Superstar Kamal Haasan's much-awaited movie, 'Vikram', is all set to become a super-duper hit. The movie, which is slated to be released on June 3 in theatres around the world, has already notched up Rs 200 crore in sales of TV and OTT rights.
Kamal Haasan's 232nd film released to a select audience during the Cannes Film Festival and Umair Sandhu, a critic based out of the UAE, tweeted about it, saying, "It is an earnest and honest effort, a terrific action thriller, with several poignant moments and episodes that leave a stunning impact. If you are in the frame of mind to watch superior quality sensible cinema, go for It #KamalHaasan fans."
In the movie, Kamal Haasan plays the role of Arun Kumar, an agent working for RAW, India's external intelligence agency. He is at times brutal and shows no mercy to criminals.
Musically, too, the song 'Pathala Pathala', written and co-sung by Kamal Haasan and music composer Anirudh Ravichandran, has already become a big hit on YouTube.
Tamil superstar Vijay Sethupathi plays an antagonist in the movie and Malayalam star Fahad Fazil is also in the film in a major role. Another Tamil superstar, Suriya, makes a cameo appearance in the film, which is produced by Kamal Haasan's movie house Raj Kamal and R. Mahendran.
Other actors who play significant roles in the movie are Narain, Antony Verghese, Chemben Vinod, Gayathrie Shankar, Shanvi Srivastava, Shivani Narayanan, Arjun Das and Kalidas Jayaram.
Veteran actor Sam Neill, who is set to reprise his character of Dr. Alan Grant in the upcoming sci-fi adventure film 'Jurassic World Dominion', recently shared his experience of visiting India back in the 90s and how driving down the roads of the country still makes him anxious.
For him, "It was an overload time" in India, as he told the press about his experience shooting in the country and how it continues to bring a smile on his face. He came to India in the 90s to shoot Rudyard Kipling's 'The Jungle Book' (1994).
Recollecting his experience, he said that "It was beautiful, but it was too beautiful. It was noisy, but it was too noisy. It was colourful, but it was too colourful. All my senses were overloaded the whole time I was in the country."
With a hearty laugh he said further, "I still get anxious when I think of hurtling down Indian roads in one of those sort of 50s Morris taxis, dodging people carrying things, weaving around cars. I would have to close my eyes in cars, because every minute we seem to be close to death. But in India, it seemed completely normal."
Jurassic World Dominion is directed by Colin Trevorrow who wrote the screenplay with Emily Carmichael, and is based on a story by Trevorrow and his writing partner, Derek Connolly. It is set to drop in theatres on June 10.
On the occasion of the 139th birth anniversary of Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, the first look of the upcoming biopic titled 'Swatantra Veer Savarkar' was unveiled on Saturday. Randeep Hooda plays the title role in the film, directed by Mahesh Manjrekar.
Talking about the film, producer Sandeep Singh said: "At a time when films of Harshad Mehta, Vijay Mallya, and Lalit Modi are trending, I am more interested in telling the story of Veer Savarkar's life. He was the first dynamic hero of India and the only man who could have saved the Partition in 1947."
He added: "Through this film, I, not only as a filmmaker but most importantly as an Indian, want to tell the world the facts about Savarkar's struggle. He is the most misunderstood hero and it is high time that we understand him, and moreover celebrate this rebel."
Adding to what Sandeep had to say about the casting of Hooda, co-producer Anand Pandit pointed out: "Randeep has time and again showcased his skill set as an actor and moreover, shown that he can transform into the character he portrays. But in the case of Savarkar, there is an added dynamic because of his uncanny resemblance to the freedom fighter."
He added: "I am a lover of history and excited to have the cinematic privilege to bring to 70 mm the story of a leader whose story must be told."
Director Mahesh Manjrekar noted: "People may have different versions in their mind for Savarkar but as a filmmaker, I'm trying to match the same thought which Savarkar had. So, the character of Savarkar in the film will not be any different from what Savarkar was in real life. He was the iconic freedom fighter and we'll ensure that he's never forgotten ever by any Indian."
Hooda had this to say: "This is a salute to one of the tallest unsung heroes of India's struggle for freedom and self-actualisation. I hope I can live up to the challenge of filling such big shoes of a truly revolutionary and tell his real story which had been brushed under the carpet for so long."
The film is going on floors in August 2022.
