Past Forward

Television has grown and so have the number of serials on air. But can the magic of the eighties be recreated? Ashima Sehajpal finds out

The story changes every Wednesday. Who will die? Who will get a plastic surgery done? Which friend would turn enemy or join hands to revenge another enemy? Who will marry whom and who will file for a divorce? Which new characters need to be introduced or shunted out? A leap of how many years and the right time for the next generation, Wednesday decides it all as per the 'oh so important' TRPs. Higher the TRP, lesser the need for change!

If around 10 per cent is the barometer of TV soap's success, how would an expert rate a TRP of 56 per cent? In the second week of its telecast, our very own, Jaspal Bhatti's show, Flop Show grossed this high rating, minus any marketing strategies. We know, the arguments in support of the drop in TRPs would be - there wasn't any competition from a hundred other channels or a thousand soaps then or people had no choice but to watch it! But Vivek Shauq, TV actor who was part of Flop Show, has a point to make. "Why after all these years, Hum Log will be telecast as Hum? Or, why Karamchand is being experimented with? Talk of comedy shows and audience invariably remember Flop Show after a good 20 years. Quality remains and quantity can't justify the dip in quality."

Unlike now, every serial had a character then. No two soaps were made on the same storyline. Directors and producers worked really hard to come up with something different. — Deepa Sahi

TV actors of Doordarshan days, for all the practical reasons, don't feel very positively about the evolution of television. The reasons range from poor content, treatment meted out to actors, clichéd storyline, and transformation of television as a medium to channelise creativity to being a mere product. Deepa Sahi, film director, who was also seen in the serial Tamas, rues the mechanical functioning of the industry. "All serials are made on the formulae of a hit. If one saas-bahu saga does well, more would follow. If a soap based on a social issue is accepted by the audience, others issues are taken up." A comparison with TV of the late 80's proves the point. "Unlike now, every serial had a character then. No two soaps were made on the same storyline. Directors and producers worked really hard to come up with something different," she adds.

As these actors say, the industry is no different from the money-minting corporate firms! "And actors are treated no better than the employees who are instructed to perform in a certain manner. They don't enjoy the freedom to bring in their creativity," shares Rakesh Bedi, who was seen in the serial Ye Jo Hai Zindagi. He cites the example of the serial, Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi, to explain that a character is more important than the actor (The character of Mihir Virani was changed).

Adds Avtaar Gill, who played the role of Kader Bhai in Nukkad, "The soap isn't affected even if actors have to be changed several times for a character. This wasn't possible in 80s, as actors were given due respect. Also, actors of that era had a passion for performing. Nowadays, it is a mere source of income for actors."

The situation can only improve if the number of episodes telecast every week is reduced. Suggests Rakesh, "It's not practical for a writer to pen down as many as 22 quality episodes every month or for can actor to shoot for them."

Another concern for actors is the serials are far from real. Instead of portraying a common man's life, they focus on characters that are business tycoons. Avtar refers to the unreal situations shown in serials: "The hero at some point of time is shown suffering from amnesia or is paralytic. The female characters are shown sleeping with glittering sarees and heavy jewellery. The divorce rate in soaps is a hundred times more."

Art mirrors the society and TV is a medium to display it. "Unless TV doesn't reflect reality, grandchildren and great grandchildren have to be created to attract the audience for these serials," quips Deepa. Are family planners of the television world listening?

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Old world charm
Neha Walia

Hit television serials of the eighties Hum Log, Wagle ki Duniya and Fauji are back in a new avatar

Stills from Hum Log
Stills from Hum Log

History repeats itself, they say. And Hum Log, India's first soap opera, is back again. Not in its actual form, but in spirit. A contemprory sequel of the iconic series will be telecast on Doordarshan titled Hum.

Shahrukh Khan announces his plans to make a sequel of Fauji, produced by his Red Chillies Entertainment and with a new set of actors. Wagle of Wagle ki Duniya, the story inspired by the 'common man' of RK Narayan, will be soon seen as Detective Wagle.

