s ‘Krish’, ‘Dhoom-2’ and other films were released in Tamil and did good business.

He is a competent actor: Amitabh Bachchan

Mumbai: For decades, Amitabh Bachchan and Shah Rukh Khan have been the biggest entertainers of the Indian film industry as both enjoy envious popularity not only in India, but across the globe. On SRK's 44th birthday, the iconic Amitabh Bachchan, who has seen SRK's rise to stardom and his attainment of the larger than life King Khan stature, agreed to share his experiences of working with the energetic actor.
"I have told him on many an occasion that I liked him immensely in Swades and in portions of Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna. In the former, it was his effortless ease that was impressive; in the latter, the competence with which he was able to bring positivity to an otherwise somewhat negative character," Big B told DNA in an exclusive interview about SRK, his co-star in Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham, Mohabbatein, and Bhoothnath.

"Everyone who has worked with me is special for me -- and for the project that I work in. Shah Rukh and I have worked on several projects together and he, like all others, has been special in them. It would be wrong of me to put one up against another. There is a relaxed intensity about him on set. He is well prepared, as all should be, and a considerate colleague."

And what does the legend think is SRK's biggest strength? "His biggest strength is that he is a competent actor. With that as your basic quality, it is not difficult to overcome any challenge that may come to test him," he adds.

Amitabh himself has entertained generations for over 40 years now, a career span that has seen close to 180 movies. Ask him if he has any advice for SRK, who is set to complete 20 years in Bollywood, and Bachchan says, "I am least qualified to give any advice. What he is doing now is sufficient to sustain him and his career, since he already has accomplished the feat, if it can be called that, of entertaining generations."

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Wish Aishwarya a very happy birthday as she turns 36 today!

The most celebrated Indian beauty, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, is celebrating her 36th birthday today. She was born on 1 November 1973. Ash, whose fan base is not just restricted to India, was crowned Miss World fifteen years back, but the actress still continues to be one of the most distinguished Bollywood brand ever.

Although throughout her filmy journey, Ash has bagged numerous awards for her contribution to Indian and international cinema, most recently she was honoured by the People’s Magazine. The mag has brought out a special biography on Ash, and has covered most of her life insiders along with giving an overview on her 15 year-long existence in Hindi cinema.

Talking about her most recent appearance on International platform, only a few days back, Aishwarya graced the Oprah Winfrey Show, together with hubby Abhishek Bachchan. The two thereby became the first Indian couple to be on such a popular international show ever. Ash and Abhi also signed an ad commercial together worth Rs 25 cr sometime back.

Nevertheless, Ash’s much-anticipated upcoming ventures include ‘Raavan’ with hubby Abhishek, ‘Guzaarish’ with Hrithik Roshan, and ‘Action Replay’ with Akshay Kumar.

Here’s wishing Ash a very happy birthday and all the success for future!