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Ranbir, Ayan on ‘Brahmastra’: We had the opportunity to create our own Marvel

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Filmmaker Ayan Mukerji’s upcoming magnum opus ‘Brahmastra Part One: Shiva,’ is now moving towards the finishing line after years in the making.

The film stars Amitabh Bachchan, Ranbir Kapoor, Alia Bhatt, Nagarjuna Akkineni and Mouni Roy.

Based on Indian mythology, the film is set in contemporary India, where a secret society called the Brahmansh has guarded ‘Astras’ created in ancient India for generations. The most powerful among these, the Brahmastra, is now waking up and it threatens to destroy the universe, reports ‘Variety’.

Constructed as a trilogy, which is part of an ‘Astraverse’ created by Mukerji, the first part follows the protagonist Shiva (Kapoor), who is in love with Isha (Bhatt). Their lives are changed forever when Shiva learns that he has a mysterious connection to the ‘Brahmastra’ and a great power within him that he doesn’t understand just yet – the power of fire.

“It’s deep rooted in Indian culture, and we had the opportunity to create our own Marvel, which Ayan is trying to do with his Astraverse,” Ranbir told Variety.

He added: “Any film, any good compelling story, made in your culture, in an authentic way, in a true form, will connect to a large audience.”

“There is a little luck to play to it – like what kind of release you get, what kind of exposure you get. And in our case, we have Disney. And there’s nothing better than that. So, I believe that ‘Brahmastra’ is in a great place where we have that opportunity, where a world audience can witness it.”

“We were just three best friends, Alia and I, sitting and dreaming this film with Ayan, and being soldiers to him,” said Kapoor. “We were really excited and really privileged to be part of this film and part of this vision so selfishly as an actor that I would do it over and over again.”

Kapoor will get to do it at least twice again in the remaining two parts of the ‘Brahmastra’ trilogy.

“‘Brahmastra’ is not an end in itself, but it’s a means to a larger end. We have part two and part three ahead of us, we have the potential to really take the storytelling in many diverse directions even beyond ‘Brahmastra,’ and there is no way to do it at the scale at which I hope to do it, unless our audience base does not increase. So that’s definitely part of the ambition,” Mukerji told Variety.

“Let’s start with some strong baby steps with part one. I think we’ve gotten far enough with this with having, over time, gotten Disney to lay their attention on the film, help us to push the release a little wider, and I’m hoping that can bring in bigger and wider returns for us.”

According to ‘Variety’, the benchmarks for Indian action films this year have been set by ‘K.G.F: Chapter 2’ which collected USD 161 million and ‘RRR’, which has grossed USD 155 million so far. The latter is directed by S.S. Rajamouli, also known for the ‘Baahubali’ franchise. Rajamouli is presenting the Telugu, Tamil, Kannada and Malayalam language versions of ‘Brahmastra’ which will also release in its original Hindi language.

“Certainly, with all humility, definitely, I think our ambition is larger than that (‘RRR’) number overseas. And I hope that, as a key step with Disney coming on board, just our overseas distribution before it even crosses over to the western audience, I hope it’s able to reach the subcontinent audience in the western world in a much wider fashion, so that we can actually see that return on box office numbers,” says Mukerji.

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Bombay HC extends relief to Rakhi Sawant till February 1 in case filed by Sherlyn Chopra

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The Bombay High Court on Tuesday extended relief to Rakhi Sawant till February 1 in a case registered against her by another model. 

Justice MS Karnik extended order of no coercive action Ms Sawant till February 1 as the complaint sought to file an intervention application. 

A model and actor had filed an FIR against Ms Sawant alleging that the latter circulated her obscene videos to the media and made derogatory statements against her. 

Amboli police had booked Ms Sawant and her lawyer Falguni Brahmbhatt on November 8, 2022, under sections 354A (sexual harassment), 500 (defamation), 504 (intentional insult) and 509 (insulting modesty of woman by act, word or gesture) of the Indian Penal Code and section 67 (transmission of obscene content in electronic form) of the Information Technology Act.

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ABHM activists booked for ‘Pathaan’ protest

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A case has been registered against activists of the Akhil Bharat Hindu Mahasabha (ABHM) who protested at a cinema hall in Agra against screening of the Shah Rukh Khan-starrer ‘Pathaan’.

SHO, Rakabganj, Pradeep Kumar said that the incident occurred within the limits of Rakabganj police station of Agra where a case was registered against five or six unidentified people.

Meanwhile, a Home Department spokesperson said that the state police has been directed to maintain vigil on outfits that have given a boycott call or plan to oppose the release of the movie on Wednesday.

The police have been also directed to take action against anti-social elements as well as maintain law and order.

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Esha Gaur makes B’wood singing debut with ‘1920: Horrors of the Heart’

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Singer Esha Gaur, who has sung title tracks for TV shows, is all set to make her Bollywood debut with Vikram Bhatts ‘1920: Horrors of the Heart’, which stars Avika Gor in the lead role.

Sharing this information, Esha acknowledged that it was her mother who discovered her singing talent when she was very young, and credits her for the way her career has shaped up.

“My biggest work achievement till date is ‘1920’,” Esha noted.

“I am from a doctor’s family; my father, brother and grandfather are doctors,” Esha said, adding: “My mother had an inclination towards singing and she figured out the singer in me when I was four-year-old, and because of her my musical journey came out so well. I have done Master’s in music.”

Esha is well-known for singing the title tracks of TV shows such as ‘Ek Aastha Aisi Bhi’ as well as ‘Guddan Tumse Na Ho Payega’ in ‘Lakeerien’ and ‘Rangrezz’ in ‘Apna Time Bhi Aayega’.

Talking about her first break, she said: “I performed in the Sangam Kala group in 1994, where I won the first prize. Kalyanji-Anandji called me after looking at my performance and that was the biggest achievement in my singing career.”

Asked who her favourite singer is, she shared: “Asha Bhosle, as she is so versatile which is what I like the most. Also, I think everybody should choose to be low profile as it’s the best thing you could give yourself.”

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