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‘I’m glad I’ve got SRK’

Deepika Padukone, who’s riding high on the success of her latest film, Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani, has a lot to look forward to. She’s soon going to be seen on the silver screen again, this time opposite Shah Rukh Khan in ‘Chennai Express’.

The actress, who made her debut with the super star in Om Shanti Om in 2007,
admits that she interacts with him a lot more freely now. “When we did Om Shanti Om, I was a newcomer, nervous and awkward. Today, I can speak to him much more freely. Today, we share a friendly equation. Shah Rukh is a sport. Unfortunately, a lot of people don’t get his sense of humour. Shooting with him is a breeze. He lightens the atmosphere and makes everything so easy,” she says.

Deepika adds that she enjoyed the fact that this film didn’t have a large star cast, which meant that the focus remained on her and Shah Rukh.

“Unlike our other film together, where there was a large cast, in ‘Chennai Express’ there is an added pressure because it’s a romantic comedy where the focus throughout is on Shah Rukh and me. For two actors to carry off a comedy on their shoulders is not easy. I am glad I’ve got Shah Rukh in ‘Chennai Express’ to make sure I don’t flounder,” she explains.

Asked whether ‘Chennai Express’ would tap into her comic side — something she hasn’t really portrayed on screen so far — she replies in the affirmative.

“If on one hand Sanjay Leela Bhansali is pushing the boundaries of my abilities as a dramatic actress (in Ram Leela), on the other hand Rohit Shetty too is tapping a side of me that’s never been tapped before. I now realise that comedy is the most
difficult genre of acting and the most difficult kind of cinema to make,” she says.

Anything  for a friend

Producer Boney Kapoor, who had booked Salman Khan’s time to shoot No Entry Mein Entry, has relinquished his dates to allow film-maker Sooraj Barjatya to make his film with the actor.

No Entry Mein Entry is the sequel to the 2005 film ‘No Entry’. Recently, while Boney
was in Europe, he received an SMS from Salman requesting that the producer let go of his dates so that Barjatya could accommodate his yet-untitled film.

 “I’ve postponed my film on Salman’s request. Such date reshuffles and adjustments are a routine happening in our industry. If I requested some producer to adjust my son Arjun Kapoor’s dates, I am sure he would happily do it,” says Boney.

According to a source, Boney immediately agreed to the request.“Salman was supposed to work on Sajid Nadiadwala’s ‘Kick’ and then go right into Boney’s No Entry Mein
Entry. But on Salman’s request, Boney’s film has now gone to early next year. Sooraj Barjatya has not directed a film for seven years. Boney feels it is only right that Sooraj makes a comeback with Salman,” the source adds.

Sooraj’s last directorial venture was the 2006 film Vivah. In the past, he has worked with Salman in Maine Pyar Kiya and Hum Saath-Saath Hain.

Sizzling chemistry on the screen

Ajay Devgan and Sonakshi Sinha, who were last seen sharing screen space in Son of Sardaar, are all set to team up for yet another film. Rumour has it that they are going to be seen in choreographer-turned-director Prabhu Deva’s next untitled film, which will be produced by Gordhan Tanwani. This will be Ajay’s first film with Prabhu Deva, while Sonkashi has already worked with the talented film-maker in Rowdy Rathore and Rambo Rajkumar, which is still under production, as well as Go Govinda, a song in ‘Oh My God!’.
The buzz is that Yami Gautam of ‘Vicky Donor’ fame has been finalised for this project too and will be seen in an interesting role. Ajay will start shooting for the film by the end of July, after a family holiday.

Genelia feeds the cast and crew


The Grand Masti team has reunited on the sets after seven years and the three actors of the flick — Riteish Deshmukh, Aftab Shivdasani and Vivek Oberoi — clearly have a lot of catching up to do. In fact, they appear to have been bonding on the sets of the film over some delicious homemade food.

    It seems that Genelia, who tied the knot with Riteish last year, has been a regular on the sets. She’s been going out of her way to make the shooting a pleasant experience for all. And to add to the homely atmosphere on the sets, the actress has been making it a point to bring home-cooked food with her.

According to a source, the shooting of the movie was generally held early in the morning and by lunchtime, the cast was exhausted because of the sweltering heat. “To make the environment even more homely, Genelia would usually come around lunch time with home-cooked food like aamti, puran poli, Kolhapuri fish and shrikhand — that too
in such large portions that the entire unit would pig out,” says a source from
the sets.

“It was very generous and sweet of Genelia, who would often come around lunch time with delicious home-cooked food for all of us. She got such grand portions that the entire
unit would enjoy the homely food and Maharashtrian delicacies,” producer Ashok Thakeria adds.

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