At the IIFA Awards there were some puzzles that even the pacy dancing and super-pacy editing of the footage couldn’t solve. For instance, why was Shah Rukh complaining onstage about Saif Ali not keeping in touch, and why were the emcees on the red carpet, Purab Kohli and Neha Dubey (competent and understated), focusing so much on the clothes that the stars wore' Agreed, this is the model derived from the Cannes film festival. But our stars looked distinctly ill-at-ease answering questions about their clothes, accessories, etc. The funniest encounter was with director Ken Ghosh and his tie.
We had to wade until dark to get to the show’s highest-light, namely, the two Bachchans with Aishwarya Rai. As Abhishek rocked, all his leading ladies in the audience out-did themselves in winning brownie points. Rani Mukherjee had an edge. She whistled, clapped and finally got to her feet to give her favourite costar a standing ovation. Rekha looked like she would rush to the stage and shake a leg if only her sari and jewellery weren’t too heavy for physical activity.
CAUGHT RAM GOPAL Varma in earnest conversation with Ashutosh Gowariker and Ronnie Screwvala on BBC’s Business Bite'surprised because Varma isn’t really a television person. Though he comes alive in print, on the visual medium one can see his bashful repudiation of the media glare. But Gowariker simply came alive, talking 19-to-the-dozen about the various reasons why our cinema doesn’t get international recognition. He spoke about how he would like to see Satya screened in various parts of the world. Ramu thought our cinema wasn’t good enough, give or take a Lagaan.
We guess everyone is aware of the growing importance of the visual medium, and none more so than the talented youngsters who bare their hearts on the various talent-scouting contests. But could we please have less melodrama on these cute chronicles of callow aspirations' On the newly-started Fame Gurukul we saw a rejected candidate weeping hysterically to the tune of Lata Mangeshkar’s Rulake gaya sapna mera. And when a girl was about to leave for ‘Gurukul’ her sister and mother wept like the contestant was leaving for her sasural.