Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Filmsaaz all set for its ninth edition in 2016

A short film festival organised by the Film Club of the prestigious Aligarh Muslim University, Filmsaaz was conceived in order to give the budding filmmakers a platform to showcase their talents.

The club itself was established in the academic year 1973-74 with the aim to promote cinematic culture among the students. Since its birth, the film club has been serving as the platform for students to explore the creative world of cinema.

It was only in 2008 that the Film Club members mooted to organise its own film festival, albeit only for short films that was slowly but securely gaining momentum. Once everyone gave their thumbs up to the idea, the First edition of the festival was successfully held from 28-30 March, 2008. Ace theatre and film artist Tom Walter was the chief guest and since then is being held annually as a national short film festival. Right from its inception, the festival had two categories i.e. national and local. National categories were for all and the local categories were restricted to filmmakers from Aligarh alone.

But, with times, the need to spread worldwide and gain recognition as well as get international films for our discerning audiences was on the cards. And with the sixth edition i.e. 6th Filmsaaz which was held from 3-5 March, 2013 the festival went international. This 6th edition transformed the national festival into an international one. The local categories were abolished totally to pave way for its international avatar. Now only international and national categories are there. The festival received 28 international and 102 national entries in all categories. Nawazuddin Sidddiqui was the chief guest for that particular edition.

The festival has witnessed several celebrities as the chief guest in the past in its valedictory session like Muzaffar Ali in the 2nd, Imtiaz Ali in the 3rd, Sudhir Mishra in the 4th, Pitobash Tripathy in the 5th, Nawazuddin Siddiqui in the 6th, Tigmasnhu Dhulia in the 7th and Ritesh Batra in the 8th.

So far the festival has completed its eighth edition in the year 2015 and preparing for its ninth in 2016. The festival has given wings to lot of budding film makers. It is the only short film festival organised by student’s body of a university in India.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Spearheading towards success: The indomitable Pranshu Kulshreshtha

Much of the mystery about November is solved when we learn that it was the ninth month of the ancient Roman calendar. Yes, it retained its name (from the Latin novem meaning "nine") when January and February were added to the Roman calendar. This is one month that has spring in the Southern Hemisphere and autumn in the Northern Hemisphere. This goes to say much about the persons born in this month. While November is often looked upon with the fiery Scorpios ruling the month, it’s the cool quotient Saggitarius that rules subtly.

Truth seekers, adventurers, lovers of travel, fun loving, generous and extremely friendly, Sagittarians are great company because they are interested in everything and everyone. Broad-minded and lacking in prejudice, Sagittarians with their optimism and humour, are often the life and soul of a party. They very rarely tell lies, in fact they’re so open about everything, and the whole world knows what they’re up to. They have marvelous intuitions that they should take notice of. They’re pretty clever because they’re so interested in everything. They can be a bit rude but that’s only because they’re very honest and will say exactly what they think. They love travel, fast cars and horse riding. They also love spending money, so a credit card should be avoided.

They can be, fanatics yet atheists, and tactless yet serious! Subjects like philosophy, education, religion, mysticism, occult, medicine engross and attract Archers. No wonder many Sagittarius-born make good inventors or discovers. Self confident, high spirited, curious and always ready to explore, they also make good advisers, teachers and social bees Despite all this, their intellectualism is profound and this is all one would see in our November star - Pranshu Kulshreshtha.

A positive person who has a bright outlook on life no matter how upsetting his current situation might be, Pranshu's optimistic and generous spirit makes him a pleasure to have around. According to Kahlil Gibran “March on… do not tarry..”, Pranshu is spearheading towards success as he has the spunk and much in keeping with the symbolic propulsion of a True Sagittarian. We wish him all the best. And we suggest you check the last models in waiting as the last month of the year unfolds. Enjoy!

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Lakecity International Film Festival moves with the times: Launches its android app

Madhya Pradesh and especially Bhopal's own film festival - The Lakecity International Film Festival has officially released its android app for bringing the filmmakers and the discerning audiences on an engaging digital content platform and to keep them abreast of the latest news and happenings of and about the festival. The free-to-download app is available on http://www.appsgeyser.com/LCIFF as well can also be downloaded by scanning the QR Code given here and on the website.

