Images from Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Se (updated)


















































thanks to Kassam for the latest…


click for widescreen..

click on image to enlarge


thanks to Masterpraz for the latest..

thanks to Kassam..

Ashutosh Gowariker is a rare filmmaker who believes in treading the different path from the rest. His next film Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey is a Period Thriller based on Manini Chatterjee’s book Do And Die which is a detailed account of the Chittagong Uprising of 1930. Starring Abhishek Bachchan and Deepika Padukone, it is currently being shot in Goa on a set created by Jodha Akbar Art Director Nitin Desai. Cinematography by Kiran Deohans is another big plus. If Junior Bachchan’s excited tweets from the on location in Goa are anything to go by, then KHJJS is a potential commercial and critical winner.

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375 Responses to “Images from Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Se (updated)”

  1. weirdly they never mention the composer anywhere. I hope Gowariker is not making a film without songs! LOL!

  2. thecooldude Says:

    Javed Akhtar is penning the lyrics according to this article so there should be music.

    http://www.bollywoodhungama.com/news/2009/11/11/13456/index.html

    • I’ve seen that before but I find it weird that a lyricist is mentioned but not the composer. I am hoping Rahman somehow does this but I am skeptical because this project came about suddenly and Rahman unfortunately is rather busy with international assignments these days. Still with the old Gowariker connection hope something can be worked out. But nonetheless whoever it is why isn’t there a name? I would like a normal soundtrack here. And not just one with a patriotic song in 5 versions!

  3. Good point about one song and five versions as that is exactly what Akhtar did for the film Main Azaad Hoon which coincidentally (I think not) the song had a prominent line in the chorus of khelenge hum jee jaan se

  4. didnt like the title neither the poster… satyam abhi seriously needs to get involve in this promos..because marketing poster and title are seriously not my cup of tea.. but i can say the title doesnt inspire.. me

    • hey rooney we are having defence crisis, what fergie is thinking.
      this year title is gone already in december i am afraid.

    • I don’t like the title either and said so at the very beginning. I think Chittagong Uprising is the best option here. Or maybe simply ‘Chittagong’. The poster though is just a ‘title’! Something retro about it. Don’t see how can like it very much or be against it very much! The biggest issue with this subject is the fact that Gowariker is attempting a thriller! This would seem to be the genre least suited to his filmmaking style!

      • lol… at gowariker attempting thriller…

      • satyam, this movie is a litmus test for Abhi……i say this because AG is also facing the same problem to deliver a HIT….so if Abhi pulls this off, I will give ALL credit to him and change my opinion abt. him :-) but the title and the subject don’t look exciting at all…..

        • I think Abhishek is beyond litmus tests! But it’s interesting that you design a ‘litmus test’ for him with a film you expect nothing from! Do I smell a setup here?! Would Swades have been a good litmus test for SRK?! Why wouldn’t you consider Raavana the more obvious litmus test if you nonetheless wanted to think in those terms? It’s releasing first!

          As for the film and title not looking exciting I think in the wake of Paa’s extraordinary run you might want to reconsider that! Of course a guy who has the projects Abhishek does hardly has a litmus test in one film! But Raavana is the closest it comes to this because the Rathnam film has always been a lynch pin for Abhishek in some form or fashion. Right now though I think Abhishek is more than happy having the passed the Paa ‘litmus test’ as producer and as actor!

          of course when Abhishek does have a hit one decides to accept the worst box office reporting on it, which is to say the most negative. so how does he really pass any test with flying colors?! LOL!

          But I reject any such notion of a ‘litmus test’!

  5. spot on mks about the title . couldn’t understand why they didn’t stick with the books title of Do and Die rather than get an over elaborate tile

    • yup aramak Do and die is lot better than above.. also as satyam sugests Chittagong uprising…

    • Do or Die was good though !! But i found “Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Se” equally interesting and carrying mass appeal. Title has 70′s/80′s movies title reference (hum Kisi Se Kum Nahi, Khel Khel Mein, Jeete hain Shaan Se …… etc). Even Fonts and Graphics design of poster is giving 70′s appeal (johny Gaddar was recent example which was in same league). Overall i like Title and Poster as well.

      BTW Satyam, Please correct the title of post. Its “Khelein” Not “Khelenge”

      • thanks.. made the correction..

        On the title having mass appeal unfortunately the ‘masses’ have been marginalized in the multiplex system!

      • agreed on the retro look and I like it here even if it’s a bit odd given that this film isn’t really in a masala genre.

      • I concur. I quite cotton to the old school(retro) look of the poster. I also hope this movie has a brilliant soundtrack. I recollect that Gowaiker’s first 2 movies were thrillers. They were okay(think one was a hit). But I do hope he has improved upon those 1st two thriller movies. I think if the script is well written, engaging, uplifting, and entertaining then everything should be copesetic. The movie has to resonate with the audience. If Gowaiker has a cream of the crop script and an efficient editor then all should be well.

      • Isnt this title from the lone song in Amitabhs movie “Main Azaad Hoon”.
        Kitne baazi kitne sar,
        ginle dushman dhyan se
        haarega woh har baazi
        Jo Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Se…

        • Right wording of the song again, flubbed the first time. One of my fav gongs of Amitabh by Amitabh:
          Itne Baazu, Itne Sar
          Ginle dushman dhyan se
          haarega woh har baazi
          Jo Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Se…

          The movie was an underrated gem, hugely underperformed at the BO, but perfect for today’s multiplex gen. Amitabh wanted to get back at all those critics who harrassed him on Bofors, so he signed off on this movie about how press can create/manipulate and destroy. Interesting, that he will now come in Rann with a similar story.

          • I found the movie to be more than a little flat. It’s certainly engaging but it has this unbelievably low budget, home movie feel to it. They could have done vastly more here on the production values. Love Bachchan in it even if it was too late for him to play such an ‘ordinary’ character.

  6. Oops, Aramark already mentioned this point above..

  7. GOWARIKAR WILL STRIKE BACK WITH THIS MUCH AWAITED FILM OF 2010. BEING A PERIOD AND A DIFFERRENT FILM GOWARIKAR WILL DEFINATELY STRIKE BACK. IT WILL BE THE BEST MOVIE OF 2010.

  8. Like the new still

    • yes good one.. the problem with Gowariker though is generally not the ‘still’ but the movement between ‘stills’!

      • thecooldude Says:

        has Gowarikar made a point of directing one modern day film to be followed by one period one??

        Lagaan
        Swades
        Joda Akhbar
        What’s your Rashee
        KHJJS

      • LOL…so true.

        But you’d made a comment on Bachchan’s blog about Vishal Bhardwaj’s laconic approach, and I know Gowariker’s a bit different even in this sense, (and I should add I don’t have the same problem with Bhardwaj that you do) but I think the point you made about Bachchan being able to “energize” the narrative flow works here as well. That is, Abhishek is the kind of actor who can sometimes kick up an otherwise lethargic narrative. SRK didn’t do this for me in Swades (Harman certainly couldn’t do anything with WYR’s epic misdirection) I know that’s a film and performance you like but I found the movie interminable and SRK fine but uninteresting.

        On the other hand, Abhishek is subtle to the point of risking the image he sometimes gets tagged with of being “too laid back” (a persona he has wicked fun with at times) and could have the opposite effect of not being bold enough. This is why his Yuva and JBJ performances are so excellent in my book – he really plays the bold strokes very well and juices up the narrative. He needs to tap into those “outgoing” reserves more.

        • GF, I normally think of Abhishek as not someone who energizes a script if his role does not require him to do so. This gets to your other point. one way to understand it is to suggest that he is too sincere as an actor when a certain commercial compromise is required. He clearly can turn up the energy but in films where that is not necessarily an issue anyway. In other words he’s fine in Dostana for example but here is sincerely playing the part. On the other hand with a Gowariker you really need his father’s sense with these things. This to my mind has always been the greatest danger for this film. Gowariker often brings a certain earnestness to the proceedings and the star needs to turn it up a bit. Of course SRK was listless in Swades, Abhishek won’t have this issue but he will probably have to find a mean. His best shot is if the role itself and the thriller aspects of the film allow him to indulge in gestures somewhat grander. But one of oppositions between father and son always has been that speed lies on the side of the former and slowness on the side of the latter. Which is not meant to be a criticism either way. Certain one could be slow when required and the other can be quick. But given that this is a commercial industry erring on Bachchan’s side is always the better option. And lastly it’s the sincerity I think (and here I agree with you) that risks the laid-back image though again Yuva might be a useful reserve to tap into for this role as you suggest.

        • I’m a bit divided on your take here. I think SRK needlesly ‘energises’ every character. Swades – he was actually ok, the film was ordinary. The blame goes to AG.

          Now Abhishek – I find that something inside him bothers. In one instance he’s the life – BAB, Yuva, JBJ, Dostana; and then in another he ‘cannot be bothered’ – Drona and his earlier work, quite slow, actually.

          If you see the two episodes of BINGO, he’s quite contarsting within himself! The second one is much better than the first one.

          • I haven’t seen the episodes of the show..

            Your point on Drona (which I never saw) and some of his earlier works is precisely my point in saying that he risks falling into that lackadaisacal sort of image when he takes on a certain kind of script. My hope is that’s not the case with KHJJS.

            I have no problem with SRK in Swades. He was adequate. I think a more suggestive actor would have been better in the role, but that’s just because SRK doesn’t really keep my attention on the screen unless he’s bouncing around a bit. That over-energetic trait of his was once charming. It just got diluted and now has a manufactured feel to it. I personally thought the Chak De performance was better because he happened to find himself in a film (which I didn’t like) that took things easy but didn’t feel bloated the way Gowariker’s did. I only compare the performances of those two films because I believe they were delivered at a similar dramatic pitch.

  9. New movie still is mad cool. Abhishek wears the dhoti and gun look vastly well. I’m vastly eager to see how this movie shapes up.

  10. Eire – i dont like this lousy pose at all though I am willing to give this still the benefit of doubt since this seems like a pic taken by an amatuerish camera by someone on the set.

    Historicals take a decent amount fo time in the making. Really skeptical due to this fast shoot…..or are we in for a lot of special effects and post production work

  11. Confirmed on twitter that the music director for this is sohail sen, who composed the music for WYR.

  12. Interview with Abhi onset

    http://www.telegraphindia.com/1100203/jsp/entertainment/story_12058205.jsp

    Ashutosh Gowariker’s Chittagong is Sawantwadi. Where’s that? Well, having checked out Bangladesh and even visited sites in Calcutta, the Lagaan director was convinced that he had no other option but to rely on art director Nitin Desai to create Surya Sen’s world. “I travelled across the entire western coast of India and found Sawantwadi’s flora and fauna to match that of Chittagong’s,” is the director’s rationale.

    But how does one reach this place? Well, you take the flight to Goa, and then travel 100km from Dabolim airport. After the two-hour drive, 14km beyond the Goa-Maharashtra border, there lies the quaint little town of Sawantwadi.

    After an eight-hour journey from Calcutta on January 11, t2 did manage to reach the site for Ashu’s latest magnum opus, Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey. It was the last night of shooting for Abhishek Bachchan who plays Surya Sen, “the dhoti and guns guy”.

    In a thick forest, lit up beautifully by a huge helium balloon, courtesy master cinematographer Kiran Deohans, Surya fires away at the British every time Ashu says, “Action!” But not before Surya has had his fill of kachodis and pav bhaji. “I don’t understand why they hide these things from me,” grumbles Abhishek the prankster.

    But once he takes up position behind the door, from where he is firing, it’s a different Abhishek Bachchan. Furious at the “bak-bak” happening behind him, Chhota B seems to have imbibed more than just the dhoti-kurta of Surya Sen. No wonder every unit member, from the director to the spotboy, refers to Abhishek as Surya on the sets.

    As a sudden electric short circuit put the shooting on a hold, t2 cornered Surya for a chat on then and now…

    The Bengali in you surfaces yet again. After Desh and Antarmahal, you are playing Surya Sen!

    One just gravitates towards what one wants to do. Whatever catches your fancy and interest. Desh was done as a favour. I had two days off when Raja (Sen) said why don’t you come over. Antarmahal was done for Ritu (Rituparno Ghosh), who is very dear to the family and has been asking to work [with me] for a very, very long time.

    Surya Sen because Ashu has been wanting to work with me for very long. I have known Ashu for very, very long. He acted with my father in Indrajeet, which was produced by my friend Goldie (Behl). I have known him since then. When I was doing production for ABCL on Major Saab, I met him a lot. That’s when he had narrated me the concept of Lagaan. We had always been in touch and he is a dear friend of mine.

    Did he offer you any role in Lagaan?

    I wouldn’t say he offered me the film but he narrated it to me as a bouncing board. We meet socially and we have always expressed a desire to work with each other. One day he called me saying that there’s a script which will really suit you and let’s do it. Unfortunately the time didn’t work out. It was two years ago and I was on my world tour. So we put it on the backburner then. Last year, in November-December I was meant to shoot Paa. But Mani fell ill and Raavan got postponed by four months. So I preponed Paa and told Ashu that I am free for a couple of months… if you want to do the film now. Luckily Ashu was also free and we found the window.

    What drew you to Surya Sen?

    I have always been intrigued by this period and have always been interested to play a freedom fighter.

    Why is that?

    I don’t know. I am a bit of a history buff. I like historical films. I have always wanted to play a character who fought for Indian independence. Surya Sen, apart from maybe the Bengali-speaking people, unfortunately, is not as widely known as some of his contemporaries. We tend to usually make films about a handful of freedom fighters. I like the fact that Hindi mainstream cinema is going to make a film about a great freedom fighter and give him his due. I like that. It was somebody we get to explore, to acquaint with, to learn about. He is a legend in Bengal but not much is known about him in the rest of India.

    Also what attracted me was that Ashutosh didn’t want to approach it as a period piece. He wanted to make it as a contemporary day thriller. The language he wanted to use was very today, very young, very urban. He has shot it like a thriller… there’s great pacing to it. He wanted the youth of today to associate with the film. It’s got an attitude. I have never seen a period piece being made like that.

    How did you prepare to be Surya Sen?

    Ashu, of course, would never get into anything half-heartedly. He is by far the most prepared director I have worked with. It’s a sheer pleasure when you know that your director is so well-versed. We saw a lot of photographs of the times, of Surya Sen, of all the 64 kids (his comrades), read up on a lot of writings, the letters he had written, saw a bit of footage, whatever little of that period. There was extensive research that was done. Being cinema, yes, we have taken minor liberties. But that’s fine, it’s important.

    Did you read the book Do And Die (by Manini Chatterjee of The Telegraph), from which the film is adapted?

    I was not very keen to read the book because I do feel a book and a screenplay have different metres altogether and one shouldn’t get influenced by that. Do And Die is a historical account of what happened and we are doing a dramatic account. Although the basic plots are similar, there’s a lot of difference in the way the story is being told.

    Just a dhoti-kurta almost throughout the film, aren’t you missing the grand period costumes?

    I am not one of those actors. I believe when you do a role, you really need to dive into it. You do films where you play the hero-hero. This is not one of them. These are roles that you get very seldom in life and you have to do justice to them. That point of time you are not going to think, oh my god, how am I going to look in a dhoti? That much of authenticity is required. I enjoy wearing these clothes and I am very comfortable in it. Running with guns in a dhoti is a bit of a problem, but that’s ok!

