Aishwarya is very special to me: Sanjay Leela Bhansali

The maestro of movie making Sanjay Leela Bhansali is all set to return to direction with a film that will star one of his favourite actresses Aishwarya Rai with Hrithik Roshan….a first in the filmmaker's oeuvre.

Neck-deep in pre-production the last thing Sanjay needs is fake reports about actors and films who are allegedly working with him. A wild story about Sanjay signing a Pakistani actor finally persuades him to break his silence. He sets the record straight, once and for all.

You seem to have quietly gone and signed a young Pakistani actor called Imran Abbas for Heera Mandi.
So quietly that even I don't know about it. I haven't signed anyone called Imran Abbas. I'm not making Heera Mandi right now.It may happen much later. When it does we'll think of the casting.

At the moment you're working on another film?
I'm directing another film with Hrithik Roshan and Aishwarya Rai. I'm very excited about the film, and so are they.

So no newcomers in this film?
No.I need an experienced crew this time. I need their expertise. I've worked with many newcomers like Ismail Durbar, Nusrat Badr, Shreya Ghosal, Monty Sharma, Ranbir and Sonam.

You continue to be fearless in spite of Saawariya?
This is the time when we filmmakers need to be fearless and experiment with themes. Fearlessness is my biggest asset as a filmmaker. I will continue to make films that come from deep within me.

I cannot make assumptions on people's tastes and make films accordingly. My very first film Khamoshi: The Musical didn't do well at all. A lot of people think it's my best work.

So are you as proud of Saawariya as the rest of your films?
Of course. In fact a Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam or a Devdas can be made again. But Saawariya can never be made again. It's my rarest work in terms of treatment. It had beautiful performances and visuals.

I tried to put a stage-play on film. Of course at the end of the day the audience decides what it likes. But in this case the audience was conditioned not to like Saawariya.

So have you met this Imran chap?
Moin Beg who has written Heera Mandi wanted me to meet this actor.So on Moin's persistence I did meet him almost a year ago. I immediately realized he wasn't the actor I was looking for.

The next thing I know, I'm supposed to be arranging this guy's visa to India. What nonsense! Just because I don't speak out people take advantage of my silence. Please don't exploit my name for your own advantage.

Why don't you clarify the misconceptions when they occur?
Kuch to log kehenge, kehne do. I can't bring myself to become the master of sound bytes. But beyond a point silence is construed as a sign of acceptance.I don't even meet new actors, technicians, musicians or lyricists.

I've already decided whom to work with in my next project. So why waste time meeting people you won't be working with? And why go to Pakistan to get actors? We've very talented people in our own country.

There were reports that some actors including your own protégé Ranbir Kapoor didn't want to work with you?
(laughs) Poor me. People are writing out tragic tales about me every day. They are even deciding what film I'm making and also helpfully casting actresses in them.

There's a whole section of people who spend their time spreading false rumours about my films. I wish them luck. Maybe stories about me sell. I've to believe in my work and focus on it. But when the misrepresentations go beyond my tolerance power it's time speak up.

The truth is, Ranbir and Sonam would be there for me whenever I need them. However at the moment I'm making a film with Hrithik and Aishwarya.

What prompted you to sign Hrithik?
Hrithik and I wanted to work together for a very long time. I've always been impressed by his sincerity as an actor. I was waiting for the right opportunity to sign him. Working with Hrithik would be a new and rewarding experience.

You and Aishwarya created magic in Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam and Devdas. Time for a hat trick?
Aishwarya is very special to me. She suits the role in my new film to perfection. When she read the script she was deeply moved. Of course true friend that she is, she told me she would've agreed to work with me even if I didn't send her the script. But it's important for an actor to be convinced of what he or she is doing.

Will this Hrithik-Aishwarya film be your first for an international market in English?
But Black was also in English. It is important for me to make my films for our market. Having said that we must take our cinema to the remotest corner of the world. Today the spoken language is no barrier.The spoken language in our country is as much Hindi as English. I want to capture that feeling of everyday conversations.

2008 was a great year for you?It was the year when an Indian director was invited for the first time to direct an opera in Paris?
Yes, I had a wonderful a time. I loved directing the opera That was an exceptional honour and an unforgettable experience. I managed to write the script that I wanted to and got the cast I wanted. I may be producing a couple of films. It's been a year of hard and fruitful work.And 2009 will mean even harder work.

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Salman and I are not ganging up against Shah Rukh: Aamir Khan

Why was this copyright issue brought up at the last time?
This copyright issue has been with us for quite some time now and the producer of the film Allu Arvind was trying to resolve the issue in the court.

The information I have with me was that the hearing was over by 10th December but the order came on the 23rd December. We appealed on the same day and you won't believe how happy I am today that our film is officially releasing. The producer has deposited Rs. 5 crore in the court and there is no stay on the film.