All set to bring in the old world charm, these sequels or proposed remakes aim to recreate the magic of the eighties. And with them, come the expectations and reactions, from the audience as well as the actors who brought to life the iconic characters.

"Wagle will return to Indian television after 22 years. He will be a senior citizen now, unlike the middle-aged man of Wagle ki Duniya. The essence of the serial and character remains the same but the storyline has changed. Wagle will be playing detective, solving different cases involving societal issues," says Anjan Srivastav, who we all still know as Wagle. "We had to take mister Laxman's permission before we started on the concept," he adds. Sulbha Arya will be seen playing his wife in the new version.

While the story of the common man still holds true in today's context, what triggered the idea of a comeback, a little too late? "Good things don't need a reason to happen. Also, we as actors are answerable to society and so when you get tired of watching all the drags happening in the name of entertainment, the Wagle and the likes would be a welcome change," he says.

Sure, with news already cheering the audiences, the simplicity of these stories might be just what we need. "These stories were an honest attempt at entertaining the masses. They were made with great conviction. To fill the gap would be challenging, but I am sure the contemprory versions will click as well," shares Sanjay Tripathy, director of Hum.

A sequel of Fauji is on the cards as well. Actor Pulkit Samrat will be seen in Fauji 2 along with actors Shruti Ulfat and others. "There should always be room for new things, fresh ideas and innovations. If somebody wants to take inspiration and make something interesting, the market has scope," feels Abhinav Chaturvedi aka 'nanhe' of Hum Log.

As of now, the two proposed sequels would be telecast on Doordarshan. So does that mean that other popular channels are not interested in going back to the basics? "It's not that. Doordarshan was where it all started actually. These serials were always made for Doordarshan and even now they are being revived by it," says Sanjay Tripathy. Anjan Srivastav sees it as an 'opportunity' to find satisfaction after work. With that, another phrase might just give the perfect ending`85old habits die-hard!

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The chase continues

From a beauty queen to a promising star in showbiz, Lara Dutta has come up a long way and she owes her success in films to the mantra of reinventing constantly.The 32-year-old beauty, who is in seventh year of her professional career, has essayed a variety of roles and is positive about playing a long innings.

"It's as simple as that; I don't want to just sit down and say that I have been a model in the past and a Miss Universe with some good Bollywood hits behind me so I should just sit back and bask in that glory. Sorry, there is no point in doing that. I have been enjoying a certain standing right throughout my career and I am not going to let anyone down", said Lara who was last seen in comic-caper Housefull. Lara says that she is one of the few leading ladies who have managed to carry off the skimpiest of outfits without even bordering upon vulgarity."Thankfully I can never come across as someone who is cheap. I want my audience to react positively to me and thankfully, so far the reactions have been heart-warming enough to make me feel good that I am doing things right," she said.

"For me, reinvention is the name of the game. It has always been the case. For my role in 'Blue', I had to be fit and be in perfect shape since the role required good deal of underwater sequences. Now that's not something that you normally see a girl to be doing. Then again in 'Housefull', I had to be totally glam even though I played the role of a wife. All these films have helped a great deal for me personally," Lara added. However, despite all the accolades coming her way, Lara has very few roles in her kitty for the coming year."Well, all I can say is that you make the best of the choices that come your way. When I look back, it has been a good innings so far. Whether it is the films that you mention or even Billu which came last year, they all have been very special to me in my career. Lara will next be seen in filmmaker Sudhir Mishra's Aur Devdas and Farhan Akhtar's Don 2 - The Chase Continues. "Perhaps a few films may not have done well but as an actor they took me forward. These films gave me a chance to be seen in performance oriented roles," she said. "I would rather work in a film where I add value. I am not going anywhere in a hurry. Moreover, with the kind of appreciation that I have received, I am sure that good roles will of course come," Lara added. — PTI

Koffee Break
Live wire

Anusha Rizviournalist turned director Anusha Rizvi's directorial debut Peepli Live is finally here. The film has become the cynosure of attention thanks to its subject, eye-catching promos and the song Mehngai daayan

Lifestyle talks to Anusha about her experience of being a director and shooting with stars from Naya Theatre, a theatre company founded by legendary Habib Tanvir.