    What is your process of diving into a role?

    I am not a method actor at all. I have studied the method when I studied drama in school. The Stanislavski method is something everybody knows but I don’t think it’s something I have ever managed to pull off. Also I don’t think our cinema lends itself completely to method acting. But I think there is a basic requirement that an actor requires to fulfil. I don’t think you can be frivolous about what you do.

    The greatest challenge for me in this film was to get the right body language. Whenever we look at a period piece, we tend to do it in a very classical manner. Stomach in, chest out, chin up and really throw those dialogues. I wanted to break all that. I wanted the audience to feel that the characters and the period are almost tactile. I don’t think there was a difference between them and us. There is a slight change in body language. Today there is an air of informality in our day-to-day behaviour which perhaps wasn’t there. Having said that, Bhagat Singh was 23-24 years old. Because he is a legendary figure, he seemed to have age on his side. But he was a kid. Similarly Surya was in his late 20s, in his early 30s when he got captured. I don’t think they would have been very different from what we are. Maybe a bit more staid but by no means Shakespearean!

    How much of Bengaliness is there in your character?

    There is the requisite amount. We didn’t lean completely towards the Bengaliness because we wanted the film to appeal all over. But having said that, it is set in Chattagram, in Chittagong. So you can’t get away from that, you can’t not be true to that. There’s a spattering of Bengali dialogues… the way they wore their dhotis… everything will definitely be reflective of the period and the place they are from.

    You seem very creatively involved in the filmmaking process here on the sets, an aspect not many are aware of…

    I have always been creatively involved… for good or for bad. That’s the kind of actor I am. I like to be interactive. I am not very good in just taking instructions. I love the fact that my director turns to me and asks me for my advice. Sometimes they take it, sometimes they don’t. I like healthy discussions. I believe filmmaking is a team process and I like it when directors involve their teams. I have always been like that and I enjoy it.

    You were just joking [In between shots Abhishek was chatting with the crew saying: “I used to believe I was immortal till a few years back, when a couple of more films of mine flopped!”] about the series of flops at the start of your career. Do you still feel bad about them?

    Hmmm… not really! I think I would be a fool to sit here and complain. I am very happy with the way things have turned out for me… very thankful… I feel blessed that I get to do what I dream of doing. That I get to wake up every morning and live my dream.

    You turned producer successfully with Paa. Is that something that you would look to do more often now?

    What I realised with Paa is that I will produce the films that I really want to produce. It will be a ‘want’, not a ‘need’. I don’t see AB Corp as a big studio, I see it as a boutique studio that will make a few films behind which we really want to put our might. I do see a greater interest in production by actors because of the economics of filmmaking today. I don’t think Paa should have been a film made at a budget of Rs 60 crore. It didn’t afford that on paper. How do I make it lesser with the same star cast? You have to step in as producer. If I offered my services and my father’s services as actors, I don’t think the film would have been completed in Rs 15 crore. That’s not possible. You believe in a film, you do what it takes to make it possible.

    Paa was a bit of a risk to take. You had me playing my father’s father, which has never been done in the history of cinema. You had Paa playing a 13-year-old. Everything pointed towards a risk and I am glad that I took that risk because it paid dividends. Firstly in box office. We are not here to do charity. Everybody is here to do business. Paa was possibly the only film last year that made money. The kind of money my distributors and exhibitors made on Paa has not been made before. That’s because it was made at such a modest budget. I was in profit on the first Sunday of release. That was an aim of a business model that I had set down and it worked. Secondly, the audience loved the film and made Auro into a cult figure.

    The only possible complaint is that you are doing too many projects with your father and your wife. It’s like a family show all the time…

    I don’t think Paa would have been possible without Paa. The only film I am doing with Aishwarya is Raavan, which is ready. I am not working only with my family. I work on films that I want to work on. It’s not like, oh, what’s the star cast? I have never decided the star cast. It’s not in my hands. Mani came up with the concept of Raavan and wanted me and Aishwarya in it. I didn’t say, take her. She didn’t say, take me.

    Amitabh Bachchan playing a 13-year-old is a fantastic marketing tool but I don’t think any actor could have done the role. Not even a 13-year-old. I don’t think anybody could have played his father apart from me. Because you needed the audience to come in there and feel the actual love. Of course, working with him is something I look forward to. Who wouldn’t want to work with Amitabh Bachchan? It’s like going to school. On a personal note, I get to spend some time with him. I have been literally living out of a suitcase for the past two years. Delhi-6, Dostana, Raavan, Paa and now Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey. Now I have films with Rohan Sippy, Abhinay Deo, then there’s Dostana 2, films with Abbas-Mustan, Anees Bazmee, Neeraj Pathak, Anurag Basu… So working with Paa means spending some time with Paa.

    • Kiran Deohans (Aks) probably has something up his alley after a long time. Otherwise the followup to that film was K3G!

      Excellent interview here. GF’s hunch about there being a Yuva aspect to the performance might be right. But I am heartened by his response on the pacing issue.

      He confirms Bazmee (Hangover) and Anurag Basu here. So the serious stuff is Gowariker, Rathnam, Rohan, Neeraj Pandey. The more commercial stuff is Dostana 2, Bazmee, Abbas-Mustaan. Remains to be seen where Abhinay Deo falls. abhishek has called it an action thriller elsewhere. But again a remarkable mix here though I would have avoided Bazmee given some of the other stuff. He seems to be cornering all the markets though! What does concern me is that he hasn’t mentioned Prabhudeva. Hope that’s an oversight. I would be disappointed if he didn’t do this one.

      • Thus far the only comical comedy movies Abhishek has signed up for are Dostana 2 and Anees Bazmee Hangover remake. The rest of Abhishek’s line up of movies are thrillers and dramas that contain lots of action and even romance. So it is indeed a good mix and line for Abhishek. Its a good move that they are getting the word out about this movie even before its done filming.

        It was indeed a pleasant surprise to read about the pacing issue, what attracted him to Gowariker’s movie on the Chittagong Uprising, and Abhishek even highlights that this movie has not been made like a typical period movie. But instead made as a thriller which explains why the shooting of this movie has not taken as long as Gowariker has done for his past period movies(sagas). I also indeed hope Abhishek does a movie with Prabhu Deva like what was earlier reported. Abhishek does not list every movie he is doing in every interview. I mean we did not know he was doing a movie with Anurag and half of the other new movies either until he started talking about them in his interviews. So hopefully the movie with Prabhu Deva is still on.

        • that’s probably right because in one of the stories here Prabhudeva himself confirms it:

          http://satyamshot.wordpress.com/2009/11/25/prabhu-devaa-to-direct-a-film-with-abhishek/

          However I wonder if the film can be shot in mid-June this year as suggested by him..

          • Prabudeva said mid-2010 after his finished next Tamil movie. That must have changed since Abhishek will be filming Dostana 2 during June, etc. And don’t think Prabhudeva is done with his Tamil movie either. The movie may not take off until 2011. Dates clash and movies are delayed or postponed until the following year when dates are free all the time in Bollywood, etc. So hopefully the movie will get going at least by early or mid 2011. Hope it happens in the end.

      • as if on song here’s Abhishek in his latest interview to Jha talking precisely about the Pabhudeva film which by the description sounds great! Lots of stunts married to lots of masala! Abhishek’s off to the races with this sequence!

        “Am I really 34? I feel I’m 23; that was my age when I entered movies” – Abhishek

        By Subhash K. Jha, February 5, 2010 – 11:38 IST

        Abhishek Bachchan Abhishek who turns 34 on today doesn’t feel his age at all. “Am I really 34? I feel I’m 23. That’s the age that I came into movies. I feel the same anxiety and excitement facing the camera this birthday for Abhinay Deo’s film as I did for J.P Dutta saab on my 23rd birthday.”

        The year begins with the shooting of Abhinay Deo’s film and ends with Prabhu Deva’s film, a first for Abhishek since it would be his first full-fledged action flick.

        “I’ve done action films like Zameen, Dhoom and Run. But nothing like what Prabhu has planned for me,” says Abhishek excitedly. “Yeah it’s a wonderful year. And I better make sure I don’t let my family myself and my audience down.”

        This has got to be Abhishek Bachchan’s busiest year ever. He’s just wrapped up Mani Ratnam’s Raavan and is in the process of wrapping up Ashutosh Gowariker’s Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Se. He’s now shooting for Abhinay Deo’s film tentatively titled Crooked. Abhishek then jumps to Tarun Mansukhani’s Dostana 2, followed by films with Rohan Sippy’s, Abbas-Mustan, Anees Bazmee, Neeraj Pathak and Prabhu Deva…all to be released, shot or completed before the year is through.

        Phew! So has Abhishek turned into a certifiable workaholic? Even on his birthday on Friday Abhishek was shooting. And his birthday was brought in on the sets of Crooked. “What to do? If I can’t be with my immediately family for my birthday I can at least be with my extended family on the sets. I’m shooting round-the-clock. It’s not a time when I can afford to be lackadaisical. Not when I’ve done television for the first time and discovered a terrific connectivity with the audience. The response to my TV show ‘Bingo’ has been overwhelming”

        His television debut has boosted Abhishek’s confidence. “I want to dedicate my 34th year to consolidating my career as an actor and building my rapport with the audience. I know I’ve the most exciting range of directors and assignments this year.”

        The last year Abhishek had a thinner work-load. He was shooting Raavan through most of the year. “And for a Mani Ratnam film giving up the experience of doing a variety of other roles is definitely worth the while. 2010 is relatively crowded with no space. And I’m enjoying every bit of it,” says Abhishek emotionally.

        Today Abhishek feels he is more equipped to face the camera than before. I remember shooting with J.P. Saab for my debut Refugee when I was 23. I was so raw and inexperienced. Today I’m in a position to contribute actively to the process of making the films that I am in. And I do. If I am not comfortable enough with a director to participate in the process of creating a film I’m working in then I won’t work with him.”

        After doing a serious bone-cruncher with Salman Khan, Prabhu Deva is all set to direct Abhishek Bachchan in an out-and-out action film. The film will have the kind of stunts that Abhishek or for that matter any other Bollywood actor, has never done.

        The preparations are on. But Abhishek isn’t talking about them. “Every year I try to make sure I’m working on my birthday. I don’t know why. But to me shooting on my birthday is very comforting. Of course I love spending the day with my family. And as soon I pack up on Friday evening, I’m rushing home to be with my parents and wife. But it wouldn’t be a happy birthday for me if I’m not working. Every year since I started my career in 1998, I’ve made sure that I’m shooting. Only last year I missed shooting on my birthday because I was in New York promoting Delhi 6. I hope to continue working on all my birthdays.”

        • Interestingly Abhishek has masala action with Prabhudeva and Bachchan has a similar deal with Puri Jagannath..

        • given on the stress on stunts/action here I wonder if it really can be the Okkadu remake as was suggested in one of the stories. Because that film certainly doesn’t have that sort of volume when it comes to action. I guess Prabhudeva could update what does exist in the film. I am just rather curious as to whether this is an original script or if a remake (which is much more likely) as to what the source might be.

  13. Abhishek to spend 34th birthday at work

    New Delhi News.Net
    Thursday 4th February, 2010 (IANS)

    Heir to the first family of Bollywood, married to one of the most beautiful women in the world and with a kitty full of projects, actor Abhishek Bachchan has no complaints spending his 34th birthday Friday quietly shooting for his next film.

    ‘I’ll be shooting for my film ‘Crooked’ in Mumbai – something I do every year on my birthday,’ Abhishek told IANS here.

    Asked if wife Aishwarya Rai would be joining him on the sets, as she has famously done in the past, he said: ‘If she is free, she’ll come and join me. If not, I’ll meet her at night after I finish working.’

    The son of actors Jaya and Amitabh Bachchan, Abhishek also completes a decade in Bollywood this year. Dyslexic as a child, he left his studies mid-way at Boston University to pursue acting when his family was going through a tough time.

    In 2000, he made his big-screen debut with J.P. Dutta’s moderately successful ‘Refugee’ that tipped him as a dark horse in the industry.

    Success, however, shone on him only after four years with ‘Yuva’. He was critically acclaimed for his role in Mani Ratnam’s ‘Yuva’ and then he gave his first big hit ‘Dhoom’ in the same year.

    Junior B or Baby B, as he is fondly called, maintained the momentum next year with ‘Bunty Aur Babli’, ‘Sarkar’, ‘Dus’ and ‘Bluffmaster’.

    In 2006, he was not only voted the sexiest man in Asia but went leaps and bounds with ‘Dhoom 2′ followed by ‘Guru’ (2007) and ‘Dostana’ (2008) and his last outing ‘Paa’, with which he also turned producer.

    Abhishek has constantly been compared to his megastar father Amitabh Bachchan since day one.

    Asked if it ever bogged him down, he said: ‘I am being compared to the best. I have no complaints. If they (critics and audiences) are comparing me to the best that means somewhere they feel I am worthy of being in the same sentences. And I am happy about that.’

    The actor also debuted on the small screen this year with game show ‘National Bingo Night’ and he was here to promote it.

    Apart from ‘Crooked’ and the show, with future projects like ‘Raavan’, ‘Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey’ and a Hindi adaptation of ‘The Italian Job’ in hand, Abhishek believes in looking forward.

    ‘I don’t look back into the past. I look into the future. I am a positive person,’ he said.

  14. http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/entertainment/bollywood/news-interviews/Abhishek-Deepika-in-Ashutoshs-next/articleshow/5542457.cms

    “As for the casting, Ashutosh feels every film has its own destiny. “Hrithik Roshan was meant to do Swades. Shah Rukh Khan
    did it… and Swades is still one of the most-talked about films in SRK’s career. Abhishek and Deepika are best suited for this project. What more could I ask for? Ultimately things work out for the best.” “

  15. The film is now releasing Dec 3 according to this:

    http://www.bollywoodhungama.com/trade/releasedates/index_in.html

    Odd.. initially they’d been talking about Aug 15 as a possible date. That was the best one for this subject as well! The Dec date seems much more crowded. also Dum maro Dum was initially supposed to release by the end of the year. Most importantly I was expecting Abhishek to have 2-3 releases this year. Now it looks like just two (if this date holds). But there might be a bit of a cluster with Dum… eventually.

    • Incidentally if this holds the film will release 2-3 weeks after Guzaarish. Raavan is releasing 3-4 weeks after Kites. In between the latter two there’s Rajneeti. And if all release dates hold Ranbir’s Rockstar will release with Khelein..

  16. Sound judgment

    Ashutosh Gowariker travelled to the rural areas of West Bengal and Bangladesh to record an authentic score for Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey

    By Sonal Chawla
    Posted On Tuesday, May 11, 2010 at 03:14:00 AM

    Ashutosh Gowariker is keen on getting every nuance right for his period film Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey. After all, the devil is in the details. To get the authentic ambient sound for the film, he travelled to rural West Bengal and Bangladesh with his sound designer Stephen Gomes. They recorded the background score live, as it would’ve been hard to reproduce it in the studios.

    Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey is based on the book Do And Die by Manini Chatterjee which is based on the 1930s Chittagong Uprising. A source reveals, “As it’s a period film, Ashutosh is making sure that every bit of the film depicts that era. From the costumes to the sets, Ashutosh has delved into every minute detail.”

    Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey

    Not satisfied with the studio sound, Ashutosh figured that the only way to capture the essence of the music is travel to its source. The source continues, “While designing the background score and music, Ashutosh heard a lot of music of that time. He sat with the sound designer Stephen Gomes and tried to produce some music, but couldn’t achieve what he was looking for.”

    Where there’s pain, there’s gain. “Ashutosh is very happy with the final product. It gives the film a very authentic feel,” concludes the source.

    Producer Sunita Gowarikar says, “We are not making a sound film this time. Our entire soundtrack is going to be post-produced in the studio. For KHJJS, a story set in 1930, the detail becomes most important. Not only with regards to art, costumes, and photography but even with regards to sound. And more so we need to create the ambience of Bengal.

    So we decided to send Stephen Gomes, our sound designer to Kolkata and the neighbouring villages to get the original sounds of environment, birds, bells, temples, people speaking Bengali in the villages, in the fish market, baul (traditional) singers and many more. This will help Stephen build a fine tapestry of sounds making it that much credible for the period.”

  17. alex adams Says:

    “If I am not comfortable enough with a director to participate in the process of creating a film I’m working in then I won’t work with him.”
    At last–he means some sense among all the predictable pc stuff.
    Must add- good strategy–if u cannot beat them in quality, beat them in quantity-
    and i DONT mena this in an ironical sense.
    Glad, abhishek is working so hard-it cruchtime for him…
    however, inspite of what his impressive lineup, most of abhisheks future(from here) will depend upon raavan.
    Must say–khjjs—the title is cheesy and needs change asap.
    the look of the “poster” is equally cheesy.
    by the way— for all his honest attempts at “authenticity”, it is a fact proven by history that most bolllywood audience dont care about authenticity……

  18. I love the KHJJS poster! Raavan is an extremely important movie for Abhishek. However Abhishek’s line up of movies and his entire career as an actor does not hinge on merely one movie. That is a fact and is reality! Abhishek has enough of a good line up of movies that will garner him success and acclaim at the box office.

    • true but Raavan is really a lynchpin deal because of what Raavan has represented for Abhishek but also for what this means to his narrative. He cannot fail in a film that is the central argument for his narrative, at least not until he can find a Guru elsewhere.

  19. Amit kumar pandey Says:

    Dear all,
    just read it that the composer is sohail sen.

    http://movies.rediff.com/report/2010/may/19/first-look-deepika-in-khelein-hum-jee-jaan-sey.htm

  20. does anyone else also think dat deepika’s face is resembling d creatures from the movie avatar?!!

    • let’s say if she’s a Navi some of us would be willing to play Jake..

      Though I would never cross over into Gowariker’s world.. life would be slow..

  21. “”does anyone else also think dat deepika’s face is resembling d creatures from the movie avatar?!!””

    hell ya.. :)

    BTW the posters look interesting..

  22. ideaunique Says:

    my gut feeling for this…….a DUD on the lines of WIYR….:-(
    Flop for sure……ashu will have to go back to aamir only it seems or to hritik :-)

  23. chengez Says:

    it will be another Kranti….and a sure shot hit!

  24. sachita Says:

    Yeah, Ashu made lagaan, swades was atleast an honest film, JA was also well made but but he also made WYR!

    I wish Abhishek capitalizes on the line up he has and jumps on to a big league in terms of a star – like how Aamir khan has done.

  25. alex adams Says:

    “I wish Abhishek capitalizes on the line up he has and jumps on to a big league in terms of a star – like how Aamir khan has done.”
    i share your wish/intentions now ( and earlier)–however still feel there is a gulf between aamir and abhi/others in this sort of “game”.
    Having a success like 3I and then having the option of doing almost ANTHING next…however he chooses to take a break.
    Takes a lot of guts/ conviction/ restraint.
    Cannot see ANYONE (leave alone abhishek) having this.
    abhishek ALREADY is av good actor. but he needs MUCH better understanding of the film-making process and audience tastes/sentiments to think of coming near aamir…In other words, one needs to get down and dirt of gettng involved in some technical/unglamorous bits of movie-making.
    “Yeah, Ashu made lagaan, swades was atleast an honest film, JA was also well made but but he also made WYR!”IMO, WYR was NOT a bad film, esp in the context where houseful and MNIK (overseas) become hits…

  26. alex adams Says:

    frankly, DONT like deepika in the pic above. Also could NOT exactly place what she was doing prancing around in those shorts in the muti-heroine houseful.
    “Kiran Deohans (Aks) probably has something up his alley after a long time.”Loved kiran deohans work in aks and even in k3 g.
    In JA, the wonderfl rstraine duse of lighting to enhance the effect whilst maintaing the authenticity of that era(without electricity) was a class act..hope he does more work…
    there was criticism like—”The rumor mills insist that Ashutosh Gowariker’s historical is running behind schedule, with cinematographer Kiran Deohans taking a lot of time to light the sets. Resultantly, only two or three shots are being filmed in an entire day.”—but i feel his work and time taken DOES show in his work

  27. Munna:

    Colour me not

    Till now, Deepika Padukone has capitalised on her urban chic image. That works wonders when she plays progressive characters like that of a model-turned-actress in Om Shanti Om, a cab driver in Bachana Ae Haseeno, a heritage conservation architect in Love Aaj Kal and an architect in Karthik Calling Karthik. These are the films which have established Padukone as an actress in Bollywood.

    That was the story so far. In her next, Khelein Hum Jee Jan Se that is set in India before Independence, director Ashutosh Gowarikar is giving her an image makeover. Padukone will be seen in cotton saris, sporting two plaits and no make-up. Neeta Lulla, who has designed the costumes for the film, feels that the 24-year-old actress has the grace to pull that off with élan. “This is what the role demanded. Besides, Deepika doesn’t need make-up or urban clothes to look good,” says Lulla.

    Though some may consider it brave that she let go of her glamour in the film, Padukone is probably only one of the many other lead actresses who are willingly giving the greasepaint laden look a break. Aishwarya Rai-Bachchan will be seen sporting a loose kurta-churidar with her hair in disarray almost throughout her next film Raavan. Bipasha Basu, who has not yet endorsed the no-make-up look in a single film in her nine-year career, shed it for Lamhaa where she plays a Kashmiri Muslim girl. Sameera Reddy goes a step further. She dresses in combat outfit-like attire with unkempt long hair for her character as a Naxalite in Red Alert-The War Within.

  28. harshil patel Says:

    i have watched all the film of Ashutosh Gowariker and like much than other film as its special and different stories and screenplays and i will definitely going to watch KHJJS

  29. I liked the first still they released but this latest one is truly well done. I went and checked the cinematographer on this. It’s Kiran Deohans who was very promising in Aks but was then rewarded with K3G for his efforts. More recently he did JA which didn’t impress me at all barring shots here and there. But I was amazed to discover that this guy has apparently done QSQT. Wonder if IMDB is right on this? He’s supposedly done that film and then nothing till Aks. That can’t be right?! Getting back to the subject this new shot is really well done. One can of course see how all the characters have been ‘arranged’ in the frame but what I really like is the color of the walls.

  30. EK AUR PHLOP PHILM

  31. remember i was the one who said raavna will FLOP i m the one who says this will tank

    abhishek will bounce back with GAME and DMD these films are right at his alley

  32. Gowarikar is most comfortable doing period films. Though Swades did reflect the modern day India in a beautiful manner, he hasn’t had pleasant memories making modern-day films. Whats your Rashee, his washout, is a very good example. He needs to do something about it if he wants to maintain his credentials as a filmmaker, at least in the eyes of his audience.

    • that’s fair.. but he still needs to find the right pace as a film-maker. The only exception in this sense was Lagaan. Now perhaps KHJJS being essentially a thriller (at least as its being described) forces him to quicken things but it’s not just about ‘narrative’. It’s also about the directorial tools he brings to the table. A thriller has to be cut differently from Swades! Speaking for myself I don’t have a pace issue if I like the subject overall. So Swades wasn’t a problem. But he could have ‘presented’ Swades in much better fashion. It could have been a much more crisp work all round a la Lagaan. JA unfortunately indicated that Swades represented his ‘truth’ far more than Lagaan. KHJJS is not a film I am uninterested in by any means but I Gowariker wouldn’t be the first name to come to mind if the question is one of a thriller! But the larger question here is: why this subject? A period piece is rarely effective as cinema on its own. In other words it must have some connection with the present.

      as an aside this is a classic exhibit of why Abhishek annoys his base. He appears with Deepika and this would otherwise be a pair to excite a certain multiplex crowd except that it’s a period film about revolution and Deepika has her first ‘deglam’ role!

      • His movies have generally been good, atleast in tackling a subject but I think presentation leaves lot to be desired.

        ps: Actors are wearing very crisp attire for village setup.

      • Yes, I agree.

        What worked for Lagaan was not the period feel but how a fictional story was inserted into the periodic element so wonderfully. Many period films have failed to generate much interest in audience because funny as it may sound, people are just not bothered much about India’s history. No matter how well made Jodha Akbar or its sets and costumes or its cinematography were, a substantial amount of people found it boring and didn’r care for it. Why Lagaan was lapped up was because of its fictional story, which was certainly not a part of India’s history. Thank God Gowarikar had Aamir Khan backing his idea and giving it proper shape, otherwise who knows what might have happened to the film.

        Gowaikar’s success as a filmmaker is primarily because of Lagaan. I don’t believe many people who think Swades is a superior work. Because leaving aside even Swades, no film has been comparable to the masterwork, forget being better.

        • agreed all round.. and you raise an important point.. the period piece becomes particularly problematic in a culture where history is not valued very much by the dominant classes. And nor is there the Hollywood ‘solution’ of just using period elements as an excuse for CGI-heavy fantasies.

          • Yes. people’s tastes in films seem to have changed in many parts of India but period films have always been problematic. Give them a modern day independent cinema film like A wednesday or Aamir which though not commercial at all, will still find acceptance because of they being well made films. But not period cinema.

            Talking of the genre, have you seen Manmohan Desai’s Dharam-veer? They were showing it on Zee Cinema yesterday. Its supposed to be an Indian period film but the costumes resembled those of European Kings and Queens!

            I wonder how Manmohan Desai films found so much acceptance. He might have had a sixth sense

        • ideaunique Says:

          i thought JA was a good film and better than SWADES – also a BO hit

  33. http://www.flipkart.com/do-die-chittagong-uprising-1930-book-0140290672

    It seems to me that a 3 hr film might perhaps have suited this subject more. Because Surya Sen is not known at all outside Bengal. A longer film would have allowed a proper introduction but also there are some interesting events in his life prior to 1920. A brazen bank robbery for example. Similarly his relationships might have been developed more. In the second half the film could have been a pure thriller. But Gowariker has opted for those last 4 years and that too within a 2 hr film. Such compression will not be the easiest to handle with this subject. Ironically Gowariker is making a short film the one time that length would have served him well! Of course it’s a different matter that the audience might not have seen such a film. Even getting them in for a 2 hr work on this subject will be a challenge.

  34. alex adams Says:

    “Ironically Gowariker is making a short film the one time that length would have served him well! Of course it’s a different matter that the audience might not have seen such a film.”-AGREE there….esp the last sentence.
    Above all, the first look, title and vibe one is getting from these pics is uninspiring! From my previous experience with gowarikar, he has seldom disappointed and may not disappoint even with this one, on some level…
    However, due to the above reasons–look, vibe and title—this one looks like losing the opening battle—and given the current context, its v difficult to fight back after that poor opening–irrespective of what a film is like.
    Appreciate that bollywood is paying much more attention towards winning this openening battle–but more needs to be done.
    And the music of this film still appears a secret or is it the WYR guy…and wtf is with this 2 hour deal–what is gowarkikar trying to do here?

    • I read somewhere there isn’t much of a soundtrack here.. just some authentic folk music from Bengal.. do like the stills though..

  35. I like gowrikar’s movies. But still not feeling positive about this with high budget
    and also story may not be box office friendly.

    • don’t believe the stories on that budget.. it’s a very exaggerated number..

    • I read somewhere the budget was 30 cr. So unless it was sold for a high price then AG should be able to recover cost.

      It really depends on how well AG handles the story – fast paced and gripping or slow and dragging. Also I hope he got good performances from his cast.

  36. This is a sureshot flop.

  37. chengez Says:

    ATLEAST ABHI HAVE THE GUTS TO TRY DIFFERENT ROLES NOIT UNLIKE TOP SUPERSTARS WHO ARE AFRAID TO TRY SOMETHING LIKE THIS.

  38. dont know if it will be hit or flop..but have to say this..abhishek LOOKS SURYA SEN..may be coz he is half bengali..!! he is suiting this role to d tee!!

  39. the title seems very odd

    • Title has 80′s flavour. Remember “Jeete hain shaan se” , “Khatron Ke Khiladi” , “Khel Khel Mein”, “Katilon ka Katil” ?

    • I’ve always felt the title was the wrong one for multiplex audiences.. my recommendation would have been ‘Chittagong’.

      • ideaunique Says:

        that sounds better……however, seems that AG can’t do without length….if the film is not long, at-least let the title be ;-)

  40. This looks like a success.Akshay and Abhishek are the best actors in bollywod today.Akshay is ofcourse the best star actor.Hopefully they bring the much required revolution in bollywood.

  41. Amit kumar pandey Says:

    Dear all,

    Though i feel the title is very apt and from heart from patriots and like saying not to be afraid and not being tamed by death…. DO OR DIE..

    is it not!!

    What you guys think of my thinking?

    Amit

  42. alex adams Says:

    SRK didn’t do this for me in Swades
    I know that’s a film and performance you like but I found the movie interminable and SRK fine but uninteresting.—agree

    “Abhishek is subtle to the point of risking the image he sometimes gets tagged with of being “too laid back” (a persona he has wicked fun with at times)”–agree.
    the abhishek perfomrance in d6 is the epitome of passivity and lethergy, although it seems rom had a lot to do with designing it in a way that the “hero” is a passive witness.

    However, somehow didnt find WYR an “epic misdirection”—it was a different concept and had flaws but something i liked. plus the non-acotr harman who has never shown anything promising somehow fitted this role of wyr. also i think the box office rejection of the film had soemthing to do with the lead hero’s appeal –priyanka chopras excellent performance(s) went unnoticed…

  43. alex adams Says:

    “just some authentic folk music from Bengal..”seems gowarikar is determined NOT to bother the box-offcie with this one.
    although this “apparent lack of compromise” may mean a good product.
    Wonder what gowarikars actual motivations here–it does not seem to be “giving a hit”

  44. Abhishek, Deepika starrer restores ancient palace

    When the Indian government through its campaign is requesting people to respect the heritage of India and not damage historical monuments and buildings and places of national significance, After Hrs has learnt that the Abhishek Bachchan and Deepika Padukone starrer Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey has recently restored the Sawantwadi palace which dates back to the pre Shivaji era.

    The palace is being used as a British cantonment by Oscar-nominated film-maker Ashutosh Gowariker to shoot his period thriller based on the Chittagong Uprising that saw Indian freedom fighters launch an attack against the colonial British rule. The Sawantwadi palace still houses the Maharani and belongs to the royal family of Sawantwadi. Ashutosh spent around Rs50 lakh for renovation.

