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Bollywood

Bhumi Pednekar: I’m a little shy about calling myself a star

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On her debut in 2015, Bhumi Pednekar took critics by surprise, and won awards, by playing an overweight bride who speaks up for her rights in the romantic comedy ‘Dum Laga Ke Haisha’. Since then, Bhumi Pednekar has given a string of hits with meaningful cinema.

She has been seen in ‘Toilet: Ek Prem Katha’, ‘Shubh Mangal Savdhaan’, ‘Saand Ki Aankh’, ‘Bala’, ‘Pati Patni Aur Woh’ and ‘Dolly Kitty Aur Woh Chamakte Sitare’, and many more such critically acclaimed films.

But is Bhumi comfortable with the ‘star tag? In an interview with IANS, the actress, who started out as an assistant to Shanoo Sharma, the casting director of Yash Raj Films, made the confession: “I am a little shy to call myself a star.”

She insists she is an actor “who has received a lot of love”. Bhumi said: “I think the definition of stardom has changed across different generations. But yes, I am grateful that my films are appreciated and people love me and I am going to continue doing whatever I do on and off screen.”

Hindi cinema is known for its bigger-than-life films, but Bhumi has stood her ground on featuring only in ‘message-driven’ films and calls herself fortunate.

“I have always been keen that my films should have a positive message along with entertainment, as that’s what cinema is primarily meant to do,” Bhumi said.

She added: “I feel that’s how films in the future would also be. If someone is spending two hours watching a film, or my piece of content, it must lead to some kind of a positive change in their mindset.”

As a public figure, Bhumi is doing her bit for the world too. In 2019, she launched the ‘Climate Warrior’ campaignto raise awareness on environmental protection and global warming.

So, is it time for Hindi cinema to raise issues related to climate change and sustainable lifestyles, pat came the reply from Bhumi: “Yes! I feel it’s high time that Hindi cinema starts showing a sustainable way of living in their films.”

She added: “As a fraternity we are woke and I personally would like to believe that we are more conscious than other industries, but I still feel we aren’t doing enough.”

Bhumi, incidentally, has named as India’s first M.A.C global cosmetics brand ambassador because of her efforts towards climate conservation and sustainability and also her body of work.

In fact, she makes sure that the sets she works on do not use plastic bottles and single-use plastics as much as possible.

Bhumi concluded: “I know it’s difficult, but I try to make my ecosystem as sustainable as possible. I do feel that we need narratives in films/movies that send out the message because they are the most powerful medium to get the message across to the masses.”

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‘Bigg Boss 15’: Tejasswi Prakash on the radar of Gauahar Khan

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In the upcoming ‘Weekend Ka Vaar’ episode of ‘Bigg Boss 15’, model and actress Gauahar Khan will enter the house as a celebrity guest.

She will give a task to the contestants to name the person who they believe won’t make it to the top three. During the task, only Tejasswi gets called out by Gauahar.

The celebrity guest asks Tejasswi to come on the dais along with Nishant Bhat and Rashami Desai. Now, Tejasswi has to choose the one among the two who she feels does not deserve to be in the competition.

Tejasswi says Nishant does not have any identity in the show, to which Nishant gives her a befitting reply by saying: “She keeps complaining and plays the victim card like a kid.”

Gauahar intervenes and in the meanwhile Tejasswi ends up saying: “Nishant she is asking you to shut up.”

Gauahar immediately retorts and says: “Don’t put your words in my mouth”, to which Tejasswi adds: “I said that.”

But Gauahar then again snaps back by saying: “I don’t appreciate it.”

Nishant and Tejasswi’s friendship went haywire after the latter got defeated by Pratik in a recent task. Nishant, who is a good friend of Pratik, stuck by his side which later on disappointed Tejasswi.

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Rohit Shetty set to make OTT debut with ‘Mission Frontline’

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Filmmaker Rohit Shetty, who has entertained audiences with his comedic movies and action thrillers, and also hosted ‘Fear Factor: Khatron Ke Khiladi’. is all set to entertain viewer with his OTT debut.

