Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Vishwa Sahni’s Digits in the Digital Era art show inauguration at Artist Centre, Kala Ghoda

Vishwa Sahni and Lesle Lewis at Vishwa Sahni's art show at Artists' Centre Gallery, Kala Ghoda
Musical genius Lesle Lewis inaugurated veteran artist Vishwa Sahni’s Digits in the Digital Era art show at Artist Centre, Kala Ghoda. Classical singer Soma Ghosh, singer Mudasir Ali, Sirf Kash, Sirf Sona, writer-director Anusha Srinivasan Iyer and artists like Prithvi Soni, Madhusudan Kumar, Kiran Chopra, Sonalli Iyengar, Vishnu Sonawane, Gautam Mukherjee among others graced the event.

Madhusudan Kumar, Sonalli Iynegar, Gautam Mukherjee, Vishnu Sonawane, Mudasir Ali, Vishwa Sahni, Sirf Sona, Sirf Kash, Lesle Lewis, Soma Ghosh & Kiran Chopra at Vishwa Sahni's art show at Artists' Centre Gallery, Kala Ghoda
Veteran artist Vishwa Sahni used the humble ballpoint pen as his instrument, brings to the world a story that unfolds through hands and digits...love, faith, trust, compassion, togetherness and above it all humanity. Vishwa Sahni's hands don't just speak -- they scream with their silence.

Lesle Lewis, Vishwa Sahni and Soma Ghosh at Vishwa Sahni's exhibition showcasing hands at Artists' Centre Gallery, Kala Ghoda
The unmissable exhibition of the unique ballpoint works by the veteran artist is on display at Artist’s Centre, Kala Ghoda from Oct 3-9.

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Weight and watch this Vidhi Kasliwal film!

Vidhi Kasliwal, Sachin Kundalkar, Sai Tamhankar  and Priya Bapat

When Sachin Kundalkar came to producer Vidhi Kasliwal with a  Vazandaar concept, she was game. Only thing is she wanted the story to be set in a younger age bracket. The director agreed, and seeds of Vazandaar, the Marathi film were sown. Today, as Vazandaar is set for a Nov 11 release, producer Vidhi Kasliwal is elated.
“The idea was to keep the film as real as possible, with the actresses putting on and losing weight in real as well as reel life. I was worried that no top actresses would agree to it.  But Sachin was sure and rightly so!”  Both Sai Tamhankar  and Priya Bapat agreed instantly. “The only thing was that both the actresses loved the opposite roles. The actresses liked the other characters, and got cast in the role of their choice.”
Vazandaar is a simple story on how we should love ourselves and look beyond our body image because self image is bigger than body image. “You have to look beautiful to yourself and accept yourself as you are. This film is bigger than just a film,” elaborates Vidhi who feels that though the protagonists are women, the film has universal appeal.
“Self image or body image is gender-blind. Men have equally had issues with their body... either receding hairline or shoulders are not that broad or not tall enough... the list could go on” Kundalkar, avers Vidhi, understands women psyche really well. She cites the references of Aiyya and Happy Journey. “He is a very sensitive person, attuned to feelings. That makes a very big difference.”
Vazandaar is about the friendship of two girls who are from different backgrounds, and how both of them help each other out. Their weighty issue almost costs them their friendship. how, both the women work to restore the friendship and keep that bond and girl power alive, forms the crux of the story.

