The Colour Purple

Imran Khan and Shruti Haasan, who were childhood friends and neighbours in Bandra, Mumbai, may have drifted apart after their one film together, the spectacularly silly thriller Luck. But their families remain close. Shruti’s mother, actress Sarika, attended a private trial show of Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu last week, organised by Imran’s wife Avantika, and was seen chatting affectionately with the actor’s mother, Nuzhat Khan.

Imran himself was away in Delhi shooting for Vishal Bhardwaj’s film, and Shruti Haasan was not at the screening either, but her younger sister, Akshara, was by her mother’s side. The painfully soft-spoken and incredibly polite young girl, blessed with the same light eyes as her sister, sported a shock of blonde hair, and was heard telling producer Karan Johar that she’d dyed her hair purple previously. Akshara recently worked as an assistant director on her father Kamal Haasan’s film Viswaroopam, and has declared she has no acting ambitions. We’ll see about that


How Berlin was Captured

When Shah Rukh Khan strode into the Fredrickstrasse Palast in Berlin just minutes before midnight last Saturday, the German premiere of Don 2 had just ended. Nervous organisers of the Berlin Film Festival and German distributors of the film breathed a sigh of relief that the actor had finally made it, albeit two days behind schedule. The actor had taken ill suddenly and couldn’t arrive on Thursday, as he’d intended to. Then on Friday, he said he had to return home from the airport after the flight he’d waited five hours to get on was suddenly cancelled. Working through the wee hours of Saturday morning, the film’s co-producers, Reliance Entertainment, had apparently managed to organise a chartered plane to take SRK to Berlin on Saturday afternoon.

The actor’s visit to Berlin was crucial for everyone involved because tickets for the premiere had sold out solely on the promise that SRK would be attending. And although the film’s leading lady, Priyanka Chopra, and director, Farhan Akhtar, were already present in Berlin, fans from across Europe had driven and flown in particularly for a glimpse of the Don himself.

Anyone who met SRK in Berlin—as I did last week—would tell you he did not look pleased about having been forced to travel. He was cold as he worked the red carpet, which is understandable given that the German capital was at a sub-zero temperature. Even before he could woo his fans, the actor led his wife Gauri away so she could stay warm inside the auditorium while he interacted with fans outside. By the time he finally entered the hall, the film was over, and he took the mike for a good 12 minutes, charming the audience with amusing anecdotes.

In case you’re wondering, his co-star and good friend Priyanka Chopra was accompanied by her mother, and kept mostly to herself, except when the Don 2 team was required to pose for photographs together.


Indecent Proposal

Guests who returned from the Goa wedding of a young director last weekend (son of a veteran Bollywood filmmaker) still haven’t stopped talking about the drama that a has-been female star is believed to have created during the festivities.

This famously unprofessional actress, who recently formed her own production company because she has virtually no acting assignments to speak of, is believed to have stormed out of one of the pre-wedding parties, alleging that a popular action star had ‘touched’ her inappropriately. The actress left the ceremony with her business partner (who her friends insist is also her boyfriend) in full public view of the guests, and apparently demanded an apology from the actor.

The male star completely denied the accusation, and even his wife (who’s been a close friend of the out-of-work actress) tried to pacify the hysterical lady. At one point, the actor is believed to have lost his temper and screamed at the actress and her partner, and let loose a volley of expletives, insisting she was either delusional or lying. Turns out the incident became so ugly the groom himself had to intervene and request both parties to resolve their issues.

In all fairness, it seems insensitive that most guests were happy to jump to the defence of the male star, paying little heed to the actress’ allegations. But at least one guest at the celebrations insists that the actress has a history of pulling such “attention-grabbing stunts”, which is why she had virtually no sympathisers in Goa.



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