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‘I am merely a means’

Nawazuddin Siddiqui may have consciously let go of films in which he is not the solo hero, but he is definitely an actor who gives new directors the much-needed opportunity. For his film ‘Shorts’ with director Rohit Pandey, Nawazuddin showed his softer side.

Apparently, the film-maker went to Benaras where Nawazuddin was working on a shoot,  actually chased him on a rickshaw and boarded it leaving his own, to simply tell Nawazuddin he wanted to narrate a story to him. Nawazuddin not only listened to the young man’s story, but liked his confidence and so, he consented to shoot for the film.

The film is about a loner, Mehfuz, who deals with dead bodies as a profession and how a wandering woman and her demeanor change his life. Nawaz went out of his way to make the film happen and is now happy it is seeing the light of the day — titled ‘Shorts’. “It is important that every film-maker gets an opportunity to showcase his talent on the silver screen. I am merely a means,” says Nawazuddin. It is surely this humility that has taken Nawaz places.

A gap in her calender

Katrina Kaif might not have had a release in a while — her last stint on the silver screen was Ek Tha Tiger, opposite Salman Khan, which did great business at the box office — but she still has a lot on her hands.

Apart from shooting for Dhoom 3, in which she will be seen sharing screen space with Salman Khan, she also has ‘Bang Bang’ opposite Hrithik Roshan to look forward to.
The actress has been busy on the sets of late but she now has a decent gap in her calender, since a particular schedule of ‘Bang Bang’ has been cancelled, thanks to Hrithik emergency brain surgery.

With some time on her hands — around two weeks, to be precise — the actress took off with boyfriend Ranbir Kapoor for a holiday in Spain after the release of his film, Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani. Pictures of the two partying at a concert and spending some quality time together have surfaced on the internet.

Unfortunately, Ranbir has to report to Sri Lanka to begin shooting for Anurag Kashyap’s ‘Bombay Velvet’ soon. Otherwise, the two might have extended their holiday.

‘My equation with Karan is lovely’

As a child actress, Sana Saeed, who played little Anjali in Karan Johar’s 1998 film Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, was scared of the film-maker. However, after working under his direction again in ‘Student Of The Year’, she says that fear has vanished.

“My equation with Karan is lovely. I was scared of him during Kuch Kuch Hota Hai. But we worked on ‘Student Of The Year’ and he is an amazing person and has amazing energy,” Sana says. “I could not have asked for anything more than to work with him again. The two big things which I have done in my life till now are these two films,” she adds.

Now Karan is among the trio of judges who will review Sana’s dancing capabilites on reality show Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa 6. She entered the show as a wild card contestant last week. Sana admits that she still gets appreciated for her role as Shah Rukh Khan’s daughter in Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, which turned out to be a huge hit. She said yes to a supporting role in ‘Student Of The Year’ as she didn’t want to turn down Karan.

“I just needed to make my comeback with Karan. There was no way I was going to say no to anything he said,” says Sana, who is now looking at doing something different from the full-of-frills and glamourous girl that she played in ‘Student Of The Year’. She is looking forward to taking on serious roles. “I am looking for work which is more serious, something which shows variation. Maybe something different than what I have played. I don’t want to rush into anything,” she explains.

A pleasant surprise for Salman

Rumour has it that Ram Charan Teja, who is currently looking forward to the release of Zanjeer, recently learnt that Salman Khan had come to Hyderabad to shoot for his upcoming film, which is tentatively titled ‘Mental’. Immediately, the star made it a point to go and meet Salman. In fact, he even went the extra mile by taking some delicious home-cooked Andhra food for the tinsel town actor.

A source close to the team says, “Salman and Ram Charan are very good friends. When Ram Charan was in Mumbai shooting for Zanjeer, Salman sent homemade food everyday to the sets for him. So, when he heard that Salman has come here, he went and met him and also carried home cooked Hyderabadi biryani for him.”

Making a mark in tinsel town

She received critical acclaim for her performance in Pakistani director Shoaib Mansoor’s Bol in 2011, where she played a convict on death row who decides to tell her story to the media. Soon, conjectures over Humaima Malick’s Bollywood entry were rife, and her name was attached to a couple of projects.

Humaima is now all set to star opposite Emraan Hashmi in Shaatir in the female lead. The model-turned-actor has already gone through an extensive screen test. Humaima has impressed everyone, including director Kunal Deshmukh. Kunal says, “It’s too early to talk about it. I can only reveal to you that Humaima has indeed screen-tested with us.”

There were also talks with Priyanka Chopra and Jacqueline Fernandez for the role, but they couldn’t take up the project due to date constraints.

Emraan and Kunal are reuniting after the success of Jannat in 2008 and Jannat 2 in 2012.
Maharaja Features

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