How confident were you about the subject of the film?

I was confident about Peepli Live which says something in a very subtle way. Its message is layered. It has an exciting story and a brilliantly constructed plot.

Is the audience today mature enough to understand the film like this?

Of course they are mature, it is a wonderful film which will engage the world cinema audience and Indian audience as well. This is an entertaining film, which is a small-town drama.

You are a city girl. How do you think up this subject?

I am familiar with rural life. I am from Qaimganj in Uttar Pradesh. Our family had shifted to Delhi but still retain connections with the places we come from.

Why have you chosen to cast several theatres actors?

We wanted actors who could relate to the script. And most of actors are from village theatres. They are experienced artistes.

Why the title Peepli Live?

It just happened. Lots of villages along the GT Road are called Peepli. In West Bengal and Rajasthan, you will find a thousand Peeplis.

How was your experience working with Aamir Khan?

My experience with Aamir was very good. One of the best producer I have worked with. He is wonderful producer who gave us complete freedom.

What next?

I have not yet decided but if I come across another good story. I will think about it.

—Dharam Pal

DT Cinemas is introducing Pipli Live activity in the city, where one can win an assured gift for the combo purchased from DT Cafe.

Back to the roots
Jasmine Singh

Hit Haryanvi movie Chandrawal is all set for its sequel

Usha Sharma with her crew. Photo: Pradeep Tewari

The art of good cooking and good movies lies in the right mix, with all ingredients tossed up in the right proportion. And regional cinema too has adopted the same formula.

In 1985, Haryanvi movie Chandrawal was declared a super-hit. Almost 25 years later, team Chandrawal comes together to device yet another hit formula for the sequel - Chandrawal 2. Surprisingly, they didn't have to scout a lot. "Nothing catches the fancy of people more than the grassroots culture and tradition, along with toppings of modernity," smiles Nishant Prabhakar, co-producer and director.

Walking down the memory lane, the lady who has been there and done it all as far as Haryanvi cinema is concerned, Usha Sharma, the leading lady of Chandrawal, will be producing Chandrawal 2. Looking closely at the slide show of her debut movie that was declared a blockbuster, Usha is excited to don the new role of the producer, and how she plans to fulfil her husband's dream.

"Chandrawal 2 is my husband, late Devi Shankar Prabhakar's project, which was hanging for a long time," shares Usha, who decided it was now or never. "I knew it wasn't going to be an easy task making and producing a movie, but then this was 'his' dream, and I wouldn't have found rest had I delayed it more." A trained kathak dancer, Usha on Monday formally gives a green signal to the project. "The auditions for the movie start August 27 and will go on till August 30. We will be zeroing-in on the cast of the movie - a total of 30 characters." On the criteria front, Usha is pretty clear on what she is looking for in people. "Theatre or screen experience is an advantage but we are open to new faces as well."

We wonder how she plans to repeat the success formula? "Chandrawal created quite a stir in the film industry when it was released. It came during the time when Haryanvi cinema was facing extinction," says Usha, trying to decode the success formula. "Big budget is just one part of a successful venture, but a movie is never successful without the artistes, who can understand and get below the skin of the character. Chandrawal captured the essence of Haryanvi culture and I will try to retain the cultural elements in the sequel too."

The movie will be directed by debutant Dinesh Tundwal, who has also written the script, and music composer JP Kaushik, who gave the music for Chandrawal, will do the music. The film will be co-produced by Nishant Prabhakar. "We would be auditioning at Indradhanush auditorium, Panchkula, and those interested can register with a fee of Rs 500. I would prefer people who are good with Haryanvi diction. This movie will also promote new talent in Haryana, Delhi and Chandigarh. After the auditions, we get on straight to making of the movie," he adds.

