Thursday, April 24, 2008


New Beginning-Navneeth Kaur

Navneeth Kaur makes her debut opposite superstar Mammootty in the forthcoming Malayalam film Parunthu, reports KK Moidu

Mammootty dons a private financier's role as Gillette Purushothaman in Parunthu directed by M Padmakumar. M Padmakumar, who directed films like Ammakkilikoodu, Vargham, Vasthavam etc. is teaming up with a superstar project for the first time in his career.
In his latest directorial venture, Mammootty appears as a coarse, cold-blooded moneylender Purushu whose only love is money. The interesting news about Parunthu was Nayanthara's re-entry to home turf as a heroine after three years. She was the earlier choice for Parunthu, but could not accept the offer because of her commitments in Tamil and Telugu films.
Super actress Nayanthara made her debut in the Malayalam film Manassinakkare opposite Jayaram. She acted in a couple of Malayalayam films and shifted her base to Tamil and Telugu for lucrative offers. She scaled new heights as a heroine and has been paired with leading South Indian heroes including Rajinikanth. Her last Malayalam film was Raappakal directed by Kamal. Mammootty was the male lead of the film and Nayanthara's performance as a Cinderella-type character was one of the best in her career.
Although ravishing Nayanthara is the highest paid actress of the South Indian film industry, she appeared free of cost for the song sequence in the forthcoming Malayalam film Twenty Twenty. She is slated to do a couple of Telugu films and is presently busy with Tamil films Kuselan, Sathyam and Aegan opposite Rajinikanth, Vishal and Ajith respectively. She also signed two other Tamil films Singam opposite Vijay and Raja Vesham opposite Vikram. Her pairing opposite Ajith in the superhit Tamil film Billa and the recently released Yaaredi Nee Mohini opposite Dahnush brought her new popularity.
Nayanthara’s busy schedule forced the makers of Parunthu to rope in glamour-conscious Navneeth as the ladylove of Mammootty. Though Punjabi beauty Navneeth Kaur is not very popular in the Malayalam industry, her pairing opposite Mammootty in Parunthu comes as a solace for the heart broken fans of Nayanthara. Navneeth Kaur is not only a good replacement for Nayanthara but also a rare combination of beauty and glamour. Her striking appearance and acting talent will definitely charm the Malayalam audience.
Navneeth, the latest fascination of Telugu cinema, is a Punjabi born and brought up in Mumbai. Her father worked in the armed forces and imposed high discipline at home. But she managed to act in a video album in her school days with the support of her mother and brother.
Navneeth made her Telugu debut in Seenu, Vasanthi and Lakshmi by playing a traditional girl's role. The film was a remake of the Malayalam superhit Vasanthiyum Lakshmiyum Pinne Njanum directed by Vinayan. RP Patnaik played the male lead as a blind man, which was enacted by Kalabhavan Mani in Malayalam. RK Patnaik also composed music for the film and it was produced by NM Suresh under the banner of Sri Tulaja Bhavani Creations. Comely Navneeth was the love interest of RP Patnaik in the film and won appreciation for her role as a dumb girl. She has shown great maturity in melodramatic scenes in her launching vehicle directed by debutante E Srinivas. Priya played the other heroine as the sister of RP Patnaik. The tear jerker could not achieve box office success like the original film.
However, Navneeth hogged the limelight with her dazzling performance in films like Shatruvu, Jagapati, Good Boy, Room Mates, Yamadonga etc. and compelled wows from the audience.
In Shatruvu, Navneeth alongwith Meghana Naidu, did characters as night club dancers in a hotel. The film had too much masala and director Arun Prasad depended heavily on showing off the skimpily clad heroines rather than the basic story of the film. Navneeth's enthusiastic performance and glamour was not enough for saving the film from a box office disaster.
Navneeth played a fun-filled role opposite Jagapathi Babu in Jagapati directed by Jonnalagadda Srinivasa Rao. Jagapathi played a thug's role in the commercial entertainer. In Good Boy directed by G Nageswara Reddy, Navneeth again showed a lot of promise. She showed a lot of flesh and glamour and the young hero falls head over heels for the heroine. The poor script added one more flop to Navneeth's career and the energetic dance performances with Srinivas' music went unnoticed.
Although Yamadonga, an extra-ordinary film directed by Rajamouli created wonders at the box office, Navneeth was not the lead heroine of the film. Priyamani and Mamta Mohandas played the female leads opposite NTR. Rambha did an item number along with NTR, and the other three heroines Preethi Jhangiani, Archana and Navneeth shook their legs with NTR in one song.
After playing glam doll roles continuously, Navneeth got an opportunity to perform as an event manager, Pallavi, in the suspense thriller Room Mates. She was the lady love of Allari Naresh and appeared in a homely look with no revealing costumes. Although the director succeeded in maintaining the suspense and artistes also performed well, the film lost the entertainment values.
Navneeth is pairing opposite senior Tamil hero Vijayakanth in Arasangam. A major part of the film was filmed in Toronto, Vijayakanth's 150th film.
Critics always accused Navneeth for exposing too much in films. She justifies her part by saying that the costumes and glamour are inevitable for the success of the characters in films. She insists she does not have a problem with wearing any attire her roles require. She was repeatedly cast in glamorous roles and proved herself as a spontaneous actress. But she failed to make a big impact on the audience like other glamorous heroines of the industry.
Navneeth started her career with a Punjabi music video and that made her entry into the film world easy. She is also famous for her TV commercials, music albums and has acted in a few Hindi films. The good looking, tall, glamorous siren tried her best as an actress and a dancer but her efforts went unnoticed.
Navneeth has acted in around 10 films in different languages in a short span of less than five years. She rarely acted opposite front-line heroes or crowdpullers and has not delivered many commercial hits. But she had enough luck to be paired opposite superstar Mammootty in her debut Malayalam film Parunthu.
Jayasurya and Kalabhavan Mani play key roles in the film which is scripted by TA Razak and produced by Dream Team Productions. Gireesh Puthencherry-Vidyasagar team handles the music.

