Raavan roars in London

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We have been in Bollytasic Heaven this week – London has been bathed in the glory and glitz that exudes from the largest film industry in the world.

Summer is a traditional time when the who’s who from Mumbai de-camp to London to escape the heat – a bit like the Brits from Empire days travelling to Simla. You can not walk down Oxford Street without a brief Mumbaite Greeting of “Hello!!, How Are You?”

Akshay Kumar, Rishi & Neetu Kapoor, Aamir Khan, Tarun Mansukhani , Poonam Dhillon, Mumtaz, King Khan – SRK & Gauri AND the First Family of Bollywood – The Bachchans to name a few.

Raajneeti is making waves at the box office and we are all waiting for Arjun Rampal – he can’t wait for Wimbledon to begin – he is amazing in the movie

Akshay Kumar held an impromptu drinks do last week to share his thanks – he’s had a fab time shooting for Nikhil Advani’s Patiala House and talk about his home production Priyadarshan’s Khatta Meetha. A rip-roaring, satirical comedy with Akshay as the man dealing with small town corruption. It sees the Bollywood debut of South Indian award winner Trisha Krishnan. Akshay is so much fun and after ribbing us about our Pindo Punjabi told us that he loves spending time playing with his son in Hyde Park when not shooting.

Tarun Mansukhani’s been location hunting and can’t wait to start filming Dostana 2 – and neither can we!

Had a lovely catch up with the gorgeous Poonam Dhillon . She’s in town with the kids and is amazed at the reaction people have had to her on Big Boss. She was a wee bit nervous doing the show, but found it exhilarating and is pleased at coming runner up! Poonam is now looking forward to start directing and is looking for interesting scripts.

BUT the Bollytastic Buzz that blew away even the most film fatigued of London was the spectacular world premier of Mani Rtanam’s Raavan at the British Film Institute. Fans queued for hours with the world’s media in attendance and were not disappointed. The red carpet was graced by the magic of Abhishek & Aishwarya, Mani Ratnam, the dignified, but so excited Amitabh and Jaya Bachchan AND Shah Rukh Khan with his entire family. What never ceases to amaze us is the amount of energy and dedication all the stars have. Abhishek and Aishwarya arrived the night before but then were up at dawn and spend the entire day in interviews. Despite the gruelling day they made sure they spent at least an hour on the red carpet talking to the people that really matter – the fans that had waited for hours for a glimpse of them. Both told us that that is what really matters and makes it all worthwhile. Catch our chat with the Golden Couple on our shows this weekend. Abhishek joked that his fiercest critic, his sister Swheta will be watching the movie for the first time and is looking forward at her reactions!

With Bollywood infusing London we have been championing the fantastic Bollywood Troupe Threebee. They made the semi finals of Britain’s Got Talent and Simon Cowell said of them -.” …It was terrific, it was exactly what I hoped you would do and it made you stand out from all the acts we’ve seen before…” All are true lovers of Bollywood and despite their various careers including being doctors, dentists, accountants have been rehearsing every Sunday in Piccadilly Well we are delighted to champion their success at our next Raj&Pablo’s Bollywood Nights@The Cobden on the 26th June, with a very special performance from this troupe – if you are in London do come along.

With Zeenat Aman winning the Lifetime Achievement Award at this years IIFAs – she told us she was thrilled at the reaction from her fans; Neetu Singh in town as well as the legend that is Mr. Amitbabh Bachchan (both families are now related as Swheta is married to Rishi Kapoor’s nephew), this week’s Raj&Pablo’s REWIND IN TIME is Shakti Samanta’s crime thriller – The Great Gambler released in 1979 and which stars Amitabh Bachchan in a double role of an expert gambler and a police inspector; Zeenat Aman as the exotic dancer involved in espionage and Neetu Singh as the heiress who gets caught up in underworld. Fans of the original Don will love this – there are twists and turns galore; mistaken identities; glamorous locations – Egypt, Venice, Lisbon and Amsterdam, its among one of the first Bollywood movies to be shoot overseas before NRI’s were discovered by Bollywood! A true Mumbai masala movie. The movie has some of the stalwarts of Bollywood – watch out for a brief cameo by a glamorous Helen, a villainous Prem Chopra, Madan Puri, Uptal Dutt and Iftekhar. Producer Boney Kapoor who is now married to Sridevi was Amitabh’s stunt double in some of the fight scenes. RD Burman composed some his best music and singers include Asha Bhosle; Mohd Rafi and Kishore Kumar. A homage to ‘Do Lafzon Ki’ was made in Shahid Kapoor’s Kaminey.

A must for masala movie fans! See what we mean with this video of ‘Do Lafzon Ki Hai Dil Ki Kahani’, filmed in Venice!

Till next week,

Love Us Love Bollywood

Raj&Pablo xx

Catch us on the BBC’s definitive Bollywood Show –
SAT&SUN – 9am – 12pm.

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