Posts Tagged ‘Freida Pinto’

Trishna and Michael, both the films will have its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival.

Michael Winterbottom’s latest film Trishna is not only set in India but it was more than one desi connect. The film’s trailer is out and according to official release,  it’s an adaptation of Thomas Hardy’s Tess of the D’Urbervilles set against a contemporary Indian backdrop. Freida Pinto stars as the titular Trishna, a young woman who is seduced by the wealthy son(Riz Ahmed) of a property developer. As the romance develops, their relationship also becomes increasingly sordid and volatile.

Click on the play button to check out the trailer. what a smooth and soothing track! Wow, Amit Trivedi, scores again? Seems so, at least from the trailer.

Michael is the latest production of Anurag Kashyap films. Directed by debutant Ribhu Dasgupta, the film’s trailer or poster is not out yet. But you can check out some of the stills. It stars Naseeruddin Shah, Mahie Gill, Purav Bhandare, Sabyasachi Chakraborty and Irawati Harshe.

According to official release, it’s a character-driven psychological drama. Using intricate camerawork and intimate point of view shooting, Dasgupta tracks one man’s physical and psychological deterioration in the rainy, traffic-filled streets of Kolkata. Check out the stills.

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Toronto International Film Festival has announced its international line-up for this year’s fest. So far four Indian films are in the list.

1. Mausam (Seasons of Love), Pankaj Kapur, India World Premiere

Mausam is a story of timeless love in the face of political hostilities and religious conflict, between a proud Punjabi Air Force Officer and an innocent Kashmiri refugee. Set against a landscape that transcends decades and spans continents, Mausam is a classic journey that transports one into a world of indestructible bonds of love enveloped by the roulette of destiny. Starring Shahid Kapur, Sonam A Kapoor and Anupam Kher.

 

2. Michael, Ribhu Dasgupta, India World Premiere

Michael, an ex-cop, lives with his 11-year-old son and works in a theatre as a projectionist pirating DVDs for a living. When he starts receiving death threats for his son from someone in his past, he gets caught up in a complex web of his own impending blindness comprised of his insecurities. First-time director Ribhu Dasgupta teams up with India’s guru of independent cinema, producer Anurag Kashyap, and veteran actor Naseeruddin Shah for this character-driven, psychological drama.

3. Azhagarsamy’s Horse, Suseendran, India International Premiere

In a small Tamil village, a ceremonial wooden-horse statue goes missing. With a crucial holy symbol suddenly gone, the village falls into recriminations and comic chaos. At the same time, Azhagarsami, a young man who earns his livelihood by ferrying loads on his horse, puts his marriage on hold when his horse also disappears.

4. Chatrak (Mushrooms), Vimukthi Jayasundara, India/France North American Premiere

Rahul, a Bengali architect who had gone off to build a career in Dubai, returns to Kolkata to launch a huge construction site. He is reunited with his girlfriend, Paoli, who had long awaited his homecoming. Together, they try to find Rahuls brother, who is said to have gone mad, living in the forest and sleeping in the trees. Despite appearances, the two brothers might have a lot in common.

An Indo-France co-production, Chhatrak (Mushrooms) directed by Sri Lankan filmmaker Vimukthi Jayasundara was also part of the official lineup of Cannes Directors Fortnight. His debut film The Forsaken Land had won the Camera d’Or for best debut feature at Cannes in 2005.

Another film with an Indian connect at TIFF is Michael Winterbottom’s Trishna. Starring Freida Pinto and Riz Ahmed, and based on Thomas Hardy‟s novel Tess of the d‟Urbervilles, the film is set in contemporary India and tells the tragic love story between the son of a wealthy property developer and the daughter of a rickshaw driver.

We don’t like Olive branches. Fest films don’t make money in India. We are still not sure about how to say it – is it Cann, Kans or Cannes? French people are rude. There are enough excuses for not making it to the official Cannes list. Or as Balki put it here, “There are no Cannes films in India! Ask why? The day one of those films will be enjoyed by us, our films will be enjoyed by them.” I wish Balki had seen the ruckus during the screening of Biutiful at MAMI last year. And  the organisers were forced to have  two more shows of the film. “Our” number might be less but that’s no reason to be so dumb and dismissive about it. Not that we ever had any doubts about Balki’s take on cinema (Kill a kid, let the lovers unite – Cheeni Kum/Paa), but this reason puts him in a different league all together.

What’s on the Cannes menu this year?

Well, Aishwarya Rai, Sonam Kapoor and Freida Pinto will walk the red carpet, not for any film but for L’Oreal Paris. This is the perfect combo – an almost has been actor who never earned any points for her acting skills, a daddy’s girl who was last seen in Anees Bazmee’s atrocious Thank You, and the third one whose middle name should be ladyluck. Apart from the brand that they are endorsing, there is only one common factor that all three share – lack of any acting talent. Imagine someone talking to Sonam Kapoor at the fest – So, what was your last release? That’s True Grit.

Blame it on the Fest too? They are all about stars, about sponsors, about big money, but they are also about cinema. About finding that independent and unique voice and putting it on the world cinema map. Even with all the goss and the glamour, you can’t deny that credit.

What else?

