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Saturday,16-October-2021

Bollywood

Rajkummar Rao on being called ‘star’: Call me Raj, it’s a nice name

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Rajkummar Rao has a candid retort when you tell him he is successful enough now to be called a star.

“You can call me whatever, but call me Raj. I think Raj is a nice name,” says the actor, in a conversation with IANS.

The actor, who won the National Award in 2014 for his title role in Shahid, has given memorable roles in numerous films in his 11-year-old career — notably, Aligarh, Bareilly Ki Barfi, CityLights, Omerta, Newton and Trapped. Despite fame and awards, he has always come across as grounded. How does he manage to stay that way?

“God has not given me wings to fly so there is no point flying! I am doing this for myself because I saw this dream when I was a kid who wants to act. I wanted to be an actor and acting gives me the most amount of happiness and I am doing this for my sanity and for my own happiness. It reaches out to so many people and you get so much love from them,” he replied.

“I don’t see any reason for me to not be real. I am an actor by profession but before that I am just a normal guy,” he added.

Over his decade-long journey in Hindi cinema, Rajkummar has featured in many slice-of-life, realistic and drama films. One genre missing from his filmography is an out-and-out commercial masala entertainer, something Bollywood is famous for.

“Never say never. I haven’t really given a thought to it honestly and not like I have gotten such films but if I get a script like that, which has some base story attached to it, then I would love to a try. Why not?” he said.

Bollywood

Nawazuddin says good people are needed for making good content

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Nawazuddin-Siddiqui

Actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui, who has been nominated in the Best Actor category at the International Emmy Awards for the Netflix film ‘Serious Men’, says for that making good content, good people are also needed.

Talking about what’s more important according to him – content of a project or who all are starring in it, Nawazuddin in a conversation with IANS said: “I think both are important.”

“A lot of content is being made but it will not come out and shine till the time the directors, actors and their performance isn’t there.”

He says if the actor or the maker are not good then there is no meaning to the content.

“No matter how good the content is, if the actor or the director is not good then there is no meaning to the content. For making a good thing, good people are needed,” he concluded.

‘Serious Men’ is based on Manu Joseph’s book of the same name. The film, directed by Sudhir Mishra, is a sharp take on ambition and caste politics, put in perspective in the Indian context.

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Rajkummar Rao to star in Anubhav Sinha’s social drama ‘Bheed’

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Filmmaker Anubhav Sinha has announced his next film titled ‘Bheed’, a social drama starring National Award-winning actor Rajkummar Rao.

Anubhav said: “‘Bheed’ is one of those titles that the whole team jumps at the moment you propose it.”

Talking about roping in Rajkummar for the lead role, the director said that for him, “casting was crucial”.

He added: “Raj is a very intriguing actor. He is one of the very few actors who can be so successfully transparent in a story. There always was a keen desire to work with him and I am looking forward to it.”

On working with Sinha, Rajkummar says it is a matter of “great honour and privilege to collaborate with a filmmaker who has such a distinct voice”.

“I have always found myself gravitating towards stories that trigger conversation. Even as an entertainer, I want my work to get people thinking. This is an important subject and the character needs me to stretch myself as an artist, beyond my comfort zone. I can’t wait to start shooting and lose myself in this universe.”

‘Bheed’ is jointly produced by Bhushan Kumar’s T-Series and Anubhav Sinha’s Benaras Mediaworks.

Bhushan Kumar said: “Anubhav and I have a long standing relationship since Tum Bin. And every outing together is even more exciting than the last one. Thappad is a film I am incredibly proud of and I can’t wait for ‘Bheed’ to kick off. It’s another of Anubhav’s deeply stirring stories and I am so proud to join hands with him yet again on this one.

“Raj is a wonderful actor and I can’t think of anyone better to pull off a film like this.”

The film will be shot across Lucknow. It is expected to go on floors in November as the unit continues their pre-production for the next few weeks.

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ED summons Bollywood actors Nora, Jacqueline in black money case

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The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has again summoned Bollywood actresses Nora Fatehi and Jacqueline Fernandez in connection with an alleged Rs 200-crore money-laundering case, official sources said here on Thursday.

The case pertains to an FIR filed by the Delhi Police in connection with an extortion racket allegedly perpetrated by scamsters Sukesh Chandrashekhar, Leena Maria-Paul and others, involving several bigwigs.

The central probe agency had already recorded their statements earlier and they are being summoned again as witnesses for further probe.

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