Players in action
Bobby Deol and Sonam Kapoor, in Chandigarh to promote their upcoming film Players, share notes on the action-thriller

The official remake of The Italian Job minus the ‘Italy’ is set to hit the screens on January 6 and some ‘players’ from the film Players showed up in Chandigarh on Thursday.

A long wait minus the stars (Abhishek Bachchan got caught up in last-minute dubbing, Bipasha Basu is so unwell that she is on antibiotics, we are told)...but Punjab da puttar Bobby Deol and stylish Sonam Kapoor held the fort while promoting their upcoming film Players at Paras Down Town Mall, Zirakpur.

“It’s an official remake,” Bobby clears the air, happy to be in Chandigarh (sounds familiar) “and characters are very different than the original 2003 Hollywood flick”. Sonam, every inch a fashionista that she is, dons the role of a monitor to settle lensmen to begin the conference (did we mention there was no trailor, no music and no electricity for a bit). “I play Naina Briganza, a computer hacker,” she declares. “I do action sequences, drive fast cars and dance on glamorous songs,” she gives details.

The action thriller shot in Goa, New Zealand and Russia has some racy sequences but more difficult was to bear the sub-zero temperature, says Bobby, “There was this sequence that was to be shot on a goods train; forget action, standing in that cold was a huge challenge in itself.”

Sonam (she doesn’t get offended by being labelled as a ‘newcomer’) is happy that Mission Impossible 4 has done record business and that her father has had a role in it. But she is not eyeing Hollywood as of now. “Things work differently there. At the moment I don’t have time for it, but if something exciting comes my way, I am a game for it,” she says. While every other player is gold-digger in the film, Sonam is out for revenge.

Bobby, who plays an illusionist, is all-praise for the Abbas Mustan flick that he is sure looks great (he hasn’t seen the rushes either). Though we don’t see much of him on screen except Players in the coming year, he is busy putting some scripts together.

Sonam is working on her three next films including Bhaag Milkha Bhaag. “Milkha Singh did so much for sports in our country. I am honoured to be part of the flick,” she says. For Players, well, this action-thriller touted as one of the most expensive extravaganza of Bollywood, hits the screens on January 6, 2012. Abishek Bachchan and Bipasha Basu essay the role of con artistes in the movie. Bobby Deol has one request for us and the good-looking dude that he is, how can we ignore —“Please don’t see it on a pirated CD or download from the Internet. A film takes huge effort, so please come to see it in the theatres.”

Choice is yours…

All that jazz

Sonam Kapoor turned up wearing a jazzy black leather jacket with silver spikes on them, to go with tight-fitted trousers. Sonam, already tagged as a fashionista, is back with another look for the role of a computer hacker that she essays in the movie Players. It’s the look that her sister has designed for her; she sports glamorous attires that are not revealing. The costumes include very tight jeans and trousers. Says Sonam, “Though I’m not embarrassed to wear revealing clothes, but I guess the glam quotient can be increased with non-revealing, yet stylish clothes.” She adds, “In the movie Players you will see me wearing two different earrings — the typical Madonna-type look.”

Sonam would be seen wearing a lot of leathers, torn T-shirts and with a lot of kohl in her eyes. “This is a very different look and I’m sure young girls would like it. You can be covered from head-to-toe, but still sexy,” says Sonam. As a teenager even Sonam used to wear clothes similar to these, but used to escape her father’s angry looks! — Sabia Talwar

Going bananas
Ra.One, Ready up for worst film award at Golden Kela award

Shah Rukh and Salman Khan’s much hyped films Ra.One, Ready and Bodyguard are competing for the worst film trophy at the fourth annual Golden Kela awards, a spin off on Hollywood’s Razzies.

The awards, to be given in March, recognise and honour the best of the worst in Hindi cinema by audience poll. The awards are hosted by comedian Cyrus Broacha.

Other films in this list are Mausam, Singham and F.A.L.T.U, which has also won a worst actor nod for lead actor Jackie Bhagnani and the worst supporting actor nods for Angad Bedi, Puja Gupta and Chandan Roy Sanyal.

