When elders were struggling to lift, let alone read, Vikram Seth’s A Suitable Boy, most of us were in shorts or babbling in the cradle, if we were there at all. Good for us that now Mira Nair is in charge of a BBC-backed series based on it, and that Tabu (seen here with Ishaan Khatter in this ‘first look’) will probably play Lata, bride of the titular boy. “...Epic tale of an unseen India,” says Nair. Unseen, eh? Let’s see.
Is that a noodle network of laser lights curling multicoloured magic around the delightful person of Radhika Apte, or is this just an artfully woven garment caught in the act of billowing? Either way, it has her approbation. What doesn’t is Bollywood dafooses offering her ‘bold’—ah, that cursed, filmy word!—roles in horrible sex comedies. What made them so bold, pray? Radhika’s mature, gut-wrenching act in Badlapur.
We can’t for the life of us remember if they broke up in a flurry of catfights in 2010, but before that, in their furry prime, Nicole, Ashley, Kimberly, Carmit and Jessica—going by the collective Pussycat Dolls—made adolescence a better garb to inhabit. Recently, they made a comeback show at primetime’s X-Factor: Celebrity, as pictured above, and did full justice to the badass leather-and- bodysuits. Result? A howl of protests from worried parents at the deleterious effect they could have on their wards. To them we say, ‘give them time, folks; they know it can’t be replicated at home!’
A great one for impersonating notables is our Taapsee Pannu—be it a septuagenarian sharpshooter in Saand Ki Aankh, or a pathbreaking scientist in Mission Mangal. Now, as every actor must, she will put on her pads, hoick a bat and step into the shoes of the inimitable Mithali Raj. Will the great cricketer be at hand to guide her? Strokeplay is fine, just look at her running between the wickets.
Swinging and leaping, clearing away villainy with rapier thrusts of his cutlass and winning the ladies with his rakish charm (oh yes), generations saw Errol Flynn (1909-59), star of such genre-defining hits as Captain Blood (1933) and The Adventures of Robin Hood (‘38) as a swashbuckling hero. But this astonishingly beautiful specimen of the human male led a more eventful life: look at the Hobart-Sydney-New Guinea-London-Hollywood trajectory of his career. His boisterous, lipstick-smudged, devil-may-care personal life made him as much a global superstar as his screen presence, while the press made him a priapic symbol, raising envious cries of ’In like Flynn’. He died troubled, broke and early, but, as always, with love at his bedside.