Friday, April 18, 2008


Working towards success

Teenage heroine Tamanna features opposite front line Tamil heroes Surya and Dhanush in the forthcoming films Ayan and Padikadhavan. KK Moidu writes

Tamanna is one of the most beautiful and the youngest heroine of the South Indian film industry. She is climbing the ladder of success after her performance in the recently released Tamil film Kalloori and Telugu film Happy Days. Although Tamanna has proved her talent in earlier films like Kedi, Sri and Vyapari, big offers did not come to her.
Tamanna won accolades for her college girl roles and succeeded in gaining offers from prestigious banners opposite reputed heroes. She is pairing opposite the popular young heroes Surya and Dhanush in the forthcoming Tamil films Ayan and Padikadhavan respectively.
Ayan will be directed by cinematographer-director KV Anand featuring the glamorous Tamanna opposite Surya in the film. The movie will be produced by the prestigious banner AVM Productions; their last production venture Sivaji the Boss featuring Rajinikanth was a money spinner at the box office.
The 65-year-old production company AVM had made a film Perazhagan with Surya. The box office debacle made Surya decide not to appear in any of the AVM movies in future. But since there are no permanent friends or enemies in the tinsel world, the reputed actor and one of the biggest production houses have cleared their misunderstandings. Their re-union in Ayan will be a total entertainer for the entire family.
Ayan tells the story of a 23 year old youth and how he attains his goals in life. KV Anand, who introduced the Malayalam hero Prithviraj to the Tamil industry in a negative role as Madan in Kana Kandein will launch another newcomer as a villain in Ayan. Prabhu will play a pivotal role in the film.
The highlight of the film is a song, which will be picturised in Venice, one of the favourite locations of KV Anand. Harris Jayaraj scores music for the first time under AVM's banner. MS Prabhu who cranks the camera, used to be an assistant of ace cinematographer and National Award winner PC Sriram. PC Sriram is the mentor of many talented cinematographers in the film industry including KV Anand.
Another forthcoming film of the rising heroine Tamanna is Padikadhavan. She is the love interest of crowdpuller Dhanush and the film will be directed by Suraj, who delivered commercial hits like Thalainagaram and Maruthumalai.
Padikadhavan is an enjoyable film with a different storyline featuring Tamanna and Dhanush for the first time. Produced by Vijaya Vahini Productions, Padikadhavan is the title of Dhanush's father-in-law Rajinikanth's yesteryear blockbuster film. Dhanush got the rights of title from the original owner of the film N Veerasamy of Easwari Productions, a friend of Rajinikanth.
Padikadhavan tells the story of an illiterate, unemployed youth and his growth as a business tycoon due to his brilliance and presence of mind. Mani Sharma tunes music for the film and the comedian turned hero Vadivelu plays a significant role as Alert Arumugham.
Mumbai girl Tamanna Bhatia was born on Dec.21, 1989 and she is the daughter of Santhosh Bhatia and Rajani Bhatia. Eighteen-year-old Tamanna is a first year student at the National College in Bandra.
Tamanna did a few music albums before her entry to films. She also appeared in advertisements of many big companies like Shakti Masala, Saravana Stores, RMKV etc.
She made her debut as a heroine in the Hindi film Chand Sa Roshan Chehra at the age of 13. The film was a love-story with newcomers and it was noticed for its music and performance of the artistes.
Later, Tamanna debuted in the Telugu film Sri as the lady love of Manoj Kumar. The film was directed by Dasaradh and produced by Lakshmi Prasanna.
She made her Tamil film debut with Kedi directed by Jyothi Krishna and produced by AM Rathnam. She played a rich college girl in the film. Her character, Priyanka, was the sister of a gangster turned minister. Ravi Krishna played the male lead in the film and Ileana was the other heroine. The film did not succeed at the box office, but as a debutante she came into the limelight with her performance.