Ajay Devgn and Sanjay Dutt’s turn as Rascals has earned them a nomination in the worst actor category where they will be seen competing with Emraan Hashmi (Murder 2), Ranveer Singh (Ladies Vs Ricky Bahl) and Imran Khan (Mere Brother Ki Dulhan).

Worst supporting actors are Pratiek (Dum Maaro Dum) and (Aarakshan), Tom Wu (Ra.One) and the cast of the movie Pyar Ka Punchnama. — PTI

Offshore Tune
Gina, Shiela and Verlyn, members of the band Manila Mix, are here from the Philippines to entertain us
Manpriya Khurana

It’s been six years of touring, performing in cities spread over entire geography of the country. Pune, Goa, Mumbai, Kerala, Nagpur, Jaipur…been there done that. But what gets them excited is Bollywood star Akshay Kumar.

“He’s handsome, we love him and he’s the perfect action hero,” chorus Gina, Shiela and Verlyn, of the three-member band Manila Mix from Phillipines. Art and entertainment brings nationalities together, just as it’s brought them to Chandigarh for a period of six months.

The Filipino group is all set to perform Pop, Rock, Ballad, Hip-Hop at Hotel Hometel as part of the Christmas and New Year’s celebrations. “We perform all sorts of songs and tracks, right from English, pop, ballad, rock and Japanese, Korean, Spanish, to Hindi. We also perform some Malayalam and Tamil songs,” shares Gina. Bollywood music? “We know some of the old tracks and perform them — Aap Jaisa, Chura Liya, Made in India and the like. We don’t understand the lyrics but we know them.” It’s pretty much the same with omnipresent Punjabi music in this region of the country! “Oh, Punjabi music is upbeat and very peppy. We love the feel of the tracks and the beats that each song has.”

Switch over to hometown Philippines and there’s quite a difference. “Philippine music comprises ballads, slow and emotional songs.” Apart from it, music is an intrinsic part of the culture of the place. Needless to say, the need to learn it professionally was never felt. “In Philippines, people love music. Nobody there teaches you how to sing, you just know it.” They add, “With so many artistes around, it is difficult to make a name there in Philippines; let alone make it big. Therefore, it’s always better to travel and perform at different places.” At any given point of time, their kitty is updated with a list as wide and varied as a thousand songs! Those who’d want to hear their Punjabi tracks with a Filipino twang can catch up.

Legendary imprints

Bollywood actor Riteish Deshmukh, who is set to launch a Legends Walk in Mumbai, a Desi version of the famous Hollywood Walk of Fame, says he has already got the handprints of as many as 25 legendary actors of the Hindi film industry.

“Legends Walk will be a waterfront promenade which will have the hand impressions of the legends from our film industry. Trying to integrate technology for a better and wholesome experience at the LegendsWalk. We already have more than 25 legends, who have given their hand impressions,” Riteish wrote on micro-blogging site Twitter.

Riteish, son of Vilasrao Deshmukh, the union minister of science and technology and a former Maharashtra chief minister, has been able to get the hand impressions of the likes of Shashi Kapoor, Manoj Kumar, Sadhana and megastar Amitabh Bachchan.

“Thank you all for being a part of #LegendsWalk- @srbachchan sir, Jaya aunty (bachchah), Rajesh Khannaji, Dharamji, WaheedaJi, Sadhanaji, Manoj Kumarji, Vinod Khannaji, Salim (khan) uncle, Mithun Da, Shashi Kapoor saab, Rishi Kapoor sir, @iamsrk @akshaykumar @beingSalmankhan, Jeetuji (Jeetendra), Asha Bhosaleji, Asha Parekhji. #LegendsWalk thank you guys.” — IANS

Gyan Zone
The ‘in’ side
Christmas Colour

It's that time of the year when everything is bright and festive -Yes, it's Christmas! If you too want to bring the Christmas cheer into your homes, here is what you can do:

n It's always good to go with the typical Christmas colours, red, white, green, silver and gold but if you don't wish to make too many changes, go with your existing colour theme. Just make sure that you accessorise the tree and the living room in the same existing colour scheme.

n Get a tree. Choosing the size of the tree is up to you. If, for some reason, you're unable to get one, you can use twigs in a glass vase filled with baubles to hold them upright. Hang light weight decorations and ribbons, and you're all set.

