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Mission Majnu is real, no answer for those comparing to Raazi: Shantanu Bagchi | Bollywood

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Mission Majnu director Shantanu Bagchi feels ecstatic about the Sidharth Malhotra-starrer, which is ruling Netflix’s top 10 movies in India. While some might think it’s the award-winning ad maker’s film debut, his first film as a child artist was Satyajit Ray’s Sonar Kella. In a conversation with Hindustan Times, Shantanu recalled his fond memories of Ray who sparked his interest in filmmaking and his latest experience with Mission Majnu.

Several fans hoped for a theatrical release of Mission Majnu and many repeated it on Twitter even after it landed on Netflix on January 20. Shantanu reasoned their decision, “A lot of people say that but in today’s day and age, the reach that Netflix can bring is absolutely great. For instance, even though I knew that it was released in 190 countries, I had my doubts that anybody but Indians would watch it. I was thinking maybe in India people will watch it but never thought it will be in 5th position in UK or 6th in Canada in the top watch list.”

While the reception of the spy thriller came as a surprise to the director, many people compared the film to Alia Bhatt’s spy drama, Raazi. What does Shantanu think about it? He answered, “At the time of the trailer release, everybody was talking about the elements which should be there in a spy story. First of all, I have never understood the meaning of reviewing a trailer. You can review a film, but I haven’t gotten around to how you can review a trailer. But people watch and do so there must be a solid reason.”

“You are, by looking at the trailer, commenting on a film, which you haven’t seen. Maybe you should wait, watch the film and then maybe you are in the right position to comment. But people are saying it’s the same thing—there’s spy who goes to Pakistan, but those are elements. When you watch the film, you will see it’s completely different. It’s based on a true story which actually happened. In this story the spy is an intelligent guy who is thinking laterally, he is not snooping on somebody and figuring it out. He is trying to find something and it’s an interesting story of a spy with a bright mind, adhering to a kind of realistic situation, rather than many other spy films that you have seen. They are glorified, almost like superheroes. Of course, there are some action sequences (in Mission Majnu) which are not as realistic but…I think they will add to the thrill. There are some people, even after watching it, who are saying you know it’s like Raazi. For them, I have no answer.”

Also read: Sidharth Malhotra reacts to comparisons between Alia Bhatt’s Raazi and his spy film Mission Majnu

The film also misses Rashmika Mandanna’s voice. When asked Shantanu about it, he revealed why they opted for dubbing. “Rashmika tried it during one of the Hindi workshops but it was a Pakistani dialect with some Urdu nuqta (the way of pronouncing and expressing the words). Those things were not happening because she is born and brought up with a certain language. We dubbed the voice with somebody who’s good at it.”

But, was Rashmika comfortable? “No actor is comfortable when you are dubbing their voice. That’s a given. But we have tried to dub the voice very close to their voice inflection.” Shantanu added around 10-15 voice artists were tested during multiple rounds to find the perfect match while only concentrating on pronunciations.

Shantanu’s film was the first Hindi film shot by Rashmika but her debut title went to Vikas Bahl’s Goodbye. But, the director has no qualms about it. “In life, there are certain things which are not in your hand. When a film will release is not in your hand, I would not worry about it at all. I would worry about the actor’s performance in my film. I was not worried at all because I knew she has done a wonderful job. When the audience sees something good they will take it up, which they did. I was never worried about what is that other film and how will people react to it.”

Shantanu helmed several popular advertisements and eventually navigated his way into films. But, was it an easy journey or stakes were even higher than for a rookie? “Whenever you do anything new in your life, stakes are high. It’s true for everybody. But one has to take the plunge and approach it with honesty, integrity, positivity and try. According to me, ads are a wonderful training ground.”

“Now you have come to a place where the format is big, the risk is larger and you have to tell a different story. How to tweak it to entertain the audience is the real task. There’s a high chance you can fail because you have never done it before. But, if one is aware, one can try to reduce mistakes,” he opined from experience.

It was Satyajit’s 1969 hit film Goopy Gyne Bagha Byne which made Shantanu his fan. He shared, “I watched Goopy Gyne Bagha Byne with grandfather. I asked him who is Satyajit Ray. What role is he playing? My grandfather told me that he is not in the film but because of him everything is happening on the screen. I was intrigued by the idea that there was a man for whom everything is happening in the film but you can’t see him. Maybe that kindled my curiosity and interest (in films).”


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Hrithik’s girlfriend Saba Azad reacts to people talking about her personal life | Bollywood

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Actor-singer Saba Azad, who is dating actor Hrithik Roshan, has spoken about how people talk about her personal life. In a new interview, Saba said about showbiz that ‘this is one industry’, where a person’s personal life is discussed. Saba also talked about ‘commercial Bollywood music’. (Also Read | Hrithik Roshan, Saba Azad party with Sunaina Roshan on her birthday)

Rumours about Hrithik and Saba’s relationship started, when they were spotted on a dinner date together in February last year. Later, she also joined Hrithik’s family for a get-together. The rumours came to an end after the two walked hand-in-hand at filmmaker Karan Johar’s 50th birthday bash in May, last year. Hrithik was previously married to interior designer Sussanne Khan.

In an interview with News18, Saba said about the attention her relationship with Hrithik gets, “If one was to go to work, anywhere else, to any other field, you go to work, you come back home, nobody is discussing your personal life. Your personal life is your business. But I find this is one industry where it would be discussed. But having said that, let’s not talk further about it.”

