India Masala

Bollywood and culture in an emerging India

If only Bollywood had discovered Freida

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- When Frieda Pinto made it big on the international stage with “Slumdog Millionaire”, there were quite a few who couldn’t quite believe her success. While she was feted all over the world, found herself on prestigious magazine covers, and on high-profile red carpets, in the country of her birth, there was some reluctant praise and a lot of silence, which is unusual for a country that “adopts” anyone who sounds remotely Indian and is a success in the West. After Slumdog, Pinto got to work with two of Hollywood’s biggest directors, Woody Allen and Julian Schnabel (“The Divng Bell and the Butterfly”), and I think I have seen more press about Anil Kapoor playing a bit role in the US series “24” than Pinto’s appearances in these two films. And now that the two films have done the rounds of the festival circuit, and the reviews haven’t been too good, there are media reports again, almost writing her off as an actor. I wish we would appreciate that she has been where even the biggest guns from Bollwyood tried to go and failed. She has shared the stage as an equal with names such as Anthony Hopkins and didn’t have to rely on being the geeky Indian friend/sidekick kind of roles to make her foray into Hollywood. I think we just can’t believe we didn’t discover her first.

friedaWhen Freida Pinto made it big on the international stage with “Slumdog Millionaire“, there were quite a few who couldn’t quite believe her success.

While she was feted all over the world, found herself on prestigious magazine covers and on high-profile red carpets, in the country of her birth, there was some reluctant praise and a lot of silence which is unusual for a country that “adopts” anyone who sounds remotely Indian and is a success in the West.

After ‘Slumdog’, Pinto got to work with two of Hollywood’s biggest directors, Woody Allen and Julian Schnabel (“The Diving Bell and the Butterfly”), and I think I have seen more press about Anil Kapoor playing a bit role in the American TV series “24″ than Pinto’s appearances in these two films.

And now that the two films have done the rounds of the festival circuit and the reviews haven’t been too good, there are media reports again — almost writing her off as an actor.

Is ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ A.R.Rahman’s best score?

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A.R.RahmanWaking up on a Monday morning is so much nicer when you wake up to good news, isn’t it?

A.R.Rahman winning two Grammys for “Slumdog Millionaire” certainly made my day, but as television channels played its theme song “Jai Ho” over and over again, I found myself wanting to hear some of his other compositions.

‘Slumdog’ magic rubs off on India abroad

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Bollywood and Indian culture is getting plenty of attention worldwide — thanks to the “Slumdog Millionaire” effect.

Danny Boyle’s rags-to-riches romance about a poor Indian boy competing in a TV game show scooped eight Academy Awards earlier this year.

The Slumdog view

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On a recent house-hunting trip in the suburbs of Mumbai, an enthusiastic real estate agent opened the French windows of a tenth-floor apartment and stepped aside to let us enjoy the view.

“It’s the Oscar view ma’am. The ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ view,” he said with a flourish as we took in the rows of slums spread out before us.

Slumdog’s Danny Boyle wants to make another film in Mumbai

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“Slumdog Millionaire” was proof enough of British filmmaker Danny Boyle’s love for India and Mumbai. But the filmmaker hasn’t had enough of the city or this country.

 

Boyle told reporters on Wednesday he would love to make more films in India and was in fact in talks with filmmakers Anurag Kashyap and Shekhar Kapur. He didn’t give any details but he did mention how much he loved working in Mumbai.

Every ‘Slumdog’ has its day

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Dilshad Qureshi, Rubina’s aunt, is a happy woman. She got up at five this morning, finished her household chores and dressed up in her nicest clothes.

For this woman from a Mumbai slum, the Oscars were coming home.

 

I was there at Rubina’s (the youngest Latika in the film) cramped quarters, located in a slum by the Bandra train tracks, since six in the morning.

Slumdog Millionaire: You can’t help rooting for it

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Imagine falling off a running train and slithering down a rocky slope even as swirls of dust and grime envelop you. Most people would land up with a serious hospital bill or at least a broken bone or two. Jamal and Salim, two of the “three musketeers” in Danny Boyle’s “Slumdog Millionaire” just get up, shake off the dust and move on.

It might seem a little unbelievable or incredulous, but in the midst of watching “Slumdog Millionaire” (or ‘Slumdog Crorepati’ as the Hindi version is called), you shake off that nagging feeling and move on with Jamal and Salim, simply because you want to believe in their story. It’s not a believable story and yet the film makes you want to believe.

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