Saturday, September 28, 2013

Day 5 at the Jagran Film Festival, Mumbai 2013 promises unlimited entertainment

It was amazing to see the enthusiasm and anticipation of ardent cinephiles, which filled the air on the 5th day of the Jagran Film Festival, Mumbai 2013, held at Fun Republic, Andheri West. On 28th September, the festival entered into its 5th day of celebrating cinema, after winning hearts and entertaining thousands of cine lovers for four consecutive days. Like the other days, the 5th day of this six-day long cinematic extravaganza also began with the screening of a classic – Mother India, the Oscar nominated 172-minute Hindi film made by the famous director Mehboob Khan. This heart touching story of a mother, who killed her own son to save a girl’s respect won the heart of everyone present at the screening. It was a treat for cinephiles to watch this yesteryear’s classic on the big screen. Other classics showcased on the day were Rituparno Ghosh’s Chokher Bali, made in Bengali; Bimal Roy directed 142-minute Hindi classic Do Beegha Zameen; and one of the top 10 highly recommended films at the festival Evdeki Yabancilar, which means ‘Strangers in the House’.

Directed by Ulas Gunes Kacargil and Dilek Keser, this Greek-Turkish film of 2013 revolved around a house that can not be shared and became a silent witness of the intersecting lives of an old Greek woman and a young Turkish man. This 90-minute film dealt with the stubbornness of Agapi, the woman in his 80s accompanied by her granddaughter Elpida, and Yasar, a man in his 30s. Fighting over the ownership of the house, they were forced to share it together which gave rise to a series of changes in their lives. It was indeed one of the best films showcased at the festival.

Under the World Panorama section, the first film screened on the 5th day of the festival was Dervis Zaim directed 75-minute Turkish docudrama Devir (The Cycle). Films that followed were Salim Khassa’s 109-minute English film Desperate Endeavors, Esteban Larrain’s 99-minute Spanish film The Passion of Michelangelo, and another one of the top 10 highly recommended films - A Night Too Young, directed by Olmo Omerzu. This Czech film of 2012 was a story of two boys who met their school teacher Katerina and her friends David and Stepan on the New Year’s Day. Turn of events made them all spent the night at Katerina’s flat. As the night fells, a series of adventures provide these two boys, who were barely more than children, a glimpse of the adult world. In this 65 minute film, the boys made the adults face the truth behind their power games, seductions and yearnings, which at times could be more confusing and dangerous than other life-threatening habits. The next morning they all, grown at least one night older, left to their separate ways.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Cinema History to be recreated at 4th Jagran Film Festival with Lumière Bros : First ever films shot by Lumière Brothers to be showcased in Mumbai again after 117 years

On 7th July,1896, the first ever films shot by the Lumière  Brothers, Louis and Auguste were shown in Mumbai at the Watson’s Hotel that day, marking the India's first ever film screening. 117 years later, the 4th Jagran Film Festival will re live the glorious moment in the cinematic history as the festival will bring in the exact same experience with the showcase of the Lumière Brothers' first six films.

The exclusive event that will be held at JW Marriot, Juhu, Mumbai, on Saturday 28th September’13 at 8 pm will see the grandson of Auguste Lumière, Mr. Max Lefrancq Lumière and eminent personalities including actress Renuka Shahane and actor Ranveer Shorey visiting the event. Recreating the same aura, the event atmosphere will be and ambience will be created giving the same look at in 1896.

Mr. Manoj Srivastava, speaking on this occasion mentioned that, “It is a privilege to showcase the first set of movies made by Lumière Brothers at the 4th Jagran Film Festival. A proud and a prestigious moment for us, we thank Mr. Max Lefrancq Lumière to be part of the festival and look forward to meeting with him.”

The show that began it all is back. The first ever film show from July 1896 is back. Back in Mumbai, where it all started.

Simon Cowell surprises everyone by showing his soft side on The X Factor USA Season 3

The music mogul popularly known as ‘Mr. Nasty’ recently showed pangs of his impending fatherhood on the show The X Factor USA Season 3 airing on BIG CBS Love. The news of X-Factor judge Simon Cowell expecting a baby boy with girlfriend Laura Silverman has been doing the rounds in the media for quite a while now. With co-judge Kelly Rowland already reinforcing the fact that Simon will be a pretty cool dad, fans got to see a glimpse of his softer side during the auditions of The X Factor USA Season 3. The usually sharp-tongued and blunt judge surprised audiences when he commented he was reminded of himself upon meeting a contestant’s young son. Simon Cowell along with Demi Lovato, Kelly Rowland and Paulina Rubio is currently judging The X Factor USA Season 3 on BIG CBS LOVE.

In a tender moment on the show, Simon saw his unborn son in a contestant’s young one and expressed his fatherly affection for the little child. Not just that, Simon even gave the contestant another chance to impress the panel after the contestant gave a disappointing performance. Is his impending fatherhood making him a nicer person?

Apparently, the contestant’s little son ran on stage to give his father a hug and had a witty conversation with all the judges to which a surprised Simon to exclaimed, “That must be my son!”

Don’t miss this exciting episode of the X Factor USA Season 3, Saturday, September 28, 2013 at 9 PM exclusively on BIG CBS Love.

Day 4 at the Jagran Film Festival, Mumbai 2013 promises to keep the spirit high

Excitement and anticipation continued to fill the atmosphere at the 4th day of the Jagran Film Festival, Mumbai 2013, held at Fun Republic, Andheri West. Commenced with an electrifying opening ceremony on 24th September in Mumbai, the festival has been winning hearts and entertaining ardent cinephiles since 3 days. In these last three days, cinema lovers got to enjoy several national and international feature and short films across genres. Many of these were showcased for the first time in any festival. The 4th day of this six-day long cinematic extravaganza began with the screening of a Korean classic 71: Into the Fire, directed by John H. Lee. This 120 minute film from South Korea, was highly enjoyed by the audience, and gave an action packed day a good opening.