Talking about music in Bollywood, Saba added, “To be honest, I don’t know what commercial Bollywood music is anymore. Bollywood not only… It gets inspired, borrows, and makes its own, (there are so many genres). You can’t really be like ‘this is Bollywood music.’ Because sometimes you’re listening to Raggea, sometimes it’s dubstep, drum, and base, or straight-up pop. So I don’t think Bollywood is one thing. It is many facetted, many coloured things.”

Saba and Hrithik are often seen together in Mumbai as they step out for dates and events. She also spends time with his family members. They have also taken several vacations together so far. However, an official confirmation of their relationship is still awaited.

Hrithik will be next seen in director Siddharth Anand’s aerial action thriller film Fighter opposite Deepika Padukone and Anil Kapoor. The film is all set to hit the theatres in January 2024. He was last seen in Vikram Vedha, the Hindi remake of the Tamil hit of the same name. The film also starred Saif Ali Khan and Radhika Apte.

Saba will be next seen in the film Songs of Paradise alongside Soni Razdan. She recently lent her voice to the title track of the upcoming series Farzi. Titled Sab Farzi, the song has been composed by music composer duo Sachin-Jigar and penned by Priya Saraiya.

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Rakhi Sawant’s husband Adil Khan Durrani holds her hand during mom’s last rites

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Rakhi Sawant’s mother Jaya Sawant died after a long battle with cancer on Saturday. On Sunday, Rakhi and her husband Adil Khan Durrani were seen at the Dr RN Cooper Municipal General Hospital in Mumbai to take care of the arrangements for her final rites. Rakhi had informed on Instagram that her mother will be buried at the Oshiwara Christian Graveyard in Mumbai on Sunday. Also read: Rakhi Sawant cries inconsolably after her mom dies of cancer in Mumbai hospital; Jackie Shroff, Aly Goni express shock

Rakhi and Adil were seen walking hand-in-hand as they arrived at the Cooper hospital ahead of her mom’s final journey to the graveyard. Rakhi, in a white salwar-suit, was also seen guiding the van, which carried her mom’s casket to the graveyard. A few near and dear ones were also seen along with them.

Rakhi Sawant ahead of her mom’s final rites. (Varinder Chawla)
Adil Khan, Rakhi Sawant and Rakesh Sawant during her mom's final rites. (Varinder Chawla)
Adil Khan, Rakhi Sawant and Rakesh Sawant during her mom’s final rites. (Varinder Chawla)
Rashami Desai attends Rakhi Sawant's mom's final rites. (Varinder Chawla)
Rashami Desai attends Rakhi Sawant’s mom’s final rites. (Varinder Chawla)

Jaya died at around 9pm on Saturday, according to Deepak Namjoshi, pulmonologist and director, CritiCare Asia Multispecialty Hospital and Research Center, Juhu. She was 73. According to Deepak, Jaya had stage four endometrial cancer which had spread to the brain, lungs and liver. “She was admitted around a fortnight ago. She was earlier treated at another hospital and later referred here,” he told PTI Saturday night.

On Sunday, Rakhi shared a statement on her Instagram Stories, “With deep sorrow, I, Rakhi Sawant, inform you (about) the sudden death of my beloved mother. Many of you know that she was suffering from some medical conditions… I’m sad to say that she is gone… join us for the funeral service of my mother at 12 noon.”

She also shared a video of her mom’s last moments in pain and wrote in Hindi, “Today, my mother left me. And I have nothing to lose. I love you, Maa. Now who will listen to me, who will embrace me? I miss you, Aai.” She was seen crying while sitting on the floor beside her mom’s bed.

Rakhi was regularly spotted visiting her mom at the hospital and shared videos of her on Instagram. She had revealed in April last year that Salman Khan and his brother Sohail Khan had provided help for her mother’s treatment.

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Lollapalooza India Day 1 recap: Imagine Dragons mark India debut, AP Dhillon wins hearts

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The annual American music festival, Lollapalooza marked its debut in India on Saturday. Held at Mumbai’s Mahalaxmi Racecourse, the two-day event is believed to have entertained over 60,000 music lovers. Featuring over 40 artistes across four stages, day one of Lollapalooza India 2023 saw acts by music outfits Easy Wanderlings, Bloodywood, Kumail, Sandunes and more. The highlights of the show, however, were performances by world-leading musicians AP Dhillon and Imagine Dragons.

While the first 30 minutes of the Punjabi singer’s hour-long act were quite a damper with his low energy and lip syncing being quite evident, the Brown Munde singer rocked the second half by belting out his chart-topping hits such as Summer High, Dil Nu, Woh Noor, Excuses and more. During his performance, he also engaged with the audience. The singer got off the stage to greet his fans and also threw the ukulele towards the crowd.

Imagine Dragons, the American pop rock band, wrapped up the first day of the festival. This was the band’s maiden performance in the country. Lead singer Dan Reynolds greeted the fans with a namaste and said, “This is the first of many shows.”

The band performed their iconic songs such as Radioactive, Bad Liar, Believer, Enemy, Thunder and more. In the midst of the performance, Reynolds went shirtless. He jumped into the crowd multiple times. Reynolds also borrowed the Indian tricolour from a fam and waved it during his act.

He shared his gratitude towards the audience members. “You people have been nice and kind. Your food is amazing. Thank you for receiving me with such kindness. What a pleasure it has been to be here today.”

Interestingly, there was some Bollywood flavour to the fest too. While actor Rajkummar Rao was seen cheering for Imagine Dragons, actor Hrithik Roshan made a quick presence for his girlfriend, singer Saba Azad’s gig.

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