Sep 162017

Salman Khan is currently on a high as he was recently honoured with a Global Diversity Award by the United Kingdom’s House of Commons, which is their Parliament’s equivalent of our Lok Sabha.

The superstar was bestowed with the Global Diversity Award 2017 in the British Parliament by British Asian MP, Keith Vaz.

Needless to say, Salman looked great, as usual, giving shutterbugs a goofy smile. Bhaijaan was honoured for his contribution to the Indian film industry as an actor, producer, philanthropist, singer and television personality. 

Salman Khan (c) Twitter

Praising Salman, Keith said, “Salman Khan is a role model and a hero to millions of people worldwide.” Well, Keith, he is indeed an entertainer and a hero but a role model? I don’t think many would agree with that statement.

“Besides his Indian cinema success, Salman is a well- known philanthropist and his NGO, Being Human, has done life-changing work supporting the underprivileged in India. It is a tremendous honour to present him with the award. I am proud that young Asians worldwide have role models like Salman Khan, ” Keith added as reported by PTI.

Salman Khan(c) Twitter

Listening to Keith, it sounds like he is a huge fan of Salman, and no doubt the man has captured the many hearts of the people there. But not many Indians would approve of the word ‘role model’ being used to describe him. First things first, young Asians don’t necessarily need role models like Salman. Let’s hope you guys get why we are making this point and if you don’t, you are certainly living under a rock or choose not to see what’s in front of you.

Of course, as expected, Salman was very pleased and said, “My father would never have believed that I would make it here. I would like to thank the fans for the respect that they have shown me. Although I have received many film awards, this is the first I have received personally so I am incredibly humbled.”

Salman Khan (c) Twitter

However, this isn’t the first time an Indian has been honoured with this award. Back in the day, Amitabh Bachchan and Aishwariya Rai Bachchan were also presented with the Global Diversity Award. Apart from the aforementioned celebs, renowned people like Jackie Chan, Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton and, American Civil Rights leader Jesse Jackson have also been bestowed with this honour.

The ‘Tubelight’ actor is in Britain for his Da-Bangg Tour, which takes place in Birmingham and in London’s O2 Arena on Saturday and Sunday, respectively. Along with Salman, actors like Sonakshi Sinha, Jacqueline Fernandez, Prabhudheva, Sooraj Pancholi and Badshah will also be seen setting the stage on fire.



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May 052017

Now, Salman Khan's bodyguard Shera will 'protect' Justin BieberNow, Salman Khan’s bodyguard Shera will ‘protect’ Justin Bieber

Bollywood superstar Salman Khan’s bodyguard Shera has been roped in to handle the security for the Jio Justin Bieber Purpose World Tour.

Shera, whose real name is Gurmeet Singh Jolly, has been considered the most trusted aide of Salman for over 20 years.

Informed sources say he will be personally monitoring the security arrangements of Justin Bieber during his stay in India later this month.

As a sign of his loyalty, Salman chose to use the badge and uniform of Shera’s own firm, Tiger Security, in his 2011 film “Bodyguard”.

In the past, he has handled the security of international actors like Will Smith, Jackie Chan and Keanu Reaves.

Salman himself might play host to the Grammy Award winning singer, who will arrive in the country on May 8 for his show, organised by White Fox India, on May 10 here.

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Apr 212017

21-chaubeyAbhishek Chaubey recalls the trying phase prior to the release of Udta Punjab last year. The Central Board of Film Certification, infamous for demanding excessive cuts in films, had invited the wrath of industry insiders, when it came down hard on the dark drugs drama, demanding 89 cuts to award certification.

Given the ordeal that the team endured before it hit screens, procuring satellite rights became harder, since channels were wary of acquiring permission. But, in a development that can only be termed ironic, the Shahid Kapoor, Alia Bhatt and Kareena Kapoor-starrer has now been cleared for telecast with a mere three-minute cut.

Ahead of the film’s TV premiere on April 30 on &Pictures, Chaubey discusses his love for Punjab, the effect his film had on the masses and of course, having the last laugh.

While the CBFC eventually demanded 13 cuts for the theatrical release, they have suggested only a three-minute edit for TV. Feeling vindicated?
Yes, I feel vindicated. I accept the cuts requested for telecast, as opposed to what happened before the theatrical release. In theatres, there is a provision for only adults to walk in, and when that happens, we [filmmakers] should have the ability to express ourselves in the best interest of the film. But TV is a different medium, accessible to everyone. I understand that the content of my film can’t be shown to a child in entirety. So the cuts were acceptable. They even wanted me to be part of the process, and in fact, I made a few suggestions.

Why did you base your story in Punjab?
As part of research, I came across reports that said young Indians were addicted to harmful products. There was no film around the topic, and as a filmmaker, and citizen, it interested me. My co-writer Sudip Sharma asked if I knew anything about the Punjab crisis. I realised this might be a great setting. Punjab, given the large number of people using drugs, could represent the problem better than any other state. Being a border state, smuggling is also rampant.

How challenging was it to portray a state that’s usually glorified differently?
I did not intend to change the image. If a filmmaker talks about a prevalent problem in a particular area, he talks out of love and concern. Since I love Punjab, I made the film. Those who deny the existence of the problem cannot love the state. I shot Punjab for what it is.

Did you stumble on interesting insights?
The number of youngsters addicted to drugs was surprising. We went to various rehabilitation centers and saw patients from different social circles.

People from all walks of life were ailing because of this problem. But, more than the challenges of the addicts, what I took home was the spirit of the activists, doctors and healthcare professionals. Their strength and zest to fight the drug menace inspired me.

Udta Punjab: TV vs theatre
The CBFC, led by Pahlaj Nihalani, had recommended 89 cuts for the film’s theatrical release in 2016. This included muting cuss words and a title change due to its reference to Punjab. Protests by industry folk brought the cuts down to 13, which was later reduced to just one — a urinating scene involving Tommy Singh (Shahid Kapoor) — after Abhishek knocked on the doors of the Bombay High Court.

TV censorhip
For the small screen telecast of a film that had received an A certificate from the Censor Board, a filmmaker must re-apply for certification to procure either a U (unrestricted public exhibition) or U/A (unrestricted public exhibition subject to parental guidance for children below the age of 12) certificate for television viewing.

Usually, the rules followed to secure the required certification involve elimination of cuss words, violence against women and vulgarity, considering the wide reach of television. Additionally, channels may exercise discretion and eliminate content they deem unsuitable for their audience.

Rape scene of Alia Bhatt has been sensitised
Expletives have been replaced (eg: madar****d had become kya syapa) at places but not where they depict the mental state of the character
The urinating scene that had been deleted for the theatrical screening has been done away with here too
Films (13 cuts suggested by the CBFC)
Deletion of flashing ‘Board of Punjab’ at the start of film
Deletion of reference to states including Punjab, Jalandhar, Chandigarh and Amritsar among others
Deletion of cuss words, including ‘chittave’ and ‘harami’ from songs
Deletion of abusive language from songs
Delete the words ‘Election’, ‘MP’, ‘Party’ from party worker, MLA, Punjab, Parliament
Delete sections of scratching/ itching scene featuring a Sardar
Deletion of close-up shots of injecting drugs
Delete shot of Tommy urinating in front of the crowd
Delete reference to dog named Jackie Chan
Delete the line ‘Jamin banzar te aulad kanjar’.
First disclaimer should be audio/video and to include — ‘The film focuses on the rising menace of drugs and war against drugs… We acknowledge
The battle against drugs being fought by the government…’
Second disclaimer of fiction to be increased according to audio/video

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