OUTLOOK Monday 14 February, 2005
That's Me!

Between bagging the Padma Shri and making it to the cover of National Geographic, Shahrukh Khan also played muse to high art. He was the subject of a new series of paintings by Anjana Kuthiala. srk was surprised at this unusual tribute and promised to put up one of the paintings at home. This inveterate celebrity painter is on to her next big-time inspiration—the Gandhi family. Now, that’s art of politics.

Man Of The Match

The lone Tamil in the Sri Lankan team Muthiah Muralitharan has met his match in a Chennai girl, Madhimalar Ramamurthy. It is an arranged affair, complete with a “girl-seeing” photo and horoscopes. Incidentally, Murali’s family trace their roots to Tiruchi where they still run a hotel. The girl’s family own a hospital chain.

Spin Me Magic

Career has been Diana Hayden’s motto. She broke up with her boyfriend Usman Afzal in England and returned to pick up her Bollywood dreams. But the lovesick English left-arm spinner said Ab Bas and followed to weave his magic on the former Miss World. Well, given her career graph, she desperately needs all the magic.

Death What?

Trust Khushwant Singh to bring a ‘dead’ issue alive to provoke debate. This time, the issue happens to be death itself. That’s how things went at the launch of his latest work, Death at my Doorstep: Obituaries, in the capital. While scholar-politician Karan Singh invoked the Hindu belief in the soul’s reincarnation, the grand old man, still agnostic at 90, countered with his oft-stated death-is-the-end argument. That’s a never-say-die spirit!

Dada Leads

What do actors Konkona Sen Sharma and Prasenjit, filmmaker Rituparno Ghosh and writer Taslima Nasreen have to do with cricket? Last week, it was more than to lend glamour to an event organised by skipper Saurav Ganguly—the release of books written by Gautam Bhattacharya, the sports editor of Ananda Bazar Patrika, about his helmsmanship of some recent cricketing highs: the ’03 World Cup, India-Australia series and the tour of Pakistan. “These are the greatest landmarks in Indian cricket since ’83 World Cup,” says Bhattacharya of his unabashed praise for the skipper. Ganguly-baiters, take that!


Now aren’t you relieved to have the old Aamir Khan back— minus his Rising tresses and mutiny mooch? He initially wanted to retain the look till the release of the film. But the shooting schedules for Rang de Basanti forced him to give in.

  • Chinese audiences’ app­etite for Bollywood drama rages unabated. The latest one to have the Peking boys sta­m­pede into the theatres and Shanghai’s dames squeal in pleasant fright is Sriram Raghavan’s suspense thriller Andha Dhun (marketed also as Piano Player, shades of Truffaut crime caper here) starring Ayushmann and Radhika. Rs 219 crore in two weeks is a handily handsome strike rate. Long live our ‘soft power’.
  • CSK Watch In this glad season for the Chennai Super Kings, ace atta­cking spinner Imran Tahir has been a sight to behold—his tight-fisted, spread-armed sprint after a wicket popular as ever on and off the field. After another easy win, skipper Dhoni dared Tahir’s son for a race. We don’t know who won, but it dissolved into a softly-softly celebration. Can Uncle Cool do it like Dad? We doubt it.
  • A midfield sultan meets a ruling badshah on the sidelines of an amphitheatre. That would be Shahrukh’s London meeting with Arse­nal’s central scimitar, Mesut Ozil. After damning the hypocrisy in German mult­i­­cultur­ism, Ozil is in a smoother space. SRK, who is huge in Turkey,  where Ozil’s roots lie, got a (rather formal) welcome in Hindi too.
  • The Lok Sabha elections draw near, so does the biopic of the country’s prime minister. Perfectly timed its rele­ase might be, but PM Narendra Modi has  earned the ire of lyricist Javed Akhtar—he was wrongly credited for work in a project he wasn’t involved in. Then there’s scepticism about how good a likeness is a shapely Vivek Oberoi for our most prominent politician. Ah, but just go in for the old-­fashioned songs: Ye desh nahin mitne dunga, sings a pat­riotic Modi in the film.


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