n You must spread the Christmas decorations throughout the room rather than keeping them clustered in one corner.

n Use a lot of silk throw pillows around the room, preferably ones with Christmas designs. If you can't find those just tie the pillows with bright ribbons, like you tie a gift.

n Use a lot of colour in the form of throws and table mats.

n You can fill transparent jars with Christmas ornaments like glass balls to add a dash of colour here and there.

n If you have a collection of old Christmas cards, show them off by displaying them on a table top or hanging them all on a string across a wall.

n Trim door frames, window frames and the edges of mirrors with Christmas garlands and lights.

n Use a lot of candles in the room and tie your curtains with bells and bows.

n Christmas stockings are a very important part of the Christmas decorations and they can be hung either by the fireplace or under the Christmas tree as per tradition.

n You can hang snowflakes from the ceiling in varying lengths to create an amazing look.

n Remember to decorate your entrance and main door. Hang a wreath and add a few ornaments, ribbons, garlands and lights.

n Angels are considered auspicious, so add one to your tree and yes, don't forget the mistletoe!!

(Sukhmani is a Chandigarh-based interior & landscape designer)

Master Chef
In the Spirit of Things
Kandla Nijhowne

It's Christmas time, the temperatures are low and spirits are high! Time for fruity cakes and boozy punch! I'm elated for a different reason. I just stumbled, not in drunken stupor, upon the fact that the word punch is derived from the Hindi paanch! It was nicknamed so because it was made up of five ingredients. The drink was taken from India to Europe by Britishers of the East India Company in the 17th Century! With this thrilling khabar, lets "pack a punch" and go glug-glug-glug for further elation!

Caribbean Rum Punch

This delicious concoction is the traditional rum punch recipe used in the West Indies, passed down for years. The old rhyme goes: One of sour, two of sweet, three of strong, four of weak.' What this implies is clear, once you look at the quantities of ingredients below!

n 1 cup fresh lemon juice

n 2 cups sugar syrup

n 3 cups rum

n 4 cups orange juice

n 4 dashes bitters (optional)

n freshly grated nutmeg-a pinch per serving.


n To make the syrup, heat together a of sugar and 1¼ cup of water till the sugar dissolves. Reduce for 5-7 minutes. Cool and use.

n In a pitcher, combine lemon juice, sugar syrup, rum and orange juice. Add a few dashes of bitters and some grated nutmeg to taste.

n Serve chilled over ice and float some sliced fruit on the surface for garnish.

Warm Spiced Apple Punch (non-alcoholic)

n 2 x 1 litre packs apple juice

n 2 cinnamon sticks, plus 8 to garnish

n 12 cloves

n 8 strips orange peel

n 2-3 inch piece of ginger

n ¼ tsp ground allspice


n Scrape and grate the ginger, then squeeze out the juice, using a muslin cloth. You shall need about 3 tablespoons of juice.

n Put all the ingredients in a heavy saucepan and bring to a boil.

n Simmer, turn the heat down to low and leave for 20 minutes for the spices to infuse.

n Strain the punch and pour into 8 heatproof cups or mugs. Serve, garnished with cinnamon sticks.

n If you choose to, you can convert this into an alcoholic punch by adding 2 tablespoons of rum before pouring.

(Nijhowne is a Chandigarh-based culinary expert)

Arguments? Bring them on! 

Adolescents who argue with their parents may be showing encouraging signs of independence and are less likely to succumb to peer pressure to drink or use drugs, a new study has found.

Researchers at the University of Virginia found that teenagers who stand up for themselves when they disagree with their parents are far from being reckless and less likely to succumb to peer pressure. In contrast, those who readily bend to their parents' will and abandon their opinion in order to avoid conflict are less autonomous and may be less equipped to resist pressure from friends, the researchers found. —PTI

One for peace

It might be just the best drawing sheets of bright kids displayed on the wall. But the art and the budding artist's angle are hard to miss. The two-day art exhibition Peace by the students of Dikshant International School touches a lot of thoughtful subjects for children, right from class II to class VIII.