Mallika Sherawat has also been thereatening to make her presence felt like she did last year and the year before that. Peek a boo-b with some Hisss and you will always get some pics clicked. BTW, have you noticed her twitter handle – it’s MallikaLA. Conspiracy theorists believe that she is trying hard to belong “there” and detach from here. She even got a pic clicked with Barack Obama (Ssshhh..she has new film coming up called Politics Of Love. But it might go direct to dvd. Oops) Or is that just good ol’ photoshop? So MallikaLA, how about changing the handle to MallikaCannes?

Films in competition?

Someone please help me here. When was the last time a desi film made it to the competition section of Cannes? Ok, let’s make the base wider. Competition section of any of the top six (Cannes, Berlin, Venice, Sundance, Toronto, Locarno) film fests?

Vikramaditya Motwane’s Udaan was in Cannes Un Certain regard section last year. Bit of googling and you will know that all those countries which are so small that they are difficult to locate on a world map and with names which are difficult to pronounce, even they are  making that Cannes cut.  Why and how? Blame it all on our bollywood musical and melodrama? Or go back to Balki’s bolly-gyaan.

Bollywood – The Greatest Love Story Ever Told?

And this isn’t helping much. If we can’t qualify, let’s make a film for them. According to official release….

Bollywood – The Greatest Love Story Ever Told, is the title of a feature film produced by Shekhar Kapoor exclusively for the Festival de Cannes. It will be screened out of competition during the 64th Festival that runs from the 11th to the 22nd of May.

 It all began with a conversation with ShekharKapoor, a member of the Cannes Jury in 2010. Why not make a film that brings together the most beautiful moments in the history of Indian musical films, with all their moving pageantry and dance? A few months later, there was Bollywood, The Greatest Love Story Ever Told. It is a swirling and poignant montage in which Shekhar Kapoor, Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra
 and
 Jeff Zimbalist pay tribute to this cinema genre that has contributed to establishing India’s identity in the eyes of the world and to making Mumbaione of the world capitals of film history.

 “We love it. We hate it. We see it as regressive. We see it as modern. We need to breathe it to feel alive. Some say it is the only culture that holds India together. Some say it gives identity and individuality to 25 million Indians that have left her shores and who’s third generations that are still addicted to it. That’s Bollywood!”

Direction Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra
 et 
Jeff Zimbalist. Production : Shekhar Kapoor &
UTV Motion Pictures with Ronnie Screwvala and Trishya Screwvala. India, 2011, 81mn)

That’s Bollywood! Well, that’s the baggage too. At a time when filmmakers are trying to find their voice, trying new ideas, this montage/documentary/film will reinforce every cliche attached to the cinema of Bollylalaland.

Shekhar Kapoor has written a post about it on his blog – How it started, why and where. And i still can’t sense anything substantial in it except for some razzmatazz on the beats of dola re dola. The intention must be honest, but how about championing a film next time at the Cannes?

( PS – Dear Shekhar, have you seen Aaranya Kaandam?)

Not sure why and how, but Freida Pinto is surely going places. As if Danny Boyle, Julian Schnabel, Woody Allen, Tarsem Singh and the Apes movie weren’t big enough for her CV, now she also has Michael Winterbottom.

The film is titled Trishna and will also star Riz Ahmed (Four Lions). It’s based on Thomas Hardy’s novel Tess of the d’Urbervilles. We haven’t read it but according to IMDB, it’s “The story of the tragic relationship between the son of a property developer and the daughter of an auto rickshaw owner”. And a friend described it as “hopelessly depressing”.

The film will be shot all over Rajasthan and it’s a start to finish schedule. The shooting starts by end of February. Last time when Winterbottom shot A Mighty Heart in India, it was in news for all the wrong reasons. So this time its been kept as a hush-hush affair.

And this is not the first time that Thomas Hardy’s novel is getting adapted for the screen. Tess of the D’Urbervillies was also adapated as a four part mini-series for BBC and had Gemma Arterton in the lead role.

Rajasthan, Frieda Pinto, property developer, rickshaw owner – well, something tells us that it will again be desi exotica for the West. What’s missing ? Bollywood and naach-gaana ? Bet it’s there. Someone will move to Mumbai and dhen tedan! We can’t spill all the beans at one go.

Click here to read the Deadline.com report.

His last film blew our mind and how! Diving Bell and The Butterfly. And what a coincidence – As Christopher Nolan’s Inception has now become the “last film to blew our mind”, Schnabel is back with a new film titled Miral. And the trailer of Miral is out. Check it out.

It stars Freida Pinto in lead role along with Willem Dafoe, Hiam Abbass and Vanessa Redgrave. Its been shot by Eric Gautier. And here is the synopsis of the film…

Based on the novel by Rula Jebreal, the movie revolves around a real-life orphanage established by a Palestinian woman (Abbass) following the 1948 creation of the Israeli state. (Pinto) was sent to the orphanage in 1978. When, later in life, she goes to teach at a refugee camp and falls for an activist, Miral is torn between resistance and education as separate paths to political change.

Talking of international cinema, he was last seen in Ang Lee’s Lust, Caution in exactly half-blink and miss role! But managed to hog some good newspace even with that bit. Anupam Kher will soon be seen in Woody Allen’s next, for which he shot for three days in London.  Kher plays Freida Pinto’s father in the film. To read about Kher’s experience, click here.

Freida Pinto – if someone ever needs some gyaan on gaining mileage from a film, she is the right candidate. Not even ten minutes role in Slumdog Millionaire and she bagged films with Julian Schanel and Wodly Allen. Currently she is busy shooting for Woody’s untitled film in London. She stars opposite Josh Brolin. Scroll down for on location pics.