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‘The audience is the barrier’

Women may be active in show business like never before — but will they surpass the status Bollywood heroes enjoy? Never, says actress Bipasha Basu, who feels there is minimum opportunity for female actors in the Hindi film industry. “In Bollywood, the opportunity for female actresses is very minimum. There’s not much choice for us — except to be safe and look pretty and do some nice dance numbers,” Bipasha says. The year 2011 saw films like ‘The Dirty Picture’ and Saat Khoon Maaf showcasing a promising trend as far as women finding prominent roles in movies was concerned. But Bipasha counters, “One ‘Dirty Picture’ hasn’t changed anything much. It’s just that you’re lucky sometimes to get a ‘Dirty Picture’ — or in my case, get a Raaz, Jism or ‘Corporate’. In one-off cases, you will get a film, which will be talked about,” she says, adding, “We all are going through it, including my contemporaries. As much as we say that the film industry is changing, it is a very hero-centric business and it will always remain that.”

After spending over a decade in show business and having cemented her standing with projects such as Raaz, Jism, ‘No Entry’, Dhoom 2, Apharan, ‘Corporate’, ‘Race’, Bachna Ae Haseeno and, most recently, the successful Raaz 3, Bipasha admits she can sense some positive change. “There are now some intelligent film-makers, who are making entertaining films with the heroine having to do something. And as an actress, you have to really hunt for these films! These are not very easy to find and they are not on higher budgets. It’s rare that a Raaz 3 comes your way and that’s when you jump at the opportunity,” adds the actress.

Who does she blame for the paucity of films with women in focus? “The audience is the barrier. If we get eyeballs for films which are women-centric, it is going to definitely get us more revenue and more infrastructure so that many more films will be made with women as protagonists,” she complains.

Promotions with a sporty twist

Kai Po Che!, which is being directed by Abhishek Kapoor, will see cricketers Ashish Nehra, Zaheer Khan and Ajay Jadeja take to the field for a four-city promotional tour in January.
Sources reveal that the event, that will take place in New Delhi, Bangalore, Ahmedabad and Mumbai, will involve the three professional cricketers — along with the cast and crew of the film, playing against local teams from these cities.

Delhi is Ashish’s home town and as Ajay is also from north, they will be playing the matches in the capital.

Zaheer will join the cast and crew in Ahmedabad. But the makers are currently trying to convince them to play in Mumbai as well, says an insider.

What’s more, the team of the film wants to be well-prepared for the matches.
So, they have even asked left-hand fast bowlers Ashish Nehra and Zaheer Khan to train actor Sushant Singh Rajput, who will be playing the part of a cricketer in the film. Former cricketer Ajay Jadeja also makes a cameo appearance in the movie.

Abhishek Kapoor is also likely to play in each of the promotional games.

Yami or Parineeti?

Post ‘Vicky Donor’, director Shoojit Sircar is set to make Hamara Bajaj and says he has two actresses in mind for the movie. “I have two leading ladies in mind for this film -—Yami Gautam and Parineeti Chopra. Both of them are wonderful actresses. I feel both of them will fit the role and I would like to work with them,” Sircar admits, adding that he has already finalised Ayushmann Khurrana for the movie.

“Let’s see how things shape up — then we will decide whom to cast,” he says. Hamara Bajaj will go on the floors in mid-2013. “My film is in its scripting stage. We are planning to shoot the film in Bhopal, Lucknow, Delhi and other locations,” says the director. Hamara Bajaj will be produced by John Abraham.

Looking for a script

Actor Dino Morea, who turned producer with Jism 2, says the third instalment of the franchise is still in the stage of being discussed. “Jism 3 is still being discussed. Nothing has been finalised yet. There is no idea yet. We are still in search of a good script,” the 36-year-old says.

Directed by Pooja Bhatt, Jism 2 featured Indo-Canadian porn star Sunny Leone, Randeep Hooda and Arunoday Singh.

Meanwhile, on the acting front, Dino says he is just reading scripts. “As soon as I will get hold of a good script, I will produce and act in it,” he
explains.

Doing well at the box office

Veteran actor Paresh Rawal’s film, ‘Oh My God’ has been one of this year’s pleasant surprises — the movie managed to impress most critics and in addition to that, it’s raked in the moolah at the box office as well. The film recently celebrated its 50th day at the box office — quite a feat in today’s world of blink-and-miss films.

Although it isn’t your typical Bollywood song-and-dance fare, it’s surprisingly managed to make quite an impact. The movie, which is based on the Hindi play Kishen Vs Kanhaiya, is an entertaining flick — but also has a social message. 

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