06032019-LSTL-01.qxd 3/5/2019 8:19 PM Page 1 c m y b TRIBUNE Clear mind Arjun Rampal says the primary job of an actor is reinvention, as the moment one starts repeating roles, a shelf life is born. Recently, Arjun was seen in the film Paltan. PTI LUDHIANA | WEDNESDAY | 6 MARCH 2019 ‘It’s an honour to play COLOUR COE Shaheed Udham Singh’ LADY IN RED English actress Elizabeth Henstridge attends the world premiere of Captain Marvel in Hollywood, California. AFP After his gripping performance as a courageous soldier in Uri: The Surgical Strike, actor Vicky Kaushal has been cast to tell the heroic tale of Shaheed Udham Singh in a biopic. He says it’s an honour. “An absolute honour to be roped-in to play Shaheed Udham Singh in his biopic to be directed by Shoojit Sircar sir. Can’t wait for this journey to start next month,” Vicky tweeted on Monday. Actor Irrfan Khan was originally supposed to play Udham Singh. Vicky, a versatile actor, and Sircar, a master storyteller, are joining hands for the very first time for the project, to be produced by Ronnie Lahiri under the banner Rising Sun Films. The actor will bring alive the story of Udham Singh, who assassinated Michael O’ Dwyer, the former lieutenant governor of Punjab in pre-Independence India, in revenge for the Jallianwala Bagh massacre in Amritsar in 1919. Singh was subsequently tried, convicted of murder and hanged in July 1940. Sircar said in a statement: “I have been waiting to tell the heroic tale of Shaheed Udham Singh for a very long time. It is a story very close to my heart. For it, I needed an actor who could give his heart and soul to the film. Vicky fits the bill perfectly. I have seen his work and the dedication he brings to it. I’m very happy he is on board for this project.” — IANS Members of the Paraiso do Tuiuti samba school perform during the second night of Rio’s Carnival parade at the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. AFP VICKY KAUSHAL Earlier it was word of mouth that decided a movie’s future. Now, a string of promotional activities, including the drones used by makers of Brahmastra, more or less determine the fate of a film Manpriya Singh J UST when everyone concerned got habituated to the idea of trailer launch, poster launch, even teaser launch, B-town fraternity takes promotions a few notches higher, like ‘sky higher’ — logo launch! With 150 drones! At the Kumbh Mela! Adding to the already existing long list of marketing and promotional initiatives, the makers went all out by shooting 150 drones to form the word Brahmastra in the night sky, as the cast, comprising Ranbir Kapoor, Alia Bhatt and Ayan Mukerji looked on from the banks of the Ganga. And this comes well after teasing the fans with cryptic social media handles since a few weeks now; one of the countless ways in which the subtle PR machinery works round the clock. Whether cre- Catching the public eye RANBIR KAPOOR AND ALIA BHATT ating a buzz translates into window ticket sales, totally depends on the content of the film. At the end of the day, it is about content then? Clever spins AAMIR KHAN SHAH RUKH KHAN Filmmaker Rahul Mittra does not for a second deny the power of a good script. “But at the same time, I also know the absolute importance and necessity of marketing and promotions.” As one of the very few filmmakers who graduated from film promotions to film production, he has been on both sides of the fence. “The subjects that I choose have to have that element of marketing in them,” shares the maker, who has given us films like Sahib Biwi Aur Gangster series, Bullet Raja KANGANA RANUAT PROMOTES MANIKARNIKA and Sarkar 3, amongst several others. “With the right content and marketing, the audience may be drawn to cinema halls. But it’ll fizzle out if the film is not good; lately we’ve seen films with Rs 15 to 20 crores of promotional budget not doing well.” It’s all about clever spins, but first your script should be good. “Had I told people it’s a story of a raja, a rani, and then she runs away with the driver… would it have gone down well?” As for the promotional budget, “The bare minimum is Rs 3-4 crores.” No belief We bet actor Irrfan Khan echoed a lot many actors’ inner-most sentiments, when he, during the promotions of Madaari, said, how ❝ WITH THE RIGHT CONTENT AND MARKETING, THE AUDIENCE MAY BE DRAWN TO CINEMA HALLS. BUT IT’LL FIZZLE OUT IF THE FILM IS NOT GOOD RAHUL MITTRA he personally doesn’t believe in the PR machinery. “You keep PR machinery so that false news about you is not printed.” For the promotions of Madaari, the actor met politicians like Arvind Kejriwal and Lalu Prasad Yadav.” If a film has been made, people have to be told about it, repeatedly. He’d said, “If I had my way, I would just announce the project and disappear.” Ideal budget Producer Rrupaali Gupta, behind projects like Mr and Mrs 420 and recently Uda Aida, says promotions definitely give you that first Friday at the box-office. “They are good for one day, which is the opening day. Beyond that, it’s the word of mouth that sustains a film.” The case in point From sticking his own film posters behind an auto-rickshaw for Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak to his weirdo hairdo in Ghajini to tying up with Google Maps for the Thugs of Hindustan, there are two things that Aamir Khan likes as much as ‘perfection’. A good story and a great marketing strategy. Known to be ahead of his contemporaries when it comes to film promotions, Aamir does things and does them well. All gone wrong Starting with the very forgettable Chance Pe Dance when Shahid Kapoor and Genelia D’ Souza spent a whole night sleeping in the car seats, as a part of the promotions. That was weird; did not work! Moving on, Shah Rukh Khan, travelled with his Raees team by train from Mumbai to Delhi to promote the film. Needless to say, people gathered at the railway stations causing not just inconvenience to the commuters, but even a stampede in which a fan suffered cardiac arrest at the Vadodara Railway station. email@example.com When real meets reel ‘There’s a sea of chess players’ Will Smith to play Williams sisters’ father in King Richard Will Smith is set to play father of tennis icons Venus and Serena Williams in the biopic King Richard. The film will focus on coach Richard Williams overcoming hardship, scepticism, controversy, and his own troubled past to instruct his daughters, starting when they were four years old on the tennis courts of Compton, California, despite having no background in the sport. King Richard will be based on a script by Zach Baylin, which was a runner-up on the 2018 Black List. Serena has won 23 Grand Slam singles titles, starting with the US Open in 1999 and Venus has seven Grand Slam singles to her credit, starting with Wimbledon in 2000. The sisters share 14 Grand Slam doubles championships combined. Tim and Trevor White are attached as producers for the film. Smith will also produce. — PTI Kalki Koechlin may have established herself as an actress of merit, but as a ‘small pawn in a sea of other chess players’, she says making a mark in the industry is quite difficult. “Pressure to do good work is always there. The pressure of being one small pawn in such a vast sea of other chess players. You’ve got to try and make your bit count, it’s always hard,” Kalki said. Though she has consistently gained praise for her work in films like Margarita, With a Straw, Waiting and the c m y b recent Gully Boy, the actress says finding a well-written role is always a challenge. “It’s one of my constant complaints. To find interesting characters that have layers to them is difficult. They are few and far in between. It’s an amazing feeling for an actor when you do get such roles.” She will next be seen in Amazon Prime Video’s latest India original Made in Heaven, created by filmmakers Zoya Akhtar and Reema Kagti. The web series has been directed by Zoya, Nitya Mehra, Alankrita Shrivastava and Prashant Nair. Kalki says it is a tough job for the writers to come up with a good script as it involves following multiple narratives with equal focus, especially when it is a web series. “It’s not just one narrative. You have to follow all the characters. Especially in commercial cinema, we have a tendency to have the ‘heroheroine’ in focus. But within a more extended storyline like in this show, you get to see all the characters,” she says. — PTI KALKI KOECHLIN
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