There is something about the City of Joy that makes artists and filmmakers want to go back to it again and again. Anuvab Pal is the latest to join the ranks of the avid Calcuttaphile. The scriptwriter who made his bones with the critically acclaimed comedy Loins of Punjab Presents, and followed it up with The President is Coming, is working on the script of a film based in Calcutta. Its a comedy about the French influence in Calcutta, he reveals. Called French Class, the movie will be directed by France-based filmmaker Anne Chakravarti, who has previously assisted Oscar-winning scriptwriter and director Michel Gondry. Pal, who lives in Mumbai, is now making frequent trips to Calcutta to bone up on the atmosphere of the place. But he wont give us any details about the story. No matter. If its about Calcutta, and has a French connection to boot, you know wild horses couldnt drag us away from this film.
It seems Paresh Rawal is not just a master of comic timing — hes also got a heart of gold. While shooting for his upcoming film Na Ghar Ke Na Ghaat Ke, Rawal got a call from a non governmental organisation requesting him to meet some underprivileged children who were great fans of Babu Bhaiyya of Hera Pheri fame. Rawal immediately agreed to meet his little fans. The problem was that he had a packed shooting schedule as well. But he wasnt about to let the children down. He simply worked double shifts so that he could not only complete the shoot but also spend some time with the kids. Clearly, when it comes to the task of spreading sweetness and light, Rawal will do no hera pheri.
While on the subject of generosity, guess who has been vying for the title of Miss Congeniality in Bollywood? Well, its Zarine Khan, the comely star of the flop film Veer. The Katrina Kaif lookalike has been making it plain to everybody that she has the milk of human kindness sloshing about her. We are told that after a hard days work, Khan often invites her spot boys, make-up man and driver over to her house for dinner. So nice and non-elitist, we gasp in admiration. Of course, the unkind brutes of Bollywood are being, what else, unkind. Its because she doesnt have anyone else to dine with, they sniff. But, hey, well give Khan that Miss Congeniality title anyway!
His name is Khan
Deepika Padukone has a Khan on her wish list. No, its not what you think. Ranbir Kapoors former girlfriend claims that having acted with Saif Ali Khan (Love Aaj Kal) and Shah Rukh Khan (Om Shanti Om), she would now like to star with yet another member of Bollywoods formidable Khan brigade — Salman. Obviously, she does not care that his latest movie Veer has sunk like a stone. But heres a question: if she wants to have the definitive Khan experience, how could the leggy Ms Padukone forget the other leading member of the group — Aamir Khan? Well, all we know is that for now its bad boy Salman who is high on her radar. Brave girl.
Rajnikanth may be all powerful in reel life, taking on baddies and demolishing them left right and centre. But when it comes to the supernatural, he prefers to play the devout rather than the daredevil. The super stars recent film Chandramukhi happens to be the remake of a Kannada film Aapta Mitra, which starred actors Vishnuvardhan and Soundarya. Now, Soundarya died in an air crash just before Rajnikanths remake was released and Vishnuvardhan too passed away recently. The two deaths, coupled with the fact that the film has a supernatural element in it, has got Rajnikanth all shook up. He recently performed a yagna at his Chennai home to ward off death and has also been spotted at temples around Mysore. After all, Rajni knows that he can flatten goons and placate gods with equal fervour.