Whoever has seen the film are saying that there is a lot of violence shown in the film.
The response I've just got before I came in to meet you all is that the film is being appreciated and the kind of advance bookings for Ghajini is the highest ever for a Hindi feature film because it's four times more than the previous films. I am happy that there is a lot of excitement surrounding the film. I am waiting for the response from the audience.

How different or difficult was it to portray a character who talks more with his eyes than his mouth?
To play the character was very difficult but I don't want to say anything about my role. Please let the audiences come out and we will talk then.

Normally a film title is based on the name of a hero or heroine. This one is based on a villain called Ghajini.
The film is called Ghajini because it's the only clue which the hero has. That's the only name he wants to find and kill.

What was your biggest inspiration while you did Ghajini?
Surya, the actor who was in the original Tamil version of the film Ghajini. He has done a fantastic job. After watching the film, I was a bit hesitant whether to do the film or not. I was in two minds. Surya convinced me and said that I was the only one who could do justice to the character. He pushed me to do Ghajini.

As you've now got a lot of hair cutting experience behind you and then the legal hassles to face, do you think aap baal baal bach gaye?
(laughs) I am feeling very relieved and nice to know that there are no more legal hassles.

What have you to say on the paintings gifted to you by Salman Khan which Asin unveiled three days back?
I am truly touched by the gestures of Salman Khan. He is such a great artist and I didn't know that till I saw his work. He has made some amazing paintings on Ghajini and I thank him for that.

How did you relate those paintings with your character in the film?
One of the portraits he has made matches my looks and the personality in the film. The second one is a much conceptualized version of the same.

Pirated cd's and dvd's will be available from day two after the film releases. Aren't you angry?
I am but what can we do about it. No one is ready to take action against this crime.

How true is it that yourself and Salman are forming a team or a camp against SRK?
There is no truth in that at all. I think, Salman, Shah Rukh and me are individuals in our own right. I have a relationship with SRK and Salman. Both are friends and there are no camps or anything like that.

Anushka and Asin, both have made their debut. Who do you think will win an award come 2009?
What awards are you talking about and to whom are you asking this question! (Laughs) Only our audiences can give awards, nobody else.

How do you intend to celebrate Christmas this year?
I am going to be at home with my family for Christmas.

With so much goodwill surrounding you in the industry and your films going to the Oscars and the BAFTA's and people talking good about you and your films, this time around, are you ready to face criticism?
I am always open for criticism.

What if you get to know that Ghajini is not up to the mark?
If people don't like any of my films then I treat it as a learning experience.

What excited you to do Ghajini?
What excited me about this film was the action, the story, the exciting screenplay and above all, the love story in the film. That really won my heart. One of the main reasons I did this film was A.R. Murugadoss.

When I met him it felt like meeting a kid who has this toy in his hand. All my expectations were fulfilled after working with him. He is so clear and understands the film so well that it's really amazing.

The Oscar committee saw Taare Zameen Par and has praised it. What have you got to say about it?
The committee liked the film a lot and the concerned person called me to congratulate me on how good Taare Zameen Par was. That doesn't mean that we are nominated because I am sure he liked other films too. But the fact that he has taken the effort to call was touching and I am very happy about it.

Aamir, I've lost a bit of my memory. Can you please tell me who was the lead actor in Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi?
Why do you guys do this to me yaar. You like such things, don't you? One day because of you, I'll be beaten up badly (laughs).

Who according to you has got the best body in business in Bollywood?
In male, it has to be John Abraham and Hrithik Roshan and in females it has to be Kareena Kapoor because she is very good looking and has a great body.

What is your New Year resolution?
I haven't yet thought about it. But I will be going to the theatres to watch my film Ghajini in disguise. Where and how I am going will be kept a secret (laughs).

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I don't know how I will manage this: Deepika

Sajid Nadiadwala has signed Deepika Padukone opposite Akshay Kumar for his next Houseful to be directed by Sajid Khan.

The film will have Riteish Deshmukh, another hero and two more heroines. It's a romantic comedy. Deepika Padukone and Sajid (Khan) met in Bangkok. She loved the story and said yes."

This will be Deepika's first full fledged comedy film. After working with sister Farha Khan Om Shanti Om she will be now jid Khan's Houseful.

Deepika says, "The film is a comedy flick and this is the first time I will be doing something very different. I don't know how I will manage. I will try my best. Sajid has a great sense of humour and I will go by his vision.

Besides, if my director has so much confidence in me, then I just cannot let him down."

Meanwhile producer Sajid Nadiadwala is completing his next venture Kambakkht Ishq being directed by Shabbir Khan.

Sajid has also signed director Siddharth Anand to direct venture starring Saif Ali Khan, Ranbir Kapoor with Deepika more or less final for it as well. It is reportedly a remake of Oscar winner The Departed.

