Chasing love

Shooting in real locales, including London, a love story highlighting the problems of young Indians living abroad, Rab Se Sona Isshq claims to be the first youthful, cross-continental story on telly

Kinnari Mehta.
Kinnari Mehta. Photo: Parvesh Chauhan

Premise: Beautiful Saahiba deserted by the man of her dreams on the very day of her wedding.

What follows: A cross-continental chase. Girl follows her love to London.

Fierce competition rules the telly screen. Rab Se Sona Isshq is Zee TV's latest soap trying to break free of all the stereotypes. Moving away from the closed door politics to begin with, this soap takes the audience to real locations—Punjab and London.

On Friday, the cast along with its producer shared their take on the larger than life serial that all of them are in love with.

The risk taker

For Kinnari Mehta, it's the seventh show for Zee and she aspires to produce 70 more. With her latest, she is trying to achieve something that probably hasn't been tried before. "We will simultaneously be shooting in Mumbai as well as London as the show goes on air. The chips from different locations will fly to our technological base while we coordinate different ends," says Kinnari who has total faith in her competent team. Just over with shooting in and around Chandigarh, she is looking forward to the London phase where she goes along with the lead actors. Is it all worth it? "Well, if I have to stand out in the crowd, I have to give something different," she says.

It's been most amazing to shoot here. I have gone at the eleventh hour with my requirements. Not only were those fulfilled but also I got to hear, 'Thank you nahi bolna ji, yeh Punjab hai'. I will take such warm memories from here and return again for sure!~

Kinnari Mehta, producer, Rab Se Sona Isshq

In this attempt to be different, they have picked a storyline that deals with challenges that present generation faces: choice between career and love. London base opens another dimension, migrants dealing with dreams versus real life out there.

And, that's not all. The show will have its own music in Sufiana tinge inspired by the likes of Bulleh Shah, Reshma and Abida Parveen. "This is another first. We will have a rock band in the show performing songs pertinent to the situations," says Kinnari who agrees that few episodes on the show will return to close door drama, "But, it's going to be the story of a daughter not the regular daughter-in-laws our telly usually tells."

The ladies’ man

Ranvir, who leaves a comfortable life back home as well as his love to follow his London dream, is being played by Ashish Sharma. With a serial Chandragupta Maurya and a movie Love Sex Aur Dhokha to his credit, who is Ashish in real life? In his oh-so-charming ways answers this dude, "Allow me to say I am a ladies’ man. And, that's what makes Ranvir a lovable character that I play!" Kinnari further elaborates, "During auditions Ashish clicked. And, our very young girls team carried on the look test for hours, changing clothes, clicking and giggling all the time. Zee also gave a go ahead instantly, such is his charm."

Why such grandeur, when the audience look for but a simple, interesting story, a journo asks. "Well, London is central to the story. It is a story that many can relate to. Choices we make, unintentionally hurting those around and where our choices take us on," says Ashish who plays a rather popular, loved guy in his own village who leaves it all to pursue his dreams to end up doing menial jobs to survive in a foreign country.

Damsel in distress

Ekta Kaul, who plays lovelorn Saahiba, is a beautiful Kashmiri girl. And, that's what show producers were looking at. A biotechnologist who worked as a marketing person for sometime, she is taking life a day at a time in this new world. The journey has been challenging so far, she admits, "I am so new to acting. Few workshops helped. But still I am not as comfortable as the other cast who have worked in the field before," says Ekta who really appreciates that her cast cooperates when she takes time preparing for the shots and has to take retakes. Does she resemble her character onscreen? "Not really. I am completely reserved and an introvert, unlike Saahiba." Each day has not been easier than the previous one, admits Ekta who wants to carve her own niche in the world. "Right now, with so much riding on the team, I try to satisfy myself with my work first, and, then my team. Will see where life takes next."

