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Monday,24-January-2022

Bollywood

Arif Zakaria: Digital format shooting allows more trial and error for filmmakers

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Actor Arif Zakaria has been in the entertainment industry for over two decades and has witnessed a lot of subtle changes. He feels the current wave of OTT has ushered a lot of change, including the fact that a lot of filmmakers get to tell the story they want to.

“A lot of small, perceptive and real narratives are finding space on OTT. So much content that wouldn’t have found theatres is now getting space. Being in the business for two decades I have been a witness to a lot of subtle changes in the industry,” he told IANS.

While a lot has been for the better, there are changes that Arif fails to fathom. He says: “There is a culture of screen tests that wasn’t prevalent earlier. I really don’t understand this. I mean what do you gauge by performing a scene in front of a young rookie with a handycam or smartphone in a decrepit room in Aaram Nagar?”

He says while technology can help rectify small mistakes, acting is something that remains to be the same.

“The technology has changed as digital format shooting allows more trial and error for filmmakers. A lot of bad shooting ends up looking very good after the post-production. But as actors, we still have to do what we have to in front of the camera.”

Talking about his new film “Ahaan”, he says that he was blown away by the script. The film directed by Nikhil Pherwani narrates the story of a young man with Down’s Syndrome, who develops a friendship with a neighbour suffering from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Arif, who plays the role of the neighbour, says the story is heartfelt and unique.

“I was blown away when Nikhil Pherwani narrated the story to me. In fact, Abuli Mamaji, who plays the lead part of the person with Down’s Syndrome, suffers from the same in real life, too. So that’s totally real. The passion of the filmmaker was infectious. He had no money to shoot, which earlier I thought would be an impediment, but he managed. The finished product has a nice feel to it, which money could’ve never brought to the film, I feel. We shot it for fun around Mumbai and that was it,” he says.

The film briefly had a theatrical release in March. “Nobody was venturing to cinema halls then because of the pandemic, so it feels like the film never released in theatres,” he says.

The film released recently on Netflix.

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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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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