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Fun drive

Make your Sunday a fun day! The fun filled delighted Chevrolet 10 th Family Fun Car Rally is back with a bang in Chandigarh on August 22 and is the first among the four city tours which is being organised by Rashi Entertainment.

The rally will be flagged off on August 22 from Hotel Park View and will cross city roads to culminate finally at Hotel Park View itself.

The rally is famous for its several unique features that make it special for the participants. It maintains secrecy about the final winner till the last participant crosses the finish line. While allowing a total of four members from a family to participate, the high point of the rally is that it gives the participants an opportunity to pile up scores through randomly picking up points from sealed envelopes and general knowledge questionnaires available at the marshal booths scattered along the 60 km long route.

The winner of the rally is decided after adding up the points picked up by the participant from the various marshal booths (through luck and by answering general IQ. questions and searching the clues).

To make the rally more interesting all the participants are asked to decorate their car in the most attractive manner and also dress themselves up to contest for the Best Dressed Family. According to Mukesh Jain, director, Rashi Entertainment, "This annual rally organised by us has become a much sought after event for all car lovers. It holds the promise of fun, adventure and excitement all the way till the finishing point." — TNS

Spade work
Family tree
Satish Narula

Landscapists have made use of tree characters for planning gardens. The most important character is, however, the shape of the tree, others being its nature, whether evergreen or deciduous, flowering or foliage tree, scented flowers or otherwise and potential height, spread etc. In small gardens, there is not much scope of including trees. But a judicious use of techniques and right selection make it possible. Use round trees for such situations and also those that can be clipped to give shape. And this is possible with the following trees.

We can take pride in mentioning one of the very beautiful and well-disciplined trees, the Chalta, as this is an indigenous tree. It forms an umbrella-shaped canopy due to its erect nature and spreading branches. It can be a good selection for planting in the middle of the lawn. The crown can be raised up so that the grass can grow till the main stem. As the grass gets full sun from all sides, it grows successfully under this tree till the main trunk. Talk about the beauty and this tree is beauty personified. Every part of this tree is amazing. The bold, about a foot long, bright green serrated leaves (saw like) are shining and attractive. When it comes to flowering, the flower bud is almost tennis ball sized and as it opens, it spreads sweet fragrance too. The fruit is also large and hard. This tree is frost sensitive but in the confines of home gardens, there is not much danger from frost bite. The plant is propagated from seeds and these can be sown now, i.e. in monsoon. Technically, this tree is called Dillenia indica.

Another tree that can be mentioned in this context is Moulsary, also an indigenous tree. This tree also has spreading and rising braches giving it a perfect umbrella shape. Another advantage with this tree is that it can be pruned to give it a thick foliage growth. The best example of its beautiful display can be quoted of the famous Mughal Garden of Rashtrapati Bhawan where it occupies the maximum space. It has been clipped there to make a round topiary. Being indigenous, it is also a very hardy tree. The flowers are, however, insignificant. The tree bears red berries of seeds. It is a bit slow growing in initial stages but then picks up a fast pace as it grows. It is free from any serious insect or disease. It is also a suitable tree for an outside coffee shop where matching round benches can be placed under it.

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Bits & Bites
Forward with care
Roopinder Singh

When I first opened an e-mail account in the 1990s, it was a Hotmail account. I used to receive forwards from my friends, which I would actually open, read and spend time over. This was because of the novelty of the whole thing, we got so few emails every day that even something from an anonymous source was welcome.

How the time has changed. Today, at the top of the list of things that I just don't want others to share with me are e-mail forwards. It's not that I have something against them as such. We all get forwards and often we send forwards to others, but I am acutely conscious of the how much of a waste of resources they can be.

Some forwards are cute, but many make assertions, which are at unverifiable and often malicious. Heard about the latest offer from Microsoft that sounds too good to be true? It is. I also take exception to mails that say: "Please FORWARD to everyone you know". Sometimes, bad grammar and spelling is enough to alert me to Google it and find out more about the mail.

