THE jewelled look of Tarun Tahiliani; the slinky, elegance of Monisha Jaisingh; Raghavendra Rathod's Indo-West princely impact; the 100-metre-crushed fabric kurtas of Rohit Bal; the embroidered effect of J.J. Valaya and Arjun Khanna. Flying high with the Seychelles-bound svelte hopefuls are a host of ensemble designers. "This is a great opportunity to grab the eye of a worldwide audience, the designers are representative of fashion in India today," says Tina Tahiliani Parikh, executive director of the hautelet. From thermacol to the tailors, everything is being carted to the island for the Miss World fashion show. The challenge is in creating couture that the girls haven't seen before and that should see some winning combinations come to the fore.
WHILE beauty contests brew in the Big B's backyard, his UK-based sibling's bedroom is home to a few ugly scenes. Apparently, the protocol partnership between Ajitabh and Ramola is past its prime and the gilt is chipping to expose the tarnish beneath. A source revealed: "The pressure is finally showing especially after the series of scandals that have popped up in the past few months. Even open marriages are not beyond all this, you know." If things do come to a close, Ajitabh will go back to minding his business. And Ramola? Well, if one party is over, she can always start planning another one.
CO-STARRING in Albela with Govinda, Pukar with Anil Kap-oor, Purab Ki Laila Paschim Ka Chhaila with Akshay Kumar, and other films, model-turned-actress, Namrata Shirodkar, has her work cut out for her. But the question that remains is whether long-time love, businessman Deepak Shetty, has asked Papa Shirodkar for her hand in marriage. "No marriage for me, at least for the next couple of years," comes the vehement reply. Sensible. After all, walking down the ramp can be fitted between shooting schedules. But a walk up the aisle is a full-time job.
WHAT do you do when your kingdom becomes part of a democratic country? Simply join hands with the government to promote it. That's what Capt Amarinder Singh, the ex-maharaja of Patiala, is doing. In charge of Punjab for INTACH, the Punjab government and he are busy planning a week long extravaganza in Patiala in January. Called Patiala Heritage Week, it will feature artists like Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Malika Pukhraj and Ustad Vilayat Khan, all from the Patiala gharana. Polo matches and fashion shows will also figure, the venue being the Old Fort which is under renovation. Says Singh: "We want to make it a yearly event and will try and collect funds for it again next year."
IT earned Ramanand Sagar near sainthood and Peter Brooks achieved critical acclaim with Mahabharata. Now Delhi-based producer Suresh Jindal is all set to mount this epic for the silver screen. To be directed by Mani Kaul and scripted by Jean Claude Carrier, who also scripted Brooks' Mahabharata, the film will be in English. Says Jindal: "The film will be for the world market as Indian parallel cinema is dead.'' The film's budget, which is an estimated $15 million, will have an international cast and be shot all over the world. Seychelles, the current favourite with film producers and directors, will in all probability be the main location, though South Africa and Vietnam are also being considered as possible venues. "We will definitely shoot some of it in India,'' adds Jindal. Hopefully, the film won't have colourful dancing arrows like Ramanand Sagar's version.