Other classics showcased in the category Jagran Classics on this day were Park Kwang-Hyun’s 133-minute Korean film Welcome to Dongmakgol; Alpgiray M. Ugurlu directed 90-minute Turkish film Overture; and our very own Guru Dutt directed Kagaz Ke Phool, a 153-minute romantic Hindi film. Cine lovers were thrilled to get this lifetime opportunity to enjoy all these classics together in a day.

The second film screened on the 4th day of the festival was Madhur Bhandarkar’s Heroine. This 149 minute Hindi film starring sizzling beauty of Hindi cinema, Kareena Kapoor was based on the life time of a superstar heroine of Bollywood. Considered by Bhandarkar his magnum opus, the film was much appreciated by the audience. Other films screened under the category Indian Showcase (Feature in Competition) on the day were Samit Kakkad’s 94-minute Marathi feature Aayna Ka Bayna, Yogendra Choubey Chhattisgarhi’s 96-minute Hindi film Gaanje Ki Kali, and Suhail Tatari’s 130-minute Hindi film Ankur Arora Murder Case. Besides showcasing these films, the festival also provided platform for movie promotions.

Please find enclosed the press release and images for your reference. Do let us know if you require any more information, will be happy to share from our end.

KRRISH 3 Merchandise to be officially launched by Actor Hrithik Roshan on 1st October 2013

Dream Theatre Pvt. Ltd. - the Brand Managements and Licensing Agency has tied hands with Producer / Director Rakesh Roshan’s FilmKraft to launch the KRRISH 3’ Merchandise and make it available to the the cinegoers as well as the normal public. The Krrish 3 collection includes toys, apparel, figures, accessories and much more. This will be officially launched by Actor Hrithik Roshan and his father Producer & Director Rakesh Roshan on Tuesday, 1st October 2013 in Mumbai.

For more details, keep watching this space…

Chitrabani announces 10th Kolkata Short Film Festival

The annual event of Chitrabani, in collaboration with Nandan, West Bengal Film Center: Kolkata Short Film Festival, 10th edition, will begin on December 2 and will go on till December 7. The six-day long Short Film Festival will showcase the best of short films from across the country and from abroad.

Generally a bouquet of some 75 films are screened each year, out of some 120 films received by Chitrabani Screening Committee. As usual, Chitrabani takes the responsibility for organizing the program, in collaboration with Nandan, West Bengal Film Center, while all the screenings will be held at Nandan 2 hall. The festival will have two screenings each day, the first one starting at 3.30 pm, and the second one at 6 pm. All screenings will be over by 8 pm.

As in the previous year, all entry forms will have to be submitted online, and the DVD copies for preview and final screenings will have to be submitted at Chitrabani counter. The same may also be sent by courier / registered post. However Chitrabani will not take responsibility for the loss of the same in transit.

The online form will be available at this site from September 15, 2013. For more information, see the Instructions on KSFF 2013 under KSFF 2013 menu.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

The 4th Jagran Film Festival takes off to a flying start with Akshay Kumar, Nimrat Kaur and eminent filmmakers

The 4th Jagran Film Festival commenced with an electrifying opening ceremony on September 24 at Fun Republic, Andheri West, Mumbai. The festival got off to a rousing start with the ceremonial tradition of lighting a lamp. The event was graced by several eminent personalities of the Indian film industry. The presence of Chief Guest Akshay Kumar, Indian Film and Stage Actress Nimrat Kaur who lit the lamp, Anil Sharma, Sudhir Mishra, Dorothy Briere, Manoj Srivastava, Sai Tamhankar, Mayor of Mumbai Sunil Prabhu and many others from the entertainment industry made the atmosphere almost contagious, filled with much of enthusiasm and anticipation.

The festival began with the screening of the film Water which also marked the Asian premiere of the film. This 120 minute feature was born out of a unique Israeli-Palestinian cinematic cooperation. Produced by the Film and Television department of the Tel Aviv University in association with Tu Vas Voir, WATER was a beautiful compilation of some fictional and self-experience based stories. Also present on the occasion were the directors of the film Yael Perlov, NirSa’ar and Maya Sarfaty, Mohammad Fuad, Yona Rozenkier, Mohammad Bakri, Ahmad Barghouti, Pini Tavger and Tal Haring.

Other films screened on the opening day of the festival were Haco Cheko’s 72 minute Turkish film Nowhere Li Vir, Sanjay Jadhav’s 132 minute Marathi film Duniyadari, and Kundan Shah’s 143 minute classic Jane Bhi Do Yaaron. The opening ceremony’s red carpet, followed by film screening witnessed an illustrious gathering of filmmakers, renowned litterateurs, cinephiles and scribes.

Began with great pomp and aplomb, the first day of the 4th Jagran Film Festival set pace for the six-day long cinematic extravaganza. The festival promises to feature the finest works of cinematic geniuses from India and many other countries. More than 50 national and international feature and short films would be showcased in the final edition of this festival.

The 4th edition of the Jagran Film Festival, Mumbai 2013 is scheduled from the 24th - 29th September, 2013 at Fun Republic, Andheri West, Mumbai.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

‘Master of Cinema’ to share their knowledge in Master Class at the 4th Jagran Film Festival

Jagran Film Festival has reached its 4th and concluding stage. Besides proudly presenting an exciting line up of national and international feature and short films across various genres from every corner of the world, the festival has also created a platform for cinephiles to discuss and get acquainted with various aspects of national as well as international cinema from global viewpoint.

Under the banner of Master Class, key representatives of national and international cinema are going to connect with each other for special insightful discussions on films. Sriram Raghavan, Govind Nihalani, Mahesh Bhatt, Saurabh Shukla, Piyush Mishra, Kamlesh Pandey, Pavan Malhotra, Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, Goutam Ghose, Swanand Kirkire, Farouque M. Shaikh and Atul Tiwari, are some of the names forming the part of the panel. There are going to be two panel discussions and one workshop to be held under the banner of Master Class.