Got a mail that says, "This is not a hoax?" I would not bet my money on it. When I get a forward, I am curious to know if it is true. I want to test the claims being made by an anonymous stranger who sent the mail to my friend and me. Often when a mail makes a claim that I suspect, I go to one of websites that track down such things.

Snopes is a common default. Searching the content of the mail on "Snopes" often exposes a fake email as an urban legend. Another site, "Truth or Fiction" also exposes latest hoaxes, as does "Hoax Slayer".

Why do I go through this exercise? Because sometime I like a mail, I want to forward it to my friends, but I want to ensure that what I am sending is true. They will believe that because I sent it, the information must be correct, and thus my credibility is at stake here.

Now that I have found that the mail is OK, and I want to forward it, I still have some precautions to take. I click the "Forward" link in my web mail so that I have full editorial control over the mail and clean it before I sent it out.

What does that mean? Well, it means that I first change the subject and remove FW:….. automatically comes when you forward any e-mail. Sometimes, you see FW: FW: FW: which shows how many times the mail has been forwarded. On such a mail, the information is also repeated. I delete all that is not required so that my friends do not have to waste their time.

I also remove all the email addresses of other people who received the mail before me. I do not want their addresses circulating on the Net. I then send the mail to myself and use the BCC: (blind carbon copy) field for listing the e-mail addresses. This way those who receive the mail don't see other addresses, and I preserve the privacy of my friends.

What is it that I never forward or reply to? Chain letters, including those which portend to be about a cause, the email petitions. Why? An email petition talks about an issue and asks for your support by forwarding it to your friends. You do so, and thus add to a chain letter that contains hundreds, at times thousands of addresses, which can be harvested by spammers and others with malicious intent. Email petitions do not work and they just are a great scam.

My friends Gupi and Mandy send me forwards. They are often interesting and I like going thought them.

Recently, Gupi asked me: "How did you like my forward?" I happily admitted that I enjoyed it. "I knew you would," he retorted, "I only send you selected ones, which I know will be of interest to you."

Now, that's the kind of sharing I love, in which the person has taken care of your interest and protected your privacy. That's what we should all be like.

Jasmine Singh

With governments around the world, the Blackberry phone has become a target for its encrypted mail and messaging services. There seems too little impact on the buyer though!

What takes precedence - looks, style or security checks? The Blackberry phone has become a target for its encrypted mail and messaging services with governments around the world. India has given Research In Motion, the maker of BlackBerry, an August 31 deadline to comply with the request for access to encrypted corporate email and messaging services or else those services will be shut.

Now the question is…does this bother Blackberry users, encrypted or not? The phone is almost a fad; how many users are actually thinking about the problem? How many are aware of the problem? Would you do away with the smart phone if need be?

As users share their opinion on the same, we tell you what encryption is. Cryptography encryption is the process of transforming information (referred to as plaintext) using an alogrithm (called cipher) to make it unreadable for anyone except those possessing special knowledge, usually referred to as a key. In many contexts, the word encryption also implicitly refers to the reverse process…decryption, to make the encrypted information readable again (i.e. to make it unencrypted). Any info on this?

"I haven't even bothered to look at the problem," says Vivek Manchanda, 24, owner Hi-Tech Electronics, Sector-42. He adds, "And I am sure the users too aren't really reading too much into the problem. Even after the media higlighting the problem with Blackberry, I have sold 10 pieces. Users generally don't get into the nitty-gritties of technology. For them, if a mobile piece looks good and offers the required features, the buy is good." Vivek talks about the time, almost 2 years back, when Nokia has asked the users to exchange their old battery-dated phones with new ones due to some problem. "How many users actually cared to get their batteries exchanged? The same holds for Blackberry, till the time the government puts a ban, its sale would go on."

The 3G wireless networks, due in late 2010 or early 2011, are expected to boost interest in BlackBerry devices. India already has one mobile connection for every two of its 1.2 billion people and adds 16 million new subscribers a month! Right now, who's bothered about the hulabaloo, and who is looking at cyber security.