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Why Ayesha Takia has pushed back her wedding date?

The terrible 26/11 Mumbai attacks have changed a lot things for Ayesha Takia as well, just like many others.

If all things had been different, Ayesha would've been busy with her wedding preparations at the moment.

But following the attacks out of respect for the dead and the survivors, she and fiancé, restaurateur Farhan Azmi decided to wisely push their wedding to next year.

The actress had been refusing films for the last six months. She's also been giving sleepless nights to producers and had asked them to wrap up their pending projects with her fast. She has three big releases coming up in 2009- 'Wanted', 'Tasveer' and 'Paathshala'.

But now the lady has changed her stance and has gone ahead and signed a new film!

The actress has taken up south director Revathi Varma's new film. But this director is not Revathy of 'Mitr' and 'Phir Milenge' fame.

Ayesha has reportedly said, "It's a woman-oriented subject and a very interesting concept. It's a sweet story, and is based on the director's life."

At the moment the actress stresses that she isn't disappointed by the postponement and she's unwilling to disclose her wedding date of 2009.

She's added, "As of nothing has been fixed. Let's take it as it comes. The cancellation is nothing compared to the grief the people in Mumbai have faced in the last month. It's better to push my wedding back by a few months than even think of celebrating at a time like this."

Like many sad Mumbaikars, she's not celebrating on Christmas or New Year's Eve celebrations this year.

She's said, "We will sit at home and just spend time with our loved ones."

It's good to see bubbly Ayesha speak like a wise lady!

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Priyanka Chopra Bikini Maxim PhotoShoot Pictures

Priyanka Chopra has start his Bollywood career with a debut movie opposite hot Akshay Kumar. After a short period of time she turns as the “hot in demand girl” for all industry filmmakers. We have some pictures of her bikini and as well as Maxim photoshoot.

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Amisha Patel Sexy In Bikini

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I have yet to find a boyfriend: Anushka Sharma

boyfriendAnushka Sharma who was kept under wraps by the Yash Raj team is finally out in the open. The actress who has signed a three film contract with Aditya Chopra including Ra Ne Bana Di Jodi has not signed any other film as she is bound by the contract.

The debutant says that she was enjoying being under wraps. “It worked for me and I did not need the hype at that moment. I would not have been able to concentrate on my work” In fact, Anushka says that she could enjoy her shopping sprees without being affected by the glamour.

Anushka who has been a ramp model has never had any acting experience but the actress says she did not have to give retakes, “The longest retake was the scene where we both had to elope and I had to cry. I had cried so much during the rehearsals that when the actual shot was ready I did not have tears in my eyes,” says the debutant.

The actress says that being selected for the role was not much a big deal but the actual test came when Aditya Chopra asked her to her recite dialogues from his super hit film Diwale Dulhaniya Le Jayange. Anushka says that she never dreamt of getting working in bollywood. “I never ever dreamt of movies or acting. Though it is often said that modelling opens doors to bollywood.”

She will never get over their first meeting. “It was on the sets, he was in his terrycot pants and spectacles as Surinder Suri. This was not the cool yuppie, the stylish Shah Rukh I was used to seeing on screen. I didn’t recognize him at first and then couldn’t take my eyes off him. But he sensed my discomfort and immediately put me at ease,” she revealed.

The actress who has had a crush on Shahrukh Khan says she was stunned when she got the offer. “My joy knew no bounds when I knew it was my dream hero” she says. Speaking about Shah Rukh Khan, the debutant says , “Shah Rukh was the most amazing experience of my life. He is so dedicated towards his work and a gem of a person. I have learnt a lot of things from him. I just couldn’t get over our first meeting. I expected him to be cool and stylist but what I saw was the Surinder Sahni on sets and I couldn’t take my eyes off him. But he sensed my discomfort and immediately put me at ease Everyday when we used to start shooting the first sentence he would begin with was ‘be comfortable’.”

The 19 year old is a trained bharatnatyam dancer but had to enrol herself with Shaimak Davar’s to brush her dancing skills. The Bangalore based girl is aware that she hails from the same town as Deepika Padukone and there will be comparisons. “I am part of Bollywood I am open to comparisons and criticisms which are bound to happen. I have worked with Deepika on the ramp but we are not in touch I am looking forward to meeting her now.” What amuses me is that I have been quizzed umpteen number of times about my boyfriend. I have yet to find one” she laughs.

For now the actress is looking forward to working with a great wish list of actors. “My favourite is Rani Mukherjee though” she adds.