The thirty-five paintings and three sculptures on display bring out the artist in them while at the same time portraying a message about peace, right from global to inner peace in the family. The exhibition also invites the viewers to consider ways of promoting peace in their own lives. — Manpriya Khurana

An apple a day…

The newly-opened Apple Premium Reseller store at Sector 35 offer shoppers an opportunity to learn and experience Apple's innovative products and solutions in a welcoming environment. The new store will offer the complete range of Mac, iPad, iPhone and iPod along with a wide range of accessories.

A number of special offers and promotions will be available in the store. Customers who buy a Mac will get Bose speakers. Offer will remain open till stock last.

"We're very excited to open a new Apple Premium Reseller store," said Ramesh, CEO, Currents Technology Retail. "Customers can now purchase the full range of Apple products and accessories under one roof. We offer a superb personal service for home and business customers that includes installation and training." —TNS 

Happy Anniversary!

Hrithik Roshan and Sussanne Roshan celebrated more than a decade of togetherness recently. They celebrated with a cozy dinner and meeting family and friends.

Special screening

Hrithik Roshan and Karan Johar were among those lucky ones who watched Don 2 at a special screening on December 22. They are already praising Farhan and the movie.

Bad item

We know the item song Chikni chameli featuring Katrina Kaif is out. Here is what we think of it—bad song, Katrina is too clean and polished to do what is supposedly a rustic raunchy song. She doesn’t seem comfortable doing the steps. We expected better from KJo.

Heroine at work

Here is a picture of Kareena Kapoor rehearsing with Madhur Bhandarkar on the sets of Heroine. We think Randeep Hooda is also in the picture.

Twitter debut

Kareena Kapoor had stayed away from Twitter and social networking so far but she is going to start tweeting about Heroine under the name Heroine through UTV’s Twitter feed. Cool!

Lost love

Arjun Rampal lost his dog Demi a few days ago. He says that she will be missed sorely and that she finds peace wherever she is. God bless them all!



The Don connection

Priyanka Chopra The world is aware of the fondness Shahrukh Khan and Priyanka Chopra have for each other. But there is much more to it than actually meets the eye!

The much-awaited movie Don 2 reunites the two former Miss Indias—Priyanka Chopra and Lara Dutta—ten years after their debut movie Andaaz!

But there is something or rather someone that is common to both the beauties! It’s none other than the King of Bollywood! It was Shahrukh Khan who had actually crowned both girls, who brought international acclaim and made India proud.

While shooting for Don 2, Lara Dutta showed him the picture of contest where after the crowning; Shahrukh had posed for a picture with them. Shahrukh recently said, “Yeah, it is strange though I am the one who had crowned them, I have not really worked with them too much. It’s very ironic and weird that I never got to work with them and we are meeting after 10 years of their work, so it was quite nostalgic and then Lara showed me the picture. We had a great time talking about the contest. I feel extremely close to them.”

He also revealed that he normally doesn’t pose for the shutterbugs as he ends up getting involved in ‘controversies’. But for the first time in his career he had posed with three girls, Dia Mirza, Priyanka Chopra and Lara Dutta.

So there, PC and SRK’s bond started way back!



Rockstar rocks!
Bags five awards at a recent Bollywood award function

After the path breaking success of the first ever Big Star Entertainment Awards last year (phenomenal record breaking 5.78 TVR) the team was back again this year with yet another night full of glitz, glamour and entertainment held recently in Mumbai.

Shree Ashtavinayak Cinevision’s Rockstar, outshone from all its other contenders as it was one of the most nominated movies of this year. The movie was nominated in several categories like Most Entertaining Movie, Most Entertaining Actor in a Leading Role, Most Entertaining Director, Most Entertaining Song, Best Playback singer Male etc.



Stunning secrets

Kate Beckinsale Actress Kate Beckinsale says it takes a whole lot of people to make her look as stunning as she looks at red carpet events.

The 38-year-old Pearl Harbor actress insists she needs a whole “village” of people to help her look tip-top for public appearances.

Referring to Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler, she said: “I don’t roll out of bed like this. It takes a village. I tend to wake up looking like Steven Tyler, then somebody comes to help.”

Beckinsale has a 12-year-old daughter Lily with former partner Michael Sheen. She is currently married to director Len Wiseman. But at her age, she looks fit as a fiddle thanks to yoga, which gives her a lot of relaxation.