LA Film Council on Co-productions
This is the first panel discussion under this banner going to be held on 25th September 2013, Wednesday at 11.30 am at Zee Preview, Fun Republic 1, Andheri West, Mumbai. The objective of this panel discussion is to facilitate Indian productions and investment in California, and similarly, encourage Hollywood productions and investment in India. It is also aimed to find solutions to overcome various production and distribution challenges faced by each of these industries in the other’s market. It offers a platform for commercial collaboration and knowledge exchange, which would support the technological development of the Hollywood and Indian film industries. It will also assist in cross-industry talent acquisition and creative collaboration.

Master Class - Dervis Zaim
This is a workshop to be held on 26th September 2013 at 11:30 am by the famous Turkish Director Dervis Zaim. He is best known for his film The Cycle. Through this workshop, the festival provides an opportunity to everyone to learn his style of film making and get acquainted with his approach to cinema. In this workshop, which is mostly targeted to youngsters, the Turkish master teaches the art of cinema to the participants.

Master Class - Finding Money For Films
It is the second panel discussion under the banner, which is going to be held on 27TH September 2013, Friday at the same venue and time. It is going to be a very interactive and fruitful discussion by the experts of the industry, which will guide and provide consultancy to new film makers and budding talents on how to find the right source to fund their upcoming projects.

Come, be a part of Master Class and get benefited with the plethora of expertise and knowledge of these national and international masters of cinema.

Monday, September 23, 2013

The Story of the making of the Constitution of India acquires a New Meaning with ‘Samvidhaan’ directed by Shyam Benegal

The Delhi connection of the Constitution of India - that was argued, articulated and drafted in the nation’s capital – is well known. The Constitution, and the story of how it was drafted, has now shifted to Mumbai for a cinematic avatar.

For over a month now, Studio No. 5 of Film City in Goregaon, has become the Central Hall of the Parliament House, where the debates took place to draft the Constitution of India, between 1946 and 1949. The studio has housed a replica of the Central Hall of that period and over 150 actors have gathered there to tell the story of the making of the Indian Constitution for a 10-part Mini-Series called ‘Samvidhaan’, directed by auteur Shyam Benegal and produced by Rajya Sabha.

“The Constituent Assembly of India sat for two years, eleven months and seventeen days to debate on and draft the Constitution. By the time this mini-series is over, we would have taken a little less than that time to make ‘Samvidhaan’ and tell the story of how our founding fathers and mothers fought against all odds to give a democratic shape to the destiny of India. It is an epic story, the story of the birth of our nation and we have done our best to do justice to it while also maintaining its historic authenticity and flavour. The idea was to bring out the drama, to make it as entertaining as it will obviously be educative,” said auteur Shyam Benegal on directing the mini-series.

Rajesh Badal, Executive Director, Rajya Sabha Television said, “It is a historic moment in Indian cinematic history. This is a story, of the pain and struggle, the passion and the compassion, the fights and the camaraderie that went into making the Constitution of India. It is a dramatization and fictionalization without losing the facts, an attempt both to preserve and cherish those who fought for the independence of India and more importantly to ensure that the freedom is maintained through democratic governance.”

Mr. Badal added, “’Samvidhan’ is the first project conceived and commissioned by Rajya Sabha Television in its efforts to document the history of the independent India. It’s an idea that germinated from Hamid Ansari, the Vice President of India, who encouraged RSTV to explore, document and present the underlying processes, decisions, events and personalities that shaped our nation post 1947. Certainly, after ‘Samvidhan’ many more such programs would follow. Rajya Sabha Television is proud to be associated with Shyam Benegal in this project. One of the finest filmmakers of all times, he was always a definite choice to handle the project and would certainly set the standards for our future works also. Its noteworthy that his uncle, Sir Benegal Narsing Rau wrote the first draft of the Constitution and he carries the legacy forward by presenting it on video for the first time.”

It is an interesting co-incidence that besides Shyam Benegal’s uncle, many other members of the cast and crew were related to the constituent assembly members, or have met them. The writers of the project are Shama Zaidi and Atul Tiwari. While Atul Tiwari remembers meeting a few member of the constituent assembly, Shama Zaidi’s father was himself one of the members.

“The last surviving member of the august assembly who sat between 1946 and 1949 to make the Constitution, died in 2008. My father was a member in those heady days where dreams of a nation met with the opportunity to make it into a democratic reality through a constitution. I heard stories of those times from my father. In nearly a 50 year long career in the arts, I had never had such an opportunity that was also a challenge. It was exciting and scary because you had to maintain the integrity of the story without losing the elements of drama and entertainment,” says Shama Zaidi.

Atul Tiwari, who co-wrote the script with Shama Zaidi and is also essaying the role of Pandit Govind Vallabh Pant says, “Our founding fathers have almost been forgotten, their invaluable contribution to the shaping of our destinies relegated to the footnotes in the history of the nation. This is an attempt to not only remind the masses about these great women and men, but also to show everyone the odds they fought, the suffering they went through in making our nation a democracy, a democracy that has stood the test of time.”

Sachin Khedekar essays the important role of Dr. B R Ambedkar, the chief draftsman of the Constitution of India. He says, “The Constitution of India has a significant, but little known Mumbai connection. It is said that Dr. Ambedkar spent most of his time at Wayside Inn café in Colaba mulling over the drafts and debates and writing and rewriting the Constitution of India. Even if this fact is yet little known, it will be well known from now on, that in true spirit of a cinematic Mumbai, the story of how it was made has been told in the city of Mumbai. I am sure that I share the spirit of other members of our unit when I say that it has been an honour to be part of this absolutely historic project. Such a project, just like the opportunity to draft a constitution for millions of people, comes but once in the life of anyone and we are all simply thrilled that Rajya Sabha TV took the initiative. In this little way our history would be preserved and more importantly, watched with interest.”

