OUTLOOK Monday 03 September, 2001
Me and My India

Patriotism ran high across the seven seas this Independence day even in the US during a show when our cultural exports gave long lectures on Indianness and all that they loved about India. The star-starved nri community surely loved watching Mahima Pardes Choudhary, Pooja Bhatt and many others in flesh and blood. Wonder what was Leander Paes doing in that crowd on the stage.

Tabla Tantrums

So is the Ustad bidding adieu to tabla? It seems he’s not. At least the punchline in the latest Taj Mahal tea ad campaign says otherwise. The grapevine is now abuzz with another rumour—that all the recent talks of his quitting were part of a carefully-planned media strategy. And we thought classical music was poorer by a master.

Two Strings

It’s a fusion for the sake of their calling in life—violin maestro L. Subramaniam and Burnin’ Red Ivanhoe, the legendary Danish rock group, are coming together in Bangalore later this week to enable 600 students of the School of Music to realise their talent. Fusion of love, should we say.

Most Wanted, A Comeback

You’ve got to take him seriously when he says he’s going to “come back with a bang”. But as of now, India’s Most Wanted star Suhaib Ilyasi has made a rather low-key comeback with Fugitive: The Most Wanted on Jain TV. The theme, he says, remains the same, but this time it’s a “mission” to expose the nexus between criminals and the government. So, is he hitting back for his recent personal crisis? He claims otherwise. But, we’re not buying that story!

Fashion Czarina

She’s certainly hit the haute spot. Ask Mumbai catwalker Ujjwala Raut what’s keeping her busy these days, and she’ll start dropping names—Emmanual Ungaro, Jean Louis Scherrer and Torrente, all czars of world fashion. Surely this Elite girl is going places—jetsetting between international ramps.

His Master's Voice

Wacko Jacko is dancing to desi tunes these days! Michael Jackson is busy finalising a single with our own Dil Se man, A.R. Rahman. Titled Ekam Satyam, the track, part English and part Sanskrit, is sung by the two maestros. In fact, the rumour mill suggests that MJ even considered including the song in his forthcoming album, Invincible, but chickened out at the last minute for reasons best known to him. Whatever, we’re not complaining—after Alka Moulin Rouge Yagnik, could Rahman be the next? Our fingers are crossed.

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  • Two women sitting on laps of men, glad, artificial grins plastered over their faces...you’d be forgiven to think such things are embarrassingly passe in the 21st century. It’s evidently not in Bollywood. And so, the comedy Good Newwz, starring Kiara Advani, Diljit Dosanjh, Akshay and Kareena, will possibly live up to its tagline: ‘the biggest goof-up of the year’. A comedy about IVF, did you say? We shudder in anticipation.
  • Bollywood must be dreading  the Calcutta International Film Festival—a stentorian call from the CM...the unenlightening prospect of a day full of drumbeats. However, there is no respite for Shahrukh (Amitabh fell ill at an opportune  period). Though flanked by filmmaker Goutam Ghosh, Mamata herself and Sourav, the stage-show was stopped by the bonhomie between Rakhee and SRK: singing along a pat­riotic Rabi­ndrasangeet and reminiscing  about the sets of Baazigar.
  • As a snarling Dirty Harry teases out criminals in LA; as Frank Serpico goes und­ercover in New York, Chulbul Pandey does age-old, comic acrobatics to hurt ‘baddies’, then giggles around his lady love. Flogging the same masala, here comes the trailer of Dabangg 3, at the launch of which Salman points at the same direction, while Sonakshi Sinha and Saiee Manjrekar prepare to follow the leader with loving attention.
  • What do they actually do in Bigg Boss—that synthetic morass of shape-­shifting loyalties, gro­up­­ings and couplings by people clinging on to the skirts of fame, dragg­ing along an endless stream of stragglers agape before their boxes? At least Boman Irani, Rajkummar Rao and Mouni are doing something specific—horsing around joyfully, canvassing for their film Made in China. Major domo Sal­man, of  course, is there at every step, falling in and out with practised difficulty.