NEZ Global Icon Award for Bappi Lahiri

Actress Rokeya Prachy, Bappi Lahiri, Director Sudeep Ranjan Sarkar & Producer Rita Jhawar at the opening ceremony of NEZ International Film Fest where Bappi da received the Global Icon Award at iLead Campus 
Bappi Lahiri and Director Sudeep Ranjan Sarkar share a moment at the opening ceremony of NEZ International Film Fest where Bappi da received the Global Icon Award at iLead Campus

Four and half decades in the industry and yet rediscovering himself… fresh with every attempt... From Zeenat Aman to Parveen Babi to Vidya Balan… they all go Ooh la la over Bappi Lahiri... And now, Kolkata once again lauded its musical genius son Bappi Lahiri by bestowing on the prestigious NEZ Global Icon Award at the NEZ International Film Festival. Bappi da received the award in the hands of award-winning filmmaker Sudeep Ranjan Sarkar, Producer Rita Jhawar and actress Rokeya Prachy from Bangladesh. 
Enthused Bappi Lahiri, "I have won accolades from around the globe but to be here in my own city Kolkata and to be appreciated and honoured here is a different feeling altogether. I am overjoyed to have received the NEZ Global Icon Award today. I have been associated with filmmaker Sudeep Ranjan Sarkar for a while now and I am really looking forward to work with him in future."
"Bappi da has composed over 5000 songs in over 600 films in HindiBengaliTamilTelugu, MalayalamKannadaGujarati, Marathi, PunjabiOdia,Bhojpui, Assamese. He is also the Guinness Book of Records holder for recording over 180 songs for 33 films in 1986, a record he has since beaten many times over. And he is also a prominent face in Hollywood making India proud there… Therefore we thought there be could no one better than Bappi da for the Global Icon Award," averred filmmaker Sudeeep Ranjan Sarkar who is also the Director at NEZ International Film Festival.

Monday, 19 September 2016

JAS Motion Pictures’ auspicious launch on Ganesh Chaturthi

Jeetu Shankar with Nasirr Khan at the launch of JAS Motion Pictures on Ganesh Chaturthi

Jeetu Shankar, Somji R Shastri, Punit Chopra, Arvind Agarwal, Manish Begrajka and Bhadra Kanaiya at the launch of JAS Motion Pictures on Ganesh Chaturthi

Ganesh Chaturthi marked the logo launch of JAS Motion Pictures, an interesting venture to promote new talent alongside veterans. The brainchild of famous Tabla exponent Jeetu Shankar, Arvind Agarwal, Somji R Shastri, Marques Xavier, Manish Begrajka, Bhadra Kanaiya & Puneet Chopra, JAS Motion Pictures aims to promote new talent in music, acting and all creative aspects and also JAS Motion Pictures will be venturing into TV serials.

The logo launch was attended by veteran music-makers of the likes of Virendra Shankar Raju Shankar, Deepak Pandit, Ram Shankar, Pradeep Pandit, Sarangi Nawaz Sabir Khan, Sanjay Vidyarthi, Surinder Khan, Kertikeya Tiwari, singers Sujata Trivedi, Aishwarya Majmudar, Sukriti Kakkar and Prakriti Kakkar, actor Nasirr Khan, comedian Shakeel Siddiqui among others. Performances began to herald Lord Ganesha post the launch and went on till wee hours of the morning.

The first offering from JAS Motion Pictures will be with Rahat Fateh Ali Khan on the vocals, set to tune by Piyush Shankar and Rishabh Shankar both of whom are young talented artists.

Post this, five films will be announced by Ravi Rai, Nasirr Khan, Shivam Nair and Marques Xavier. Albums by new singers will follow. 
Carnival Cinemas will also be a part of the venture.

Friday, 26 August 2016


Vishwajeet Pradhan, Sohail Khan and Sonalika Pradhan
Chinagate Group's Magazine was abuzz with masti, music, mazaa and  Ozvaganza Melbourne, a  Meilleur Events presentation. The hoi polloi of Mumbai was naturally there with actor Vishwajeet and wife Sonalika Pradhan, their Australian associates Eshwar Lakhawat and Raj Chopra, Smita Thackeray, Sohail Khan, Rajpal Yadav, Ruhan Mahendra Kapoor, Krishna Tamang, Vinod Kambli, Rohit Verma, Asif Bhamla, Ram Kadam, Archana Kochhar, Alexx O’Nell, Lesle Lewis, Madhushree, Mudasir Ali, Kavitta Verma, Eijaz Khan, Brinda Parekh, DJ Beyond 120, Allwyn Rodrigues, Purva Rana, Rehan Shah, Priyanka Shah among others.