The third angle

Daljeet is another significant character in 'Rab Se Sona Isshq' to whom his family's happiness matters the most. It's played by Kannan Malhotra who has few serials to his credit, including 'Geeta Ka Dharamyudh', many commercials and four Malyalam movies. Convincing his business family to try out his luck in acting was tough but he somehow managed. Still not well-versed in Malyalam, he was pulling it off well, when his parents asked where he does he work for he was hardly seen on screen. And, that's what made him pick up the telly. A happy, supportive family now to back him, Kannan is giving his best shot. "Unlike me, the character I play is reserved, with so many days of shooting, I have almost started living in that mode," says Kannan who holds a graduation in tabla. Music is what he loves and is pretty open to other options.

“Rab Se Sona Isshq is the biggest we have ever launched," says Usha Thomas, deputy vice president, channel promotions, Zee. Well, check out when it's launched next month!

Zoom on—Chandigarh
Manpriya Singh

From Bagrian pind to Nabha Haveli to the farmhouses within the vicinity of Chandigarh—film crews come looking for these destinations and more

Many a mustard fields has always brought in B-town directors with their cast, crew and cameras in tow. Throw in either a tube-well and conical mounds of chaff or other paraphernalia suggesting pre-harvest art and voila, the film is replete with the rustic touch necessary to take care of the world premiere and Indian Diaspora!

The city has always managed its fill of the star dust, courtesy never ending locales and sprawling farms.

"Chandigarh is a hit in more ways than one. First being its nearness to so many farmhouses and villages and the areas located within the city itself," shares Sunny Sheoran, production controller, The Theatre Army.

"In Punjab, Chandigarh is in high demand, because of its nearness to practically everything. Five star hotels where you can make the cast stay, half an hour's drive to the fields, hills, farmhouses on the Zirakpur road…But if the script demands an extreme rural set up which traditional elements and phulkari then Amritsar and Patiala come the second and particular places like the Nabha Havelli," shares Gurang Sharma, a pass-out of the Department of Indian Theatre and now production manager.

Adds Sunny, "In the past few months, we assisted the shooting of as many as four or five films. All of them explored the private farms and farm houses. Some of them were shot around Mullapur. There are these villages towards Kurali, Wajidpur and Majjri that are quite a hit because of the different locales available."

Then comes Patiala, the city replete with the majestic feel, though in parts and pieces. He adds, "For Pinky Moge Waali we had a two- month schedule in both Patiala and Chandigarh. Then for the movie Sur Khuab, which is a cross between Hollywood and Punjabi movie, there was a 10 days of shooting schedule around Kurali."

That is not the end of it. Yet another, Quissa, starring Irfan Khan, banked on the backdrops in the nearby Rani Rayepur, Haryana.

In between, there is understandably no dearth of regional cinema and small screen programmes being shot in the extended suburbs and locations.

Among other movie crews, who can forget this year's Kathryn Bigelow's Zero Dark Thirty, when Chandigarh's Sector 15 market turned to Lahore. Shares Darshan Aulakh of Darshan Aulakh productions, "Chandigarh is in demand for a number of reasons. First, its wide roads and the plush houses. Then, we also have heritage buildings and landmark places like the lake, gardens, official buildings et al."

Before even the right road is zeroed down on there's a lot of sifting going on at different places simultaneously. Shares Gaurav Sharma, line producer, "When the movie directors or other people in charge feel, that certain scenes and sequences in the movie can be shot here, they contact us and tell their requirements. This communication can happen either over the phone or over email, sometimes they also send us the reference pictures. Then we give them the options, send them the pictures of real locations."

Wait, it hasn't ended yet. "Then one person from the crew, either assistant director or the director himself and a few other people, like a cameraman come and do a recee and only then they finalise things." At times, the entire process actually gets as difficult as it sounds. He adds, "The Chandigarh Administration easily gives permissions for movie shoots. But that's not the case with the Punjab government. They can be quite difficult to take necessary permits from." Permit issues notwithstanding, even the most demanding ones are ready to queue up. Adds Gaurav, "They basically have two requirements, they need big havelis for which Nabha haveli is quite a hit. Then the villages of Punjab to represent Punjabi families in B-town movies. There's this Bagrian pind on the Nabha-Malerkotla road which fits into a lot of scripts."

