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Adil Hussain wants government to back ‘Village Rockstars’ in Oscar race

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Village Rockstar

New Delhi, Sep 24 : Noted Assamese actor Adil Hussain has urged the government to release Rs 5 crore for the promotion of Rima Das’ Assamese film “Village Rockstars” ahead of the Oscars, where it will represent India in the Best Foreign Language film category.

On Saturday, the Film Federation of India (FFI) announced the independent film as the chosen one to vie with movies from several other countries to make the cut as a nominee in the highly competitive Academy Awards category.

FFI’s selection committee chairman S.V. Rajendra Singh Babu, a veteran film producer, said there is an acute lack of funds to carry out the required promotional processes effectively, which is why many Indian movies haven’t made it to the final round, barring three — “Mother India” (1957), “Salaam Bombay!” (1988) and “Lagaan” (2001).

Adil was “flummoxed” with the statement.

“The governments have so much money to promote themselves putting posters all across! After selecting ‘Village Rockstars’, jury says there’s acute lack of funds to promote film at Oscars,” tweeted the actor, whose Norwegian film “What Will People Say” is Norway’s official entry to the Oscars this year.

Adil drew the attention of the Assam government, Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, his office and of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting to the matter, hoping they “will immediately release Rs 5 crore for the promotion of ‘Village Rockstars’, since all other countries have already started their campaigns in the US”.

As Rajendra Singh Babu rightly pointed out, “It is impossible for independent and small producers to promote their film all by themselves. It is important that they receive funds to do so. It is important we follow these processes to reach all the Academy members and critics.”

Adil’s tweets got reaction.

Actor Annup Sonii expressed disappointment, and wrote: “For the smallest achievement they have big funds but for this… ‘Acute lack of funds’. Eventually it will come down to the filmmaker asking for favours or donations… Sad… Very sad.”

Actress Renuka Shahane questioned: “Why don’t we from the film fraternity join hands and create a fundraiser for our Oscar entry? Let’s not depend on the government. It is important that we support this gem of a film onwards to the Oscars.”

When a Twitter user pointed out that “filthy rich, big stars and producers” from the industry “can afford your Oscar thingy”, Renuka retorted: “What do you mean ‘Our Oscar thingy’?

“It should be a matter of pride for the entire country that a young girl with no background or training in filmmaking makes an incredible film like ‘Village Rockstars’ that compels the jury to select it for the Oscars. Let’s not be myopic.”

On Adil’s plea to the government, another user commented that the taxpayers’ money should not be used for Oscars.

“Is it some kind of national service? Why should we care about an American award? Why can’t film industry fund these expenses?” the user questioned.

To that, Adil wrote: “Government can use taxpayers’ money to promote India’s image as a supporter of high quality art. That’s what all civilised governments do! ‘Village Rockstars’ is an independent film. It’s not a mainstream run-of-the-mill film.

“Government’s responsibility is to support fine art of any discipline.”

Set in Das’ own village of Chhaygaon in Assam, “Village Rockstars” is the story of “poor but amazing children” who live a fun-filled life.

The film also won the Best Feature film Award at the 65th National Film Awards.

As for Das, she is hoping for the best as far as funds are concerned to put her film on the Oscars map.

“‘Village Rockstars’ is a film about dreams and hope. It has transcended so many barriers right from the time of its inception and I am hopeful this time too it will.”

IANS

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Actress Kangana Ranaut ‘will quit twitter’ if anyone can prove she starts fights

Kangana Ranaut has tweeted that contrary to what many believe from her online presence, she is not a very ‘ladaku’ person. The actor said that she is never one to start fights with others but is always the one to finish them.

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Kangana Ranaut

From the Shiv Sena to Urmila Matondkar, Kangana Ranaut is engaged in multiple wars of words with multiple parties at the moment. However, she insists that she is never the one to start a fight. In a tweet shared on late Thursday night, Kangana said she would quit Twitter if proven wrong.

“I may come across as a very ladaku person but it’s not true, I have a record of never starting a fight, I will quit twitter if anyone can prove otherwise, I never start a fight but I finish every fight. Lord Krishna said when someone aks you to fight you mustn’t deny them,” she said.

After Urmila told Kangana to keep check on the drug problem in her state of Himachal Pradesh, Kangana retaliated by calling her a ‘soft porn star’ who wasn’t known for her acting skills. Kangana’s comments were met with criticism by her Bollywood colleagues.

She also got in a tussle with comedian Kunal Kamra who had joked about her tweet on spirituality. When Kangana called him a ‘fool who wanted to discredit her struggle’, Kunal questioned why she required the Y-plus security from the central government.