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Rohan Sippy: Akshay has brought his genius to CC2C

view CHANDNI CHOWK TO... PRESS MEET picture gallery

While RAB NE BANA DI JODI is already a Superhit and GHAJINI is on the way to become one, Bollywood is looking at a hat trick of big money spinners with Akshay Kumar bringing his CHANDNI CHOWK TO CHINA in three weeks from now. In a way it is quite deserving for Top–3 stars of the country to be giving back to back big hits, especially in the time when recession has impacted Bollywood too in a big way. No wonder, Rohan Sippy, producer of CHANDNI CHOWK TO CHINA, is mighty excited about the prospects of his film and credits Akshay Kumar for the way it has eventually turned out to be.

"Akshay has brought in his own energy, his genius to the film", says Rohan Sippy when quizzed about Akshay's contribution to the making of the film, not just as an actor but also as someone who actively gets himself involved into the creative aspect of making the film.

"To begin with, there were no restrictions of any kind when CC2C was being made", reveals Rohan, "At every stage of the film, we were open to any ideas that could help it grow further. Akshay would in fact come up with suggestions during the shots and also improvise a lot. Some of the ideas were the kind that were not on paper or anyone's mind but when Akshay incorporated them, they took the film to a different high."

How did Nikhil Advani, the film's director, respond to such 'involvement'? Didn't he resent it?

"Akshay would always bounce off ideas and most of the time Nikhil enjoyed them. When he didn't, he shared his apprehensions. In any case, Akshay wasn't forcing anyone to accept his ideas", says Rohan while putting a full stop to all controversies.For Gossips And Mirch Masala Log On To Bollywood Paradize

Harman to become Harrmann?

view VICTORY videos

Harman Baweja may not have had a good start to his Bollywood career, with his over hyped and super expensive launch vehicle, LOVE STORY 2050, directed by his father failing at the ticket window. But Harman is leaving no stones unturned to see that this story is not repeated again. And for that he is taking extra care to see that his next venture, a big budgeted sports thriller, based on cricket, starring the who's who of the cricketing world, VICTORY, provides him the success that he rightfully deserves.

In order to ensure that he has already started promoting his film and for that he appeared on Dial C for Cricket, an interactive show on Neo Sports and answered questions related to his movie and of course cricket.

Coming to our headlines, there is a buzz that Harman is in consultation with some astrologers and numerologists. One Mumbai based numerologist, Suniiel Naik says that he has suggested that Harman should change the spelling of his name. Most probably Harman may go in for Harrmaann and hold a press conference to announce the change of name, if and when that happens.

Well Harman, or should we say Harrmann, here's wishing you all the luck for your forthcoming endeavours.For Gossips And Mirch Masala Log On To Bollywood Paradize

2009 begins with a heap of releases


While CHANDNI CHOWK TO CHINA (arriving on 16th) is the biggest release of January 2009 with RAAZ – THE MYSTERY CONTINUES, which follows a week later, carrying good reports as well, they are not the only ones to kick start the year 2009. Instead, as many as five films would be arriving before these two films, though all on 9th January (which is the second weekend of the year), since traditionally, in the decade gone by, none of the movies released on the first weekend have done well at the box office.

These movies are 42 KMS, BAD LUCK GOVIND, HORN OK PLEASSSS, KAASHH...MERE HOTE and THE PRESIDENT IS COMING. While 42 KMS was earlier titled MARATHON and couldn't see the light of the day, BAD LUCK GOVIND too is a small time film and carried a working title of KISMAT BOLE TOH? earlier on. HORN OK PLEASSSS has been mired in controversy ever since the Nana v/s Tanushree battle made headlines while KAASHH... MERE HOTE just doesn't bring with it positive vibes in spite of a romantic theme. As for THE PRESIDENT IS COMING, one wonders how Rohan Sippy and team would concentrate on its release considering his biggie CHANDNI CHOWK TO CHINA releases a week later.

No wonder, situation is pretty glum for each of these five movies even as they defy the first weekend jinx. That's because all of them belong to the kind that has been ready for quite some time now and are just being released because no other biggie is interested in arriving during this time frame.
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There’s no bad blood between me and Asin

So far Jiah Khan who plays the other leading lady in Ghajini is almost completely missing from the film's promotion and publicity.

Sighs Jiah, "Ghajini is a big film for me. And I'm very happy with my role. As for why I'm not in the promos, what do I say? Wait and watch. The truth will be out when my song Lattoo starts.It's my first big Bollywood item song. And I've been performing to Bollywood songs from the age of 6 in front of the mirror. I've had years of practice. "

Jiah's last (and so far only) film came two years ago. "Nishabd and Ghajini are so different. I needed this kind of a challenge. I'm dressed from head to toe—except for that one song where I transform from a Plain Jane to a femme fatale. I hope they accept me in this role."

No regrets about doing an unconventional film like Nishabd so early in her career?

"None at all. I agree our audiences are still very conservative and Nishabd was a very bold subject. Even in the West Lolita created a huge controversy although they out there are no strangers to sex and nudity.

For me Nishabd was a challenge because I got to work with Mr Bachchan and Mr Varma so early in my career. And to be doing a central role in a film featuring Mr Bachchan. It made me what I am. So I am grateful."