Doc talk
Sleep well
People sleeping for six hours are likely to become obese
Dr Sumit Jain & Nishta Pandey

Sleep is a natural state of rest for the mind and body in which eyes are usually closed and consciousness is completely or partially lost.

A duration of 8-10 hours of sleep helps to maintain one’s body weight. Sleeping too little is related with obesity.

Why sleep?

Sleep is a time when the body releases higher level of growth hormone which helps in the utilisation of fat. Fat cells release leptin to the blood stream which act as a natural appetite suppressor. Sleep also slows stomach movement which helps reduce acidity which indirectly reduces hunger. Normal sleep not only benefits your digestion but also your heart and brain. The chances of high blood pressure and heart attacks are reduced by more than 50 per cent. Early onset of memory loss is also reduced with sleeping.

No sleep, all gain

An abnormal sleep is the main cause of weight gain and weight loss. People getting 6 hours of sleep per night are more likely to become obese than those getting 7-9 hours. When you do not sleep enough, the body is stressed because of your undue work stretch and hormonal changes that take place in your body. There is an increase in cortisol level to combat the stress which causes fat storing. Leptin is either reduced or your body becomes resistant and the stomach also releases gastrin which ultimately causes hunger. All the above reasons increase the food intake which causes obesity. The extra hours of wakefulness also leads to unnecessary eating, muscle fatigue and even poor work outs.

So it is also true that sleep stops or at least reduces the feeling of hunger and that is why we go for much longer period of time without eating while sleeping.

Weak link

Many a time excessive emotional stress experienced with an anxiety disorder can cause many symptoms such as lack of sleep, abdominal pain, diarrhea and nausea which often cause a decrease in calorie intake and weight loss, but rather than weight loss it is weakness that one suffers. You may even develop ulcers in your mouth and stomach.

(Dr Jain is MD Medicine and Pandey M Sc, Food & Nutrition)

Astro turf
P Khurrana

ARIES: The Knight of Swords gives you a new vision but overindulgence will lead to trouble. Be attentive toward the ones you love, and let bygones be bygones with those who have upset you in the past. Tarot message: Your determination to succeed will pay dividends. Lucky colour: Saffron.

Magic number: 50

TAURUS: The Princes of Cups infuses you a youthful disposition so you will be flirtatious, but be careful not to ignore or hurt the one who counts most in your life. Love can take a turn if you aren't thoughtful. Tarot message: Must learn to accept responsibility for self and others. Lucky colour: Silver grey. Magic number: 44

GEMINI: You won't be able to count on anyone. Be responsible and you will start the day on the right foot. Perhaps one particularly attractive person will show that you can mix business with pleasure.

Tarot message: Set the pleasant set of events into motion.

Lucky colour: Sea green.

Magic number: 35

CANCER: It's time to clear the air and rid yourself of all the burdens you've been carrying on your shoulders. A social event or gathering might put you in touch with some interesting people. Tarot message: Use your instinct to get into the top circle of power.

Lucky colour: Deep red.

Magic number: 46

LEO: Recent professional setbacks can easily be turned into triumph. Don't yield

to temptation. You will not get away with wrongful doings, so don't even try. Real estate matters may suffer. Tarot message: Don’t be dismissive of advice from young people.

Lucky colour: Pink.

Magic number: 25

VIRGO: You are on a winning streak. Play the odds, but don't bet what you can't afford to lose. You are more than ready to make a

change. Love and romance will have special flavour. Tarot message: Be articulate to prevent people from making their own

conclusions. Lucky colour: Yellow.

Magic number: 39

LIBRA: Today your mind should be on money, reveals the Magician. Attend any event that will place you with people you find stimulating. A Cancerian surprises you with a generous gift. Tarot message: Do not divest assets or transact in uncertain matters.

Lucky colour: Sky blue.