The sci-fi action film 'Attack: Part 1', starring John Abraham, will have its OTT premiere on May 27.
'Attack' is the first Indian super soldier film which features high-octane action, romance, and drama. The film, which also stars Jacqueline Fernandes and Rakul Preet, has been directed by Lakshya Raj Anand.
Lakshya has also co-written the film along with Sumit Batheja and Vishal Kapoor. Speaking on the occasion, John said, "'Attack' is and always will be special to me as it is a one-of-a-kind film presenting India's first super soldier. It is an authentic story from our homeland and at par with the globe's best action films. I am glad that we have ZEE5's support in making this film reach action lovers across the world".
The film tells the story of Arjun Shergill played by John Abraham, an Indian army officer who ends up with permanent paralysis neck down after a terrorist attack and loses everything and everyone dear to him, including his love interest, Ayesha played by Jacqueline Fernandes.
Under the command of the newly introduced technology, Intelligence Robotic Assistant (IRA) chip, in the Indian army, designed and implanted by Sabaha essayed by Rakul Preet, Arjun is able to stand up on his feet again with his mission is to save the Prime Minister of the country from a Parliament attack.
Director Lakshya Raj Anand said, "Witness our film Attack's second innings on India's homegrown OTT platform, ZEE5. India's first super soldier is a film made with a lot of heart, blood, sweat and tears and we hope our efforts reach more and more people via its digital premiere and entertain them thoroughly. Get ready to Attack".
The film, produced by Jayantilal Gadda's Pen Studios, John Abraham's JA Entertainment and Ajay Kapoor Productions, will drop on OTT platform ZEE5 on May 27.
Cinema celebrities from across India will walk the 'Red Carpet' along with Union Minister for Information and Broadcasting Anurag Thakur at this year's Cannes Film Festival.
The ministry in a statement said that the 'Red Carpet' event at the 75th Cannes Film Festival is going to be a gala event for Indian audience as celebrities from the cine world across India are set to walk as part of Indian delegation on the opening day of Cannes Film Festival on May 17.
Thakur will lead the delegation from India to Cannes and the list of celebrities comprises actor Akshay Kumar, music composers A. R. Rahman and Ricky Kej, folk singer and music composer Mame Khan, actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui, actresses Nayanthara, Pooja Hegde, Tamannaah Bhatia and Vani Tripathi, chairman CBFC Prasoon Joshi, actor R. Madhavan, filmmaker Shekhar Kapur.
The ministry said that the intent is to showcase the rich flavour and diversity of India - culture, heritage, legacy, and developments through its cinema.
The delegation has been hand-picked from across the length and breadth of the country to represent different strengths and aspects of the country.
"Several new initiatives were undertaken at the recently concluded 52nd International Film Festival of India like collaboration with OTT platforms such as Netflix, Amazon Prime amongst others; recognition to 75 Creative Minds of Tomorrow and the BRICS film festival. In the same spirit, several new and exciting initiatives are lined-up this year for Cannes," the ministry said.
India is the 'Official Country of Honour' at the Cannes Film Market (Marche' Du Film) in this edition of the festival. This is the first time this honour has been bestowed on any country and comes at a time when India celebrates its Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav.
India and France are also celebrating 75 years of diplomatic relations this year.
The minister had earlier announced that India is also the 'Country of Honour at the Cannes Next', under which five new startups would be given an opportunity to pitch to the Audio-Visual Industry.
Actor Akshay Kumar has completed 30 years in the Hindi film industry and Yash Raj Films celebrated his special milestone by creating a new 'Prithviraj' poster, which features every single film that the actor has been a part of.
Akshay in a video shared by the production house is heard saying: "It didn't even cross my mind that this activity is happening to celebrate my 30 years in cinema! It's fascinating that 30 years have passed since my first film Saugandh!
"The first shot of my film career was at Ooty and it was an action shot! Thank you very much for this gesture. This is really special."
Akshay's next 'Prithviraj' is based on the life and valour of the fearless and mighty Samrat Prithviraj Chauhan. He is essaying the role of the legendary warrior who fought valiantly against the merciless invader Muhammad of Ghor.
The film has been directed by Dr. Chandraprakash Dwivedi, who is best known for directing the television epic 'Chanakya' and the critically acclaimed film 'Pinjar'. Manushi Chhillar plays the role of King Prithviraj's beloved Sanyogita.