    Sunita Gowariker, Ashutosh’s wife who also runs the film-making company, reveals, “It is true that we have renovated the palace. When we went scouting for a location to shoot the movie which had to look like it was in the then Bengal, we zeroed in on Sawantwadi in Goa. The palace was beautiful and it was apt to be used as a British cantonment. However, lots of work needed to be done as the palace was in a dilapidated state. Grass had grown waist high and major renovation work was done.”

    Highly placed sources reveal that Abhishek and Deepika will promote the palace in their own way during the film’s promotions.

  45. Looks great!

  46. alex adams Says:

    Ditto kassam.
    the ONLY worthwhile pic associated with this film till now.
    Interestingly, abhishrek looks in his element in this pic and somehow looks like he is on “home turf”.
    by far, the best recent abhi pic …

  47. alex adams Says:

    this clean-shaven look suits him more than the stubble or so-called “metrosexual” look.
    somehow, did NOT mind his JBJ look though, which was panned quite a lot…same for bachchans JBJ look.

  48. To add to the chorus: Abhishek looks very good and more importantly, he looks the part as well. I’d definitely like to see more of Abhishek in his clean shaven avatar as well..

  49. Not able to see latest one … :( , Satyam please upload directly on your blog.

  50. cant view the latest pic??

  51. yep..now its there,thanks!

  52. ‘Chittagong was once an important part of India’

    Ashutosh Gowariker has made period films before, including the Oscar-nominated Lagaan and the Mughal extravaganza Jodhaa Akbar. But Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey (KHJJS) is his first historical, in the true sense of the word.

    This time he’s going strictly by Manini Chatterjee’s book, Do And Die — The Chittagong Uprising: 1930-34. The movie features Abhishek Bachchan as Surja Sen, Deepika Padukone as Kalpana Datta and Sikander Kher as Nirmal Sen.

    Gowariker has worked with ace actors such as Aamir Khan, Shah Rukh Khan and Hrithik Roshan, but maintains that Bachchan was his first and only choice for Surja Sen, popularly known as Masterda. Actress Asin was initially considered for Kalpana Datta’s role but in retrospect, the filmmaker believes that Padukone makes a convincing revolutionary.

    KheleinhumHe points out that the Chittagong uprising spearheaded by the trio was the biggest revolution in India against the British. “We have heard and read of it but few know exactly why it was triggered off and the people behind it. And curiosity has faded over the 63 years since Partition when Chittagong went to East Pakistan and later became a part of independent Bangladesh,” Gowariker rues. “Hopefully, after the film’s release, people will be more aware of this long-forgotten chapter in the history of India.”

    Interestingly, Gowariker went to Bangladesh for a recce of the location of the 1930 uprising. To his shock, nothing from the era has remained. “That’s why I opted for the village Sawantwadi on the Maharashtra-Goa border. It opens into the Arabian Sea like Chittagong does to the Bay of Bengal. The topography is similar, complete with flora and fauna,” he says. “Besides, it was easier to cart a crew of over 300 to Sawantwadi than it would have been to fly them to Chittagong.”

    Heritage structures restored
    ‘We redid the entire palace’
    Ashutosh Gowariker had several heritage structures restored so he could film there. “A considerable portion of the palace, where the King and Queen of Sawantwadi still live, was falling to ruins. We had it carefully reconstructed, and rebuilt the garden so the British cantonment could camp out there,” he says.

    No doubt there were delays due to bureaucratic red-tapism but the filmmaker says that extra time had been taken into account when planning the production and didn’t knock their schedule haywire. “My team got in touch with the officers at the Archaeological Survey of India and local authorities for the required permissions,” he says. “It took us about four to five months to restore the structures, including a few bungalows. We also worked on the coastal landscape, and made the jungles and hilly terrain more accessible for the film crew.”

  53. Abhishek looks very special here (apart from looking attractive and handsome). I think it’s his expression.
    He’s going to be good in this film, I feel it.
    I hope the name is changed to something profound.

  54. Apparently the trailer will be out Sep 24. So Gowariker is giving himself 2.5 months for the advertising. Just as well given how hard audiences try to avoid period films!

  55. Incidentally Abbas Tyrewala said on Twitter that he had offered JTYJN to Abhishek who rejected it and it then went to Imran eventually. Abhishek also confirmed this by saying it was on the sets of Sarkar that Tyrewala had met him. I’m quite amazed Tyrewala thought Abhishek was appropriate was this part!

    • sarvanash Says:

      I can’t picture abhishek in that movie. I’m not sure if he could pull off the college student role. But with some tweaks to the script, he could have pulled it off. I’m not really a big fan of that movie, but it would have given abhishek a hit, if the audience accepted him as a college student.

  56. Asim Sengupta Says:

    I think that Gowariker could have done with a better title. The title gives a deception of the real thing-the bitter Chittaong fightings. Very Few people in India actually know about Surya Sen and his daredevil followers. People might think that this is some fictional account and keep away from the halls……GOWARIKER WILL NEED SOME SPECIAL PROMOS TO BRING THE PUBLIC THO THEH CINEAMSA

  57. Paa greatest actor in B’wood: Abhi

    Sometime after the ‘Clock-hands joined palms in respectful greeting,’ as Salman Rushdie might have said, Abhishek Bachchan creates time for an exclusive interview. Yes, it is midnight.

    The Tall Small B has had a hectic evening till then but, after he sits on a straight-backed restaurant chair, he flashes that bright smile of his. Please ask, one can see the question in his eyes, the emphasis being on the word ‘please’. His wonderfully mild-mannered approach sets the tone for the interview.

    A fairly long journey in a fairly short time. So many films, some hits, others flops, but each of which has been a teacher in its own right. Where does Abhishek Bachchan see himself in terms of acting progression? Staring at the round table in front of him as he plays with his fingers, he says, “Acting is an unending road. “Refugee” was released 10 years ago. I would like to think that there has been a huge improvement since then. My knowledge of the craft has increased. You could say I have become more comfortable with my craft.”

    Abhishek has three films in the pipeline, among which are Abhinay Deo’s ” Game” and Rohan Sippy’s “Dum Maro Dum”. But the film that is making news is Ashutosh Gowariker’s “Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey”, a period drama, in which Abhishek plays the role of the Bengali revolutionary Surya Sen, or Masterda as he was popularly known. “You might like this very much,” he says with the hint of a mischievous smile that disappears almost before it appears, referring to this writer’s Bengali roots.

    For the historically inclined, Masterda, who was famous for his guerrilla warfare tactics, carried out a famous anti-British exercise known as the Chattagram Astraghar Luntthan (or, the Chittagong armoury raid). Such was the man’s charisma that his fame has leapt out of history books and found a place in Bengali folklore. How did he prepare for the character? He replies, “Since he died 80 years ago, one couldn’t have seen him. So one had to rely on what is documented.” He compliments his director immediately thereafter, “Ashutosh’s research is fantastic as usual.”

    “Dum Maro Dum” is a forthcoming Rohan Sippy film. Why do so many Bollywood films have titles from Hindi songs? He laughs heartily, “Come to think of it. Rohan’s first film was ” Kuch Naa Kaho”.” Pausing awhile, he adds, “But, jokes apart, the fact is that the title of the film suited the subject.”

    The son of a legend that he is, he must be learning something new everyday. ” Understandably,” he replies, “We stay in the same house. Mr Amitabh Bachchan is the greatest actor we have ever had. What amazes me is his thirst for learning even at this stage of his career. His dedication is a quality one learns so much from.”

    Poised at the threshold of an even better career, Abhishek Bachchan continues to retain his modesty, a quality that makes him really endearing. But then, we all know what makes him the way he is.

  58. To Cut a Long Story Short

    Director Ashutosh Gowariker has been asked to keep his forthcoming film, Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey, to two-and-a-half hours at max; its budget has also been pruned by 10 crore

    Vickey Lalwani

    Posted On Saturday, September 18, 2010 at 02:14:11 AM

    Ashutosh Gowariker’s forthcoming feature, Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey, has to be curtailed to a maximum length of 150 minutes (two-and-a-half hours) max, and its budget has been sized down to around 35 crore, a reduction of about 10 crore from its original sum.

    The director, while not entirely happy with this re-negotiation, is having to accept the new rules laid out to him by his producers, PVR. Says a source, “Ashutosh has been told by the producers of the film, PVR, that he cannot make Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey too long. In fact, PVR has asked him to keep it down to 150 minutes maximum.”

    A still from Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey

    However, another source says, “This a creative call. This is an understanding between PVR and Ashutosh.”

    The new arrangement is perhaps also a result of a shift in taste: today’s cine-going audiences have short attention spans. The producers might have felt that anything longer would cause audiences to stray.

    Ashutosh’s films have always been sweeping epics that extend beyond the average run-time of a Hindi film: Lagaan was 224 minutes; Swades was 210 minutes; Jodhaa Akbar was 213 minutes; What’s Your Raashee? was 211 minutes.

    The reduced timing of the film could also be a by-product of a reduced budget. When contacted, CEO of PVR, Kamal Gianchandani, did not deny the story. He simply said, “This is market speculation. I cannot comment anything more on this.”

    Ashutosh Gowariker chose not to reply to our calls and text messages. We also tried to contact his wife, Sunita Gowariker, who is actively involved in the making of all his films.

    She did not reply. And neither did the PR agency representing the film.

  59. Bollywood actors Abhishek Bachchan and Manoj Bajpai are playing the same character in two different films

    Chittagong will release in October, while Khelein Hum… is expected to hit screens in December.

    http://movies.ndtv.com/movie_story.aspx?section=Movies&Id=ENTEN20100153288&keyword=bollywood&subcatg=MOVIESINDIA&nid=52216

  60. It looks uninteresting even for one time watch unless it surprises. Two films of same subject in two months!!! Who will watch? Abhishek has to wait Dum Maro for getting hit. Disappointing…

  61. Gowariker interview:

  62. Ashutosh Gowariker & PVR will launch ‘K.H.J.J.S.’ standee on 1st Oct.
    By Taran Adarsh, September 24, 2010 – 12:49 IST

    The first look promo of Sanjay Leela Bhansali and UTV’s GUZAARISH has met with an overwhelming response. In fact, besides the discussion on CWG on Facebook and Twitter, the postponement of new releases and the lovely promo of GUZAARISH are being discussed animatedly. Now get ready for another keenly anticipated film’s first teaser standee and backlit: Ashutosh Gowariker and PVR’s KHELEIN HUM JEE JAAN SEY.

    Slated for a global release on 3rd December, the teaser standee and backlit of KHELEIN HUM JEE JAAN SEY will be launched on 1st October at cineplexes across the country. Meanwhile, Madhur Bhandarkar is also gearing up to launch the first look promo of DIL TO BACCHA HAI JI with GOLMAAL 3.

  63. Abhishek:

    “Just back from the GQ man of the year awards. Wonderful evening. Met 1 of my childhood favs John travolta. Very sweet and humble.”

  64. Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey standee

    http://twitpic.com/2t0akc

  65. first poster. Looks good

  66. Cool poster. Unusual one for Gowariker.

  67. good to see them coming up with a revamped poster.
    the title is a big dampened and has <40% mutiplex opening written on it—short film or serious film or whatever!
    if this film is to have any chance, changing the title should be done as a start. the way it is presented should have a curiosity/ novelty factor.
    also it should ideally should release after abhi shrek has had a better bo outing than raavan.
    otherwise, looks like a non-starter (although ti will be a good film courtesy gowarkiar)

    • It’s not a revamped posted but the first one.. the earlier one you saw was just a publicity thing they did when they launched the film.

      On Raavan I guess I’m with this crowd (!):

      Raavan And Ravanan To Be Screened At Various Film Festivals
      Posted by Faridoon Shahryar at 11:36 PM

      Mani Ratnam’s Raavan & Raavanan a big hit in film festivals & has invitation from 9 festivals for screening

      Mani Ratnam has just returned from Venice after receiving the “jaeger-le coultre – glory to the filmmaker award” where his Raavan & Raavanan won him much appreciation and a standing ovation from the 600 strong special delegates audience. He is also the sole Indian to ever be awarded this prestigious award.

      But looking at the impressive lineup of invites from international and prestigious festivakls for the films its clear that Raavan and Raavanan is a critical hit worldwide.

      After Venice is the PUSAN International Film Festival in South Korea (Oct 7th to 15th 2010) where both the films will be screened.

      The others festivals where the Mani Ratnam film in both or either version will be showcased are the following :

      SITGES Film Festival, Spain (Oct 7th to 17th 2010) – Spanish Premier – Raavan (Hindi)

      Mostra De Valencia, Spain (Oct 15th to 23rd 2010) – Action Section (Competition Section) – Raavan (Hindi)

      MONTREAL-INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL OF NEW CINEMA, Canada (Oct 13th to 24th 2010) – Canadian Premier – Raavanan (Tamil)

      Tokyo International Film Festival, Japan (Oct 23rd to 31st 2010) – Winds of Asia-Middle East Section – Raavan (Hindi)

      Mahindra Indo-American Arts Council Film Festiva, New York (Nov 12th 2010) – New York Premier – Raavanan (Tamil)

      Asia Pacific Screen Awards, Australia (Dec 2nd 2010) – Competition Section – Raavan (Hindi)

      International Film Festival, Goa – Indian Panaroma Section – Raavanan (Tamil)

      http://faridoonshahryar.blogspot.com/2010/09/raavan-and-ravanan-to-be-screened-at.html

  68. Really looking forward to,KHJJS. It’s surely going to be a good movie, especially since it’s from Gowatrikar. But it’s not looking good for Abhishek box-office wise. It’s releasing with ‘No Problem’ and I do expect the latter to have a better initial. Bajpai’s Chitragong, with the same theme, is also releasing earlier so part of the audience will perhaps find the theme repetitive.

    Am expecting a good movie, but I am not expecting it to click at the box-office. It’s really not looking good for Abhishek. He has a lot to prove in terms of his box-office draw. He definitely needs the Abbas-Mustan and Anees Bazmee movies to deliver a good hit. Don’t think Dum Maro Dum will be a big grosser. It’s going to be a good movie but dark thrillers usually don’t turn out to be big grossers.

    If Abhi is looking for something big at the box office, then it’s probably Italian Job, Bazmee’s flick and Dostana 2 that will save the day for him. I hope these movies materialise in the 1st place or else he isn’t going to survive for long in the industry.

    His biggest grosser is at around 45cr net and even the likes of Ranbir, Imran and Shahid have surpassed that. Dabang has already grossed 3 times that amount. Abhi has a lot to prove box-office wise. And I do believe that Raavan has harmed his career to quite some extent. I really want him to succeed, but I have to admit that he has disappointed big time post Guru.

  69. Clooney and Bachchans ‘plan holiday’
    Thursday, October 7 2010, 6:14am EDT
    By Anna Krahn, Bollywood Reporter

    George Clooney has invited Abhishek and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan to join him and his girlfriend at their lake house in Italy.

    After spending time partying with the pair in Milan at the GQ Man of the Year Awards, Clooney was said to be so impressed that he asked them to spend a long weekend in Italy with him when their schedules clear.