Magic number: 48

SCORPIO: Don't let anyone make you feel guilty. Someone wants to ruin your plans. Stay calm and refuse to let anyone get

the better of you. Plans are likely to be changed at the last minute, so have a backup plan. Tarot message: Balance in all aspects is recommended. Lucky colour: Peacock green. Magic number: 63

SAGITTARIUS: Nine Cups, full of light lotus blossoms, greet you today as loving relationship flower with commitments. The day headed your way with great new possibilities. Avoid romantic entanglements. Tarot message: Lay emphasis on spiritual needs.

Lucky colour: Metallic grey.

Magic number: 28

CAPRICORN: You will dazzle everyone if you put yourself in the mainstream today. This is a perfect time to entertain or to let others entertain you. A chance to do things a little differently will lead to changes. Tarot message: Don’t forsake a new learning opportunity because of pride. Lucky colour: Turquoise. Magic number: 56

AQUARIUS: Be careful not to do anything that might get you into trouble. Going away for the weekend or visiting good friends will be a great way to bring in the

new day. Students might receive a job offer. Tarot message: Plan your life to avoid the in-built delays that come your way. Lucky colour: Peach. Magic number: 27

PISCES: You can have all the fun you want, but make sure you have someone you can count. There is a danger that you may take on more than you can cope with.

Tarot message: Yet work could pose certain minor difficulties but don’t worry.

Lucky colour: Rainbow pastels. Magic number: 30

The year ahead
Madan Gupta Spatu

If your birthday is June 10...

You can expect growth in career. Your official contacts will increase. Communication problems will be evident in personal life. With proper self-assessment, you will enjoy good finances and career. Stress may pose a problem. The year will be good for business, especially in real estate. There will be no distractions or obstacles. Those who decide to change their jobs will do well. In July 2012, you can get a taste of change in your life, and a desire to upgrade your life entirely. In December, you will experience sluggishness, passiveness and the desire to move away from problems and work. Financial issues will require special attention. Many people will experience temporary difficulty with money, but it is not advisable to solve financial problems very quickly and dramatically All personal relationships will be emotionally coloured, nobody will remain indifferent and apathetic to love. This year is a golden opportunity to advance your education. Go ahead and fill out several applications. The important thing is to start seeking scholastic opportunities now, while you're feeling optimistic.

Holding yourself to your own exceptionally high standards can lead to a high quality of work, but, it could also be holding you back. Do not waste your time trying to warn others, when so few people are willing to listen. Remember the lessons that you learned from your mistakes. Do not be afraid to apply the breaks. If the group looks like it is moving in a wrong direction, do not be afraid to pull away.

Chronic diabetes patients need caution and regulate your food habits. You will be vulnerable and catch diseases. You shouldn’t become hypochondriac, but go to the doctor’s if you don’t feel well, and don’t postpone it. Venus has been asking questions of your heart, whether you can experience the ideal in real life. It's a week to take a bold move in your love life.

Mood: Stable

Compatible signs: Leo, Capricorn

Lucky colours: Black, dark grey

Lucky days: Monday and Saturday.

Lucky numbers: 5, 6, 18, 21, 32

Lucky flower: Red rose. Suggestion on birthday: Donate halwa at a religious place.

Known for his large audiences at various live shows Mika Singh (June 10, 1977, Durgapur born as Amrik Singh) shares his birthday with you. He shot his maiden album Sawan Mein Lag Gayee Aag in 1998. He has done many film songs which include Singhh is Kinng, Mauja hi Mauja, He has also participated in reality shows as a judge. He remains in media due to controversies. Mika made a film titled Mitti and composed the music of movie. The number 4, which is indicator of Rahu in his birth date, keeps him in controversies. He must avoid such incidents. He also enters his 36th year, the year 2012-13 is likely to prove a hit in the singing field.

