Here we go! In random order the Top 5 things that happened in Bollywood this year (listen to me discuss these stories on the BBC Asia Network today ISD 4pm!) It’s possible your list may read very different than mine so feel free to add to the comments on this post, but here’s what caught my radar in the run up to 2010.
Psst! I know what you really want is the hottest gossip right off the press. So here’s the real juice first!
Aamir Khan and Shah Rukh Khan buried the hatched and came together to support the film producers’ strike against the multiplexes. Akshay Khanna refused to promote his film Shortkut – The Con is On with his co-star Arshad Warsi at IIFA in Macau last June stating that he does not like Arshad. Akshay Kumar also jumped off the Lakme Fashion Show stage and had his jeans ‘Unbottoned’ by wife Twinkle Khanna.
Twinkle and Akki were ‘arrested’ on charges of obscenity. However, Akki said ‘no handcuffs’ were involved in the incident. Meanwhile Arshad Warsi’s 10-year-old marriage with Maria Goretti hit a rough patch this year, with the actor’s busy shooting schedules and Dia Mirza. Now Arshad is making as many public appearances possible with Maria to suggest to the media that ‘All is Well’. Aamir Khan also made the news when he joined ultimate social networking site Facebook and started interacting with his fans through a profile called Pucca Idiot. Bollywood’s most famous Scorpio’s Aishwarya Rai Bachchan made up with Shah Rukh Khan at Karan Johar’s birthday party this year. Things went bitter between the two after SRK replaced Ash with Rani Mukherji in Chalte Chalte in 2003. (Yup you guessed it, Salman Khan’s fault for making a scene in set.)
Ajay Devgan ironed out his 2-year-old wrinkled relationship with Ram Gopal Verma this year. The two stopped interacting with each other after Ajay blamed Ramu for the failure of Ram Gopal Verma Ki aag saying that he paid more attention to Nisha (Priyanka) Kothari than his male actors. Amitabh Bachchan continued to blog and actively criticize the press for misrepresenting him on a regular basis. Anil Kapoor continued to bask in the Slumdog glow signing on for a part on ’24’ he had a really good year. Danced with joy at the Golden Globes and Screen Actor Guild’s Awards, touched Anthony Hopkin’s feet, scored an introduction to Angelina Jolie courtesy Irfan Khan, upstaged Hugh Jackman at Oscars and came out with the ‘secret affair’ of Frieda Pinto-Dev Patel.
Arjun Rampal welcomed controversies this year, after he confessed that he had once entered an ‘Agiyari’-a Parsi fire temple (where only people from the community can enter) out of curiosity in his childhood. The price of childhood fancy cost him dear as the community took offense at his statement. The Ghajini girl Asin got lucky this year too. If one Khan (Aamir) gave her a successful break in Bollywood, media buzz said the other Khan (Salman) got the Southern siren a new house in Mumbai. As usual, Asin denied the news and said: “I earn enough to look after myself.” Adhyayan Suman finally detached himself from ‘Kangana Ranaut’s boyfriend‘ tag Abhay Deol and Sonam Kapoor got close on the sets of Anil Kapoor’s production Aisha.
Shahid Kapoor and Kareena Kapoor called it quits after which he proceeded to date each of his co-stars (as revealed by his Twitter activity), breaking up and making up with Priyanka Chopra twice. Meanwhile Sonam Kapoor made a silly remark (pissing off the most beautiful girl in the world Aishwariya Rai) which cost her her red carpet debut at Cannes. Twitter gained Bollywood notoriety with the likes of PC, Abhishek Bachchan, Karan Johar and Shahid Kapoor being regular tweeters and Mallika Sherawat tweeting herself silly all over America as Bollywood’s biggest movie star, (yeah right!)
After partying ways with Esha Deol, Shamita Shetty and Yana Gupta, Aftab Shivdasani seems to have finally found his lady love in Aamna Shariff this year. Ranbir Kapoor & Deepika Padukone called it quits leaving Ranbir to pursue Katrina Kaif and Deepika with a permanent RK tattoo! Ayesha Takia’s father-in-law and politician Abu Asim Azmi asked her to wear a ‘burkha’ (traditional Islam outfit) while campaigning for the Maharashtra Assembly Elections this year. As a result, Ayesha and her restaurateur husband Farhan are moving to a new house. Bobby Deol attended a charity cricket match on the outskirts of Pune and got mobbed by his fans. They tore his clothes and pushed him; but Bobby said he was, “‘glad to see how much people love me.”
Unfortunately the year 2009 has been a disastrous one for the Hindi film industry in the face of everything from cricket matches, elections to a major industry strike. The first few months were spent reeling under recession. Then came another blow in the form of the film producers-distributors’ tussle with multiplexes over revenue sharing. It led to a two-month strike – from April 4 to June 5 and witnessed a virtual drought of movies. As soon as the strike ended, Indian Premier League matches and elections started, still keeping people away from the theaters. Experts say it suffered a loss of about Rs 700 crore in 2009.
In 2009, around 120-odd films released, but hits were few and far between. Katrina Kaif unanimously ruled over Bollywood with three blockbuster hits, New York, Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani and De Dana Dan. Among male actors Shahid Kapoor and Ranbir Kapoor undoubtedly increased their fans list from their movies Kaminey and Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani and living legend Amitabh Bachchan delivered his “performance of a lifetime” as progeria affected child in the movie Paa and then we had major flops like Chandni Chowk To China, Aladin and Kurbaan. Shruti Haasan (Luck) and Mahi Gill (Dev D) had the most promising debut in the industry in 2009. Now all the eyes are on Christmas day releasing 3 Idiots.
Bollywood belles Shilpa Shetty, Amrita Arora (to Shakeel Ladak) and Isha (Copy) Koppikar settled down. The big news of course being Shilpa Shetty finally getting married to Raj Kundra, a high profile businessman. Her lavish wedding (while not sold to Hello in true glitterati spirit) still had all the bells and whistles of a star-studded guest list, high profile designer-wear and a dash of Bollywood drama!
And finally Bollywood capped off a new trend in exploring rare diseases this year (hopefully seeking to raise awareness about lesser known ailments) and top Bollywood stars like Shah Rukh Khan, Aamir Khan and Amitabh Bachchan all did their bit.
Star: Amitabh Bachchan
Condition: Progeria, a rare genetic disorder where a child ages three times faster than normal. The movie has Abhishek Bachchan and Vidya Balan playing Big B’s parents.
Movie: Upcoming film by Karan Johar, My Name is Khan
Star: Shah Rukh Khan
Condition: Asperger’s syndrome, where the victim has difficulty interacting socially. The movie also brings back the hit duo of SRK and Kajol back again.
Movie: Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s next, Guzaarish
Star: Hrithik Roshan
Condition: Paraplegia, a complete paralysis of the lower half of the body including both legs.
Movie: Taare Zameen Par
Star: Aamir Khan
Condition: Dyslxia, a learning disorder that manifests itself as a difficulty with reading and spelling.
Movie: Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Black
Star: Amitabh Bachchan
Conditon: Alzheimers, a progressive and fatal brain disorder that destroys brain cells, causing memory loss and problems with thinking behavior
Star: Aamir Khan
Condition: Anterograde Amnesia, a selective memory deficit resulting from brain injury.
Movie: Krazzy 4
Star: Arshad Warsi
Condition: Schizophrenia, a mental disorder characterized by abnormalities in the perception or expression of reality