Dalip Tahil Ramani, who plays Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, says, “It has simply been thrilling working with Shyam Benegal on the project. He is a living encyclopaedia of information. While growing up, he has literally met dozens of people who were members of the Constituent Assembly of India. It has been a most humbling experience, both as an actor and as a citizen of India to have worked in this landmark project.”

“It took nearly a year and a half to do the research for the mini-series and get the details right. It took nearly a month just to construct the set. But the final result will be for all to see. Just under 400 people were directly associated with drafting the Constitution of India. Over a 1000 people have been directly involved in the making of this serial and the result will be for everyone to see. It is a cinematic attempt to rekindle the spirit of democracy in the hearts and minds of people,” says Dayal Nihalani, helming the chair of Associate Director.

The mini-series being produced by Rajya Sabha will go on air in January 2014 and has experienced film and television actors like tom alter, Rajendra Gupta, K K Raina, Rajit Kapur, Harish Patel, Anjan Srivastava, Mohit Chauhan, Utkarsh Majumdar, Divya Datta, Ila Arun, Rajeshwari Sachdev and Kennith Desai among others.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Films & TV World unveils its new brand identity and logo

Successfully moving into its 5th year on 13th September, Films & TV World has unveiled its new brand identity and logo that reflects a more meaningful engagement with the films and television industry. This new identity and logo is being rolled-out to all over the tie-ups that Films & TV World has part of its publicity and exchange program.

Unveiling the new logo, Editor Soham Siddharth said: “The change in our brand identity signifies our intent to establish a deeper connect with our readers as well as ensure that the Films & TV World brand is able to stir the reader’s imagination, ignite their creativity as well as expand their vision to a new vista of possibility. Our new logo conveys those elements with the flowing ribbon pattern that creates the ‘F’ design highlighting the easy flow, smoothness, dynamism and possibility that our solution and offerings will provide to our readers as well as advertisers and clients.

Mahua Mazumdar, CEO says, “"The Films & TV World logo is widely known today, so changing it was not an easy decision for us. However, with cinema turning 100 this year, we felt the time was right and we can initiate a change. But we’ve evolved a lot in the past few years, and Films & TV World is much more than just offering news, views and reviews on films and television today. And we hope that our readers and advertisers like this new logo and can easily identify it with good content and wider reach.”
What do you think of Films & TV World's new look and brand identity? Share your impressions in the comments.

“Water” to open 4th Jagran Film Festival at Mumbai on September 24 at Fun Republic, Andheri

The 4th edition of, ‘Jagran Film Festival, Mumbai 2013,’ will begin with the film Water and will be screened on September 24 at Fun Republic, Andheri, Mumbai. Water is a 120 minute feature film born out of a unique Israeli-Palestinian cinematic cooperation. Produced by the Film and Television department of the Tel Aviv University in association with Tu Vas Voir, the project Water is made in HD, color. Yael Perlov has initiated this project and is also the Artistic Director of Water. Its original version is in Arabic, Hebrew, and English.

The film, a unique piece of art has been screened at various international film festivals, Venice International Film Festival, Jerusalem Film Festival, Busan International Film Festival, Mostra International de Cine de Saõ Paulo, Brazil, Stockholm International Film Festival, Swedenand many others. This is the Asian Premiere of the film.

Taking complete artistic freedom, in 2012, a small group of Israeli and Palestinian filmmakers directed a feature film that explored a strong unifying subject - WATER. Besides being a highly poetic and pastoral subject, water is also a very political and violent subject with respect to the Israel-Palestine conflict. Water is about two conflicting populations, which couldn't overcome the prejudice and political intimidation but ultimately finds a platform for a unique collaboration, in the form of this feature film. This is one of the reasons why Water is so special.

Cinema always has the ability to penetrate forbidden zones and Water exemplifies that. It has made all of us realize that we all yearn for a solution to this long-going on conflict. Seven Directors have interpreted this subject in their own creative way, which together has given shape to Water.

Ayushman Khurana makes a special appearance on bindass’ Yeh Hai Aashiqui

Bollywood heartthrob Ayushman Khurana will soon be seen on small screen as he makes a special appearance on bindass’ latest show, ‘Yeh Hai Aashiqui’. The show that chronicles unusual love stories brings to its viewers the story of a NRI girl who falls in love against her family’s wish, with dire consequences. Starring in this episode will be well known television actress Aishwarya Sakhuja and Punjabi actor Sangram Singh who will be seen playing the lead couple.
With love being the flavour of the season, Ayushman was extremely excited to be a part of the show. A true Punjabi at heart, Ayushman intently sat through the touching story of Sunny and Harleen from Punjab. While, he was also there to promote his ‘single’ from his upcoming album, which is also in Punjabi, he didn’t hesitate to hum a few lines of the now popular Yeh Hai Aashiqui title track. Impressed with the theme song of the show, Ayushman said, “The title track is lovely. It’s quite hummable and contemporary and it’s really beautiful.” Commenting on the show, he said, “I love the show and I think it’s a great combination of fiction and non-fiction which is rarely seen.”
The show host, Vikrant Massey will narrate a dramatic tale full of twists and turns which revolves around a Punjabi girl who falls in love with a local cab driver after returning from Canada. Do not miss Yeh Hai Aashiqui at 7pm today on 22nd September, 2013 only on bindass

Vikas Swarup, Slumdog Millionaire author to join 100 children for “Torch of Unity” launch

Vikas Swarup, diplomat and the author of the international bestseller Q & A, which was adapted into the multi-BAFTA and Academy Award winning film Slumdog Millionaire, will be joined by 100 children for the Launch of The Unity of Faiths Foundation (TUFF), a UK based non-profit, secular organisation that recognises the importance of inter-community dialogue and acceptance as the bedrock of community cohesion and understanding.