The film is set to release on June 3 in Hindi, Tamil and Telugu.
Ranbir Kapoor and Alia Bhatt are set to exchange wedding vows on Thursday reportedly at 2 p.m. in Vastu Apartments, Pali Hill area of Mumbai. The couple has been very private about their wedding and that reflects in the guest list.
As per media reports, only a handful of 30 to 50 guests, which includes Ranbir and Alia's closest friends and family members have been invited for the star couple's D-Day. The 'baraat' will start from the iconic Krishna Raj bungalow, which is currently under construction and will head to Ranbir's Vastu Apartments.
The bungalow is named after Ranbir's grandmother Krishna Raj. Prior to the 'phera' ceremony, Ranbir and Alia will also take part in a special pooja. Earlier, a video of Alia's sister Shaheen Bhatt losing her cool on the paparazzi emerged on social media.
Shaheen slammed the shutterbugs as she arrived at Ranbir Kapoor's Vastu building.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has responded to the Will Smith-Chris Rock slap episode that has overshadowed everything else that happened at the 94th Academy Awards.
It said in a statement tweeted on its official account: "The Academy does not condone violence of any form." Then went on to say: "Tonight, we are delighted to celebrate our 94th Academy Awards winners, who deserve this moment of recognition from their peers and movie lovers around the world."
'Variety' reports that while presenting the best documentary feature award, Rock, a well-regarded comic actor, joked about Will Smith's wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, starring in 'G.I. Jane 2' because of her bald head. He was referencing the 1997 movie 'G.I. Jane' in which Demi Moore appears with a shaved head.
Pinkett Smith has been open about her struggles with alopecia, a medical condition causes aggravated hair loss. Smith reacted to the joke by going up on stage, separated from where he was sitting by a foot, and slapping Rock. He then returned to his seat and shouted, "Keep my wife's name out of your f****** mouth!"
Smith won Best Actor for 'King Richard' following the incident and issued an apology in a tearful acceptance speech. The actor said: "I want to apologise to the Academy. I want to apologise to all my fellow nominees. This is a beautiful moment and I'm not crying for winning an award. It's not about winning an award for me. It's about being able to shine a light on all of the people."
The point to be noted here is that Smith did not apologise to Rock, the target of his wrathful behaviour that has overtaken the coverage of the otherwise carefully crafted event.
The members of Bharatiya Janata Party Yuva Morcha on Wednesday staged a protest outside the residence of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal over the latter's recent remarks in the Assembly on 'The Kashmir Files' movie.
The Aam Aadmi Party, however, alleged that the protesters attacked the Chief Minister's house.
"CM Arvind Kejriwal's HOUSE ATTACKED BY BJP! SECURITY BARRIERS BROKEN, CCTVs CAMERAS BROKEN, GATE VANDALISED, WITH FULL SUPPORT FROM BJP'S DELHI POLICE. All for demanding Rehabilitation of Kashmiri Pandits?," the party tweeted from its official handle.
Confirming the incident, Deputy Commissioner of Police Sagar Singh Kalsi said that from around 11.30 a.m. onwards a protest was started by around 150-200 protesters of the BJP Yuva Morcha outside the chief minister's residence.
"Around 1 p.m., some of the protesters breached two barricades and reached outside the CM House where they created ruckus, shouted slogans, etc. They were carrying a small box of paint from which they threw paint outside the door. In the imbroglio, a boom barrier arm was also found vandalized as also a CCTV camera," Kalsi said.
The senior police official further informed that the police team immediately removed them from the spot and detained around 70 persons. "Legal action is being initiated," he added.
Notably, the protest was led by BJP Yuva Morcha's national secretary Tajinder Pal Singh Bagga and its national president Tejasvi Surya.
Director: S.S. Rajamouli. Cast: Jr NTR, Ra Charan, Ajay Devgn, Alia Bhatt, Olivia Morris, Samuthirakani, Alison Doody, Ray Stevenson and Shriya Saran.
IANS Rating: ***
Director S.S. Rajamouli's 'RRR', which is the abbreviation for 'Roudram Ranam Rudhiram' or 'Rise Roar Revolt', is a torture fest, literally and figuratively, unless you view the film as a fantasy fiction catering to the masses.
Set in 1920s India, this is a fictitious story about two revolutionaries who, away from home, take it upon themselves to fight the British.