“There’s a carrot at the end — I get to lie down for 10 minutes. If that part didn’t exist, I wouldn’t do it. I always hated the idea of it - yoga and golf are similar in that people can become obsessive and boring about it. I never thought that would be me, but I do feel a lot better (for doing it]. And a happy side effect is that it lifts my bottom,” she added. — IANS



Hot newbies!
We take a look at the newcomers (absolutely new and one film old) who made a mark this year!

Nargis Fakhri in Rockstar

She was super lucky to do this film. She looked gorgeous and she was perfectly cast in her role. We don’t know whether she is a good actress or not, but with Ranbir’s acting and Imtiaz’s direction and all her hard work, she was good in her role and had screen presence.

Shraddha Kapoor in Luv Ka The End

She owned this film which rested on her shoulders. It was a fun and fast film and she was excellent in it. She looks good, can dance, and emote.

Kajal Aggarwal in Singham

The Mumbai-born girl came back from the South film industry and made a feisty debut in this hit film.

Poorna Jagannathan in Delhi Belly

This was a guy film and she had a significant role in it. The unconventional actress pulled off her role with effortless ease.

Tia Bajpai in Haunted 3-D

We hated the movie (big hit!) but Tia was a sport to do the rather bold role.

Kriti Malhotra in Dhobi Ghat

She had a haunting presence in the movie. Her track was very interesting and she was lovely in her role.



Another custody battle

Anthony Singers Marc Anthony and Jennifer Lopez will reportedly fight a custody battle over their three-year-old twins Max and Emme.

The former couple, who split in July after seven years of marriage, had an amicable arrangement where Lopez was the primary carer of kids.

According to sources, Anthony “hit the roof” when he saw pictures of Lopez’s new boyfriend Casper Smart bonding with the children. He now wants joint custody. “It caused a huge blow-up. He going back on his word and saying he wants joint custody,” said a source. — IANS

Chatter Box
Second time lucky

 Swapnil Joshi Swapnil Joshi who divorced his first wife Aparna in 2009 married Leena Aradhye on December 16 in a private ceremony. Surprisingly, Leena also happens to be a dentist like his first wife. We caught up with Swapnil tell us about his wife, marriage and more…

Tell us about your wedding?

Well, it was something that we had been planning for a while. We wanted to keep it a low-key which is why I never really spoke about it.

What can you tell us about your wedding and rituals?

It was a Hindu-Marathi marriage. We got married according to all the rituals. It was a very private affair at a hotel in Aurangabad. Only the members of both the families were present.

Tell us about your wife Leena.

She hails from Aurangabad. She works as a dentist and now she is my wife. (Laughs)

What are the qualities that you like about her?

She’s down to earth. She has family values and she is a great person. She’s everything that I want in my wife.

How would you describe marriage?

Marriage is when two people who love each other come together and seek blessings of God and their family members so they can spend their rest of the life together.

They say marriages are made in heaven, do you agree?

Of course, they are made in heaven. It’s all destined. You only know it after time decides it for you.

What are your plans for honeymoon?

Well, we have got some plans. But I am afraid I cannot give the details.

Will your life change after marriage?

Yes, it definitely will. I will have to become more responsible and maintain a balance. Earlier, I could be out late or come back any time. Now, I will have to balance it as I have a family. My goals in life will also change.  



Who is the chosen one?

With just three weeks left for Bigg Boss’ grande finale, the channel Colors’ is all set to introduce the wild card entry. Three evictees Shonali Nagrani, Mahek Chahal and transgender Laxmi Narayan Tripathi were the chosen ones but latest buzz claims that sexy Mahek will be the one.