Shetty will be seen in the show ‘Mission Frontline’, which peeps into the lives of armed forces posted on the borders. The show has earlier featured Rana Daggubatti and Sara Ali Khan.

He will step into the shoes of a Special Operations Group soldier and experience how the unit lives and trains in the difficult places they are posted at. The show has been shot at locations in and around Srinagar.

Kunal Kochhar, the show’s director, said Rohit Shetty is synonymous with action, so no one else could be more qualified for the job than him. “Rohit Shetty’s films reflect patriotism, courage and vigour and there couldn’t be a better fit than him for ‘Mission Frontline’,” Kochhar said.

Sharing his experience, he added: “It was an absolutely surreal experience to shoot in the picturesque terrains of Srinagar with the special unit and Rohit’s presence added so much energy to it. Super excited to see a completely different side of Rohit and we’re sure the audience will enjoy watching the show.”

‘Mission Frontline’ will premiere on January 20 on discovery+.

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‘Unpaused: Naya Safar’ trailer: A bouquet of hope, ambition and forgiveness

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Mumbai, Jan 15 (IANS) The trailer of ‘Unpaused: Naya Safar’, an anthology of five short films that highlight stories of hope amid Covid, was released on Saturday.

The anthology features five stories: ‘Teen Tigada’ directed by Ruchir Arun; ‘The Couple’ by Nupur Asthana; ‘Gond Ke Laddu’ by Shikha Makan; ‘War Room’ by Ayappa KM; and ‘Vaikunth’ by Nagraj Manjule of ‘Sairat’ fame. Each showcases the emotions of hope, positivity and forgiveness playing out as the pandemic rages.

Talking about the anthology and his film ‘Teen Tigada’, Ruchir Arun, said: “‘Unpaused: Naya Safar’ anthology boasts of compelling narratives, showcasing a multitude of emotions and we’re really excited to bring our film as part of this anthology. With ‘Teen Tigada’, our effort was to highlight the threshold of human emotions, amidst the tribulations of an ongoing pandemic which hit us like a storm. This film has a unique narrative, beautifully translated on screen by the actors and we hope it will resonate strongly with the masses as well.”

Director Nupur Asthana spoke about her narrative choice saying: “Layoffs were a glaring reality of the pandemic that hit professionals very hard the world over, leaving them uncertain and demotivated.”

Commenting on her film’s core theme, she said: “‘The Couple’ captures the emotional upheaval and complexities caused by such a professional setback and how it impacts personal relationships between two people, altering their realities. The first edition of the anthology beautifully struck a chord with the audience, and we hope now Unpaused Naya Safar will, am sure, open to similar love and appreciation.”

Reflecting on the impact of Covid pandemic, director Shikha Makan said: “The pandemic has affected one and all in ways that are unexpected and uncalled for. We all worry for our loved ones living far away and look for means to connect and care for them even from a distance. And sometimes we find connections with strangers too.”

Shedding light on her film’s idea, she said: “The idea of ‘Gond Ke Laddu’ was to showcase the spectrum of human bonds, but with a twist. It was an enriching experience to shoot this film with an amazing cast and crew who breathed life into this subtle yet substantial narrative. We’re sure the story will connect with the audiences at an emotional level.”

Director Ayappa KM, whose film ‘War Room’ captures the reality of frontline workers, said: “‘War Room’ showcases the vulnerability of frontline workers who encountered unfavorable situations during the outbreak of the pandemic. This is a gripping story that unravels a different facet of human emotion in duress and I owe it to the entire team for bringing it alive so beautifully.”

Vaikunth director Nagraj Manjule, said: “‘Unpaused: Naya Safar’ anthology reflects on a range of emotions with each of its films, and Vaikunth adds on to this with a unique balance of gloom and hope, peppered with unpredictability. We, as a team are humbled and honored to bring this story as part of this anthology and we hope that it stays with the audience for a long time.”

Starring an ensemble cast of Saqib Saleem, Shreya Dhanwanthary, Neena Kulkarni and Priyanshu Painyuli, ‘Unpaused: Naya Safar’, will be available to stream on Prime Video from January 21.

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