Blog Posts by Sayoni Sinha

  • 'Was never desperate to be an actor'


    Ayushman Khurrana talks about his role in Nautanki Saala and his bromance with Kunal Roy Kapoor


    Unlike other newcomers in Bollywood, Ayushaman’s journey into Bollywood wasn’t rocky. After dabbling with radio and television, he forayed into films with shoojit Sircar’s Vicky Donor. The film hit the bullseye and won a national award making Ayushman a hot property that he is today. But success hasn’t gone in his head and he says  ”while interviewing stars and celebs as a television host, I have seen how it is to be on the other side of the camera. I have seen it as an outsider and that was a reality check for me.” Now he is back with Rohan Sippy’s Nautanki Saala which is based on a French film Après Vous where he shares screen with Kunal Roy Kapoor. In a free- wheeling chat, Ayushman tells us about his role in Nautanki Saala and his bromance with Kunal Roy Kapoor.

    Excerpts from the interview:

    How did Nautanki Saala happen?
    After Vicky Donor, there was a heavy responsibility on me for doing the

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  • The villain’s change of heart


    While the villains have transformed through the decades when it comes to plotting, sadly their magnificiant lairs have gone missing. Here's why

    In the last scene of Rowdy Rathore, the Hindi remake of 2006's Telugu hit Vikramarkudu, Akshay Kumar goes to Chambal-like hideout of the villain to rescue his family. Apart from the sassy nautanki girls and loud dialogues, the film is a tribute to the 80s with its raunchy and raucous content featuring a done-to-death plot, voluptuous heroine and a villian's lair which can compete with Gabbar's from Sholay. Well, almost.

    The 70s and 80s were the time when each Bollywood villain competed with the other when it came to having a hideout which resembled a space ship or may be a house in Pluto, the more imaginative, the better for the art department The lair is a delineated space for malevolence and was given meticulous detailing to amplify of his power and strength of the evil as the hero's nemesis. Perhaps, this is why in Karan

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  • Tracing Parallel cinema


    In the 1950s, Indian cinema saw the emergence of neo-realism films which were perceived as vehicles of social change

    A still from Ray's 'Pather Panchali'

    While most film historians believe that the birth of parallel cinema took place in 1969 with Mrinal Sen’s FDC financed 'Bhuvan Shome', the informal foundation had already taken place 20 years ago when a graphic designer began making a low-budget realistic film about the struggles of a poor family in a West Bengal village in the 1920s, with a team comprising a cinematographer who hadn't operated a video camera before and a cast ranging from an 80-year-old thespian who hadn't appeared on screen for 30 years and a five-year old making his debut in the lead role. With 'Pather Panchali' in 1955, Satyajit Ray marked his entry into the film world. This period saw the emergence of neo-realism which was closer to reality and early examples of films include Chetan Anand’s Neecha Nagar (1946), Ritwik Ghatak’s Nagarik (1952), and Bimal Roy’s Do Bigha Zameen (1953)

    A still from 'Bhumika'What was common

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  • Decoding Dadasaheb Phalke

    A still from Paresh Mokashi's 'Harishchandrachi Factory'

    Phalke’s own history serves as an exciting backdrop in terms of understanding the man who is the founder of Indian Cinema

    The man who laid the foundation of Indian cinema had died a dejected man and was probably the first Indian to taste success and failure in the show business. Phalke’s films, as was the norm during that time, were based on mythological characters and were instant successes. The audience, who till now, were only privy to the foreign films that would be screened in the theatres. “No much is known about Phalke’s early life and I , like most people, was oblivious to his eccentricities, “ says Paresh Mokashi, the director of the acclaimed Marathi film Harishchandrachi Factory. “While researching about his first film, I came across interesting trivia about him and go to know the man who was a sucker for adventure.”

    At the age of 15, Phalke left his home at Tryambkeshwar near Nashik and travelled all the way to Bombay to enroll himself in J J School of Arts. After that,

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  • Raja Harishchandra’s French connection


    'The Life of Christ' captivated Phalke so much that he gave up everything at the age of 40 to make the film

    On April 21, 1913, the editors of selective newspapers along with some imminent personalities of Bombay queued up at the now defunct Olympia Theatre to witness a phenomenon, which eventually marked the birth of Indian Cinema. The 40-minute long film was called Raja Harishchandra and the plot was based on a mythological character. Not having witnessed anything of this sort earlier, the film was a success when it was opened to the public on May 3, 1913 heralding the era of silent films in Indian Cinema.

    Passion of the Christ
    But this wasn’t a mean feat to accomplish but so captivated was Dhundiraj Govind Phalke (Dadasaheb Phalke) with the silent film, The Life of Christ, in 1910 that he decided to give up his career as a printing press owner and travel to London to learn and procure film making equipments. In the 1917 issue of Navayug, Phalke writes, “While witnessing Christ on

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