Now, the six contestants — Sky, Juhi Parmar, Sunny Leone, Amarr Upadhyay, Siddharth Bharadwaj and Mahek will fight till the finish. —HRM

Astro Turf
p Khurrana

ARIES: Keep in mind that situations change and lucky breaks can be just around the corner. Increase your knowledge in new areas. Excellent time for starting a correspondence course. Tarot message: Lack of confidence may end you in losses. Lucky colour: Coffee. Magic number: 28

TAURUS: Take criticism constructively and accept praise graciously. Make the most of this day because there is plenty of work tomorrow. Money problem is likely to arise. Tarot message: Don’t make hasty decisions as it could lead to a waste of time and money. Lucky colour: Burgundy. Magic number: 61

GEMINI: Your chivalrous behaviour strikes the right note with lovers. Pack up your all cares and woes. Influential people can be contacted without too much trouble. When working alone, you will fare best. Tarot message: Don’t waste an opportunity by being impulsive. Lucky colour: Golden brown. Magic number: 33

CANCER: Arguments at home are likely to erupt. Career women will be in the lime light. Be a little more tactful and considerate. Businessmen should examine new ideas for making money. Tarot message: Learn from past experiences and don’t repeat the mistakes again. Lucky colour: Beige. Magic number: 28

LEO: If you have been feeling house bound, arrange an outing with your partner. Loved ones are unlikely to make special demand upon you. Studies could help you gain a promotion. Tarot message: Be articulate to prevent people from making their own conclusions. Lucky colour: Peach. Magic number: 65

VIRGO: Show your love to close ones through action rather than empty promises. Be careful while signing agreements. Family members may require your assistance. The day will end on a fairly optimistic note. Tarot message: Dare to accomplish difficult tasks. Lucky colour: Yellow. Magic number: 27

LIBRA: If something is already on your calendar, postpone it for a later date. It’s time to impress your boss. You will be feeling competent to deal with work that requires creativity. Employment activities are lucrative. Tarot message: Don’t do anything at the cost of your health. Lucky colour: Forest green. Magic number: 39

SCORPIO: Decisions may involve a journey overseas, committing to a formal course of education or joining a religious community. Older people should take care of health. Tarot message: Make compromises outside and come to terms within yourself. Lucky colour: Deep red. Magic number: 25

SAGITTARIUS:Think about the cost to the family budget next time you spend on entertainment or luxury items. You can plan a profitable business trip. Those interested in modelling will get a suitable break. Tarot message: Lack caution can leave you in losses. Lucky colour: Pink. Magic number: 44

CAPRICORN: Household expenses seem to be pretty well covered now. But pleasurable indulgence might be eating into domestic expenses. Do not take an impulsive decision. Tarot message: You shall prevent a lot of trouble by taking timely action. Lucky colour: Black. Magic number: 55

AQUARIUS: Investment in property may be possible. A detailed accounting process lets you know what you can afford at the present situation. You may neglect your health due to busy schedule. Tarot message: Think carefully before taking any action. Lucky colour: Purple. Magic number: 64

PISCES: Make the day enjoyable and forget about the work. Some of you may lose interest in career and will feel faded about future prospects. Students interested in competitive sports may be selected. Tarot message: Do not swing away from the course you have charted so far. Lucky colour: Orange. Magic number: 46

The Year Ahead
Madan Gupta Spatu

If your birthday is December 23...

Today’s birthday is not a bad day to unwind, and reflect on your life’s journey. Prudence is important. Those born after 1980, must avoid being malicious or arrogant. Try to control your instinct and wait for the right time.

Be a bit impulsive for a short time and consider it an experiment in spontaneity. You might feel a little impatient about attaining a certain goal. Unfortunately, things are apt to slow down now. Organisational involvements can now offer stimulation through new ideas, outlooks and projects. 2012 is a good time for gaining emotional poise and finding your personal tolerance level when dealing with stress. Projects close to your heart will materialise. Mood: Emotionally vulnerable at the beginning of 2012, cheerful later.

Compatible signs: Libra and Aries.

Lucky colours: Chocolate and Corn silk.

Lucky days: Tuesday and Thursday.

Lucky numbers: 4, 9, 12, 40 and 40.

Lucky gem: Onyx. Lucky flower: Petunia

Surinder Kapoor ( December 23, 1925 – September 24, 2011) was a Bollywood film producer and was the president of the Film and Television Producers Guild of India from 1995 to 2001. His three sons, Boney, Anil and Sanjay, are also involved in the film industry. He was born in Peshawar, British India. His daughter, Reena, is married to Sandeep Marwah of Marwah Films and Video Studios. He started his film career as a secretary to actress Geeta Bali.

HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | E-mail |