Sachin Khurana, city-based enterprenuer, does not find any drastic change with the users of Blackberry. "Half of the Indians are dependent on this portable office. Even when the government is talking about imposing a ban on the phone, the users are neither interested nor bothered. In fact, it is in favour of the users because nobody can decode the information sent and recieved on this phone."

Cyber security does ring an alarm bell for the government but for the ideal user, as long the text messages are sent through push mail, gaming is active, the camera gives a good picture clarity…all is well!

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DUAL role
Amitpal Singh Grewal

Today, dual SIM mobile phones are a rage as these give you the option of keeping two numbers active at the same time. You can even make and receive calls from two different networks at the same time!

These phones come in two categories - the standby dual SIM phone and active dual SIM phone. In the former, embedded dual SIM adapters are used (earlier a single SIM phone could be converted into a standby dual SIM phone with the help of an external adaptor, which was sold separately).

In the active dual SIM phone, both SIMs can be activated and put to use at the same time. And with these phones, you can switch off your official number while keeping your private number open for family and friends.

Dual SIM phones release us from the burden of carrying two mobile phones. The same handset can be used for official work and private use with separate numbers and bills. It is an ideal choice for frequent flyers, pilots, air-hostesses or merchant navy officers.

Standby dual SIM phone

In standby dual SIM phones, various types of adapters are available. All of them allow only one SIM to be active, and various ways of switching from one to the other is provided. Earlier, phones needed to be switched off to change SIM cards, but now one can switch SIM cards via a menu or by keying in a numeric code without switching off the phone.

Some adapters require the two SIM cards to be cut to size, fitted on to a special holder and inserted into the phone's SIM socket. But this can be quite risky, since you might just end up damaging the SIM card in the process. Other adapters don't require cutting or modifying the SIM card. The adapter has two slots for the SIM cards, and a small ribbon cable, which is hooked to a dummy SIM that mimics another SIM card.

Active dual SIM phones

This category allows both the SIMs to be active at the same time and calls can be received from either number at any given time. Normal GSM phones contain a single transceiver; dual-SIM phones must have dual transceivers, and need to display signal strength for both networks. A phone with a single transceiver cannot be converted to simultaneous dual-SIM operation; at most it can be turned into a standby dual SIM phone with the help of an adapter.

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Style light

Our home is the cocoon where we feel free. It's where we relax, by ourselves, or with our family and friends. It's the reflection of who we are, which means that every individual's interior is different. Philips LivingColors range matches individual tastes and interior styles. The Philips LivingColors Black is sober and chic. With its eye-catching, opaque, iconic shape and a sleek black remote, it is a symbol of elegance and sophistication. With its combination of great light effects and a great design, it's a jewel for the interior.

Philips LivingColors is an exciting new form of lighting for the home that puts endless colors at your fingertips, helping you to create striking light effects for different occasions, with just one press of a button. Simply by using the intuitive, touch-sensitive color wheel on the remote control, you can select one of over 16 million different colors to create a new atmosphere and bathe your home in truly personal colors whenever you want: whether you are having a romantic dinner for two, an evening with friends, sharing holiday pictures with your family, or just relaxing after a hard day's work.

Philips LivingColors lamps are based on advanced LED technology. The second generation long-lasting high-power led gives pure white light which is 70 per cent brighter, lasts much longer than traditional lamps and consumes much less energy. They include a color saturation mode and are dimmable, which ensures that you can create the perfect brightness, balance and intensity of light to create your personalized ambience. If you'd like the lamps to change colors automatically, just push a button on the remote control to switch to the color changing mode. For a great immersive experience connect up to six lamps via the remote control and enjoy the great atmosphere.

With Philips LivingColors Black, Philips takes the range one step further and, in addition to adjusting the lighting to match your atmosphere, it enables you to choose a Philips LivingColors design that matches your personal interior style.

Philips kidsplace range of child-safe lights

The collection is a range of child-safe lights that are designed around the function of lighting, but with a playful twist. Available in many fun designs, the Philips Kidsplace family offers direct and indirect lighting, with diffused effects, for a cosy bedroom environment that banishes the night monster and lets kids indulge in what they enjoy most - fun!

