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Actress Ananya Panday: This is the most special year of my life

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Ananya Panday has no time for things most girls her age relish doing — not even celebrate her birthday. She isn’t, however, complaining. Rather, the “Student Of The Year 2” debutant, who turned 21 on October 30, is happy to have spent a working birthday this year. She says the day highlighted the most special year of her life.

“I think this has been the most special year of my life. I actually got to live my dream of becoming an actor. That’s what I wanted to do my entire life,” Ananya told IANS.

It has been a good year, indeed. Her debut film made her a teenybopper heartthrob on release earlier this year and she has been flooded with offers for movies, web shows and brand endorsements.

“I am blessed and lucky. I am grateful that people have liked my performance in my very first film. I hope they continue to like me in the future as well. This is just the beginning of a great, beautiful journey and I am super excited. I feel overwhelmed!,” gushed actor Chunky Pandey’s daughter, looking back at her journey so far.

Her first birthday after becoming an actress was all about work as usual, rather than cakes, merriment and partying. “I went for dance rehearsals of a song in ‘Pati Patni Aur Woh’. It’s been a working birthday but I am happy.”

It was dad’s advice that she work on her birthday, she reveals. “Dad told me you should be working on your birthday because if you work on your birthday, then you will be working throughout the rest of the year. I am going to follow his advice and work on every birthday of mine,” she added.

On the work front, the actress will next be seen in the romantic comedy “Pati Patni Aur Woh”, which is a remake of the BR Chopra classic made in 1978, having the same title. In the remake, Ananya stars alongside Kartik Aaryan and Bhumi Pednekar. The film is directed by Mudassar Aziz and slated for a December 6 release.

Opening up on the film, she shared: “I think remakes are a lot of fun. We added our own tadka to it and made it modern and relatable in the present times. Even a college student can relate to the feeling of being stuck in a relationship with someone and liking someone else, or having feelings for different people. I think it is a very universal feeling. I hope everyone relates to it. I had a lot of fun shooting the film and I hope that translates on the screen.”

On her character in the movie and why she is nervous about it, Ananya said: “I am actually very nervous because I am playing a character slightly older than my age. It’s very different from how people have seen me in ‘Student Of The Year 2′.”

The actress also expressed her love for the rom-com genre. “I have always been the kind of person who is instinctive. I always do what my gut tells me to do. I am young and fond of rom-coms and light-hearted films. That’s the zone I am sticking to right now. I think I am drawn to scripts I would like to watch as an audience.”

While “Pati Patni Aur Woh” is a romantic comedy, her other upcoming film “Khali Peeli” is the sort of experiment she wants to do. “Khali Peeli’ is completely different. Although I love rom-coms, I also want to experiment. I am young and want to try many things even if I may make mistakes. I think it’s okay to make mistakes as long as I learn something from them,” she said.

The Ali Abbas Zafar-produced “Khaali Peeli” co-stars Ishan Khatter and is directed by Maqbool Khan. “We have finished shooting one schedule, and will resume in December,” Ananya said about the film, scheduled for a 2020 release.

She is eager to foray the domain of web shows. “I have gotten a few (offers) and I am very interested in the digital space. I love watching digital shows. I am completely open to working in the digital (domain). I am just waiting for the right one,” she revealed.

Bollywood

Shruti Haasan to conduct live Instagram sessions on social issues for b’day

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Actress and singer Shruti Haasan will conduct a series of live Instagram sessions on various social issues as part of her birthday celebrations this year.

Sources close to Shruti, whose birthday falls on January 28, said the actress has been overwhelmed with all the love pouring in from her fans who have begun celebrating the month as her birthday month.

A source said: “This year, on her birthday, Shruti has decided to address issues pertaining to society. She will be doing a series of live sessions, starting January 27 on topics such as mental health, women in films and media, and sustainability in fashion.

“On January 27, the session will be on mental health, while on January 28, which happens to be her birthday, the session will be on Women in Films and Media. On January 29, the topic will be Sustainability in Fashion.

“Through these live sessions, Shruti wants to draw attention towards topics that are usually brushed under the carpet or aren’t discussed as often as they should be. All of the live sessions will have Shruti along with various influencers and hosts discussing these topics at length in an attempt to normalise these conversations in our day-to-day life.”

Commenting on the same, Shruti said: “The idea behind the live sessions is to open up a discussion on these topics. There are many ways to celebrate one’s birthday but my idea of a celebration is to open honest discussions, especially about the things I care about and believe need more talking.

“My aim is to let more people in on these topics, get varied perspectives from others during the live and open up these issues for others to think, discuss, share and debate.”

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Priyanka and Nick Jonas bring home a child

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 Priyanka Chopra and Nick Jonas have taken the surrogacy route to have a baby. PC made the surprise announcement at Friday/Saturday midnight.

Taking to Instagram, Priyanka said: “We are overjoyed to confirm that we have welcomed a baby via surrogate.” She added: “We respectfully ask for privacy during this special time as we focus on our family.”

Immediately after the announcement, more than 1.73 million of Priyanka’s followers shared her joy on Instagram, showering her with heart emojis.

They celebrities who celebrated included the late basketball star Kobe Bryant’s wife and philanthropist, Vanessa, Kal Penn, Shefalee Shah, Katrina Kaif, Lara Datta, Sania Mirza, Bhumi Pednekar and Radhika Jones, editor of ‘Vanity Fair’, where Priyanka is on the cover of the February 2022 edition.

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Bollywood

Ranveer to Deepika: My ‘babygirl lookin like a Fazillion buxxx’

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Bollywood’s livewire star Ranveer Singh seems to be in awe of his actress wife Deepika Padukone’s performance in the upcoming film ‘Gehraiyaan’ and praised her by saying his “baby girl lookin like a fazillion bux”.

Ranveer, who does not shy away from professing his love for his wife on social media, posted a picture of Deepika from the film.

“Moody, sexy and intense!!!A Domestic noir ? Sign me up! All the favs @shakunbatra @ananyapanday @siddhantchaturvedi @dhairyakarwa Naseer the Legend! and my babygirl lookin like a Fazillion buxxx @deepikapadukone produced by the sexiest of them all @karanjohar.”

Directed by Shakun Batra, Amazon Original Movie ‘Gehraiyaan’ stars Deepika Padukone, Siddhant Chaturvedi, Ananya Panday, Dhairya Karwa as leads along with Nasseruddin Shah and Rajat Kapur in pivotal roles

Jointly produced by Viacom18 Studios, Dharma Productions and Shakun Batra’s Jouska Films, the movie will have its World Premiere exclusively on Prime Video on February 11.

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