The ‘in’ side
Theme for a dream balcony

Just because you don’t have a backyard does not mean you can’t make the most of your outdoor space. Even the tiniest balconies can be converted into a tranquil oasis. Don’t just use your balconies to store your junk, mops and buckets. Instead, use your balconies to have your breakfast in the morning, read a book or unwind after a long day’s work. Plan it out as to what you would like to do there and get decorating. Here are some tips to help you on your way:

  • Think of a theme and go with it. You may choose a modern chic look or a traditional one or you may just decorate around your favourite colour.
  • Be careful while you decide on the flooring. You can have a light coloured floor if you go with the modern theme or rough terracotta tiles to go with the traditional look. You may even use wood decking to go with both themes.
  • You will definitely need seating to enjoy the view from your balcony. Depending on the size you can go for a table and a few chairs, loungers, a swing or a hammock. If space is a problem, build a multipurpose bench. Make sure your furniture is waterproof and durable and blends with your theme.
  • Any balcony is incomplete without plants. Use fancy containers to plant them in and also hang a few window boxes with bright coloured flowers. Make sure the containers are uniform or they will give a cluttered look. Hang baskets, creepers or vines to add interest. You can even grow a few herbs or vegetables.
  • If you have a concrete floor, you can add a dash of colour in the form of an outdoor rug or carpet. Spread the same colours all over your balcony through cushions and a table cover. You can even alternate shades and hue of one colour.
  • Add appropriate lighting to create a dramatic effect. Mix big and small hanging lights, post or floor lights or party lights matching with your theme. Candles can be used to add a soft glow. Paper and glass lanterns add charm wherever installed. Solar lights are another great option for balconies. Make sure that the overall lighting is subtle.
  • Once everything is in place decorate the balcony with outdoor statues or wind chimes.
  • You can even hang art pieces on the walls. A water feature is always an added bonus.

Keep in mind that just like indoors, outdoor decor must also have a focal point and one must never over decorate.

  • Add shading in such a way that it allows the winter sun to come in and the harsh summer sun is blocked. Use canopies or fancy umbrellas.
  • To add a bit of privacy you can even consider using a bamboo fence or if allowed, use grills.

(Sukhmani is an interior & landscape designer)

Chatter box
Double celebrations

The soap queen of Indian television celebrated her birthday recently and graciously turned 37. At the 11th Indian Telly Awards, she won the Special Award for making a successful foray into movies from television. So, it was double celebration for the Kapoor khandaan.

Heartbreaking moments on Bade Acche…

Get ready to see some heartbreaking moments and twists and turns in the upcoming episodes of Bade Acche Laggte Hai on Sony. Priya (Saakshi Tanwar) has already taken all the blame by telling the police that she is the owner of the company. While on her way to the police station, the police van will meet with an accident. Later on, Ram (Ram Kapoor) will get to know that Priya has died in the accident. He will be heart broken. Tune into Sony to catch the drama.

Spiltsville for Pratyusha

The diligent bahu of Colors’ show Ballika Vadhu has broken up with her off-screen boyfriend, Makrand Malhotra. Pratyusha Banerjee confirmed that things had turned sour between the couple and they have split. She says that she wants to focus on her career.

Ravi and Sargun in Nach Baliye

If everything goes well, the lovely couple Ravi Dubey and Shargun Mehta will be seen dancing together in the upcoming season of popular celebrity dance reality show Nach Baliye. Initially, Nach Baliye was supposed to hit the screens in August but it has got postponed and will air only by year end.

Twist in Byah…

Sony Entertainment Television had garnered much attention and curiosity over its new show Byah Hamari Bahu Ka. Currently, the plot is revolving around Paulomi’s (Benaf Dadachanji) engagement with Krish (Gaurav Khanna). But there’s is a twist where Krish will fall for Rajnibala (Shrenu Parikh) and will propose her for marriage. This will leave Paulomi heart-broken and shattered.

Happy go lucky

Career graph: Deblina Chatterjee
Career graph: Deblina Chatterjee

Deblina Chatterjee who is presently seen in Sajda Tere Pyaar Mein on Star Plus as Aaliya is ambitious and hard-working. The talented actress says that she’s happy the way her career has been shaping up. We catch up Deblina to tell us more about her…

How did you get the role of Aaliya?