Created for use by children, the Philips Kidsplace luminaires collection features timeless designs that focus on the function of light and creatively integrate lamps into the designs. The entire collection is made to be easy for children to use, with child-specific ergonomics including switches that are incorporated within the body and easily accessible and operated by little hands.


Vivek's main lead

Bollywood actor Vivek Oberoi, who will soon tie the knot with Priyanka, daughter of senior Janata Dal (U) leader, Jeevaraj Alva, feels 'lucky and happy' to have her as the 'main lead' in his life.

"I feel I am really lucky and happy, my family and I are very happy. On a personal note, life is really good now, that she is the main lead in my life," Vivek said.

The couple's marriage is slated to happen this year in October.

When asked about his to-be-wife, the actor said, "She is really nice and an amazing person. We all are really happy.

She is really good." He said that his parents, Suresh and Yashodara Oberoi, had chosen the girl.

The 33-year-old actor, who is teaming up with Ram Gopal Varma after a gap of eight years, with Rakta Charitra, said, "It was a fascinating and incredible experience to work with my mentor again with whom I started my career." Their last film Company was released in 2002.

Directed by Varma, Rakta Charitra, is based on a true life story of slain political leader Paritala Ravi (Vivek Oberoi) and Maddela Cheruvu Suri (Surya Sivakumar).

The movie also features Shatrughan Sinha playing NT Rama Rao along with Kota Srinivasa Rao and Radhika Apte in other pivotal roles. — PTI

They 'Did' it!

Hillary Duff & Mike Comrie Hollywood beauty Hillary Duff and Mike Comrie are now officially husband and wife. The 22-year-old actor and the Canadian hockey player married Saturday during an intimate ceremony in Santa Barbara, California.

Dressed in a white mermaid gown by Vera Wang, the Lizzie McGuire star said 'I do' to the 29-year-old, in front of hundred of their closest family and friends. Duff was escorted down the aisle by her mother Susan while sister Haylie and four friends were bridesmaids.

The couple, who began dating in 2007, first met on a trip when they both visited a resort in Idaho.

Comrie proposed during a Hawaiian getaway in February this year, a move that came as a pleasant surprise to both Duff and her family. "I've never met anyone who can say a bad word about him. He's generous, caring and funny. We just laugh our heads off," Duff had said about her husband-to-be in an earlier interview. — PTI

Chronicle of Crazy Days

Actor Sadie Frost feels she became "out of control" after falling in love with Hollywood hunk Jude Law in the 1990s and it rocked her marriage to musician Gary Kemp.

The British star tied the knot with 'Spandau Ballet' star Kemp in 1988 and they had a son, Finlay, but their marriage was jeopardised when she met Law on the set of 1994 movie 'Shopping'.

The 45-year-old actor admits she felt a strong force of love for the 'Alfie star', but crushed the feelings to continue her married life with Kemp.

"I knew that by even entertaining thoughts of Jude, I was jeopardising an idyllic home life, the most secure relationship I'd ever had. I crushed my unwelcome ideas about Jude, but it wasn't easy," Frost says in her upcoming autobiography Crazy Days.

"The force of the love I felt for Jude and his intense ambition made me feel out of control," she writes in the memoir.

Frost later divorced Kemp in 1995 and married Law two years later. The couple went on to have three children before divorcing in 2003. — PTI

Some neighbourhood!

Pirates of The Caribbean star Keira Knightley has become the new neighbour of Hollywood heartthrob Johhny Depp after she bought a wine estate in the Provence region of France.

The 25-year-old actor bought the secluded estate so that she can have private getaways with boyfriend.

The couple had been on a wine-tasting trip to the Champagne-Ardenne region of France when they bought the small estate in the region.

Knightley paid $ 3 million for the five-bedroom countryside retreat.

"The house is incredibly private, small and cosy and they intend to keep it that way. Keira started moving in right after she completed her purchase earlier this summer.


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