The narrative, divided into three chapters begins with 'The Story'. It tells us how Mali, a pre-teen girl from the Gond tribe of the Deccan forests, is forcibly taken from her home and her parents to Delhi at the behest of Mrs Buxton, wife of the British Governor Scott Buxton.
The next chapter, 'The Fire', introduces us to the daredevil policeman, A. Rama Raju (Ram Charan), who goes all-out to impress his British boss.
The third chapter, 'The Water', presents Bheem (Jr NTR), the forest dweller who travels to Delhi disguised as Akhtar, a Muslim man, to rescue Mali, the girl from his tribe.
How Rama and Bheem meet, form a bond of contrived friendship, and take on British colonials, forms the crux of the magnum opus. Adding to the plot is Bheem's brief romance with Jenny (Olivia Morris), Rama's back-story, and his lady love, Sita (Alia Bhatt), waiting for him.
The film is packed with cinematic excesses and liberties. It opens with visually impressive frames and scenes, but gradually the novelty wears off as the storytelling appears lame and tiresome. It is only when the narrative breaks into its first song, 'Nacho Nacho' ('Naatu Naatu' in the Telugu original) that the screen comes alive, and thereafter the plot gains momentum.
The first two acts of the plot move at a leisurely pace, but the last act is hurriedly wrapped up in the last 30 minutes. There is a lot of gore in the form of torture -- and that is when your spirits dip.
Not wanting the opportunity to slip, Bheem sings and stirs a revolution. This also happens to be the turning point for Rama, but that does not surface organically. The final 15 minutes with exhilarating action sequences showing Lord Rama destroying his enemies with his bow and arrows, seems more like a comic-book rendition.
While there is a patriotic streak to Rama's tale, Ram Charan's actions are so obligatory that it is impossible to be emotionally attached to him. On the other hand, Jr NTR, as the little girl's saviour, is endearing. Alia Bhatt, as Sita, has hardly anything to offer.
Ajay Devgn as Venkat, Rama's father, the policeman-turned-revolutionary mouthing instructions in English, "Load, Aim, Attack", sounds preposterous, despite his intense demeanour and sincere performance. Shriya Sharan, as his wife, has nothing much to do in the film.
Olivia Morris as Jenny is passable. The only one to get your goat is Alison Doody. She very effectively plays her part as the obnoxious Lady Buxton, who demands to see Bheem on his knees and on not seeing enough blood, offers a special whip to make him apologise.
The film is mounted with ace production values. The CGI images seamlessly merge with live-action frames, but their quality varies from good to mediocre.
Bollywood superstars Shah Rukh Khan and Deepika Padukone have been shooting for a grandiose song of 'Pathan' in Mallorca, a Balearic Island of Spain, for the past few days. The two are now set to head to Cadiz and Jerez in Spain where they will wrap up the schedule on March 27.
A trade source reveals, "'Pathaan' is the first film to be shot in Mallorca, Spain. Its expensive, exquisite and luxurious setting makes it one of the best tourist destinations of the world and Siddharth Anand and YRF definitely wanted to film 'Pathaan' over here to achieve a level of scale that has not been seen before in Hindi cinema."
Talking about the next leg of shooting in the Spain schedule, the source further says that the final part of the schedule will involve physically demanding action sequences.
He says, "After Mallorca, Shah Rukh Khan and Deepika Padukone will head to Cadiz and Jerez for an activity schedule that is simply unreal. They will be pushing their bodies to the hilt and filming some death-defying stunts!"
The source goes on to mention that the production is looking to wrap up the schedule by March 27, 'Pathaan' team is aiming to wrap the Spain schedule on March 27. Sid Anand wanted a big international schedule to wow audiences and he has managed to somehow achieve his vision with YRF. SRK and Deepika are looking absolutely drool-worthy and looks like Sid wants them to scorch the big screen."
"SRK and DP's pairing has delivered historic blockbusters and there is a definite intent by the makers to make 'Pathaan' their biggest film to date", the source concludes.
'Pathan', which marks SRK's comeback to movies after almost four years, will see him essaying the role of a spy. The film, directed by Siddharth Anand and produced by Yash Raj Films, also stars Deepika Padukone and John Abraham. Earlier, the film's teaser gave an insight into its premise and the titular character with SRK appearing in a silhouette, generating massive hype.