Taking place in one of London’s most diverse areas, Southall, on Friday 27th September 2013, Vikas Swarup will participate in a procession uniting over a hundred students from various schools across London to carry the first Torch of Unity. The event reflects TUFF’s 2013 focus on Youth, with the core belief being that in order to sow the seeds of respect and mutual understanding for each other early, it is vital to connect with the younger generation - the ‘voices of tomorrow’.

Vikas Swarup’s debut novel, Q & A, tells the story of how a penniless waiter in Mumbai becomes the biggest quiz show winner in history. Critically acclaimed in India and abroad, this international bestseller has been translated into 43 different languages. It was also shortlisted for the Best First Book by the Commonwealth Writers' Prize and won South Africa’s Exclusive Books Booker Prize 2006, as well as the Prix Grand Public at the 2007 Paris Book Fair. It was voted winner of the Best Travel Read (Fiction) at the Heathrow Travel Product Award 2009.

The book, and later its film adaptation, was testament to the fact that certain social situations in society such as stratification leads to pressures amongst the youth. Speaking about his participation in the launch of TUFF, Vikas Swarup says: “This is a very worthwhile project and I am absolutely delighted to have been invited”.

The launch coincides with the third annual Unity of Faith Festival, taking place on Sunday 29th September 2013 in Southall Park. With over 30,000 individuals expected to attend, the festival provides London's multi-cultural community from all backgrounds and age groups, an opportunity to connect, break the barriers of misunderstanding and prejudice. Individuals will unite together against a backdrop of free entertainment, food, drink and social engagement; building up a groundswell of support to the message of UNITY and thus creating ‘Awareness’ about the concept of having FAITH in each other.

As part of TUFF’s ‘Reach Out’ programme, long term and sustainable initiatives are being considered with Schools and Universities to discuss the Unity of Faiths concept with plans to invite learned speakers to converse with and inspire the younger generation. TUFF will also hold a unique International Conference later this year, to be attended by international thought-leaders in the fields of empowerment, humanity and social cohesion, advocators of political and social dialogue for positive change, and personalities across entertainment, sport, popular culture and business. The purpose of the event is to provide a unique platform for ‘Dialogue’, to convey and share ideas and set actions for Unity in communities. Details of forthcoming programmes will be announced during the Festival weekend.

A response to the increased dissonance, cultural and religious divide that has estranged communities nationally and globally, TUFF, acknowledged by President Barack Obama and HRH The Queen, was launched with the mission to UNITE people and communities through the common factor of Faith, irrespective of religious belief, cultural or social backgrounds, and to subsequently create a more stable, tolerant and cooperative future for all. TUFF was the pioneering vision of the founders: Ms. Anna Prior, a former art dealer from Mayfair; Dr. Shamender Talwar, a Social Psychologist from West London and Mr G.S. Malhi, a successful entrepreneur from Southall, who joined them later.

Speaking about the launch of TUFF, the Founders say: “We believe through setting up initiatives at a community and grass-root level, we can build up a groundswell of support and action to the concept of having Faith in each other.

This launch will not only witness the lighting of the inaugural Unity Flame, but will also set alight the conscious Flame of Unity to unite minds all around; igniting and launching various grass root projects for social cohesion and Unity in the Community”.

The TUFF Torch Ceremony on Friday 27th September takes place at The Centre, 1 – 23 Merrick Road, Southall, London, UB1 4AU. The Unity of Faith Festival, a completely free event, takes place in Southall Park on Sunday 29th September.

Jury for the finale of Jagran Film Festival, Mumbai 2013 announced

The jury for the 4th edition of, ‘Jagran Film Festival, Mumbai 2013,’ which will commence on September 24, has been announced. To be held at Fun Republic Cinema in Andheri West, the jury members for the Indian Showcase (Feature in Competition) section include India’s iconic film maker Basu Chatterjee, renowned actress, film director and producer Aditi Ninad Deshpande, one of the best known Cinematographers of India Raamachandraah, the renowned film editor Suresh Pai, and the current commander-in-chief of Indian theatre Feroz Abbas Khan.

More than 20 feature films, made in several different Indian regional languages, including Hindi blockbusters are going to compete with each other in this category. The section also encourages debut directors to showcase their work in front of a global audience and compete with some of the bests, at both national and international level, in the industry.

Apart from Indian Showcase section, where India’s best feature films are competing with each other, the festival has also organised a competition for short films. Under the section Jagran Shorts more than 35 short films made in various Indian regional as well as international languages are going to compete with each other. These short films will be judged by a panel of eminent jury, which includes the famous French actress Dorothy Briere, one of India’s top film directors N Chandra, and Managing Director and CEO of one of the India’s top production houses, ‘Rajshri Media’, Rajjat A Barjatya.

Through this section, the festival provides a platform to both upcoming artists and established masters in the field of short film making, from the national as well as international industry, to showcase their talents. The competition aims to highlight and encourage the work of some of the bests in this field, through its awards.

Entry to the festival is free and will be on a first come first serve basis and is being held at Fun Republic, Andheri West, Mumbai from 24th to 29th September’2013.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

On UTV Stars Breakfast to Dinner, Catch Ayushmann Khurrana

Yes! The Special Guest on the show this week is Ayushmann Khurrana. The actor, on the show, talks about his journey in Mumbai and his first job. He also walks down to the beach and tries some ice-gola.

