Sat. night movie on Zee TV: Namak Halal

Cue the cute girl in the gold bodysuit:

 Sat. night movie on Zee TV: Namak Halal

 Sat. night movie on Zee TV: Namak Halal

Seen Around Bombay

The all-knowing, all-seeing Big B keeping watch over us:

 Seen Around Bombay

Old movie poster at an old theater near VT:

 Seen Around Bombay

And, going to see this one tonight, starring Jimmy Sheirgill and Kay Kay Menon:

 Seen Around Bombay

Around Bandra

The film biz is indeed everywhere.   As I first set foot inside the national arrivals terminal at the airport, I was greeted by an SRK Tag Heuer ad.   Then  SRK was over at the hotel the other night for an awards ceremony, Mr. Bachchan pere was due by today for another event, and Jimmy Sheirgill was at the coffee shop for a bite to eat this evening.   (He was interviewed on Anupama Chopra’s Picture This Friday evening, and revealed the most beautiful singing voice.   Quite stunning.)

Pleasant visit to Mount Mary Basilica (of Amar, Akbar, Anthony fame) earlier today, interesting to see  Indian touches (removal of shoes at the entrance to the church, garlands around the neck of Jesus on the crucifix, and a very attractive hijra waiting on the altar to touch the feet of Jesus on the crucifix).   My favorite moment was when a street dog came trotting in and proceeded up the center aisle of the church.   Priceless.

Here are a few pics:

Only thing missing is  Sreenivasan Jain:

 Around Bandra

Telugu film shoot on Sunday morning:

 Around Bandra

Taxi Ganesha:

 Around Bandra

Seen Around Madras

 Seen Around Madras

Movies, movies, movies…

Oram Po:

 Seen Around Madras

Vel:

 Seen Around Madras

Hey Mr. Vijay:

 Seen Around Madras

Evano Oruvan, opning this week:

 Seen Around Madras

Looking up to Maddy:

 Seen Around Madras

What, no Southern movie songs?

 What, no Southern movie songs?

First time back in Madras after two years, and yessir, this city really is growing.   We landed today and had to wait for 5 minutes on the tarmac before we could get to a gate.   Once inside, the airport has been renovated, though still lacks the aesthetic consideration you find in so many other buildings all over  the country.  

While waiting for my ride outside the arrivals area,  little swallows swooped down low and skimmed over our heads, like Tom Cruise in Top Gun.

Construction of flyovers going on, traffic now accounting for a good 45-50 minutes drive from the airport to town.   New buildings up all over.

And most telling, in the hotel, where we used to see channel after channel of Tamil, Telugu, Kannada and Malayallam movie music videos, now, there are some 10 Hindi channels on offer, plus RAI, and DW, some French channel, and of course  BBC and CNN, but only one channel each of Vijay and Jaya.   As one of the staff said “All the world is here now.”

 What, no Southern movie songs?

So, while doing some work, I’m enjoying a salute to Rajni (punctuated by ads with Amitabh in Tamil, for Himani Fast Relief).   Interestingly, political posters of local politician Stalin have him portrayed in such a way that he bears a striking resemblance to the Southern fillum hero…

 What, no Southern movie songs?

Up now, a Dakshin version of Nach Baliye.

Catching up with Pratibha Parmar

NDH%20nina%20and%20bobby%202 Catching up with Pratibha Parmar  

Last year, her debut film  - Nina’s Heavenly Delights – screened at the Indo-American Arts Council’s 2006 film festival.   Now, the movie has just been released in New York City, with other US cities to follow soon.   Here’s my thoughts on the film from last fall.

NHD%20hot%20hot%20hot%20finale%202 Catching up with Pratibha Parmar

Read on for  a brief chat with the film’s director Pratibha Parmar, on the occasion of the release:

Last year, we talked when Nina’s Heavenly Delights was shown at the IAAC Festival, now it’s opening in NY, a year later.   Tell me how that process has been over the last 12 months, getting from there to here?    
 
This past year has been a whirlwind.   NHD has screened at over 50 international film festivals and I have traveled to quite a few of these.   I feel guilty about my carbon footprint but this is the reward that an indie filmmaker gets which is the connection with audiences.

The film has won 3 Awards and almost everywhere I have been, it has been received with so much warmth and joy.   A couple of weeks ago I was in Paris for a film festival and there were 900 women who were in the audience and who just all stood up and clapped like for over 3 minutes.   It was a really special moment for me.   It took such a long time to get this movie made but at that moment all the angst and uncertainty was forgotten.

The fact that the film is getting a limited release here in NYC and then San Francisco on the 7th and more cities to follow after that, is an unexpected bonus.   As you know this is my debut feature and so to get international distribution is wonderful.

pratibha%202,%20v2 Catching up with Pratibha Parmar

Maria:   Following up on that question, what has it meant for you?   On the phone constantly?   Traveling constantly?   Lots of schmoozing?

Pratibha:   All this traveling has meant that it has taken time away from my new projects which I am itching to get going on.   Now that the film is released here in the US, I am not going to travel anymore with it.   I am getting an allergy to airports and planes.  

Note:   Here’s an interview I did with Pratibha last year.