Speaking on the launch, Festival Coordinator Mahua Mazumdar says, ““It was time for a change and be in tune with the moving times. We needed something dynamic and attractive to connect to our audiences and film makers and create an interactive communication platform. Nothing can get better than this app to keep them abreast of the latest information even while on the move.”

The app will be a trendsetter as it will bring all the topical information and news items on whats happening in and around the festival, the entries, the selection, the schedule, the inauguration and the events centering on to finally the awards and the ceremony right into your mobiles and tablets. Created by Bangalore based Pranshu Kulshreshtha, this app meets all requirements and is very easy to manoeuvre and use. And it also takes less time to navigate as compared to browsing on a site. But the biggest advantage of this application is that it comes free.

Ankit Tandon of OM Films and one of the Festival Organisers concludes:"Apart from having an interactive site with 24x7 Live Chat functionality, we are all very excited by this new app as it offers a great social functionality. It does more justice to our coverage skills and talents, and we are now ready for the new communication challenges ahead! Should you have any difficulties downloading the app or have any query or feedback, you can directly contact via the contact form provided on the site and we will be more than happy to serve you.”

The Lakecity International Film Festival will be happening in December 2015 and will be inviting filmmakers across the globe to attend the same. Till now, the festival has managed to bring in lots of films for the discerning audiences which includes:
  • Rebellious Flower by Krishan Hooda (Winner of Special Jury in Italy)
  • Pagdi by Rajeev Bhatia (Winner of National Awards)
  • A Daughters Dream by Manto Pashupatinath (Winner of Several Awards)
  • Final Project (Chinese) by Eric Lam
  • Capturing Happiness by Ludwig Klupka
  • Virgin Munda by Rituraj Verma
  • The Eve (Italian) by Luca Machnich 
  • UnFreedom / Dagh Ujala (Indian) by Raj Amit Kumar (Denied a Censor Certificate)
  • Ghar Aaja Jeetu by Dr. Jaswinder Singh Gandhi
  • and many more...

Friday, October 30, 2015

Tahir loves shades of grey

The young and handsome Tahir Raj Bhasin, who made his debut with a negative role in the Rani Mukerji-starrer Mardaani, will soon be seen essaying another grey character in director Abhinay Deo's upcoming action-thriller Force 2.

Tahir changed the perception of Bollywood villains when he played the role of the suave Karan Rastogi. At present, Tahir is busy shooting for action sequences as part of a 40-day schedule for Force 2 in Budapest, Hungary. In Force 2, viewers will soon see Tahir unfold his other shades of grey.

When asked about being typecast as a villain he said, “Not at all. It is a great time for grey characters [in the Hindi film industry]. They have evolved, and have more dimensions now. The actors I admire, like Irrfan Khan and Shah Rukh Khan, achieved fame by doing negative roles. Irrfan did Haasil (2003), while Shah Rukh did Darr (1993). I think black and white villains, like Gabbar and Mogambo, are slowly fading out."

Tahir was quick to add that off screen he is nothing like the on screen characters he plays. "I am a Shah Rukh Khan romantic at heart. Someday, I will do a traditional romantic role. But everything takes its own course.”

Look who's playing Virat Kohli

Saqib Saleem, who bats for Sohail Khan's Mumbai Heroes in the Celebrity Cricket League, admits that if not an actor, he would have become a cricketer. So, when Rohit Dhawan offered him the role of an aggressive, contemporary batsman in his upcoming action-adventure, Dishoom, Saqib immediately agreed.

Buzz is this cricketer is modelled on Virat Kohli? "He could be Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina or Rohit Sharma," says Saqib, who has already shot for four days. "The major cricketing portions will be shot during the Abu Dhabi schedule with the UAE cricket team, with whom I will train as well. I'll be playing a lot of cricket, hitting a few sixes too. My biggest fear is that the audience will say that I acted well, but played bad cricket," he laughs. Saqib, who played for the Under-19 team in Delhi and captained his college team, reveals that Rohit has been monitoring his look for the film. "He narrated the entire script to me, focussing on the dramatic scenes. He is the kind of director who loves to pamper his actors. And I'm sure there's lots of 'me' in the film," Saqib beams.

