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Friday,03-December-2021

Bollywood

Abhishek Banerjee: My dream role is Al Pacino’s Tony Montana in ‘Scarface’

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Actor Abhishek Banerjee

Casting director-turned-actor Abhishek Banerjee would love to reprise Al Pacino’s iconic character Tony Montana in Brian De Palma’s 1983 classic “Scarface”.

“I’ve been fascinated with Al Pacino all my life. Something like Tony Montana in Scarface — that’s the kind of dream role I have for me. If I ever get to play something like that, I’m sure I’m going to kill it. The energy, the gruesomeness of such a character is always very exciting. It is very liberating and helps you vent your inner anger,” Abhishek told IANS.

After working in theatre in Delhi, Abhishek arrived in Mumbai around 12 years ago with the dream of being an actor, He took up casting direction in order to support himself in the expensive city. Althouygh he has been around for a while, life changed after he garnered critical appreciation for his performance in the 2018 horror comedy “Stree”.

“Before Stree, I used to doubt myself as an actor. Filmmakers didn’t know about me. No matter how talented you are, till the time people trusts you, I don’t think you can showcase your talent. Stree gave me that opportunity — that recognition and trust. Whatever I am today is because of that film. Huge thanks to (director) Amar Kaushik and (producers) Maddock Films for that.”

The 36-year-old actor is not interested in confining himself to Hindi cinema. Rather, he wants pan-India recognition.

Abhishek said: “As an actor I want to work in languages like Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam and Bengali among others. I have stayed in several parts of India because of my dad’s Armed Forces background. He used to get transferred every four to five years. I want to become a pan-India actor.”

With films mostly releasing on OTT in the current pandemic situation, does he feel it makes a difference to him as an actor? “I don’t know, maybe it makes a difference. As an actor, watching myself on the big screen is more exciting than watching myself on the small screen. Of course, I can’t complain. OTT is also a medium where everybody can watch your work,” he replied.

On the work front, Abhishek features in the latest Netflix anthology “Ajeeb Daastaans”. The actor has his kitty full with upcoming projects like “Dostana 2”, Akarsh Khurana’s “Rashmi Rocket”, Amar Kaushik’s “Bhediya”, Umesh Shukla’s “Aankh Micholi” and Satram Ramani’s “Helmet”.

Bollywood

‘Shabaash Mithu’ to hit the screens on Feb 4, 2022

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On the occasion of Mithali Raj’s birthday on Friday, the release date of ‘Shabaash Mithu’ starring Taapsee Pannu has been announced. It will hit the screens on February 4, 2022.

‘Shabaash Mithu’ is the coming-of-age tale of women’s cricket in India as witnessed by the most successful woman cricketer. The film chronicles the highs and lows, setbacks and moments of euphoria of Mithali’s life with Taapsee essaying the titular role.

Also seen in the film will be the talented actor Vijay Raaz in a key role.

‘Shabaash Mithu’ has been shot across domestic and international locations to aptly bring alive Mithali’s iconic journey and her meteoric rise to the world stage.

Produced by Viacom18 Studios, Shabaash Mithu’s Creative Producer is Ajit Andhare, while the film is Directed by Srijit Mukherji and Written by Priya Aven.

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Ali Fazal joins Gerard Butler in action thriller ‘Kandahar’

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Actor Ali Fazalis all set to star in an action thriller titled ‘Kandahar’ alongside Gerard Butler.

‘Kandahar’, is being directed by Ric Roman Waugh, who has directed films like ‘Angel Has Fallen’, ‘Felon’, Greenland’ and an upcoming Film with JK Simmons ‘National Champions’ among many others.

Commenting on being a part of the project, an excited Ali said: “I always look forward to new and exciting ventures . We are all set to begin production soon”.

‘Kandahar’ is based on the screenplay, which the director developed in tandem with former military intelligence officer Mitchell LaFortune. Mitchell’s experiences at the Defense Intelligence Agency in Afghanistan have shaped up the story and the principal photography of the film is expected to begin soon in Saudi Arabia.

The film is being produced by Thunder Road Films, the producers of the ‘John Wick’ and ‘Sicario’, G-BASE and Capstone Group.

Back at home, Ali will be soon seen in an untitled Arati Kadav film. The actor took to his Instagram a few days back to share the first look of the futuristic space film.

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‘Bob Biswas’: Intriguing but perfunctorily mounted

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Film: “Bob Biswas” (Streaming on Zee5); Duration: 132 minutes.

Director: Diya Annapurna Ghosh; Cast: Abhishek Bachchan, Chitrangda Singh, Paran Bandopadhyay, Ronith Arora, Tina Desai, Samara Tijori, Ditipriya Roy, Pavbitra Rabha.

IANS Rating: ***1/2

This film focuses on the assassin Bob Biswas, a character conceived by Sujoy Ghosh and Advaita Kala in 2012 released Kahaani which featured Vidya Balan, thus technically making it a prequel to Kahaani.

Actor Saswata Chatterjee had portrayed the quirky character in Kahaani with such flair and unconventional style that it landed becoming an intriguing figure worth exploring his backstory, and thus this film germinated.

Unlike the high-octane, nifty thriller Kahaani, Bob Biswas with a character-driven plot, is a slow-paced film. The titular character in a vulnerable state of mind embarks on a journey of self-discovery after being in a coma for eight years. Unable to recall his past, and while trying to piece his life together with his wife Mary, son Benny and stepdaughter Mini after he steps out of the hospital. How he gets his prospective victim’s MMS on a mobile phone and is forced to kill them while working undercover as a life insurance agent, forms the crux of the film.

Set in Kolkata, the script does have its moments, with the twists in the tale and the code of conduct among criminals, but it is Bob’s gullibility that keeps you hooked to the screen.

While we miss Saswata Chatterjee as the eponymous killer, Abhishek Bachchan with his bemused appearance and unwonted demeanour delivers an equally earnest performance. He is aptly supported by Chitrangda Singh as his wife Mary, Ronith Arora as Son Benny, and Samara Tijori as Mini.

Purab Kohli has his moments of onscreen glory as the drug peddler Bubai. Similarly, Pabitra Rabha as Dhonu the street-food seller, and Paran Bandopadhyay as the pharmacist Kali Da who keeps saying: “Niyam, Niyam hota hai…” leave their mark on the screen.

Tina Desai in a significant role as Police Officer Indira Verma is stereotypical and so are all the other supporting actors who are a part of the city’s underbelly.

While Bob Biswas’ back story is intriguing and the film informs you of how he is connected to the tale in ‘Kahaani’, writer Sujoy Ghosh takes the lazy way out.

His script fails to tell us about Bob’s initiation into the world of crime, how he became a contract killer in the first place. This would have been much more interesting. Also, Bob’s journey as the assassin is smooth and perfunctory that beyond a point, you just don’t get emotionally hooked.

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