The day begins as it should, with breakfast. What’s special about this meal is that it’s been put together by none other than Ayushmann Khurrana, who has decided to turn chef for the day. After breakfast, during which the actor talks about all things love, Ayushmann arrives at a radio station where he has been invited as a guest. After his stint at the radio station, Ayushmann heads to Juhu beach where he confesses that when he first arrived in Mumbai, he had made a vow to himself that he would not visit the sea until he lands his first assignment. A trip to the beach is incomplete without the famous ice-gola. After picking one up for himself, Ayushmann heads to the offices of UTV where he celebrates the launch of his latest single. The day is hardly over for this extremely energetic actor as he is bid goodbye on the sets of a television show where he proudly shows off his Punjabi connection by doing the Bhangra.
Catch Ayushmann Khurrana, exclusively on UTV Stars Breakfast to Dinner on Sunday 22nd September, 2013 at 7 p.m.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Gear Up for the action-packed blockbuster SALT on 21st September on Movies Now

Originally designed for a male protagonist with Tom Cruise playing the lead, the script was rewritten especially for Jolie. Based on a CIA agent’s mission to clear her name from being accused as a Russian agent, the film was released in the DVD and Blue Ray format featuring two alternate cuts that provided different endings for the movie.

From jumping out of helicopters, shooting, hanging from the edge of buildings, this film has Jolie performing it all!  Don’t miss this intense blockbuster which portrays Jolie in a completely new avatar!

Watch the sexiest woman of all times play the toughest protagonist in Salt only on MOVIES NOW on 21st September 2013 at 11pm!

The men Sarika wants to be locked up with in the Bigg Boss house!

At the concluding Manhattan Short India Master Class Series at National college on Monday afternoon, when asked if she would consider entering the infamous Bigg Boss house, senior actor Sarika sportingly quipped, “I’ll do it if they lock Naseeruddin Shah, Nana Patekar, Irrfan Khan, Seema Biswas, Tabu, myself, Nawazuddin Sidiqui, Anurag Kashyap. Yes, then I would go in. That is so exciting!”

In a heart-to-heart tete-a-tete with the students at National college, moderated by senior film journalist Faheem Ruhani, Sarika made several youngsters’ jaws drop when she revealed to them that today in Hindi cinema, women are less objectified than in earlier times. “Go to youtube and search for songs like ‘Hungama Ho Gaya’ with Bindu or a Padma Khanna song. The camera is only on two places,” she said, with the young audience in splits. “And the camera had this very vulgar movement. They would zoom in and out and in and out, just at those two places. I would rather see Deepika looking so sensual and so sexy than seeing that camera movement. Things are much better now,” she added. 

At ease, Sarika was as comfortable talking about people who influenced her like Sunil Dutt, Meena Kumari and Sanjeev Kumar and about the choices she has made in her professional and personal life. The students posed as many tough questions as any journalist would do today including ones such as, ‘Why did you take so long for your come back?’, ‘With your daughter an actor today, do you think women are more objectified today than the previous generation?’, ‘Is Bollywood changing that we will soon see an older heroine with a younger hero?’, ‘How true is it that an actress’ career comes to an end when she gets married?’ and even ‘Will we see you direct a film soon?’

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Akshay Kumar and Ashvini Yardi’s Grazing Goat goes digital with new youtube channel targeting fashionistas

To keep up with the age of contemporary advances, Akshay Kumar and Ashvini Yardi’s production banner Grazing Goat Pictures recently launched ‘Grazing Goat Digital’. The first exciting venture to emerge is the Youtube channel ‘FOMO Fashion On My Own’, India’s first Hindi fashion channel which lets trend-conscious women transform into glamourous goddesses without having to step into a salon.

The fashion channel will cater to women aged between 15 to 34 and will provide them with the latest trends, tips and tricks of the fashion trade. The channel broadcasts step-by-step tutorials on such subjects as hair styling tips, make up tutorials, getting the look of your favourite celebs and more. The channel will be broadcasting videos in Hindi and English, and will upload new episodes every Monday.

Commenting on the launch of their new digital channel, Ashvini Yardi, co-founder of Grazing Goat Pictures commented, “Grazing Goat Digital is proud to present FOMO Fashion On My Own, India’s first Hindi fashion channel in association with Youtube, targeted at women not only in metros but even in smaller towns who have the fashion sense but not the required facilities at their disposal. FOMO will be catered in Hindi to reach a wider audience and will also available in English. It’s not very cost effective for women to visit a salon each time they desire a particular look hence they can watch it anywhere at any time and still manage to look a million bucks!”

Looking pretty couldn’t get easier! 
To subscribe to FOMO, click here:

India’s first-ever Composers Lab to launch at the 15th Mumbai Film Festival

India's first Music Composers Lab is being launched at the 15th Mumbai film Festival. It will be held at the prestigious Yash Raj Film Studios, Andheri (W), Mumbai, in their state-of-the-art Audio Wing. The lab is being presented by UK’s Bohemia Junction Limited and Abbey Road Studios in association with PRS for Music, UK. It will take place from 21st October to 23rd October, 2013 during the 15th Mumbai Film Festival.

The first-of-its-kind Composers Lab will offer a unique opportunity to emerging Indian composers to interact with successful professionals in the field of music, to get a better understanding of what lies at the heart of a music score in the arena of moving image.

Over two days, six composers will attend the Mumbai Composers Lab to meet and interact with professional composers and a team of music & film Industry specialists, from the UK and India, who will share their knowledge and expertise with them. The composers will also be advised about many aspects of music and the music industry. The lab is an initiative to provide a hub for like-minded emerging film composers to network with each other, as well as with industry professionals, to learn new skills in the realms of film scoring.

The two-day film scoring sessions will be followed with an interview and audience Q & A with award-winning British Composer Ilan Eshkeri and a with the Lab’s Creative Advisors on 23rd October at 1pm at Metro Cinema.

Special guest Ilan Eshkeri, best-known for his film scores of 47 Ronin, Coriolanus, Stardust, The Young Victoria and Kick-Ass, as well as his collaborations with Coldplay, Annie Lennox and Take That, will lead the creative team of composers that will be announced shortly.