    A friend of the actor told the Times of India: “George has enormous respect for India and Indians and he was highly pleased to meet Abhi-Ash. He asked them about India – its culture as well as the movie industry.”

    It is rumored that Clooney could be discussing a Bollywood project with the Indian superstar couple as he previously expressed an interest in becoming involved in the industry.

    He once said: “There is a small market [for it] in the States as of now, but it will be fun if it catches on because it is such a positive way of looking at filmmaking and I really love that. I truly think it’s fun.”

  70. The theatrical trailer will apparently be out Oct 12.

  71. ya don’t think it lets you in unless you complete some annoying first level game.
    They’ll probably open it up later.

    • nope i guess one has to register.. and then they update u when it gets loaded.. and then u enter.. this a teaser website imo

  72. alex adams Says:

    “Clooney and Bachchans ‘plan holiday’”
    Hope they are not planning a remake of ” the indecent proposal”!
    if KHJJS succeeds at the box-office, I will be very very (pleasantly) surprised.
    having said that, will be a good film nonetheless

  73. satyam check out new images and poster from the movie, looks good

    • thanks Shakti.. updated the post..

      so far I have liked the stills more than the trailer.. the central poster is fantastic in my view (in all its variations) though it does suggest a lot more dynamism than I think Gowariker is capable of.

  74. sarvanash Says:

    those 11 guys lined at the bottom of the poster, remind me of a similar shot from lagaan posters.

      • Abhishek is looking good, but still have a feeling may not work at BO.

        • The problem with this film will be the initial more than anything else. I have the sense it won’t be rejected like D6 or Raavan. It’s not that sort of radical deal one way or the other. But getting people excited about this in the first place will be hard! And if you don’t get a decent or better initial you’ve more or less lost the battle with this kind of subject. Gowariker frankly has showed a certain lack of control in every film save Lagaan. JA might have been the worst offender as it moved episodically from one thing to another but it had the lead pair there most of the time and the whole love story bit as well to keep things moving along. A patriotic subject doesn’t allow that sort of freedom, especially if it sticks closely to the book. Of course a film with a hero dying in the end also raises the stakes for multiplex audiences! Gowariker’s best bet chance here is if he has enough of a love story here, in general enough of a ‘relationship’ movie (including among the men) and then just enough of thriller to keep things interesting. It’s quite clear that the film is probably just shy of 3 hrs. So Gowariker has the time to really put in everything as long as he can control his material. All of these are big ifs. But it would be quite amusing if this film did what Mehra and Rathnam couldn’t!

          • This film I have no hopes for box office wise which is probably a good thing cos I was expecting something from Raavan and Delhi 6!

          • I’ve liked all Ashu’s films except the last one WYR. I hope he doesn’t disappoint here either. They have to change the promotion strategies, just showing sincere faces doesn’t help.

        • the posters at any rate have a kick that the trailer didn’t.

  75. Incidentally I think the period looks suits Deepika..

  76. Abhishek set dress code for media!

    Tables have turned! Abhishek Bachchan has now dictated a dress code and a code of conduct to go with the dress for the media!

    The Bachchans have always had a love/hate relationship with the media. After the media was not allowed to cover the Abhi Ash wedding, the bitterness widened. Ignoring the fear of being blacklisted by the Bachchans, a daily even reported the cause of Ash’s delayed pregnancy.

    The media too has been unkind to Ash ever since she started appearing at Cannes. Not a single year goes without fashion critics, celebs and designers trashing the former beauty queen for her lack of fashion sense, in spite of the actress looking stunning consistently.

    The media is not fond of Jaya Bachchan either. Abhishek however has had an easy going with the media, barring very few unpleasant incidents

    The actor now wants to seal his friendship with the media as for the music launch of his forthcoming film ‘Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey’ directed by Ashutosh Gowariker, the actor has set a dress code for the media, thus making them an integral part of his film.

    Innovative music and trailer launches have happened in Bollywood before with Ash and Hrithik even singing live to promote the music of their film Guzaarish recently!

    Abhishek Bachchan however has taken promotion to an altogether new level. He has set a dress code for himself, his cast and the media for the music launch of Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey which is scheduled for Wednesday evening in Mumbai. The film will release on 3rd December this year.

    Our source close to the film revealed, “Abhishek, Deepika and the entire cast of KHJJS will be seen in white on Wednesday evening. The dress code for the event is white and red as those are revolutionary colours and go with the theme of the film which is about the Chittagong uprising. Both Abhishek and Deepika will be seen in traditional Indian attire and the media too has been requested to come in either white or red. Apparently even the food at the event will be Bengali as the film is set in Chittagong, Bengal.”

    It feels good to see media getting dress advice for a change from a celeb! Seems like Abhishek is all set to paint the whole town red, rather red and white… that too Jee Jaan Se. After the debacle of Raavan, this certainly seems the right thing to do Abhi.

    • >white and red as those are revolutionary colours and go with the theme of the film which is about the Chittagong uprising.

      Aren’t those the ‘bengali’ sari colours..white sari with a red border?

  77. abhishekr Says:

    I don’t know where to post it but as a big cricket fan and to an extent i must confess i enjoy some of these exercises i was hoping for an commentary on cricinfo-wisden year long exercise for choosing a cricket all time 11 by some of cricket loving(and certainly much more knowledgable than me ) members such as satyam,Q,saket,GF,Jay etc but i didn’t find one.I would have loved to see all of you commenting and quibling on the choices thence.
    PS:Q bhai,aap bahut zyaada busy ho kyaa maine aapko 2 hafte pehle 1 mail daaga thaa,aap reply nahi kiye. Aur maine aapke liye aur rohit bhai ke liye Aakhri decision pirated cd pe bhaga bhaga ke dekhi,bas ye shiqwa raha ke credit mein aapka naam poore short form mein aaya,rohit bhai to poore the, karn aur btra ke saath

  78. Abhishek’s expressions are good here.
    I think even if the film doesn’t do well, it’s going to be a well made film and Abhishek’s acting will be remarkable (its my feeling).

  79. “This film I have no hopes for box office wise which is probably a good thing cos I was expecting something from Raavan and Delhi 6!”

    Ha! But Jay this also translates into a poor initial! Which is the point I was making!

    • I see a poor initial here. Period films hardly find it easy at the best of times and this one although the stills are nice won’t have the blockbusterish feel a Jodha Akbar can bring through lavish battle scenes with a thousand people killing each other, set pieces with epic feel and grandeurness. In a nutshell it does not have the feel of a “big” budget type of film which usually arrives with huge promotion and publicity.

  80. from the music launch:


  81. Bachchans Promote Jee Jaan Sey

    October 27, 2010

    http://www.tubaah.com/details.php?video_id=172208

    • Bachchan talks about it in today’s post.

      • Bachchan is quite candid andsays all thru the making of the film and he told it to Ashu, he felt there wasnt much hope for this film! Tho after yesterday’s function, he feels differently.

        Agree, it would have to be a miracle or an extremely good film for this to be commercially viable. Nothing we hvae seen so far
        makes either scenario likely. It might be a good film but I o not see great commercial potential.

    • sarvanash Says:

      Is there a reason why the whole family was there? I think this is one of the reasons why some people incorrectly believe that abhishekh isn’t getting these movies on his own merits. Also it could bother some co-stars when the whole family shows up on stage and they’re sidelined. In the audience it’s ok, but don’t need to go up on stage. Ashutosh could have asked bachchan to do this, but they should be careful to not make this a regular thing.

      • In South, for all music functions they invite major stars who attended to the stage. Aishwarya worked with him in JA, Jaya was the actress.
        That depedes on the director.
        Casting to this movie doesn’t need any merits. I don’t think any top actor risks in accepting this project.

    • masterpraz Says:

      Whatever the BO outcome, this looks like another solid acting piece from Abhishek after RAAVAN and D6!

      BTW Satyam, how’s WAG THE DOG? Been a LONG time since I saw it….

      Also saw CROOK and KNOCK OUT, reviews up

      RAKTA CHARITRA TONIGHT !!!!!!

  82. masterpraz Says:

    BTW Guys…Yakuza (Bollybusiness) is in Sydney and I’ll be meeting up with him at some stage over the next few weeks.

    • mksrooney Says:

      great.. so him australia.. and give him my regards.. as i knw u would show the good old aussie aussie aussie ;-)

  83. Sikander Kher is looking good in all the stills i have seen, he should really do more films

  84. I continue to be impressed by the stills on this.. I think these are Gowariker’s best since Lagaan (and in those days they didn’t have too many from the film). And again the gap between these images and the trailer strikes me more and more. And the reason is a simple one — Gowariker isn’t a very cutting edge filmmaker overall in terms of the edits and transitions and so forth. He’s fairly straightforward in this regard. So you have elements like set design and even occasionally interesting shots that come through very well in stills but are often lost in the overall film. Unlike say a Mehra who is consistently interesting ‘within’ the film. Having said that the trailer could still have been cut better to better highlight some of these stronger stills. Also (and to pick up on GF’s earlier point) these stills suggest more of a world than the trailer itself. In a related way the color choices are also better represented in these images.

    Don’t mean to be too hard on Gowariker. He’s obviously a very sincere filmmaker who has some real concerns that he brings forward without worrying too much about the commercial viability of the project and this is something one wishes other filmmakers could learn from. At the same time for a filmmaker this ambitious (in so many ways) it is odd to find, at least in contemporary times, a lack of visual elan (for want of a better word). Again JA is the best example where you had a few interesting shots but overall it was very standard fare that the set design at times masked. Kiran Deohans is the cinematographer here and he’s not done too many films but he worked on Aks which was great on all these fronts. Which shows ultimately that contrary to the perception people sometimes have the DP isn’t the director! There still needs to be ‘vision’ involved. Sometimes directors will ask a very important cinematographer to just ‘repeat’ their past work and the later film will seem almost as impressive but this is an illusion. You really need a director to set the tone. But with all this said Gowariker could probably benefit with some cutting edge technicians and so forth all round. perhaps I am wrong. Perhaps he has them and this is just how he wants the film to look.

    Incidentally it’s not that I want a ‘precious’-looking period piece like Parineeta or a fantasy-land representation a la Bhansali, just the sense that people have not just dressed up in period costumes but might otherwise be shooting down the road! Detail is very important in period settings even if sparseness is privileged as Gowariker certainly seems to. I would even go so far as to say that sometimes such a world should be ‘fabricated’ if being true to the actual place and time doesn’t quite evoke that sense of world on its own. In other words it might be that Gowariker is being very authentic but then he needs to be less so! And again detail is important. As GF said earlier the world at least as represented in the trailer doesn’t seem ‘lived in’. All of this isn’t about the box office. These elements of course won’t hamper the film in this sense if the audience likes everything else. Mine is just a different sort of critique. For a director as interested in ‘period’ as Gowariker it’s just strange to see him appear functional at so many levels. Again hope the film proves me wrong, it would be a pleasant surprise.

    • Satyam: could you elaborate a bit on the distinction between Bhansali’s “fantasy land” and the need for fabrication? What I’m trying to get at (despite the fact that the airless ambience of Bhansali’s films is simultaneously attractive and repellent) is the extent to which one can have the “fabricated” without retreating into the “fantasy land.” [Aside: I will say that if one MUST err on one side or the other, Bhansali's fantasies at their best -- say Saawariya's visuals -- are a better way to err than the stageyness that is trying to pass as naturalism that we often get with Gowariker]…

      • That comment wasn’t necessarily a criticism of Bhansali’s instincts. I quite liked Saawariya in the theater on those grounds even if it was otherwise a rather boring film. The problem with Bhansali is that he goes down this route irrespective of his subject but also beyond this his visuals suck the oxygen out of his stories in many ways and this should never happen.

        But if you’re doing period in any kind of naturalistic sense you should make sure that it of course looks authentic but also creates the sense of a different ‘time’. It might well be that if you set a film in a village in Madhya Pradesh in say 1900 you might discover that not very much has changed in that village in a 100 years. Therefore when you try to evoke period you are more or less representing the present. So you are being authentic but this impulse in these circumstances is an unhelpful one. Because it will never give the viewer that sense of time and distance. In such situations one should perhaps find a different village where there has been enough change or where a world of a 100 years ago would provide a greater sense of ‘period’ by way of detailing and so on. Or else one should simply introduce those period elements oneself, consonant with certain villages or towns in British times but not necessarily this village at this time. Perhaps one introduces period elements of the 1850s when the setting is actually the 1930s, perhaps one puts in physical features etc that belong to the 1930s but belong to UP as opposed to Bengal. It’s a bit of a balancing act as you want just enough for the illusion to succeed without really making it completely inauthentic. But it can be done and I think the ‘world’ so create would service the story and the overall ‘message’ of the film far more than fidelity to the actual place and setting.

        In this regard check out the recent Agora which is set in the 4th century (AD) in Alexandria and clearly they’ve taken pains to make it very accurate in these respects (of course with Alexandria you don’t really have some of these issues I’ve been referring to, you don’t have to go elsewhere!) but you could change the centuries and it wouldn’t matter very much to the story (here it deals with Hypatia). Because all that has to be conveyed to the audience is the sense of an ancient Hellenic city. One could do 5th century (BC) Athens in very similar fashion and only change a little bit. Now it’s a different matter that I what was problematic for me in Agora was some of the CGI but this is an old refrain of mine. I have never found CGI in period settings as effective as those grand old Cinecitta sets or whatever. Something about CGI in this sense always seems a bit unreal and plastic even when you can’t quite place your finger on it. I think in an odd sense the CGI makes things a bit more two dimensional. But this is again a different critique. If Agora had been done the old fashioned (and more expensive) way its world I believe would have worked even better. Even as it stands however it makes my overall point.

        • On the CGI vs. Cinecitta point, one only has to compare Gladiator (a lot of CGI) with HBO’s Rome series (all Cinecitta) — the presence and impact of the latter is beyond the former. The DVD set in fact has some special features on how the sets were made etc., and they tie in to the point you were making: i.e. for the sets of the Roman Subura, the filmmakers studied certain streets in Mexico City and Calcutta, because they felt that the crowded alleys of that part of ancient Rome were never done justice to in the Hollywood films, that in general the city seemed a hell of a lot cleaner and sparser than we know it was, etc. So there is one example of using something completely INauthentic at one level — contemporary Mexico City and Calcutta — to create a more palusible reality for the viewer…

          The other extreme is AMC’s Mad Men, which has fetishized its period to such an extent that not a speck is permitted to be seen if it can’t be documented as having been in existence on the precise day the episode is set in. The producer apologized for one lapse where (I believe) a cigarette packet style was shown that hadn’t come out until a year after the time of the episode.

