Cinema tours launched
Bollywood fans have something to look forward to on their next visit to Mumbai. The Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation has officially started tours of Bollywood studios and sets, and a drive around star homes. There are various packages, suited to various budgets, languages and levels of interest. More information is available at mumbaifilmcitytours.com
Colour me pink
It’s confusing when two films with similar titles release within two weeks of each other. While Gulabi Gang is an award-winning documentary by Nishtha Jain (releasing February 21), Gulaab Gang is a feature film starring Madhuri Dixit and Juhi Chawla, directed by debutant Soumik Sen. Sampat Pal and her gang of pink-sari clad activists, known as the Gulabi Gang, are the subject of both films. While Pal, who became a well-known face after her stint on Bigg Boss, was present at a screening of Jain’s documentary about the Bundelkhand-based organisation that fights for women’s rights, she categorically dismissed any association with Sen’s Gulaab Gang. Pal said neither the makers nor the actors had sought permission to feature her group nor had they visited her village or met her. The two films follow the 2010 documentary, Pink Saris, by Kim Longinotto. Interestingly, Pal’s Bigg Boss co-housemate, Sapna Bhavnani, was also present at the screening.
Name in lights
Rajkumar Yadav — who we all know as the Kai Po Che and Shahid actor and who recently confused everyone by changing his name to Rajkummar Rao — is deeply immersed in shooting Hansal Mehta’s City Lights. The film is an official adaptation of British film Metro Manila, an intense immigrant story. The film sees the debut of young actor Patralekha, who originally hails from Shillong but moved to Mumbai some years before to pursue her passion for films. Curiously, Patralekha has also gone through a name change — from Patralekha to Anwita Paul and then back to her original name.
Flights of fancy
After the delightful Stanley Ka Dabba, the Gupte family — writer-director-father Amole, editor and mother Deepa and actor-son Partho — reunite for Hawaa Hawaai. A family entertainer about sports, which also stars Saqib Saleem (Mere Dad Ki Maruti), will release on May 9. Director Gupte, who also wrote Taare Zameen Par, said, “Hawaa Hawaai celebrates the triumph of the human spirit against all odds and salutes those dreamers who carry the will to turn their dreams into reality.” Saleem is believed to be playing a skating coach in the film, which shows a group of children participating in a roller-skating tournament.
A bromance break
Arjun Kapoor and Ranveer Singh, who were quite a riot on Karan Johar’s couch, play Bala and Bikram in today’s release, Gunday. The fact that there is a romantic angle with Priyanka Chopra seems superfluous to the plot — the bromance wins through. While their chemistry is evident, it seems they did squabble about one thing: who would wear which pair of retro sunglasses provided by the costume designer. The pair will reunite later this year in Homi Adajania’s Finding Fanny (with Deepika Padukone). It’s hard to know with these two (whether they are joking or are serious), but Kapoor and Singh have said they plan to start a production house — with Singh as the COO and Kapoor as the CEO.