Eshkeri learnt the art of film composition by working closely with music maestros Michael Kamen, Edward Shearmur and Steve McLaughlin. Over his decade-long career, he has been awarded ‘Best Original Score’ for his work on the film Stardust at the International Film Music Critics Association award and nominated three times for The World Soundtrack Awards. Eshkeri's soundtrack to The Young Victoria topped the classical music charts for several weeks and received a nomination at the Ivor Novello awards.

Applications for young composers to take part in the workshop will open on Tuesday, September 17, and close on Monday, October 7.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Katrina Kaif was strongly recommended for Besharam!

Newcomer Pallavi Sharda is shining bright in the promos of her upcoming film Besharam with Ranbir Kapoor. She must be thanking her stars for this big break. However, if sources are to be believed, Katrina Kaif could have been a part of this movie.

zoOm found out that Ranbir Kapoor had strongly recommended Katrina Kaif for this movie. He did not want newcomer Pallavi to be a part of this ambitious project. However, director Abhinav Kashyap found his female protagonist in Pallavi and stuck to his decision. Rumor has it that director Abhinav Kashyap and Pallavi are more than just good friends. Clearly Abhinav has taken this relationship to a new level all together.

Even after constant feelers being sent from Ranbir Kapoor, the director stuck to his decision. Eventually, Ranbir had to give in to the wishes of Abhinav. Well seems like the off-screen couple, Ranbir and Kat are definitely trying hard to be a part of the same projects. It would have been quite interesting to see how their off-screen chemistry would reflect in this movie had they be cast together. To know more, tune into Planet Bollywood News every day at 7 pm on zoOm – India’s No. 1 Bollywood Channel.

BIG CBS Love to woo Indian audiences with the X Factor USA Season 3

BIG CBS Love, India’s leading English GEC amongst elite urban Indian audiences, is all set to bring the latest season of its most exciting and entertaining singing talent show, The X Factor USA, to Indian television screens. Season 3 of Simon Cowell’s hit reality franchise begins September 21, 2013 and will air every Saturday and Sunday at 9PM. After the conclusion of two successful seasons and grabbing millions of eye-balls, the top-rated show will see the witty Simon Cowell surrounded by three talented ladies, the vivacious Demi Lovato, Grammy Award winner and X Factor UK judge Kelly Rowland and Latino singing sensation Paulina Rubio. Targeted at viewers aged 18-34yrs, BIG CBS Love promises to engage Indian audiences with thrilling performances, along with an ideal mix of glamour, talent and drama wrapped in one show – The X Factor USA Season 3.

The unique format of The X Factor USA involves identifying singing prowess keeping in mind factors such as stage presence and personality. The four judges are then assigned one category each and act as mentors to the contestants belonging to their respective category. Not only do they help the contestants from their category with decisions regarding song choices, styling and staging but they also judge contestants from other categories. The winner of the reality talent show, which was recently voted as the Best Reality Competition show at the 2013 Teen Choice Awards, will take home a whopping $1 million recording contract.

The X Factor USA Season 3 brings on board a lethal combination of glamour and fiery passion with Kelly Rowland, the incredibly talented singer and member of one of the world’s most successful groups, Destiny’s Child along with Demi Lovato, the youngest judge and mentor on the show who is known for her spot-on critiques, genuine encouragement and active involvement as a mentor. Demi Lovato’s previous stint on ‘The X-Factor' USA as the original female judge has also earned her the Choice TV Personality Award at the 2013 Teen Choice Awards.

The X Factor USA Season 3 will be promoted across mediums – including social media innovations, BIG CBS Love aims an interactive watch for the show’s fans in India. With over 80 million active Facebook users in India, the campaign is designed to capture all trends within the social media space and create a loyal tribe of its fan followers. The entire social media campaign will include promotions via Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, including a contest where the winner gets a once in a lifetime opportunity to watch the finale of the show live in the US.

Commenting on the show, the Channel said in a statement, “The X Factor USA is one of the top rated reality shows in the US which has garnered a loyal fan-following in India as well. With the inclusion of two remarkably talented new judges, we are confident the latest season of the show will continue to entice our viewers. The show has always been a huge property for BIG CBS and the latest season will only strengthen our weekend programming line-up while providing a concrete platform to marketers and advertisers to reach out to their target audience.”

The X Factor US Season 3 premieres on September 21, 2013, every Saturday and Sunday at 9 PM exclusively in India on BIG CBS Love.

Theatre-in-Motion : Theatre festival bringing the best of theatre across Kolkata, New Delhi & Mumbai

This winter, get ready to experience the best of Indian Theatre with Theatre in Motion; a festival that will provide theatre lovers a chance to experience plays across Kolkata, New Delhi, and Mumbai in Hindi, English and Bengali. Running for 3 months starting from October 5 till December 29, the festival will bring together the best of theatre groups, personnel and art connoisseurs on a single platform.

Presented by Utkal Rangmanch Trust in association with Sanket and steered by Anant Mahapatra, a legendary figure in theatre, Theatre-in-Motion revolves around his idea of making the best of theatre available for viewing to connoisseurs across the country.
Theatre in Motion will feature famous theatre exponents like Dada Saheb Phalke awaredee Soumitra Chatterjee, Rajit Kapur, Nadira Zaheer Babbar, Mohan Agashe, Om Katare, Manoj Mitra, Rakesh Bedi, Ashish Vidyarthi, Lilette Dubey, Ira Dubey, Shernaz Patel, Yashpal Sharma, and many more. The festival commences in New Delhi, Mumbai and Kolkata from Saturday, October 5 till December 29.