However the challenge for Jiah in Ghajini is to be accepted in a more conventional role. "If I had Mr B as my co-star in the first film, here it's Aamir. Can't get any bigger."

Asin and the rest of Southern crew never made Jiah feel like an outsider. "I love working with the South Indian cast and crew made me feel completely at home."

Reports say she was at loggerheads with the film's other leading lady Asin.

Jiah protests. "I don't have any scenes with Asin. But recently we were in Panchgani together. And we spoke for the first time then. Without a doubt she was amazing in the original Tamil in Ghajini.

This is her first Bollywood film and therefore a big thing. From my side there's no bad blood at all. I think Asin is beautiful. She has been working a long time. This is just my second film. I had a lot to learn from both Asin and Aamir."

Jiah admits she was intimidated by Aamir. "To match up with was quite a tough task. I've grown up by ten years in the last two years."

As For Kangana Ranaut the problems, if any, are over.

Says Jiah, "I saw Fashion and met her and told her she was fabulous. She's a lovely girl. Why would anyone give me trouble? I don't trouble anybody."

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Katrina and Preity's unlikely yaari

In Bollywood there have been many actresses who have been friends for a long time. Just how the likes of Kareena Kapoor-Amrita Arora, Koena Mitra-Tanushree Dutta and Kim Sharma-Preity Jhangiani are.

There have been others who have ended their friendships on a sour note. One famous example was when Aishwarya and Rani fell out after Ash got replaced by the Mukerji babe in 'Chalte Chalte'.

The Priyanka-Kareena and the Kareena-Esha Deol friendship also didn't stand the test of time.

There have been more cat fights than girl bonding between two female celebs in Bollywood. Of late there is a buzz that Katrina Kaif and Preity Zinta have struck up a friendship.

Katrina who's considered wooden and cold by many and doesn't have too many females liking her in B-Town says that she absolutely adores Preity Zinta.

Apparently the duo take time out of their busy schedules to chat, shop and hang out with each other.

Katrina has said, "Preity is such a warm and lovely person."

And she goes on to talk about why people think that two actresses can't be friends and so on.

It's just that no one takes the 'best-friends-forever' status of actresses seriously. Past experience can make anyone not want to do that.

We really doubt that this wooden actress would prove us wrong in the future.

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Love birds Kangana and Adhyayan defy rumours

Eversince Kangana Ranaut and Adhyayan Suman have been a couple there have been negative reports floating around. Earlier it was said that his father Shekhar Suman was not happy with the alliance.

Then that the couple played truant on the sets and irked Emraan Hashmi. Adhyayan clears the air about his girl friend and says "my father has always been supportive of my decision. He is happy as long as I am. It's just that he is a little concerned."

"Whereas Emraan is concerned he has been a good friend we get along very well. I don't know how these reports have come about" he adds further.

Reportedly the duo are playing a madly-in-love couple in the Vishesh Films Raaz –2. Buzz is that the couple was was very spontaneous in a few scenes that they didn't even rehearse before shooting the scene.

An excited Adhyayan says that he is looking forward to the film. "this is the first time we are sharing screen space. I think it's my debut film and life depends on it. This film is important for me. Director Mohit Suri has done a fantastic job"

There was a buzz that the actor did not get well alongwith co-star Emraan Hashmi. "It's funny" says Adhyayan. "We are good friends. There were rumours that Kangana and myself were locked up in a van but it's ridiculous. We are both professionals how can we do that. I am tired of giving explanations" he says.

Adhyayan says that life with Kangana has definitely changed him. "I have calmed down a lot. I was very impulsive earlier but now I do everything on time. Kangana has taught me how to be focussed" he laughs and adds.

The actor is now looking forward to his next with Mahesh Bhatt titled Jashn. "Then I have another film being directed by Mani Ratnam's assistant. In February I will be doing a film with Zee. I have signed three more films but right now I can't talk abouot them" he concludes.

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Why would I feel threatened by Jiah: Asin

If all had gone well Asin would have moved into her own home in Mumbai by now.

"But I've been traveling non-stop. I had no time time to look around and find a place. But now we're finalizing a place in Bandra. Hopefully by new year I'll lock in to the place.And we'll move in. Right now we feel a little unsettled. In Mumbai you desperately need your own home."

Asin's parents have moved from Chennai to Mumbai with her. "Both of them gave up their jobs to be with me. Mom is a doctor. She has taken voluntary retirement.

She manages my home now. And Dad had seven business enterprises. He gave them up to look after my career. Right now I'm quite a handful and worth more than all his business ventures."

And she bursts into peals of laughter.

Asin is a fun-loving extremely atypical South Indian who chatters non-stop, if allowed.

