When you say a home production, this is what you mean. Anandi Ghose, director Gautam Ghose’s daughter, has a role in his new film Yatra. But the young actress points out that her father never planned on putting her in his film. “In the course of the shooting, it was Nana Patekar who asked me why I couldn’t play his daughter in the film for he thought I suited the character. And that’s how it happened,” she says. But Anandi hastens to add that she is going to focus on film making. And she is not sure if she is going to follow her father’s genre. “My father and I belong to different generations, so I don’t know if I will be making the same kind of movies. But I will let time decide,” she says. In the meantime, of course, there is always acting.
Well, it’s not quite gently down the stream. A young man called Bhavik Gandhi — a 29-year-old Mumbai-bred, Sweden-based venture capitalist — is rowing all by himself across the Atlantic Ocean. He set out from La Restinga off the coast of Spain on February 28 and is said to have just reached the midpoint. Bhavik’s publicists say he is expected to reach his destination, Antigua, 3,000 nautical miles away, sometime in late June. For that, he rows 10-12 hours a day in four-hour shifts in a 23-foot boat. When he completes his journey, he will be the first Asian to row solo across the Atlantic. Why does he want to cross the Atlantic' Because, as the mountaineer said in another context, it’s there.
Poetry by the peg
It all began about a year ago, between lunch, siesta and scotch in Kasauli. That’s when Khushwant Singh, while fighting off a hectic writing schedule, happened to first browse through a compilation of Urdu poetry by Gyaneshwar Prasad. And — voila! — it lit the grand old man’s fuse. So much so that he went about putting in place a brand new compilation of Urdu lyrics — titled Celebrating the Best of Urdu Poetry — along with Prasad’s daughter, Kamna Prasad. “It came about as a result of our shared interest in Urdu poetry,” says Prasad, who helped Singh select and edit the verses for the book. Now on the shelves, the compilation contains some of the best verses written in Urdu by poets such as Mirza Ghalib, Faiz Ahmed Faiz and Bahadur Shah Zafar, all in English. But with Singh’s magic, there’s little chance of the essence of good poetry being lost in translation. Cheers to that!
Kolkata is Kewl — or so says Sania Mirza. In the city for a promotional event, Sania went gaga about its warmth — and, no, she wasn’t talking about the rising temperature. What she likes about the city and its people is their abiding passion for their heroes. “There is a certain loyalty the people of this city have that I admire. Look at Sourav — it did not make a difference to this city when he was left out of the team,” she said. It didn’t' The city was in mourning for so long that the boys in blue looked sunny in comparison. But Sania’s point is taken. After all, as far as the city is concerned, Netaji Subhash Bose is still out there somewhere.
Kaju’s journey from the US to India was a long one. And Shonali Bose was lauded for her offbeat film Amu which showcased Kaju’s coming of age. Now the buzz has it that the young director is preparing for a big budget film to be shot in India. Shonali has been looking around for scriptwriters for the film that’s still in its conceptual stage. And since it is going to be a big film, she is also hoping to rope in some of the blockbuster stars. She shouldn’t have a problem there, for Shonali’s persuasive powers are well known. After all, she had even convinced her aunt, Marxist politburo member Brinda Karat, to act in Amu, which went on to win a national award. Uncles Prannoy Roy and Prakash Karat should be suitably nervous.