I’m originally from Kolkata but moved to Mumbai three years back to pursue a career in modelling. After doing a Bengali film, I went for an audition and the channel selected me to play the role of Aaliya. I felt on top of the world. It was like a dream come true as it gave an opportunity to showcase my acting talent. My mother and sister are my biggest source of encouragement.

If not an actor, what would you have been?

If not an actor, I’d have been an HR manager. I wanted to become a model but soon after moving to Mumbai I bagged a role.

Your dream role would be…

My dream role is to play a character like Kajol in Kuch Kuch Hota Hai and I want to be as gracious an actress as Madhubala.

Are you an introvert or extrovert person?

I am an extrovert by nature and have lot of friends. But my sister is my best friend.

Your message to fans…

I would like to thank all my fans for the love and appreciation. Please keep supporting me in the future as well. It motivates me to do better work. — HRM

Big round of applause

Do you want to work for humanity but do not know where to start and how to go about it? Actor Rahul Bose's humanitarian contributions are just as well known as his contribution to Indian cinema. The non-controversial actor tells us about the six different NGOs he is associated with so that you can decide the kind of charity work you want to do.

With Oxfam International, I work for the education of the poorest children in India.

With UNICEF, I work for malnourished children. 60 million children in the country go to bed hungry and we work towards providing them with sufficient, nutritious food.

With Akshara Centre, I am working with 90 Muslim girls teaching them about gender equality

My work with Breakthrough is all about equality, human rights and dignity of the individual through entertainment.

My association with Citizens for Justice and Peace is strictly for communalism and secularism. We look after victims from bomb blasts and natural calamities and take initiatives to make sure everyone from all castes and communities is treated equally.

The Foundation is my own NGO. You can check the website at to see the work we do.

One of our initiatives is educating six children from Andaman and Nicobar Islands in a school in Rishi Valley, near Bangalore. They will study there for seven years. They have five years left to study. Another initiative is for 'victims of childhood sexual abuse'. Within one year, we wish to make considerable improvement.

On the tiger’s trail

Rumours about Salman Khan being a very fierce competitor when it comes to his films, seem to be turning into a reality now. The actor makes it a point to ensure that each and every film of his is promoted to the utmost and he is personally involved in the campaigns. And he generally chooses an auspicious day – Eid to launch his films.

It has been found out that Akshay Kumar’s movie Joker and Salman’s Ek Tha Tiger were scheduled to release around the same time. But Akshay suddenly decided to withhold his film’s release and let Salman take the spotlight!

Ek Tha Tiger is expected to gross Rs 250 crore in its first week. The promos are very promising and this is Salman's first film with YRF. Joker stars Sonakshi and Akshay, is directed by Shirish Kunder, and will release later this year or early 2013. The movie is in post-production at the moment because of the three-dimensional feature. Seems like no one wants to mess with Salman Khan.

Stylish foot forward

Today Metro Shoes has opened its second store in Chandigarh. Targeted at the entire family, the product range at Metro Shoes will feature style, quality and the latest international trends that appeals to all age groups.

“Customers today are looking for exclusive options that match the latest fashion trends with best quality and best price. Metro Shoes gives them an opportunity to shop for all their needs under one roof” says Jairaj Kapoor, regional manager, Metro Shoes.

Keeping this perfect synergy in mind, Metro Shoes has on board the uber-glamourous couple of Saif and Kareena as their brand ambassadors.

The newly inaugurated store stocks more than 9000 pairs of ladies’, men’s and kid’s shoes. As in all Metro Shoes stores, the product range is customised to fit local tastes and fashion trends. Men’s shoes are priced from Rs 1090 onwards while ladies’ shoes start from Rs 590 onwards. Metro Shoes also houses accessories such as handbags, wallets, belts and shoe care prod. — TNS

Nargis denies dating Ness Wadia

American model-turned-actress Nargis Fakhri is upset with the reports of her link-ups with Preity Zinta’s former beau Ness Wadia. 