          That both of these examples (impressive in their own way) are from TV suggests the extent to which contemporary Hollywood uses CGI and SFX as a substitute for the imagination. Of course, TV series have time on their side, and can allow the impact of detail to accumulate over months and years. Be that as it may, this discussion underscores why for several years now I have found the (best) worlds of american TV more compelling than those of Hollywood (on average)…

  85. “on that note check out this piece on the Wire, a series I have regrettably yet to see (though this is from the guy who’s never seen a single episode of the Sopranos!):”

    I won’t blame you on the Sopranos but missing The Wire is criminal…

    • pleasantly surprised by the soundtrack. It is Rahman-soaked for sure (and one can really point out moments in every song.. it might be that this was Gowariker’s brief to Sen) but it is possibly the best soundtrack that could have been done for this subject by any contemporary composer barring Rahman himself (Shantanu Moitra could arguably have created this kind of sound though he is less Rahman-esque for sure). I think the orchestral arrangements perhaps elevate even the less interesting tracks. It was an inspired idea to include bits of the background score as well because some of these are the best elements of the album even if one is startled too hear refrains sounding suspiciously out of Leone’s Westerns! Not a very commercial soundtrack which is unsurprising but I believe it works. This is just a first hearing and I haven’t heard it completely but it is definitely something I want to revisit. It is no discredit to Sohail Sen to suggest that Rahman ought to have done this. But Sen might just have persuaded me that he was the next best bet for this sort of thing. The Vande Mataram in Hindi works well incidentally. If I do have one criticism it’s that a couple of the numbers needed to be more kinetic than they are. Overall I am certainly pleased with the music. I certainly see it working well with the film.

      • LOL satyam if u want kinetic energy ask kahyap to direct abhi in this one ;-).. gowariker can be blamed for anything.. but never kinetic energy!!

        (only yeh tara, azeem o sham, have been a kinetic, andthat also rahman works, otherwise all his songs are slow)

        (this guy made wyr, without a single fast track, yup there was one, but ashu being director one can only wish he went to a disco once in a while ;-) )

  86. Javed Akhtar translates Vande mataram for Khelein Hum…

    Veteran lyricist Javed Akhtar has translated the national song Vande mataram from Sanskrit to Hindi for director Ashutosh Gowariker’s forthcoming period film Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey.

    “I think if you are inspired, if you have that high energy created by the original text then it becomes easier for a writer to do something,” the 65-year-old told IANS when asked how easy or difficult was the whole process.

    “So I won’t say it was difficult although I was obviously and terribly over-awed by the responsibility. But somehow it happened very quickly and to the satisfaction of the music director (Sohail Sen) and the director,” he added.

    Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey, slated to hit the screens Dec 3, stars Abhishek Bachchan and Deepika Padukone in lead roles. Set in Chittagong in pre-independent India, the true life story revolves around a series of attacks executed April 18, 1930 and their aftermath.

    Khelein Hum Jee Jaan SeThe music of the film was launched on Wednesday and apart from the male lead, other B-town celebs like Jaya Bachchan, Aishwarya Rai, Anupam Kher and Kirron Kher were there.

    The story develops in a part of Bengal, so what all did Akhtar have to keep in mind while penning the lyrics?

    “When you take the background of a film, which is in a way alien to Hindi and Urdu – you have to still write the songs in Hindi or Urdu only, but it should somehow put the impression that perhaps this song has come from that language or that state or that era.”

    “There are many words which cannot be used and there are many words that will help you create that literary illusion. In this film, the characters are Bengali, if I use chaste Urdu with them, that will sound false. So it should sound as if it has just been translated from Bengali. That effect should come in the album and that’s what we have taken care of,” he said.

    He has penned lyrics for many films, but says despite so many years of experience even he gets stuck sometimes.

    “In most of the films, more often than not, you are writing songs for the same kind of situations and to be different every time is a challenge.

    “Someone has defined an expert saying that an expert is a person who knows about less and less. This is how we film people are, we tend to know more about less and less. To create variety, to keep your diction fresh, to get something new, new words, new metaphors, is challenging and the first thought that comes to you is generally cliched, you have to reject that and then move further,” he added.

    This is not for the first time that Akhtar has collaborated with Gowarikar – he worked with him in Lagaan, Swades, What’s Your Rashee? and Jodhaa Akbar.

  87. There is definitely a Lagaan-like group dynamic at play in this film and Gowariker can get something going if he has anything of that older film human interest elements in this sense.

    • always have a problem with these Bollywoodhungama stills though, they always look ‘bleached out’ when they reproduce them!

    • masterpraz Says:

      Yeah if he can recreate the same group dynamics/team-play as LAGAAN this one might be a slow-burner. I still don’t see a huge opening here but I see room for positive WOM and longitudinal hit over-time. It definetly looks like a very “real” and grounded film….

      Nonetheless, looks more interesting than anything else coming up from the current crop of films..

      ALLAH KE BANDHAY, RAKTA CHARITRA 2, TEES MAAR KHAN are my 3 other most awaited…

      Must say it’s been a heartening year, and one where Indian cinema (even though in part) has started an odd cross-over of Masala/Southern cinema as well.

      Whether it’s Rathnams RAAVAN with the dual film and Vikram, DABANNG, and now RAKTA CHARITRA (not to forget Prabhu Devaa with his Akki/Abhi actioners), Poori Jagganth making his hindi debut with Big B and granted there will be a number of South remakes by Akki and Sallu…things should get even more interesting.

      • masterpraz Says:

        Not to forget OUATIM in the mix..

      • forget huge opening, even a good one is not guaranteed at the moment!

        • masterpraz Says:

          True, I think Abhishek really has to wait for HANGOVER Remake, DUM MAARO DUM and Italian Job remake for the “big one”!

        • I am feeling for Abhishek, people will wait to watch this movie in DVD however good it is. The youngsters in this film are not like RDB, may not appeal to current generation. It doesn’t look grand scale or it has romance like JA.

          I’ve read his next movie Game is set to release same day as Dhobhi ghat.

  88. This is a fair soundtrack. Title track’s my favorite. The instrumental pieces are fine and as a whole this has shades of the “cathartic” and the vocals are especially well chosen. Has a terrific rooted quality, nothing in the instrumentation feels unnatural but simultaneously there are surprises here in the sense of this almost being a throwback album in some ways.

    These are the kind of musical choices you’d expect Rahman to make for sure, but also others like Ilayaraja and a few Malayali composers I can think of. My one quibble might be that there is a lot of “lulling” going on, (never a good thing with a Gowariker film especially!) some complacency in making this “comfort food” in the vein of someone like Moitra for example. But there’s a likable classical (in the film soundtrack genre) quality in this work. Don’t think it’s something I’ll go back to very often but I’m certain it will work nicely in the film.

    Gowariker is the wildcard in all this…

  89. @Satyam Thanks for the KHJJS updates . Thanks a lot.
    Best Regards

  90. Khelein… took inspiration from Bengali music

    Sohail Sen, who has composed music for Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey (KHJJS), says he referred to various genres of Bengali music for the soundtrack of the period film by Ashutosh Gowariker.

    “A lot of people asked me whether or not I was inspired by Rabindra Sangeet for this film? Rabindra Sangeet is compositions of Rabindranath Tagore and in Bengal there are many other genres too. So you can’t select one genre and Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Semake songs on that. I took the basic vibes from every genre and then started composing,” Sohail told IANS.

    Based on Manini Chatterjee’s book Do and Die: The Chittagong Uprising 1930-34, Gowariker’s period film is a true story of the revolution of 1930 against the British that happened in Chittagong, then a district of undivided Bengal. Abhishek Bachchan is playing freedom fighter Surya Sen in it and Deepika Padukone the role of Kalpana Dutt.

    The composer said that selecting the instruments was very important to get the feel of that era.

    “You have to keep in mind the sounds because it is a 1930 film. It was important to see what instruments were mainly used that time in Bengal to lend the right feel to the film. To compile those instruments and design sounds keeping that in mind was an interesting experience.”

    Sen worked with Gowariker in What’s Your Rashee. Which film was more challenging?

    “In What’s Your Rashee I was supposed to churn out contemporary music, but here It was a different experience. However, you can’t decide what is difficult or what is not. It is always difficult to compose. It mainly depends on your approach to your work,” he said.

    He composed music on the sets in Goa.

    “The shooting was happening in a small town in Goa. I went there and stayed with them for a month and a half. In the morning, I used to go to the sets and interact with all the actors, then I used to come back to the hotel and create tunes.

    “That was a nice experience because I got a chance to see the locations, the cast and crew. I used to take all those vibes and compose the tracks. After pack up Ashutosh sir used to come and we used to select tunes,” said Sen.

    The film has 12 tracks across various genres. Sen, however, got stuck while composing Sapne salone.

    “I did face certain problems while composing Sapne salone, which is a romantic number in the film between Abhishek and Deepika’s characters. The age difference between Kalpana (Deepika) and Surjya (Abhishek) is quite a bit; so you have to keep a maturity level in the song and at the same time you have to keep a little mischief too. So while composing the song, I did face a little bit of problem,” he said.

  91. DIRECTOR ASHUTOSH GOWARIKER AND WRITER MANINI CHATTERJEE REWIND FOR KHELEIN HUM JEE JAAN SEY

    http://www.telegraphindia.com/1101102/jsp/entertainment/story_13127736.jsp

  92. new promo looking good.

  93. Moving on from Guzaarish to khjjs.

    http://twitter.com/khjjs

    Cast and crew screening tonight! Whole team will the film together! The revolution is about to begin…

  94. Utkal Mohanty Says:

    The film is beginning to look interesting now. I like the look, the framing. I like the narrative approach, a bit similar to Lagaan, yes, focusing on the group dynamics. Yes, I will check it out in a theater.

    • Just added another image. I too have liked many of the stills.. I think the framing and the art design has come through better on the stills than in the trailers.

      • Buzz is nott there, they have to intensify the promotions.

        • LOL, I’ve said this forever both on Bachchan’s blog and more importantly on Abhishek’s twitter! The film is made, however good or bad it is, it’s done. One would think that the Guzaarish result would at least be a sobering lesson! Do think this film could be quite stable but the problem here unlike D6 and Raavan is just getting that basic initial. If you start off very low you need sensational WOM to make up for it.

        • by the way the same media/trade and online portals that treated AR ‘s an and Guzaarish with such kid gloves will be interesting to see on KHJJS!

          • No trial in our Theatres for khjjs. Dhobi Ghat is showing three tiems and another Anil kapoor comedy twice.

            Even Abhishek fan club tweets are not as active as HR/ Aishwarya. someone has to spread it.

            Did you see Fariidoon’s interview? They didn’t even replied properly what is there for contemporary youth.

  95. Now, a comic book on Chittagong Uprising
    Hindustan Times
    Mumbai, November 24, 2010

    Amar Chitra Katha has tied up with Ashutosh Gowariker’s Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey, toplining Abhishek Bachchan and Deepika Padukone, to launch the second Amar Chitra Katha title, Surjya Sen And The Chittagong Uprising.

    The comic book publishers have collaborated
    with the producers to bring out paperbacks to educate the younger generation about the 1930-uprising in a more entertaining way.

    The story is about the unsung hero of India’s freedom movement, Surjya Sen. The book will be out next month. The comic book is based on Arijit Dutta Chowdhary’s meticulously researched illustrations to bring to life the turbulent revolutionaries of British-ruled Bengal in the 1930s. The script has been researched and written by Shalini Srinivasan.

  96. I wish this weren’t releasing the same day as Rakht Charitra. Don’t know if either film will sustain here past the first week (of course KHJJS has a better shot) and I’d like to see both!

  97. i must say my interest in khjjs is continually growing. i’m loving all the stills. cinematography looks top-notch!

  98. i have been in a bash-abhishrek mood ever since raavan. and this continued with khjjs still etc/
    .
    must say that v recently (this week) the promos have suddenyl looking promising. I have noticed a certain “earnestness of hinger” in abhishreks eyes in this one.
    mabe the law of averages might help abhi this time. i dont knwo what the costs ae for this one, but if they are kept low, this film may just have a chance—did not expect to feel like this few weeks ago.
    hope it peaks at the time it matters for this team….

  99. typo—
    meant “earnestness and hunger” in abhishreks eyes.
    usually the ever-so-gullib;e public surprisingly does notice this “look”.
    Not sure about this particular film, but if abhi continues with this hunger, he cannot be far away from a trueblue suxess

  100. Taran adarsh on twitter:

    Abhishek starrer Game shifted from 21 Jan to 18 March. Hrithik-Farhan-Abhay starrer Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara confirmed for 27 May.

    • yes…

      think they’re already preparing for the box office ‘issue’ though!

      Odd things happen a lot in the movie business and it would certainly be remarkable if Gowariker succeeded where Mehra and recently Rathnam couldn’t.

      • This is one of his responses from the interview. Pretty honest and affecting…

        “The biggest problem is that you don’t feel; you become numb! If you are hit by a tonne of bricks, you are going to be numb. That is the worst thing for an actor because his job is about feeling. You lose all confidence. I am saying this openly because I don’t see the point in hiding these things. Raavan released… five days after the release I was meant to shoot for Rohan’s (Sippy) film and I couldn’t shoot for four days. I used to sit in the trailer every day and I didn’t have the confidence to go out and face the camera. Because I take criticism so seriously, after what they wrote about me, I believed that I didn’t know how to act. If you take that confidence out of an actor, he is nothing. And it takes a lot of courage and a lot of hard work and a lot of pampering and guidance from your director to be able to get back in front of the camera and perform. You are dealing with an individual who’s going to have to go out there and do some work again. You are dealing with a human being. If people can remember that, it will be nice.”

        • I was glad that he said this: “I didn’t agree with a lot of what was written or said about me after Raavan. I thought I looked the part of Raavan, I thought I looked the part of Beera and I thought I really inhabited him to the best of my ability. ”

          So much of what’s said following a seriously acerbic critical and box office response is apologetic. This at least offers a glimmer of standing by the work.

          • You are dealing with a human being. If people can remember that, it will be nice.

            – touching and frank interview.

        • It really hurts to read such excessive criticism of him which in turn affects him so much.

          I hope that KHJJS will at least be a great critical success if not BO one.

          • But it’s not critical success that can right the wrongs, it’s the BO success that will. The filmy media doesn’t work to promote quality in cinema. It just looks for the hot trends (box office returns, that is) and follows the star who’s considered hot property.

            I don’t believe there’s a conspiracy against the Bachchans. There might be one, for all I know, but it’s a fact that Abhishek’s record purely as a star has been pretty weak since Guru. Nothing succeeds like success in BW, or for that matter in any other walk of life..

          • The only problem with that theory Saket is that BnB was downplayed by many of these same trade guys, BM too that same year, Guru as well. So it’s a bit hard when you get that treatment even with successful films. And the same guys then turn around and give disasters more positive treatment. The contrast is stark and unmistakable. You are right in the sense that if Abhishek kept giving films like BnB the media and trade would eventually shut up. But first of all that’s a high bar and secondly that’s not a standard everyone else has to live by. and the classic test case here is Aamir Khan who despite his unprecedented commercial and critical success for a decade was not really given his due before Ghajini (again too high a bar). I remember having these debates in ’06 when despite the RDB/Fanaa double the media treated it as if it was no big deal. The fact is that those who don’t play ball with the media (which includes all the usual ways of compromise and even corruption) have a tough time. They then have to do it only with hits and get no leeway when they fail. Note how Aamir’s most positive media narrative also coincides with his much greater availability to the same also in the period leading up to Ghajini and beyond. So yes it’s not just one factor but the resistance to the Bachchan name is a very old media story in Bombay.