On Thursday evening, Anurag sarcastically told Kangana to go fight for India against China if she believes herself to be ‘the one true Manikarnika’. He was responding to a tweet by Kangana in which she had called herself ‘a warrior’. Kangana said that she meant it as a metaphor. “You’re taking metaphors literally. How have you become so stupid? You were quite clever when we used to be friends,” she wrote in a tweet.

She has also been tweeting against Rhea Chakraborty in the Sushant Singh Rajput death case, called Karan Johar ‘movie mafia’, called Alia Bhatt a ‘mediocre’ actor and dubbed Swara Bhasker and Taapsee Pannu ‘B-grade’ actors.

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RJD leader Arun Yadav: Sushant wasn’t a Rajput

However, RJD spokesman Mritunjay Tiwari said Arun Yadav has made the statement in his personal capacity and the party has nothing to do with it.

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Sushant Singh Rajput No More

Patna, Sep 17 : RJD legislator Arun Yadav has stirred up a new controversy about the caste origins of Sushant Singh Rajput. Yadav says Sushant wasn’t a Rajput by caste and that any descendent of Maharana Pratap won’t die by hanging himself.

Yadav’s remark has political implications in the context of the upcoming Bihar assembly elections. Opposition leaders say members of the RJD are habitual offenders in making such controversial statements.

Arun Yadav, RJD MLA from Saharsa, said Rajputs are known to fight till their last breath like Maharana Pratap and do not give up on life the way Sushant Singh Rajput allegedly did.

“We are sad that he died but I am afraid that he wasn’t a Rajput,” Yadav said.

Following his statement, the BJP quickly pounced on it saying the RJD is known for doing politics of caste.

“We want Tejashwi Yadav to clarify his stand on Sushant Singh Rajput and Kangna Ranaut,” Anand said.

Neeraj Kumar, information and public relations minister of Bihar and a prominent JDU leader, also said: “Such statements display the complete bankruptcy of a party. Their education was done at Charwaha Vidyalaya (school for shepherds). You cannot expect much from them. Sushant Singh Rajput doesn’t belong to one caste or community alone. He was a son of Bihar.”

However, RJD spokesman Mritunjay Tiwari said Arun Yadav has made the statement in his personal capacity and the party has nothing to do with it.

“Our leader Tejashwi Yadav is one of those leaders who have been demanding justice for Sushant Singh and his family since day one of the tragic incident. He had demanded a CBI inquiry in the early stages of the investigation,” Tiwari said.

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Hope media will show restraint: Delhi HC on Rakul Preet’s plea

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Rakul Preet Singh

New Delhi, Sep 17 : The Delhi High Court on Thursday expressed hope that the media will exercise restraint as the bench asked the Centre, National Broadcasters Association among others to respond to a petition filed by Bollywood actor Rakul Preet Singh.

Rakul Preet has highlighted media reports against her after Sushant Singh Rajput’s death case accused Rhea Chakraborty named the former in a drug related case before the NCB.

While passing these directions, the single judge bench said: “There has to be some restraint. Media gets to know info even before the officers themselves. Reputations are getting tarnished.”

Justice Navin Chawla issued notice to the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Prasar Bharti and the Press Council of India seeking their response over the petition filed by the Bollywood actor through advocates Aman Hingorani, Himanshu Yadav and Shweta Hingorani.

It also asked the central government, Prasar Bharti and the Press Council to treat the said petition as a representation and take decision expeditiously.

The next hearing on the matter will be on October 15.

“It is hoped that media houses and TV channels would show restraint and abide by the Program Code and other guidelines while making any report in connection with Rakul Preet Singh,” the bench added in its observation.

The plea filed by the actor claimed that she was shooting for a film in Telangana when she was stunned to see private TV channels, including some members of the News Broadcasters Association running “breaking news” from the evening of 11.9.2020 to the effect that the Petitioner, along with Actress Sara Ali Khan and Designer Simone Khambatta, have been named as the individuals who take drugs by Actress Rhea Chakraborty in the ongoing investigation by the Narcotics Control Bureau in Mumbai into the drug angle in the June 14 death of Sushant.

“The Petitioner categorically states that she does not take drugs at all, and has, to the best of her recollection, has only met Sara Ali Khan twice (once at IIFA Awards and once while working out in a gym) and has not met Simone Khambatta at all,” the petition said.

Rakul Preet further stated that despite the fact that Rhea had already retracted her statement on 9.9.2020 as aforesaid, the private TV channels have continued since 11.9.2020 till date to run a slander campaign against her.

The petition has sought the court’s direction in order to ask the media not to telecast, publish or circulate on the TV channels, cable, print or social media, as the case may be, any content in context of Actress Rhea Chakraborty’s narcotic drugs case that maligns or slanders the Petitioner or which contains anything defamatory, deliberate, false and suggestive innuendos and half-truths in respect of the Petitioner, or to use sensational headlines, photographs, video-footage or social media links which invade the privacy of the Petitioner.

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