Ozvaganza Melbourne, the brainchild of Sonalika and Vishwajeet Pradhan, will see Preity Zinta, Abhay Deol, world-famous DJs , Brazilian dance troupe, singers and performers among others swaying to Bollywood beats in Melbourne. The event also spells the confluence of leading designers from India, Pakistan, UAE, Sri Lanka and Australia, and is in collaboration with Smita Thackeray’s Mukkti Foundation.

Says Vishwajeet Pradhan, “Ozvaganza Melbourne aims to bring together the best of South Asia and Australia, and strengthening the India-Australia intercultural relationship and our motto of empowering women.”

Adds Smita Thackeray, “We for India is the new social initiative started by my NGO, Mukkti Foundation. I believe that the only way to empower women is by developing their skill sets, making them financially independent and capable of standing on their feet, to walk tall in society and with their heads held high. For this endeavour, we are proud to associate with Ozvaganza Melbourne, to take our cause further.”

Ozvaganza is powered by 90bids Official Online Portal, Exhibit Official Tech Magazine and managed by 3rd Rock Entertainment.

Wednesday, 17 August 2016

Sex worker can inspire monk find Nirvana: Sudeep Ranjan Sarkar

K K Goswami, Bappi Lahiri,Mudasir Ali,Dillzan Wadia, producers Saharsh Khaitan & Rita Jhawar, Aamir Dalvi, director Sudeep Rajan Sarkar and Sushil Bhosale at the Umformung poster and book launch event
Not long ago, criminal psychologist-filmmaker Sudeep Ranjan Sarkar’s Hindi feature film Umformung – The Transformation made news when monks and sex workers came together under one roof at Kolkata to watch the film. Now, Mumbai witnessed a celeb-studded Poster Launch of the film that speaks of equality among all of God’s creations. Besides Director Sudeep Ranjan Sarkar and Producers Rita Jhawar and Saharsh Khaitan, music director Sanjib Sarkar, actors Sushil Bhosale, Neha Kapoor, Parijat Chakraborty, Yogesh Anand of Reincarnation India, present at the do at Bora Bora Club in Andheri West were chief guest Bappi Lahiri, and celebs Shaleen Bhanot, Mudasir Ali, Gaurav Chopra, Aamir Dalvi, K K Goswami, among others.

The story of intense dimensions, two parallel stories juxtaposed in one world Umformung – The Transformation is about a Buddhistmonk in search of the ultimate truth on one hand, and a ruthless entrepreneur who knows that power is the ultimate truth on the other.

Languid and unbiased, the film unfolds as Karma unfolds. The journey of the monk from the idyllic monastery set in the mountains to prostitutes at a city brothel and his movement into the path of self-actualisation, alongside the transformation of the builder when life comes half way to meet her on her path of self-destruction,  forms the crux of Umformung – The Transformation.
And that is all that Dr. Sudeep Ranjan Sarkar set to achieve  along with social entrepreneurs Rita Jhawar and Saharsh Khaitan, when he made his maiden film based on Buddhist principles. Umformung – The Transformation, interestingly,  the film is the winner of Best Story – Indian Cine Film Festival, Best Background Score – Noida International Film Festival, Best Director and Best Background Music –10th Free Spirit Festival, Merit for Newcomer Director – World Film Award, and Merit for International Film – World Film Award, Jakarta, Best Background Score – 5th Dadasaheb Phalke Film Festival,   Official Selection – 4th Washington DC South Asian Film Festival, Maverik Movie Awards, Khajuraho International Film Festival, Miami Independent Film Festival among others. Umformung – The Transformation is distributed by Yogesh Anand Reincarnation India.