            By the way it’s not just about hits or flops, it’s also the entire narrative. So take JBJ, a film which sank completely following the weekend but which must have had a good enough opening or better to do the 20 crores that it did in 2007. This is by the way more or less the Kurbaan total in 2009 as well as the Guzaarish opening just recently. In any case those were great numbers for a disaster and couldn’t have been achieved without a strong weekend. But the trade made it a week opening and a disastrous follow through. Well how did we get those 20 crores then?! Because again the narrative is to suggest that not only does Abhishek flop but also that he’s not even a big enough star to get an initial. Meanwhile Guzaarish is going to fall significantly short of the D6/Raavan totals! Or a supposed success like BeH does not do much more than these latter two ‘disasters’. The point is that they hit him every which way and this creates a general narrative which does become effective when it’s repeated ad infinitum. Which is by the way why he kept getting these big projects over the years! Today Italian Job is Abbas Mustaan’s biggest project, when Bazmee does a HP revamp he has Abhishek in Akshay’s part, Rohit Shetty after a 100 crore film wants Abhishek, so on and so forth. Whether it’s a Rathnam or a Mehra or now these sorts of purely commercial filmmakers how is this guy able to get all this stuff. If you’re in box office trouble and need a quick rescue you could do worse than some of these projects! But you’d never get this sense from the media or the trade. The downplaying of Abhishek is very systematic in every sense and is completely in keeping with the press Bachchan got at the height of his success. and even before the banning of the media.

            All of this is not to argue that he has had a very patchy or even poor box office record since Guru or one too many high profile failures. Certainly the impact of a D6 or a Raavan failing cannot be underestimated let alone everything else. At the same time it is also necessary to keep the facts in order.

  101. Ashutosh: I want to expand KHJJS to Pakistan and Bangladesh

    November 29, 2010 05:10:55 PM IST

    Kolkata had a date with the Bollywood stars Abhishek Bachchan, Deepika Padukone and director Ashutosh Gowariker as they visited the city to promote their upcoming period movie KHELEIN HUM JEE JAAN SEY.

    The film is a period film based on the struggle of revolutionary Masterda Surjya Sen and 1930 Chittagong uprising against the British rule in India.

    Abhishek Bachchan is playing the role of Surjya Sen in the movie.

    ABHISHEK BACHCHAN, DEEPIKA PADUKONE and ASHUTOSH GOWARIKAR at KHELEIN HUM JEE JAAN SEY PRESS MEET in KOLKATA

    ABHISHEK BACHCHAN, DEEPIKA PADUKONE and ASHUTOSH GOWARIKAR
    at KHELEIN HUM JEE JAAN SEY PRESS MEET in KOLKATA

    “I do film on the theme and story that come to me, while doing this film my love towards history has increased, Manini Chatterjee’s book has all the details. I decided to concentrate completely on Manini Chatterjee’s book for Surjya Sen’s reference,” director Ashutosh Gowariker said about the film.

    “I hardly knew much about Masterda, sadly, as Ashutosh told about the film, its story, I felt then would like doing it. I thought if I am not aware about, many people are not aware about him, this film gave me an opportunity to showcase him,” Abhishek said, when asked about the film and his experience.

    Deepika Padukone who will be seen portraying the character of ‘Kalpana Datta’ in the movie said: “I believe that saree is a sensual outfit that a women can wear, I feel that Kalpana’s character was gorgeous and glamorous, for me the process as an actor is same, it has been a huge responsibility for me to portray such a character,” when asked about her saree clad avatar, completely opposite to the roles she has been showcasing so far in her career.

    CHECK OUT: KHELEIN HUM JEE JAAN SEY Movie Preview

    Ashutosh added that his target audience for the film is not only Indians but even Bangladesh and Pakistan.

    “My target audience is Indians worldwide, with this film I want to expand it to Pakistan and Bangladesh. As Chittagong is in Bangladesh, I hope people there will also love to watch the film,” he said.

    He also mentioned that he had worked hard in selecting the proper star cast for the movie so that the characters look nearly the same to the original people.

    “When I read the book the first man came to my mind was Abhishek, I am fortunate that Abhishek is playing Surjya Sen and Deepika playing Kalpana. I tried to see the photographs of the revolutionaries while casting. I found that there is an uncanny resemblance between Kalpana’s picture and Deepika.”

    “But now I want to see that the audience express that they can also find Surjya Sen in Abhishek,” he said.

    Abhishek said that it was a pleasure for him to do Bengali movies and will love to do more if somebody approaches him with a script he will be happy.

  102. i am gonna try to watch this one at preview itself if it has here or i would have to wait for sunday..

    • when’s the preview show?

      • ” itself if it has here”

        i dont know i am assuming.. and thus used IF

        normally in ahmd multiplex since ghajini sometimes they have a late thursday nite show.. now i am not very accurate on this info but many movies where released like that.. so m expecting this one to follow suit..

  103. Taran’s supporting KHJJS

    Just back from ‘Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey’. Film evokes a colossal patriotic fervor. A film for every Indian. A film for everyone.

    • yeah but Taran’s pattern with Bachchan films is that he often supports them at the ‘review’ level but then kills with kindness later on the box office front. So for example he loved Paa but when you compare his box office reporting on this film compared with what he said on IHLS for example it’s a big joke. Having said that to the extent that reviews are going to be important for this film it doesn’t hurt to have the positive piece wherever it might come from. Then again the Guzaarish example reminds us that even this alone will not do the trick if the audience is not interested in a subject. Anyway let’s see how this goes. Speaking for myself, and of course as an Abhishek fan, I’ll say this. There were many Abhishek films that excited me irrespective of how these turned out at the box office or whether I actually ended up liking them as much I initially thought or not. With KHJJS I am perfectly willing to believe this is a ‘nice’ and ‘sincere’ film but the trailers just haven’t excited me at any point. I will be watching this Fri night in all probability but I am hoping to discover an interesting film (the way I would define this word) as opposed to getting psyched out by the previews. Incidentally I think Mehra would have been a great fit for this subject.

      • Mehra needs to do something. The Milkha Singh thing sounds rather uninteresting for the most part, with the exception of the partition angle.

      • I agree, they hail it if they think it is box office flop

        • Taran has a whole variety of strategies when it comes to the Bachchans and he’s not alone. He gave BnB a bad review, when the film nonetheless became big he tried his hardest to downplay it. With Guru he did give it a good review much like Paa but in each case the box office was downplayed. When he doesn’t like a film featuring them he doesn’t just give it a bad review but more or less calls it the worst film on earth! A Bachchan film which gets reviewed well by him and also does very well at the box office by his count does not exist! At least not so far. On Paa though I did notice a split between the media and the ‘trade’ for the first time where despite great reviews and great WOM the latter went soft on the film (the very same folks these days call BKB and IHLS and everything else a profitable venture!) while the former called it a hit very soon and consistently. If I were to hazard a guess I’d say the gap was filled with ‘ideology’. For the classes represented in the media Paa was India’s Benjamin Button, a film to be proud of.

  104. I think Abhishek’s performance in ‘Paa’ is criminally underrated. It’s a bizarre turn of events for him because he was clearly very good in the film. I’m not talking about the moments that characterize his populist expose of the media, handled deftly as they were, but about the quieter moments towards the end of the film. After he realizes that Auro is his own child. Abhishek nailed those moments with great poise and subtlety. The last scene with him and Vidya sitting on the footsteps with a heavy downpour is a great one…

    • I thought Abhishek’s performance here was actually better than his father’s. This to me wasn’t a performance from Amitabh but a Kamal-like attempt at acting through artifice. He’s somewhat successful but I consider this one of the most overrated Bachchan performances around, especially when he’s surrounded by work like Abhishek and Vidya Balan’s.

      • though the one remarkable bit about Bachchan’s performance here was his body language. Both in Black and this film this element seemed to me the most interesting aspect of each performance.

        • Yes, I was about to say the same thing. One could sense that Amitabh relished the challenge of playing a precocious 12 year old…

        • It is exactly this that saves the performance. The voice frankly doesn’t work at all, (no one could have done a good job here) but he’s able to communicate a lot with his body which is obviously not easy given he’s so tall and so obviously a “man” in his physical bearing.

          I certainly don’t mean to be harsh on this work, just not one of my favorite moments from Bachchan, which is very contrary to the experience many audiences have had with this character and performance.

      • I do agree with you to some extent. Amitabh was hampered quite a bit by the staticness induced by his make up, which made his face quite rigid. He’s a master at conveying emotions through his eyes and through the very slight movements visible on his face. In effect I do think Abhishek came out stronger, but there may be other reasons behind the perceived outcome. In the Sarkar series, there’s hardly a doubt who’s better. And I don’t mean this as a criticism of Abhishek, but as good as he was in Sarkar, he couldn’t hold a candle to an already aged Amitabh (as if this needs to be repeated!)

        On Vidya, my complaint is that she didn’t have enough screen time in Paa. She was an absolute delight to watch in the film. And so was Arundhati Nag…

        • I actually preferred Abhishek in both films, especially the second one. Bachchan is physically magnificent in both films but frankly not interesting enough as an actor to my mind. One can sense the pauses, the whispers, the gestures miles away. He is still very effective in certain set pieces. The title credits sequence in SR with Bachchan appearing on the balcony and Abhishek lurking in the shadows is fantastic (actually I prefer Bachchan in SR over the first film). There are other such moments. But what I can almost never forgive in an actor is predictability and Bachchan I think is guilty of this in these films (not least because RGV probably wants it this way). I continue to believe that RGV and some others are fundamentally, and for all their professed reverence, weak misreaders of Bachchan’s peak period. Agneepath for example is a performance of risk and I am always unsure as to how to rate this one but Bachchan surprises here. The same could be said for Khakee. In Sarkar it’s just a question of offering a certain charismatic presence which he certainly does. In truth even Abhishek’s part is not really as well-written as it should be, specially in the second film but I’d find it hard to sustain viewings of either film without him. In the second one he represents well a certain impenetrability. It’s a much more subtle performance than the first one (where again he got great reviews though I think he’s overrated in this film) with some moments that I would consider extraordinary (as when the bomb goes off.. his sense of stupor is superb here). But it needed to be a better written character and certainly not written out of the film.

    • I’d disagree a bit here.. because to my great surprise Abhishek did get very positive reviews for this part.. again Paa was a film that the media liked but also ‘wanted’ to like. But I do agree that this was a strong performance in an understated vein. Incidentally Balki’s next is a solo with him. Hope there is an interesting subject at hand.

      • Yes, but those reviews did not praise his performance on its own. The limelight was reserved for Amitabh and I think Abhishek deserved more credit for his performance in Paa.

    • Abhishek was excellent in Paa but Satyam and GF seem to be quilty of ‘misreading’ Amitabh’ performance here. Is not about the parts – face/make up/body language/voice/height etc but about the sum of the parts and the effectiveness of the performance. He makes a somewhat ridiculous notion believable and most seem to forget after first few minutes of watching the film that it is Amitabh who is playing Auro. And, it is his performance which holds the film together. He wins your sympathy and your heart but never your pity. Not a subtle performance by any means but nuanced,controlled and completely effective. And, one could sense he was having a blast. Which at his age and with his flmography is special.

  105. Re:This opinion (Abhisehk better than Amitabh) will shut down the site for 72 hours!

    LOL. Actually taking into consideration the relative magnitude of misjudgements, it should be more like a year!

  106. I am really upset, why Abhishek is apolozing for Raavan. It seems he lost confidence. He gave much bigger flops than Raavan, why did n’t he apologize for Drona which is nightmare for even his blind fans.

    http://www.bollywoodhungama.com/broadband/video/Interviews/ErPPN957/3/Abhishek-Ashutosh-Speak-About-Khelein-Hum-Jee-Jaan-Sey-Part-2.html

  107. He has clearly lost his confidence, more destructing than the failure.

  108. Two points, if I may:

    Sarkar and SR both were Amitabh’s films. I liked Sarkar a lot more. I did have fun with what RGV said about Abhishek being better! Clearly off.

    Abhishek does need BO at this point of time. Dostana2 is nowhere on the radar. Bazmee’s film is a good bet. Not a fan of Shetty, though.

    Actually on KWK, with Ash – he made a brilliant quip that he’ll “masqerade as Vijay Dinanath Chouhan and show you how it’s REALLY done!” KJo was left embarassed. Loved the repartee!

  109. KHJJS screenings getting good feedback so far on Twitter. The movie may get critical appreciation even if it fails at the box office.

    vajir singh
    Box Office India
    India’s premium film trade magazine (boxofficeindia.co.in)

    @abhijitmajumder Abhishek is awesome as Surjya Sen :)

    @theneela @abhijitmajumder It, indeed, is one of Abhishek’s best…

    @KushanNandy @abhijitmajumder A must watch!

    • There are certain offbeat subjects where good WOM can result in eventual box office success. But certain others where even when people are persuaded it’s a good film they decide to check it out on DVD or on cable or something. The WOM then has to be stupendously good to account for this factor. ‘Patriotism’ though hasn’t been a good sell in a long time! And generally speaking these films work best when there’s an admixture of masala.

      On KHJJS it’s not just that advertising was low key but also ‘confused’ in some ways. The longer theatrical trailer was fine because it at least revealed the arc of the story. Otherwise it’s not completely clear from the rest of the promos whether this is more of a thriller or more of a ‘patriotic’ deal. I think they could have done better to highlight each aspect in this sense.

      Ironically (and as I’ve said before) I actually think this film has a very good chance of trending well but if the initial is very low it won’t matter. So it has to register a fairly good weekend which means one of two things — either Fri numbers are decent all things considered and then the weekend’s stronger or else the Fri numbers are low and the weekend shows a big jump.

      The other thing even with respect to the WOM is that there’s a difference between a ‘nice’ film and a ‘strong’ one. I have little doubt about the former, quite a few about the latter. Many elements seem to be in place here in terms of the arc of the story, the group dynamic Gowariker has dealt with before, the thriller angle which even in Gowariker’s hands should make for an engaging narrative at just the right time, and so on (still think they should have made more of a romance between the lead pair.. one doesn’t need to be quite so earnest about the historical record!). But all of it still depends on the initial weekend. In this age there’s very little hope for a film that doesn’t show a serious graph in this ’round’.

      The film is what it is but they should have done vastly better on the advertising.

      • Incidentally it’s not playing at my suburban theater. They released BKB last week and Guzaarish the week before. Now they’re mixing it up with these two films on one screen (Guzaarish has almost regular shows.. think it’s trended reasonably well in the US even otherwise.. but they pulled screens in the second week and it hurt the film more than it might have otherwise) and Mammooty’s successful Pranchiyettan on the other.

  110. If I remember correctly, abhijitmajumder has trashed Raavan with repeated tweets.

    • yeah but these guys all go to such extremes. In one film Abhishek has the worst performance imaginable, in the next one he’s super. Even great actors can sometimes go wrong with certain portrayals (obviously this isn’t my view of Raavan) but no one calls those performances miserable. And any actor who’s worth anything will not have such wild gaps in performance from film to film. But where Abhishek does have a ‘commercial’ problem is that he is not willing to play ‘signature’ in every film and can just adopt a certain naturalistic mode where he is true to ‘character’ but the audience then misses the ‘signature’. Commercial stars in any industry can never really abandon this element unless of course they do a radically different role.