She admits she was asked to keep quiet. "The marketing team felt better that I keep my distance from the press until the film's release. However that didn't stop wildly-speculative writeups about me. I read things about myself that I didn't know."

Like feeling insecure about her co-star Jiah Khan? "Is that really me? I've worked in South Indian films with female co-stars and never felt insecure. I worked with Nayantara in the Tamil Ghajini without my conflict.

Why would I feel threatened by Jiah? Was this a publicity strategy? It was being implied that I was somehow responsible for keeping Jiah out of the publicity. I don't know how one heroine can influence a huge marketing strategy."

Jiah and Asin have no scenes together. "But we have of course met and we're very cordial with one another. We got along fine. I've had no fights with any one in Tamil or Hindi cinema so far. All these stories of friction make me feel strange. I wonder who these people who spread such rumours are."

And no, Asin was under no contract with the Ghajini makers. "I'm under no contract. Didn't I sign London Dreams while Ghajini was being shot?

If I haven't signed another film, it's because I haven't come across anything exciting. I was supposed to do Priyadarshan's film with Akshay Kumar. But that clashed with the Ghajini 's promotional dates."

She will be moving into her new home in Bandra in January after the release of her first Hindi film Ghajini.

"But even without my own home I feel at home in Mumbai. For one almost the entire unit of Ghajini was South Indian. Most of them were people I had worked with. So we were constantly chattering on the sets in Tamil or Telugu. Except of course Aamir Khan who was new to all of us."

London Dreams was much tougher. "The total crew was totally Bollywood. So practically speaking London Dreams is my first Bollywood experience.

Ghajini was easier than my second Hindi film London Dreams where I had to start from scratch with the character. In Ghajini my character remained untampered except the language. Here I was speaking Hindi instead of Tamil. Otherwise no changes."

Her character is not the archetypal glamorous decorative doll. "I play a struggler in the ad world one of the many eager faces you see hanging out at ads shoots."

Asin's Hindi has always been good and she won't require any dubbing from outsiders, thank you.

How different is Aamir from Salman Khan? "While Aamir mulls overs scenes Salman must be prepared from beforehand. Because you don't seem him rehearse on the sets. But everyone in Mumbai is thoroughly professional"

As for Mumbai being wary of stepping into theaters right now Asin exudes confidence. "I'm hoping by Christmas time they'd be enthused into watching an Aamir Khan film. I'm put in my best efforts in Ghajini."

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I was really trapped by dirty people: Kangana

All of 21, Kangna Ranaut has seen and suffered a lot (in her own words) during last few years in showbiz!

In an earlier conversation, she had admitted that she was going through bad times. She had said, "I got everything very soon in my life but personally my life was going through too much of trauma.

I was really trapped by dirty people and they wouldn't let me concentrate on my work. They tried to harm me both physically as well as mentally."

However, everything seems to be passe now ever since she moved on to 'yoga'. The biggest gift she's received from this, she says, is the practice of Silence or "Maun". The practice of staying silent physically brings to the fore the tremendous busy-ness of the mind and help to bring some quiet there as well.

Effervescent and vivacious by nature, Kangna has found a 'thehrav' in her life ever since she adopted 'maun'. "Initially I found it very difficult to stay silent; however through perseverance I did manage to develop this as a regular part of my yoga practice and have benefited ever since."

"When I am working, I have to give it 100%. So that's why I took a break for my personal work to sort out all my issues and only then got back to work. I did not want to struggle between work and personal issues. I am not that kind of a person. I can do only one thing at a time", she had stated earlier.

"Now, through Silence, I feel I've discovered my Soul, the very centre of my being, which is the source of all my energy - creative, spiritual, emotional and mental.

I've always been a very focused person, and I've chosen to portray characters in my film that are challenging and strong. This awareness and practice has given me greater ability to channel my energy effectively to deliver even better on these performances", she says in an obvious relaxed tone.

Through shooting Raaz-The Mystery Continues, Kangna has been even more diligent about this practice. That's because the character is one who gets possessed and has to deal with the horrific consequences.

"The role required a lot from me. It's a very intense role. So it was imperative to keep my practice alive during the outdoor schedules to be able to maintain the focus and equanimity needed to deliver the required performance."

"I know where I want to go. That inner destination's where my eventual goal is", concludes Kangna

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New York Movie Exclusive Wallpaper

New York New Movie of Yash Raj Films Exclusive Wallpaper and first look
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Bipasha was caught in the 26/11 terror attack; speaks for the first time

"I feel vulnerable and helpless. That's why I haven't spoken until now," says Bipasha Basu softly.

Bipasha was returning from Film City on 26/11 when she was caught in the blast. "It happened at Vile Parle as I crossed the area. There was mayhem on the road as my staff and I sat huddled in our car wondering what to do next. Should we go forward? Or go back? I told my driver to drive in the middle of the road as fast as possible."

