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    Classic inspiration
    Off late, Aditi Rao Hydari has been in the news for good (her performance in Wazir) and questionable reasons (her proximity to a recently separated actor-director). But close on the heels of that professional success, Hydari will be seen playing the younger begum Hazrat, in this week’s release, Fitoor. What we do know well enough is that the older begum Hazrat—who is pivotal to the story—is played by Tabu. We certainly know who the powerhouse actor is in this Abhishek Kapoor-directed adaptation of the classic Great Expectations, which also stars Katrina Kaif and Aditya Roy Kapoor.

    Finding his stride
    If there is one actor who the industry is watching closely, it’s Vicky Kaushal. After an astonishingly sure-footed debut in Masaan last year, his second release—and the first role he actually landed—Zubaan, releases next month. Kaushal plays a musician in Mozez Singh’s directorial debut. The actor has two more in the pipeline. He will be seen in Anurag Kashyap’s dark drama, Raman Raghav 2.0, with Nawazuddin Siddiqui. Interestingly, Kaushal was an assistant director on Kashyap’s Gangs of Wasseypur. Switching genres, he will also be seen in the romantic Manmarziyan directed by Sameer Sharma with co-stars Bhumi Pednekar and Ayushmann Khurrana.

    Spirited efforts 

    Tamannah Bhatia is steadily making strides in Bollywood, in spite of the unbearable Himmatwala with Ajay Devgn marking her return to Hindi cinema after a long stint in South films. A couple of more duds (Humshakals) and ‘hits’ (Entertainment) followed, but it was Baahubali that was her biggest hit in the North. While she is set to appear in the second part of SS Rajamouli’s epic drama as well as other South films, she has recently signed on for her next Hindi project. Starring alongside Prabhu Deva and Sonu Sood, Bhatia will be directed by AL Vijay in an as-yet untitled thriller (in which she is rumoured to be playing a ghost) that is reportedly being made in Tamil, Telugu and Hindi. Let’s see if she has better results with this endeavour.

    Royal cameo
    Saif Ali Khan may not carry the chip of his royal genes on his shoulders, but he certainly wears royalty on his sleeves. So when a Kolkata-based industrialist decided to celebrate his 50th birthday, guests were pleasantly surprised to see Khan join the birthday boy on stage to discuss all things regal and grand. Reportedly, Khan was gracious and dapper—dressed immaculately and appropriately in an all-white Indian ensemble, his pencil-thin retro mustache adding a nice touch. Two days later, this time with Kareena Kapoor on his arm, the dashing couple struck quite a sartorial pose at the Indian Derby in Mumbai. While he wore a grey suit with blue, white and pink accents (tie, flower, handkerchief), Mrs Khan was coordinated in a black, white, pink and green floor-length Temperley dress.

    meatier parts
    Manoj Bajpayee loves this phase of his career. With the trailer of his next, Aligarh, already crossing over two million views on YouTube, he has also promoted and featured in a short film, Taandav, directed by rising talent Devashish Makhija. In both—the trailer and the short—audiences have commented on Bajpayee’s abilities to convey so much with just his eyes. The actor, who says he is hungry for meaty roles like this, is trying to put together a feature film project with Makhija at the helm. A day after premiering his short film appearance, Bajpayee was back promoting Aligarh by taking to the stage at the Mumbai gay pride parade. Co-star Rajkummar Rao accompanied him. As they took the mike to spread the message of their movie and its theme of privacy, respect and equality, one overheard some ladies in the gathering remarking as to how ‘hot’ the two men are. A surprisingly reaction at such an event indeed!



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