In New Delhi, the festival opens with Nadira Zaheer Babbar's Ekjute presenting Saku Bai in New Delhi with Sarita Joshi among the main cast. On October 13, theatre lovers will be enthralled by Tom Alter who stars in The Old Man and the Sea by Shivani Tibrewala's performing arts company No License Yet, marking his debut in the play for the city.
In Mumbai, the festival opens with Sohini Sengupta and Rudraparasad Sengupta in his debut play Ajantobas. The city will also see the iconic Bengali film, stage actor and poet Soumitra Chaterjee starring in the Bengali play Chariganga presented by Dwijen Bandopadhyaya's Samstab as the festival draws to an end on December 29

In Kolkata, the festival opens with Rajit Kapur's Rage presenting Mahua starring Mona Ambegaonkar and Sadiya Siddiqui among the main cast. Lillete Dubey and Ira Dubey, the mother-daughter duo gets together in 30 Days in September, a Primetime Theatre production on December 27. The festival comes to a close with Lillete and Mohan Agashe in Primetime Theatre's Adhe Adhure on December 28

New Delhi - LTG Auditorium, Mandi House, Copernicus Marg
Mumbai - Veer Savarkar Auditorium, Shivaji Park
Kolkata - GD Birla Sabahghar, 29, Ashutosh Chaudhary Avenue, Ballygunge
For complete schedules and more information – visit

5 million strong: zoOm is the youth’s ‘chosen channel that delivers ‘Entertainment of Choice’ to the youth

The youth has always loved their entertainment. But with just one TV screen entertaining an entire household, how much access did a youngster really have to the entertainment he/she really loved?  Enter - an attractively affordable range of smart-phones, laptops, tabs, a decent network connection and a plethora of social media platforms that allowed picking, sharing, commenting, trendifying. And suddenly we have the birth of the alternate screen; the rise of access and finally the time for true choice is truly here! Fulfilling this newfound appetite for entertainment by fitting into a digitally powered social environment was surely every content provider’s dream. TV went social. It had to.  But did everyone make it there – significantly enough? The numbers speak for themselves.

When it comes to Bollywood and glamour, zoOm has so far been the most preferred destination on TV. In the social media space also, especially without the restrictions of sharing screen / time with others, the brand has further emerged as a youth destination of choice. zoOm’s community on Facebook is the biggest amongst all TV channels. With the fan count crossing the 50 lac mark recently, its bigger than the online communities of some of the mainline GECs combined (Star Plus, Zee and Sony Entertainment Television)! Just the Facebook community of zoOm ropes in a weekly reach of 95 lacs, with its posts delivering impressions in the excess of 4 crores every week. A whopping 80.19 crore views on Youtube, a ‘people talking about’ stat of nearly 5 lacs on Facebook at any point of time and a Twitter following of 2.2 lacs – shows how zoOm’s social media destinations are buzzing with activity at all times. As India’s largest consumer survey on mobile usage, ‘Airtel Mobitude 2012’ revealed, zoOm is also the 3rd most consumed TV channel on Mobile TV.

Whether it’s the latest news about upcoming releases, tangy reviews, steamy gossip, fashion trends, photo-releases or an exclusive byte of their favorite stars – the youth don’t seem to be getting enough of it. Yet, its only through careful monitoring and studying past trends that zoOm ensures that it puts out content that the audience is looking out for the most. In this space, it is key to be first. zoOm has systems in place to ensure that even if one is not in front of the TV – one never has to lose access to the latest. The reach and speed of zoOm’s news has not only found popularity among viewers, but celebrities too. Recently, an exclusive picture of Priyanka Chopra with Pitbull tweeted by zoOm and then retweeted by Priyanka herself, drove more than 53 lac impressions by the tweeple.

Speaking about the digital edge and zoOm’s strategy, Mr. Avinash Kaul, Chief Executive Officer of ET NOW, TIMES NOW and zoOm said, “A user’s interaction with content online or on social media happens entirely out of an individual’s choice. Being the No.1 TV channel in our category, a dominating presence in this space is a double whammy for zoOm as it goes on to show that the youth finds a real connect with our content. Beyond just viewership, it is also engagement with the content, using it as a social currency, a conversation starter.  So much so, that they are actively seeking it, consuming, sharing and interacting over it on a regular basis.”

Despite the huge outreach that its social media space is able to offer, zoOm doesn’t only use it to inform its loyal fan base about upcoming content, but also to design the content itself. A show called ‘zoOm it’ – which plays song dedications made by fans on Facebook is one such example. This property was initially built exclusively in the social media space and as the requests came flooding in, a dedicated property on the channel called ‘zoOm it!’ was created to close the engagement loop. The show is now a long-term hit and its social jockey Nikita continues to enjoy her own loyal following in the social media space.

With the present avenues conquered, the success for zoOm now lies in constantly observing and responding to the changing trends of the mediums itself. It already has a following of 11 lac+ on Google+ that many other brands are yet to explore. A presence on SocialCam, Tumblr and Pinterest – offer opportunities of better content curation experience amongst its more evolved audiences.

When asked about the scope of getting other brands to integrate with zoOm in its social media space, Avinash responded, “The digital medium has given us an added advantage to target relevant audiences in a highly focused manner, engage with them and gain further amplification across peer groups, making it an interesting choice for contextually cobranded activities. Its not a mere marketing outreach, but a strong resonance with the youth that we can look at tapping into.”

At a time when increased clutter and rapidly evolving consumption habits of audiences are finding media brand owners asking desperate existential questions – zoOm has managed to not only extend its identity into the online space seamlessly, but build it even further. Fitting right into the changing consumption trends of its key audience, the youth, zoOm has managed to bridge its various entertainment avenues and deliver a consistent brand experience across. With effective social listening and content planning along with an efficient content delivery system it has successfully created a content haven that the audience themselves seek out for.

zoOm, India’s No. 1 Bollywood channel, and a trendsetter in its genre, brings viewers closer to the biggest stars through the hottest entertainment news, features, countdowns, music, trends, celebrity interviews and reviews. zoOm is available across 28 countries worldwide besides heavy presence in the social media space making it the one stop shop for everything related to Bollywood.