The actress was photographed giving a casual hug and a peck on the cheek, after filmmaker Karan Johar's birthday party last month. Soon after the photograph was published all over, gossip mills started running.

But the Rockstar actress is upset about it. “Where is the woman with whom I walked out... whoever clicked it, seems to have cropped it? In my country, we meet people and say hello with a hug and kiss. Being well-mannered to other human beings is how everyone should be. I think it was all misinterpreted,” she said. She was earlier linked to Ranbir Kapoor and Shahid Kapoor.

Exit postcard!

The days of sending and receiving the holiday postcard are numbered due to the rise of texts and social networking sites in the UK. Today, only 3 per cent of the people in Britain make the effort, instead preferring to text or even Tweet a picture.

It has been dumped in favour of mobile phones, laptops and tablets, which allow families and friends to update each other in seconds through calls, texts and social media.

Research by market analysts Mintel found that in 1972, 27 per cent of Britain's population sent a postcard home compared with just 3 per cent. "Younger Britons may never have experienced the joy of receiving a postcard in the age of social media and many others may have forgotten the sensory experience a writing set gives the sender," Alexandra Richmond, Mintel lifestyle expert said. — ANI

A stitch in time

Kim Kardashian suffered a fashion mishap, when her skin-tight leather dress burst open at the back, just minutes before she was to go live on TV. The 31-year-old socialite, had to be frantically sewn back into her sheer bodycon leather dress before she appeared on the Jimmy Kimmel show in the US.

Though the audiences were unaware of the fashion disaster that had happened just moments before, her 14 million Twitter followers were alerted when the reality star posted a picture of the mishap and a stage hand stitching her back up.

As the dress gave way at the back, Kim tweeted, "About to do Jimmy Kimmel and my whole dress rips! Help!!! Time to sew me in...praying this works!" — ANI

Off the beaten track

When Ashim Ahluwalia set out to capture the C-grade cinema industry of mid-80s Mumbai in Miss Lovely, little did he know that his debut feature film, made without any support, will go places. He is back from the screening of the film in the Uncertain Regard section of Cannes film festival to rave reviews and two important distribution deals with Fortissimo Films and Ad Vitam.

But it has not been an easy journey for Ashim, who feels Indian cinema lacks support for directors who try to experiment with their craft. "My film comes from a completely new space. Directors who are trying for new things should be given opportunities to break new grounds," Ashim said. The director had set out to make a documentary on the soft-porn industry but converted it into a movie as people related to the industry were reluctant to come on camera. — PTI

Weekend wedding

Magic Mike star Matthew McConaughey is reportedly set to tie the knot with longtime girlfriend Camila Alves this weekend.

It is said that the couple will exchange vows at the actor's hometown Texas in front of very few guests, reported a website. The wedding is kept so private that even the workers involved with the nuptials had to sign nondisclosure agreements.

They have also invited only two dozen of close friends and family members for the celebration. Alves will appear via video instead of in person at Step Up Women's network luncheon that honours her.

This will allow her to be close to the wedding venue instead of in Beverly Hills. McConaughey proposed to Alves, who gave birth to his two children, last Christmas. "Just asked Camila to marry me, Merry Christmas," he had said at the time. — PTI

I looked ugly in my twenties: Ryan Reynolds

He may be the heartthrob in Hollywood today but The Proposal star Ryan Reynolds says he looked terrible in his twenties. The 35-year-old says he has become more comfortable with his appearance over the years, reported a website. "I recently saw a picture from when I was just a pup - maybe 20 or 21 years old. And I look pretty bad. I've got some weird facial hair, and my hair is glopped with about six pounds of gel. So I really don't shy away from aging at all. I love getting older," he said. The actor said he got a tattoo of cannon in Vancouver 14 years ago, during a fleeting moment of stupidity. "A lot of people have really beautiful tattoos, and I get real tattoo envy. But then other people basically just treat them like bumper stickers for their bodies," he said. — PTI

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