Three weeks down the line, and as the city nurses its wounds, Bipasha wonders what she can do to help the situation. "I've been extremely affected by 26/11. I haven't spoken to anyone about it until now. I don't know how I can ease the pain of Mumbai. Everyone wants to put forward more than just a point of view. But no one seems to know what to do. I do believe in the mass movement that Mumbai has been seeing over the last three weeks. I think people lighting candles, holding hands, showing their solidarity speaking's all very effective."

Bipasha was skeptical to begin with. "I thought this movement would die down after the first few days. But now I feel it's not losing momentum. And I'm very happy about that. The media is playing a very important part in keeping the movement against terrorism alive. I must admit I thought it would be over after one Sunday. That's why I kept quiet."

But now Bipasha believes in the power of people. "I just hope it continues. If the people's voice continues to be heard whichever government comes into power will be forced to pay heed and provide us with basic security. Sure, our economy is booming and the industries are doing well. But what do we do without security in Mumbai? If the financial capital of India which generates the maximum taxes is hit, how do we sustain global confidence in our country?"

Bipasha can't believe that ten terrorists could do this to Mumbai. "What happened to Mumbai is a shame for the entire country. I went out socially for the first time this week. Life must go on. The important thing is to not forget the lessons that we've learnt from 26/11. Now I feel far less defeated far more optimistic about the future than I did the first few days after Mumbai was attacked. Mumbai won't forget. We have Zero security in the country. Otherwise how could there be continuous blasts all over the city for so many hours? And if the detonated RDX had not been discovered in time, it could have been worse."

Bipasha caught up with a film on the Mumbai blasts. "I saw Neeraj Pandey's A Wednesday after 26/11. I can't believe it's so sensitive and so prophetic. Like Naseeruddin Shah being pushed into destroying terrorism the Common Man is ready take action. A Wednesday should be a textbook on terrorism. All of us should see it and learn its lessons."
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Salman to spend birthday at his farmhouse

It was rumored that Salman would be flying out of the country for his birthday and New Year celebrations but that is not the case. Salman is currently shooting for Veer at Film City but he will take a day off tomorrow.

A source close to Salman tells us, "Salman will have a party at his farmhouse in Panvel with his close family and friends on his birthday."

He further adds, "We all know that Salman is a family man and he loves to party. Biryani and kebabs are definitely on the menu. Salman will play host to all their friends from the industry.”

It has almost become a ritual for the superstar to head to his Panvel farmhouse for his birthday. The actor heads there every year on Christmas Eve and stays there till a day after his birthday.

The guest list for Salman’s party tomorrow night is said to include dad Salim Khan, mom Salma, step mom Helen, sisters Alvira and Arpita, brother Sohail, Arbaaz and their families. His staff members will also be there as Salman values them a lot. David Dhawan, Aamir Khan, Subhash Ghai, Anil Kapoor and Ajay Devgan are also expected.

However, this year girlfriend Katrina Kaif will be missing from the do. She is currently holidaying with her family in London and is expected back only in January.

Salman is really fond of his farmhouse in Panvel. He often cycles there from Mumbai with his bodyguards following him in cars. After the shooting of Yuvvraaj wrapped up earlier this year, Salman and Katrina threw a lavish wind up bash for their cast and crew members over there.
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I replaced Ash, tomorrow someone shall replace me too: Katrina Kaif

Brand ambassador for the Nakshatra brand, Katrina Kaif arrived at the launch of the new TV commercial which is quiet an achievement according to Bollywood standards.

The TV Commercial that was unveiled to the media has Katrina performing a cosmic ballet of sorts and controlling the cosmos.

Speaking about the ad shoot, Kat said, It was a little difficult for me to shoot this ad. I was in the US for three months shooting for the Yash Raj film with John and Neil. After I arrived back in Mumbai, I headed straight for Nakshatra's shoot.

I basically had to do these weird hand moments and was surrounded by a blue screen all around for the special effects to be incorporated. My friend Ahmed Khan (choreographer) was a great help though. But when I saw the final result I felt it is simply awesome.

Aishwarya Rai was earlier the brand ambassador for Nakshatra. You replaced her?

Well I guess it's the people who own any brand know better as in who suits for a particular product and who does not.

I have been seeing the Nakshatra ads featuring Aish since the time they came on air. I have loved them all. I now feel lucky to be a part of them. But I guess it's a part of the industry that one replaces the other. Tomorrow someone else shall replace me too.

Mehul Chowksi, Chairman and MD Geetanjali gems pitched in between, "We felt she is the perfect representation of the young, trendy and fashionable woman that Nakshatra targets."

We asked Mr. Chowksi how replacing Aish with Katrina how had it affected the brand?

"Our sales have improved considerably since we introduced Katrina as the new brand ambassador." he revealed.