AB introduces freemium celebrity video blogging app – Wakau

Iconic superstar Mr. Amitabh Bachchan introduced to the world and his fans the first of its kind, freemium celebrity video blogging app - Wakau. Starting 29th October 2015, the Wakau app will become the ultimate celebrity hotspot to catch original, candid ‘direct dil se’ videos of Mr. Bachchan and other celebrities across genres, be it films, sports, entertainment or music.  Available across iOS, Windows and Android formats, Wakau is the gateway to a gold mine of never seen before original celebrity content, anytime anywhere!

With an ever increasing repertoire of celebrities including the likes of Amitabh Bachchan, Sachin Tendulkar, Arjun Kapoor, Ayushmaan Khurrana, Nirahua, Shaan,  Manju Warrier, Tamannaah Bhatia, Sophie Choudry, Arman Malik and Elli Avaram contributing to the platform. Wakau will upload new content including landmark moments from the celebs lives, hobbies and interests and career stories, for subscribers on a daily basis. On Wakau fans can watch, share and comment on a wide variety of interesting videos categorised topically and by celebrity. The app, has a celebrity interface feature that enables celebs to upload premium video content, while allowing them to track fan comments on their videos and respond directly.

Mr. Bachchan, who has a following of 44 mm on social media, will now further connect and communicate with his fans, through Wakau.  On the app, one can get an insight from Mr. Bachchan on how his now famous surname came into being; catch the master blaster, sharing first hand, his emotions on retiring from test cricket or see Arjun Kapoor talk about his favourite movies and giving a glimpse of his personal DVD collection.

Talking about his association with Wakau, Mr. Bachchan commented, “Social media is an integral part of my life today. I have always tried to stay connected with my fans and respond to them whenever possible through my blog and other social media platforms.  I am glad to be associated with an interactive platform like Wakau, through which I can share some of my candid moments from my day to day life with my fans and inch closer to them.”

A joint venture between CA Media Digital and Jetsynthesys, Wakau is the first of its kind, freemium celebrity video blogging app that allows users to access unseen candid celeb moments to help them connect further with their favourite stars and celebs. Freely downloadable to users across India this ‘freemium’ app allows consumers to view celebrity videos for free, with the videos being interspersed with advertisements. The app also supports an ad-free experience via its subscription service.

Speaking on the association, Rishi Negi, EVP Operations, CA Media India commented, “Wakau is a great opportunity for celebrities to connect with their fans and share personal stories, interests, sepia moments and cherished thoughts through their video blogs. The app is a celebrity hotspot that enables consumers to gain easy access to insightful videos of their favourite superstars and personal heroes on their phones.”

Rajan Navani, Vice Chairman and Managing Director, Jetsynthesys, added “Through constant and continuous innovation we at Jetsynthesys strive to offer the best in digital technology and Wakau is no exception. With a deep focus on creating a personal connect with the consumer through leveraging analytics, the Wakau experience will eventually pave the way towards many firsts for the world. We are excited to launch this unique world class Indian product that would become the social digital media screen of the 21st century.”

A technically superior app, Wakau has an adaptive and predictive streaming technology that enables optimization of content to each specific device and dynamically adapts the video stream to the constantly varying bandwidth of carrier and Wi-Fi networks creating a quality experience for the users. Consumers can subscribe to the premium service on the app using their existing mobile connection, credit cards, net banking and e-wallets with multiple validity periods and price points available.

Salman Khan & Sonam kapoor will celebrate Diwali with Taarak Mehta team

Actor Salman Khan with Sonam Kapoor came to Gokuldham Society in Taarak Mehta Ka Oltah Chashmah to celebrate Diwali with members. He even brought sweets for Society member and wished them all in advance.

Once again Dayaben entertained Salman with her special arti and garba. "Nobody can get bored while watching my dance. It’s an all time favorite entertainer," laughs Disha Wakani.  Both actors had lot of fun moments while shooting with the team.