Unfazed by the accolades and worldwide acclaim, Sarkar is humble.  Umformung – The Transformation isn’t just a film for me. It is a marriage of poetry, philosophy of life and a painting of moving images,” confesses the director, adding that the diverseness of the audiences of  the screening was a simple way to illustrate the open arms of Gautam Buddha and his tenets.

“Guided by Senior Rimpoche from McLeodgunj, Himachal Pradesh from His Holiness Dalai Lama’s temple, the film looks at Buddhism as a way of life and how detachment is the ultimate truth. A sex worker in that sense is no different from any of us in the so called respectable society, and by her straightforwardness and honest approach to life, is actually an inspiration to a monk to find Nirvana!”

Now that is one concept we are looking forward to see on celluloid!

Wednesday, 20 July 2016

Mumbai’ madness makes waves at NY Shorts Fest!

Varadraj Swami, director, Akhbar Ka Ek Panna
Varadraj Swami and Shahzad Ahmad, the writers of Manjhi The Mountain Man recently tasted sweet success again when their short film Akhbar Ka Ek Panna won at the New York short Film Festival and Rasika Agashe won the Best Actor Award. The shorts is written by Shahzad Ahmad and Varadraj Swami and directed by Varadraj Swami as well.

A Still from Akhbar Ka Ek Panna
Interestingly, the film seems to be straight out of the life of the writers, who even after Manjhi await the world to know that they have been responsible for the research and dialogues of the acclaimed film.  Says the duo, “Metropolitan life brings with it urban chaos.  The stress and the need to prove oneself at every step is not just painful but at times suicidal. Success in a metro spells the beginning of a stressful journey, not the end. Here, at every step one needs to go through so many complications that it is not easy living the life. We are glad our feelings on the metro madness made sense even in New York.”

The writers plan to take the film on a world festival tour before embarking on their next. “This time it will be a feature,” discloses Varadraj. “You can say Akhbar Ka Ek Panna was the fourth leaf from our book, replete with exciting stories waiting to hit the celluloid.” The other short films by the duo are The Endless, Shades and Recession. "Our short films are our short stories coming to life," avers Shahzad Ahmad.

Monday, 11 July 2016

When the Tap overflowed with enthusiasts!

Savio D'sa, Gaurav S Bajaj, Dillzan Wadia, Sandip Soparrkar, Lesle Lewis,
Kavitta Verma, Jeetendra Varma and Vikas Bhalla

Shriya Tamang

Satyajeet Dubey 

It was time to grab the Mic… And take home the spotlight at Tap Restobar, Saki Naka as the amazing 14000 sq ft gigantic watering hole opened its doors to one and all with the prestigious Karaoke World Championships.
Mumbai’s party animals made a beeline for the place and how! Pretty and enterprising Shriya Tamang and Savio D’Sa played the perfect hosts to a fullhouse, as Lesle Lewis, Vikas Bhalla, Jimmy Felix, Sumeet Sachdeva took over the music for the evening with the karaoke champs. Choreographer  Sandip Soparrkar set the dance floor afire with lyricist Manoj Muntashir, actors Alecia Raut, Dalip Tahil, Satyajeet Dubey, Gaurav Bajaj, Dilzan Wadia, Kavitta Verma, Pradeep Rawat, Jeetu Verma, Yogesh Lakhani, Dj Shameless Mani, Bharat and Doris Godambe, Pratap Sarnaik and many others joining the celebrations with their presence.
Karaoke enthusiasts can now unleash their potential at the 6th season of The Karaoke World Championships India, that besides making its mark in Mumbai, Pune, Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai, Kolkata & Goa, will see the national winners vie at the world finals in Vancouver, Canada amongst 40 other participating countries.
Besides a host of celebrities who will join KWC boasts of a robust panel of Judges from Ankit Tiwari, Suleiman Merchant, Jaaved Jafri, Lelse Lewis, Meet Brothers, Remo Fernandes, Manasi Scott, Shibani Kashyap, Suneeta Rao among others, while Tap boasts of an amazing array of mouthwatering cuisine, an exciting ambience and of course, the foot-tapping extravaganza on store at the dancefloor that has a life of its own.
A perfect match. And a perfect evening… And an energetic beginning of a lot of good things to come…