When asked Kat what was her criteria for selecting brands? She said, "So many offers come my way every time but I am very choosy. That's why you see I feature in so less ad films. I lick to pick and choose.

I take my own decisions about selecting my brands and don't consult anyone. I go by my gut feeling. If I zero down on a particular brand, I also do my own little research and if I feel satisfied then I go ahead with it."

Having been voted the sexiest woman twice, what was her take on it?

"Any woman may feel nice to get compliments but you know what? When I am feeling very low and having a very bad day going on, it feels really nice when I realize that time, that hey I am the sexiest woman around! It makes me cheer up(smiles)" replied the beauty.

Akshay too was recently voted as Asia's sexiest man, what did Katrina have to say about it? To which she said, "Well I hear everyone saying we both make a wonderful onscreen pair. Basically its fun working alongside him on and off the sets and our comfortablity perhaps reflects onscreen making it look so natural."

Her recent release Yuvvraaj failed at the box office. Does she think her fans didn't like her romantic pairing with Salman?

To which she replied with a smirk, "Well may be."

When asked what her new year plans were and whether would she be performing?

She replied, "I have no plans as of now. But I definately won't be performing on the New Year's Eve after what has happened in Mumbai recently. I would also like to take this opportunity to tell all the women of India that they should not panic in situations like this."

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In Pics: Saif heads Home

After staying in Lilavati Hospital for two days thanks to a severe gastro infection, Saif finally heads home with girlfriend Kareena.

Saif and Kareena walk out of the hospital

Saif is happy but also stunned by the massive media presence

He goes to talk to the media...

....with the doctor and security personnel in tow.

He tells all his fans that he is alright

Answers all the queries…and looks very happy and pleased

Meanwhile, an angry looking Kareena (and not Saif) looks like the patient as she waits for him to head home.

The two head home in Saif's Lexus.
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I'm fine and going on holiday with Kareena

Saif Ali Khan gave all his family and friends a scare when he was hospitalized on New Years' eve.

But on 26 December he was well on the way to recovery.

Speaking from his hospital bed at Leelavati hospital Saif said, "I'm almost recovered now. I'm going home today (27 Jan). It was nothing, really.

I returned from Philadelphia from the shooting of Rensil d'Silva's film on 23rd night. And since I was missing all the Mumbai ka khana, I gorged indiscriminately on local junk food, sev puri bhelpuri, paani puri….puri ki puri fauj went into my stomach."

The Chote Nawab jokes from his hospital bed. So wasn't he frightened when his stomach started acting up on him?

"Not at all. It was gastroenteritis. Yes, I've been in hospital twice in the recent past. Once it was just an appendicitis. And the other time it was far more serious. After going through what I did the last time I'm hardly going to get scared by a little stomach infection."

Chuckles Saif, "Actually it's much less scary than it looks. I've got a drip coming out of my hand, so that makes it look kind of serious. But it's nothing. I'm fine. Just a little sleepy. In fact Kareena and I are going on our holiday to the mountains as planned."

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Jumbo - Movie Review

Rating: ***

You need to look at an animation film differently. Let the kid in you come to the forefront when you watch one. At the same time, it's pertinent that every film, live or animation, should possess that grip to keep the viewer hooked to the proceedings for the next 2 hours.

Percept's Jumbo may not be as entertaining as HANUMAN -- one film that opened the doors for animation films in India -- but it is shades better than most amateur attempts that followed the success of HANUMAN.

Jumbo, based on 'Chao Praya Prah Hongsawadee', a story by Ariya Jintapanichkarn, tells the adventures of Jaiveer aka Jumbo, a baby elephant. He dreams of following Yudhveer, his absent father, and becoming the royal elephant. Jumbo decides to go in search of his father.

During his search, Jumbo meets up with a kindly elephant trainer, a hyperactive messenger bird and a female elephant, who becomes his sweetheart later. Subsequently, Jumbo becomes a war elephant and defends his kingdom against the evil opponents.

Jumbo bears an uncanny resemblance to THE LION KING. You don't take to the film instantly, but it picks up towards the latter part when Jumbo is chosen by the king to fight the opponents.

The animation isn't at par with the best (SHREK, THE LION KING, FINDING NEMO, the recent hit MADAGASCAR: ESCAPE 2 AFRICA), but the quality is better than some of the stuff we've witnessed in India.

Jumbo has the trappings of a typical Hindi film. There's revenge, romance, emotions, action... plus, the voiceovers by several top names, besides a song (well choreographed by Ahmed Khan) and scenes featuring Akshay Kumar.

Also, the voiceovers are in sync with the lip moments. Akshay, Dimple Kapadia, Rajpal Yadav and Gulshan Grover infuse life in those characters.

On the whole, Jumbo is a sweet, sincere and simple film that works. Who knows, it may spring a surprise this Christmas. Recommended for kids from 6 to 60.

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