OUTLOOK Monday 23 March, 1998
The Gourmet Makeover

BACK to cookbooks. For starters, a four-serial recipe book and a ten-volume encyclopaedia for a German publisher, out in October. Sanjeev Kapoor, the chef who blended his culinary skills into a CD-ROM explains: "Each volume will be devoted to a culinary region in India." Hence his sabbatical from Juhu Centaur, 'cause he's "travelling and eating". And fighting an expanding girth—one of the job's hazards, he laughs.

Golfin Around

KAPIL Dev's love for golf continues. Not only is he playing in the most prestigious golf tournament in the country, The Indian Open, but is also designing a golf course for Sahara India's resort in Lonavala. The 18-hole course will be part of a larger complex. Designing courses is something pro's have been known to do after retirement—Greg Norman, Jack Nicklaus... That Kapil, just a couple of years after he took to the game, is being invited to do so speaks volumes of his skill with clubs. Kapil da jawab nahin!

Dressed in Scandal

MAMTA Kulkarni is never out of trouble for long. This time its not the Shiv Sena which is hounding her, but politicians and public personalities in Bangladesh. Kulkarni was part of a star performance at a well-known hotel last month. The catch was that her performance and clothing was described as 'indecent'. What made matters worse was the fact that February is also the month when the nation pays homage to the martyrs of the language movement. Goes to prove that this is one babe who attracts controversies faster than roles.

Masala Merchant

ISMAIL Merchant's office tells us that the boss, who was in Mumbai recently, is scouting around in the south, desperately in search of locales for his next venture—Cotton Mary. The film, to be shot entirely in the heat and dust of South India, will be centered around the Anglo-Indian community, based on the impressions of American author Alexandra Vietz. Apart from Merchant-Ivory types like Naseeruddin Shah, Shabana Azmi and Saeed Jaffrey, it just might include box-office types like Aamir Khan or Shah Rukh Khan. "It's a bit premature to get into details of the film," claims a tight-lipped source. But the excitement in the film industry is brimming over. And for once, understandably so.

More Song and Dance

HAS ghazal singer Talat Aziz, the Bachchan lookalike, given up his silver screen aspirations? He will now anchor Gaane Bhi do Yaaron, a musical game show for DD. His experience with the now wound-up talk show Saat Saal is taking him places. The fun element will be provided by the more garrulous Archana Puran Singh. Says Aziz enthusiastically: "We want the show to be humour-laced and different." But then, don't they all?

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  • Couldn’t she have had a better hairstyle than one which makes her hair stand up in ungainly tufts, like that of a bird soaked to its skin in the Mumbai monsoon? Couldn’t he have worn a jacket without those offensive stripes, often an indicator of a perfect marriage of bad taste with sudden money? But Rahika is soaring after the success of Andhadhun; Ali Fazal, too, is gearing up for his role in a Hollywood production of Death on the Nile, the Poirot mystery. They smiled reassuringly at the ‘IIFA Rocks’ event; they had a lot of fun.  
  • Abu Jani and Sandeep Khosla started designing trousseaus fit for a princess for the catwalk when designers weren’t famous in their own right. Thi­rty-three years on, they are well-known now, and celebrated with a show in Mumbai, They dressed up the reliably gorgeous Deepika in this intricately woven, ivory-embellished lehenga. At the end of the walk, she broke into a jig. For joy, certainly. But, given an inch, Bollywood will out!
  • With every conceivable sporting activity speedily shuffled up into a corporatised league for maximum milking, it’s unsurprising that the annual boat race on the Punnamada lake inaugurated the Cha­mpions Boat League. Sachin, outrigged by Kathakali dancers, spoke of Kerala’s resilience in the face of floods and its passion for cricket.
  • For all his Bhangra moves, Justin Trudeau had a diplomatically disastrous tour of India, but the boyishly handsome Canadian premier  rem­ains a darling of the masses, especially swooning womenfolk. It was no surprise then that at an informal gaggle of world leaders at the G7 summit, Melania turned to  him for a peck, as the weight of the world kept the scowl fixed on Donald’s face. As a Twitter wag put it: “Find someone who looks at you like  Melania looks at Trudeau.”


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