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

The New Age Woman – Rekha Chaudhari, Global Wellness Ambassador

Global Wellness Ambassador for India Rekha Chaudhari and Maharashtra Tourism Minister Ram Shinde 
Global Wellness Day is a first officially branded Wellness Day in all the countries of the world dedicated to wellness and healthy living.  It is an international movement which is celebrated with the support of Global Wellness Ambassadors, who are entrepreneurs and wellness professionals as well.
This year, Rekha Chaudhari, the Global Wellness Ambassador for India, brought together personalities from the field of women and social welfare, holistic healing, beauty, sports, fitness and entertainment and music to convey the message of Wellness to Indians.
The event was graced by Smita Thackeray, well-known social activist and producer; Ram Shinde - Minister of Tourism, Maharashtra; eminent cricketer Vinod Kambli; versatile singer Shibani Kashyap; Dr Meghna Shah – Dean, The Other Song; Maya Paranjape; wellness entrepreneurs JC Kapur and Sangram Birje and Aditya Pratap Singh among many others.
Says Rekha Chaudhari, “Maharashtra has a wealth of destinations, amazing cuisine and of course Ayurveda. With health being the ultimate wealth, I strive to make Maharashtra the ultimate tourism destination. I already provide over 10000 rural women livelihood through my wellness movement. This will give more strength and opportunity to rural Maharashtra, and that is the need of the hour."
Said Ram Shinde, Hon Minister, Tourism, Maharashtra, "Rekha Chaudhari is a woman of great strength and substance. She has come from the heart of the villages of Maharastra and has grown to be a wellness entrepreneur who provides livelihood to many women. I am elated that she has been honoured as the Global Wellness Ambassador and I would like to extend our well wishes and congratulations to her. Let us all join and make wellness a way of life."

Friday, 20 May 2016

Kavitta Verma pits wits with Vivan-Akshara-Gurmeet in TP Aggarwal’s Lali Ki Shaadi Mein Laddoo Deewana

Kavitta Verma
She is pretty, she is vivacious, she is an actress who has proved her mettle matching steps and wits with Sanjay Dutt in Policegiri. Now, actress Kavitta Verma looks forward to her film Laali Ki Shadi Mein Laddoo Deewana, where she shares screen space as the parallel lead in the film with Akshara Haasan, Vivaan Shah and Gurmeet Choudhary. Produced under the banner of Star Entertainment Worldwide Pvt. Ltd by TP Aggarwal and Rahul Aggarwal, and written and directed by Manish Harishankar, the film is an entertainer revolving around a royal marriage.
“Laali Ki Shaadi Mein Laddoo Deewana is a very beautiful love story, replete with Indian values,” says Kavitta Verma. “In Policegiri, my dancing skills came to the fore. Here, you will see the actor in me. It is a tailormade role,” adds Kavitta Verma who is currently dubbing for the film. 
“Shot at the picturesque locations of Vadodara palace and in and around the city of Vadodara and Mumbai, Laali Ki Shadi Mein Laddoo Deewana is a sweet love story that talks about Indian values today,” elaborate producers T.P. Aggarwal and Rahul Aggarwal.
The film also stars Saurabh Shukla, Sanjay Mishra, Darshan Jariwala, Ravi Kishan, Suhasini Mulay, Kishori Shahane, Navni Parihar among others. Cinematographer Ravi Yadav has done the camera work with Steven Bernard as editor, the music is by Vipin Patwa, Revant Shergil and Arko, project designing by Shahid Khan, production designer Muneesh Sappal.
Laali Ki Shaadi Mein Laddoo Deewana is set for a release this Summer.