  111. The negative tweets on Abhishek has already started.

  112. Big B on promoting own movies by stars-

    Many have viewed this act with some skepticism. Why must artists do this. It really does not bring credit to the film. Rajnikant, my friend and colleague wondered ‘why do film stars have to become salesmen’. Ha ha, just something that Rajni would comment upon and in the manner that he does. Maybe he has a point and maybe he would never indulge in and maybe … well .. when you are Rajnikant you would obviously not need to. So ..

    http://bigb.bigadda.com/?p=7033#comment-1162229

  113. Ashutosh’s khel is not for children

    The Censor Board gives his new film a U/A

    Subhash K Jha

    Posted On Thursday, December 02, 2010 at 02:13:04 AM

    Mira Ashutosh Gowariker is extremely annoyed by the treatment accorded to Khelen Hum Jee Jaan Se by the Censors.

    The film has been granted a U/A certificate, which means kids can only watch it accompanied by their parents.

    The reason: the film has excessive violence against juveniles.

    Deepika Padukone in a still from Khelen Hum Jee Jaan Se
    Explains Ashutosh Gowariker, “My film is about the Chittagong uprising against the Britishers. Tragically, a lot of kids who fought in this uprising were underage. So I’ve had to show teenage actors in violent situations.”

    The director says he’s okay with the censor certificate as long as the message gets across.

    Says Ashutosh, “It’s a pity that children need to be accompanied by their parents to see a slice of history that aided our country’s independence. But that’s okay. I’m just happy to bring these unsung heroes alive on screen.”

  114. Faridoon on twitter (Bollywood Huungama):

    Ashutosh Gowariker is back with a bang n it can arguably be his best film till date…
    As an entire movie watching experience KHJJS is a wonderful cinema that never falls into any trap of cinematic ‘items’.Don’t miss it!

    • Coming from Faridoon I don’t know if this is good or bad. He often likes a lot of junk in BW but he is often correct in knowing what the audience will like.
      AG’s best film to date? oh man wouldn’t that be something.

  115. As per the Cinematix™ predictive model, assuming KHJJS opens across 800 cinemas, the film will have a nett opening weekend (Fri-Sun) of only Rs. 5-6 crores. Word of mouth can influence the collections Sunday onwards, given the low Interest at the pre-release stage.As per the Cinematix™ predictive model, assuming KHJJS opens across 800 cinemas, the film will have a nett opening weekend (Fri-Sun) of only Rs. 5-6 crores. Word of mouth can influence the collections Sunday onwards, given the low Interest at the pre-release stage.

  116. Taran’s review – 4 stars

    http://www.bollywoodhungama.com/movies/review/14199/index.html

    A motion picture like KHELEIN HUM JEE JAAN SEY isn’t created targeting the box-office solely. It’s also made for the gratification of the senses. And that it does in sufficient measure. In an industry obsessed by opening weekend business and box-office records, this is one of those rare films that doesn’t compromise on its gracious objectives for the sake of becoming more box-office friendly. At the same time, a film like KHELEIN HUM JEE JAAN SEY, although very well made, may not appeal to those who relish the customary kitsch and masala. Therefore, the film will have to rely on a very strong word of mouth to create any kind of an impression or impact at the box-office.

    • I don’t see how a film like this can work (he gives it 3.5 stars) if the lead performance here is as poor as Khalid Mohammed finds it to be!

      • Didn’t take his comments on Abhi so seriously considering what he’s written about Bachchan in the past.
        But seems as though AG has made a pretty good film just going by a few twitter friends who have seen it. The only negative I’ve heard is the pacing but that seems to be a complaint in all of AG films.

        • Yeah it seems he’s never going to get it right pacing-wise, which itself wouldn’t be a problem if all his scripts were as engrossing and unique as Lagaan.

          I won’t be able to see this in the first week and fear it won’t last past this in NYC.

        • yeah that thought did occur to me.. but leaving him aside a lot of reviewers tend to critique Abhishek in this fashion from time to time. To an extent I understand why a more understated acting style does not go down well with many Indian reviewers (and audience). But on the other side they would never (never ever!) give this sort of review to SRK or Hrithik. Irrespective of the kind of film or role. And so while I might be able to see why someone would not warm up to Abhishek’s mode in this sense it’s very hard to see why those two stars would always be praised in every situation. Because again this is part of the media game. Journalists, irrespective of whether they have an axe to grind or not, find it easy to say very frank, even demeaning stuff about Abhishek because there’s no response from the Bachchans. The same goes for the trade. But no other star tolerates it and there are ways of applying pressure.

        • other than Lagaan I’ve never seen a film from him where every scene seemed very engaging to say the very least. I did not mind the pacing in Swades though I can certainly see why people would. The larger problem here, especially following Lagaan, was the very unimaginative filmmaking in a formalist sense. Also what Gowariker has not quite learnt (hope this isn’t true for KHJJS) from someone like Mukherjee is the art of making the little moment sparkling. Mukherjee or Chatterjee in fact could make entire films about ‘nothing’ that then meant ‘everything’. The guy stands at the bus stop, misses the bus, or gets on, he gets pushed around, he gets to work, someone’s listening to the cricket commentary on a radio, so on and so forth. Nothing special from a narrative standpoint but a whole world is revealed through these moments. This is also true for the Malayalam cinema of the 80s. But creating a ‘world’ is always the hardest thing for a filmmaker to achieve. In any case I didn’t find Swades hard to watch at any point. JA too was engaging enough in the theater but the narrative here was Gowariker’s messiest among his major films. Still he somehow kept things going. On DVD I once tried and found it hard to get through it (Swades I’ve seen three times or so since the original release). Given the reviews though I can well believe KHJJS might be Gowariker’s best narrative since Lagaan. But I am equally interested in whether Gowariker can better his post-Lagaan efforts here at a visual level. I’ve liked many of the stills, the trailers have not impressed me at all.

  117. Interesting comment from Rajasen.

    Watched Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Se. Definitely a story that needed to be told. Writing up the review now.

  118. I would say that Ashu has redeemed himself. Irrespective of the BO performance. The movie seems to be garnering almost unanimously good reviews.

  119. Actually I just checked – RC-2 is not playing in the city.

  120. Amazing – all three new releases are getting good reviews so far – KHJJS, RC2 and Phas Gaye Re Obama and all three movies will likely flop.

  121. masterpraz Says:

    Seeing this tonight and again tomorrow lunch time with 2 separate groups of friends. Will post my review tonight. Buzz all over Social Media=POSITIVE!!!!!!! KHJJS is getting some awesome critical acclaim!

    • masterpraz Says:

      My dad saw it earlier and excerpts from his email:

      “you will love this one. i would call it abhisheks most crowd-pleasing acting piece since guru-character of surya sen grows on you and by the end youre hooked to sen, claps all round as the heroes all fall at the end, very sad to see. this reminded me a lot of his dad too, fiery performance. seeing a school-teacher as a revolutionary freedom fighter is also unique.

      deepika is fantastic and that kher boy is a surprise too. I will see it again with your mum on sunday, but i think its gowarikers best since lagaan, best fusion of serious sensible cinema told in bollywood style”

  122. The Guardian UK

    Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey – review

    A little-known episiode in India’s independence fight gets the Bollywood treatment – and it works a treat

    Rating: 4/5

    Phelim O’Neill guardian.co.uk, Thursday 2 December 2010

    The 1930 Chittagong armoury raid was a pivotal event in India’s fight for independence and isn’t the sort of tricky subject normally tackled by mainstream Indian cinema. In order to soften the blow, director Ashutosh Gowariker has removed most of the politics from this political act – it is the army’s takeover of a football pitch that is the last straw. As with his previous hit Lagaan, Gowariker proves he can handle a large cast and loves to compose frames full of chatting characters. Beautifully shot, it manages to hit hard even under the restrictions of Indian cinema.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/2010/dec/02/khelein-hum-jee-jaan-sey-film-review

  123. First thing first. The corrupt politicians of today, one and all, should be arrested and put into a jail and let them watch movies like ’
    KHELEIN HUM JEE JAAN SEY’ to realise that the crores they earn doesn’t worth a single drop of blood spilled to get the freedom. Brain covered financial experts may take a break and watch films like this to hear the stories of suffering the soil have to say. Courageous freedom struggle stories from India can only give martyrs but it is to those martyrs we owe our present and future.

    http://www.mouthshut.com/review/Khelein-Hum-Jee-Jaan-Sey-Movie-ruqusqnoln-1

  124. Why Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey Is An Important Film?

    As an avid movie buff, I am bored of the regular and the mundane. So, when a film like Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey comes along, one reinforces the belief in the power of cinema. Yes, there’s a lot of chaff out there but when one does come across the Real thing, you take back home the experience of watching a good story told wonderfully well. What you like most about KHJJS is the total disregard for bowing before the conventional Box Office demands. There are no cinematic ‘items’ that ensures ticket sales in cine halls. Still, there’s a restrained Thrill element that permeates the fabric of the entire film and keeps you interested as a viewer…

    http://faridoonshahryar.blogspot.com/2010/12/why-khelein-hum-jee-jaan-sey-is.html

  125. khjjs seems to be getting good reviews.It might even end up as a success
    if wom is good.

  126. masterpraz Says:

    TOI review….another winner. Re: Abhishek..”played straight from the heart”!

    http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/entertainment/movie-reviews/hindi/Khelein-Hum-Jee-Jaan-Sey/articleshow/7029093.cms

  127. Raja Sen – 2.5 stars

    A story that needed to be told

    Abhishek Bachchan however, is woefully miscast in the film’s leading role. Content to oscillate between a ‘thoughtful’ furrowed-brow look and a creepy smile in the first half, the second sees him scurrying for instruction from his colleagues and hardly ever assuming control.

    http://www.rediff.com/movies/review/review-khelein-hum-jee-jaan-sey/20101203.htm

  128. anupama Chopra 2.5 stars

    boring history lesson, Abhishek Bachchan, who plays the leader Surjya Sen, is in sober, benevolently smiling mode. We get little hint of the fire in his belly.

    http://movies.ndtv.com/movie_Review.aspx?id=572

  129. From all the reviews so far, it seems to me that it’s Gowarikar’s ponderous style of direction that is the main negative for this film, which I don’t find surprising, as I felt the same with Swades & JA. Even Lagaan had some strains of it. I got very bored when I tried to watch it a second time, even though on first viewing I was very impressed at how well constructed it was as a film. From all these, I conclude that Gowarikar has an earnestness of purpose, and a taste for interesting subjects, but alas, does not have the skills to structure a story properly or develop three dimensional characters. Why is it that in present day Bollywood, it seems that a director is almost always also the screenwriter, with only a lowly “dialog writer” brought in to fill in the blanks, so to speak? Are there no proper screenwriters who specialize only in writing? The only names I can think of offhand in this category are Rumi Jaffery, Shibani Bhathija, and, previously, Anees Bazmee. The rest all seem to be directors, even first time directors serving as their own screenwriters. Such a pity.

    • Re: “Are there no proper screenwriters who specialize only in writing? The only names I can think of offhand in this category are Rumi Jaffery, Shibani Bhathija, and, previously, Anees Bazmee.”

      Given the last name on the list, it’s clear even the specialists have a lot of work to do. At least if the films Bazmee has both written and directed are any indication!

      • Yeah that’s a miserable trio. I’d put Sridhar Raghavan over nearly any “pure” screenwriter working in Hindi film today.

  130. Swades is my most favourite of Ashu’s fims. It was contemporary with top star at that time, good music. I still wonder how it failed.

    With khjjs , he tried more closer to naturalness which never works in Indian movies.

  131. Komal Nahta 0.5/5 http://koimoi.c2w.com/2010/12/03/khelein-hum-jee-jaan-sey-review-by-komal-nahta/

    Excerpts:

    What’s Good: Nothing really, except, perhaps, the cinematography.

    What’s Bad: The script; the performances; the dull drama; the music.

    Verdict: Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey is an unmitigated disaster.

    • he might have given it half too many!

      • I don’t think so, wvwn for John Abraham’s movie Jhootha .. he gave 1 star

      • To be fair to Nahata, something that requires reserves of patience and self control, he did give a negative review to MNIK as well.

      • He basically gives based on opening.

        Prakashjaju posted few:

        # KHJJS – Single Screen – Kastur cinema, Indore – 12 pm – Rs. 2100 ( capacity Rs.47500) – 4% … about 4 hours ago

        # Today – AUDIENCE – Velocity Multiplex, Indore – 9.45 am show – Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Se – 24, Narnia – 72 about 9 hours ago

        • true but then the problem is that he tries very hard to keep his verdict intact even the fortunes of a film change. He gave Guzaarish 1.5 stars and it was in general a kinder piece. With KHJJS it’s a total hatchet job.

  132. Abhishek’s performance is not getting much appreciation from critics. We are used to high level of emotions, hyperactive leads in Indian films. Abhishek’s restrained performance doesn’t appeal to critics or majority audience.

    • Yeah, but more than Abhishek, it’s Gowarikar who’s getting the major negative criticism.

    • I think the positive reviews have generally had praise for him. On the understated bit that is true as a general matter because his ‘tone’ might not always be ideal for commercial cinema. Having said that here this was Gowarikr’s brief to him. The later said in an interview that Surjyo Sen was supposed to be a very composed kind of guy.

  133. I haven’t seen the film, can’t comment on. The last four reviews (RajaSen, Cho[ra, Zee, Komal) were pointing that he hasn’t made any difference. Stars like Ab, Rajnikanth can make even average script to work. Abhishke is a sincere actor same as Gowrikar. Sincerity rarely works in Bollywood.

    From twitter, very few people watched it, but they are all appreciating Ab’s performance.

    • People like AB & Rajni get scripts tailored to their strengths, even if they are average, and thus make them work. But even they have had their failures. Think of Kuselan for Rajni.

  134. I agree to some extent, but they can pull the avarage movie to bar above.

  135. looks like the boi prediction (5-6 cr) will come true.

    • What a bogus list. You’ll notice that soft target star movies are on the list. But where are the following movies?

      Veer – #1 on my list
      DMG
      CPD
      LP
      MNIK
      Kites
      Prince
      MM
      Aisha
      WAF
      Housefull
      G3
      Knockout

      Yes, Housefull and G3 were hits but still crappy movies.

    • that must be a Masand list. You know the one who liked MNIK, Kites and recently called BKB engaging.

  136. http://sandhyai.blogspot.com/2010/12/khelein-hum-jee-jaan-sey.html

    sandy – 2.5 stars

    Masand 2 stars

    The critics rating is same Guzaarish, Performances Guzaarish tops.

  137. Hmm, sometimes you wonder if the different critics are seeing the same film!

  138. a friend said-

    1. it requires patience a bit too much
    2. star power brings it down he says.. with Lagaan they had cricket and here its in ur face patroitism.. and for Lagaan aamir ensured people could focus on the movie has abhi reached that state .. seems doubtful
    3. abhisekh does a good job.. but he still needs to give some more audience pleasing scenes..

    songs play culprit.

    recommended. 2/5 (pace and story telling disappoints.. and lacks the grip of Lagaan! )

  139. HR’s fans were retweeting negartive comments even before release.

    Now Dabba Bang’s fans started withis tweet.

    KHJJS is bigger flop than Guzaarish, PVR will lose more than 30 cr

  140. Just came back from the show. My expectations were high after Taran’s review. This was a bad film, but made with good intentions.

    BO wise this may flop. There were only 32 people in the hall in which I saw the film.

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