Tamanna was one of the heroines opposite SJ Surya in Vyapari produced by hit producer AM Rathnam. The film, directed by Shakti Chidambaram, had two other heroines as well, Namitha and Malavika. Like her previous Tamil film Kedi, she again played the role of a college girl Savitri. Vyapari got a good opening but failed at the box office.
The success of Kalloori and Happy days propelled her career to new heights. Her realistic performance in Kalloori and her role as Madhu in Happy Days won critical acclaim. Kalloori was a campus thriller directed by Balaji Shakthivel and produced by veteran director Shankar's S Pictures. Tamanna was once again cast as a college girl in the film and her pairing opposite newcomer Akil was a success at the box office.
Happy Days, the family film with newcomers was noted for the freshness and simplicity of the story. Directed and produced by Sekhar Kammula, it tells the story of the college life of four boys and four girls. The seven leading stars of the film were selected by a talent search at a radio station and web site. A suitable newcomer for the role of Tamanna was not found and ladyluck smiled on her. Happy Days won several awards and got good reviews. Notebook fame Mickey J Meyer's music played an important role in the success of the film.
In the forthcoming film Netru Indru Naalai directed by Lakshmikanth Chenna, her hero is Ravi Krishna, the lead of her Tamil debut film Kedi. Ravi Krishna is the son of producer AM Ratnam and the film will be produced by Nukarapu Surya Prakasa Rao under the banner of SPR Private Limited. The film will be simultaneously made in Telugu as Ninna Nedu Repu.
Tamanna will also play the female lead in the Tamil film Ananda Tandavam. Her hero is Sidharth and the summer release is produced by Oscar Ravichandran and directed by Ghandhi Krishna.
Tamanna has not only achieved big offers from Tamil but also signed a couple of Telugu films like Pellivaarillu, Kalidasu and Chandrapratap. In Kalidasu, she pairs opposite another debutante hero Sushanth, Nagarjuna's nephew and Akkineni Nageshwara Rao's grandson. G Ravi Charan Reddy's maiden directorial venture Kalidasu will be produced by Chinthalapudi Srinivasa Rao and A Naga Suseela under the banner of Sri Nag Corporation. The six songs of the film composed by music director Chakri was filmed at various locations like Phuket in Thailand and Kuala Lumpur.
Although Tamanna is recognised for her talent in her five-year career, the teenage actress has only one or two commercial hits to her credit. She hopes the forthcoming films Ayan and Padikadhavan will establish her as a successful heroine in the industry.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008


Ushering in spring

Five Malayalam films are ready for release on April 14, the occasion of Vishu, the spring festival of Kerala. KK Moidu writes on the films that could smash the box office

The new festival releases are Innathe Chinthavishayam, Annan Thambi, De Ingottu Nokkiye, Parthan Kanda Paralokam and Positive. Among the five films, Innathe Chinthavishayam, Annan Thambi and De Ingottu Nokkiye are success guaranteed projects and hopefully will do good business at the box office.

Innathe Chinthavishayam
The Mohanlal-Meera Jasmine starrer Innathe Chinthavishayam directed by Sathyan Anthikkad has an impressive line up of talented artistes like Mukesh, Innocent, Sukanya, Mohini, Muthumani, Maamukkoya, Vijayaraghavan, Ashokan, Vanitha etc.
Director Sathyan, a master of feel-good-family dramas, himself pens the script of the film. Mohanlal plays the role of Gopakumar, a garment exporter and Meera Jasmine plays his assistant Kamala, who recently completes her graduation in a fashion design course.
Innathe Chinthavishayam tells the story of three couples who get separated due to family disputes. The three couple's roles are played by Vijayaraghavan-Mohini, Mukesh-Sukanya and Ashokan-Muthumani.
Gopakumar and Kamala makes an unknown journey through the life of these three couples. Gopakumar and his assistant Kamala work secretly to re-unite the three families who live separately after their broken marriages.
In his forthcoming film Innathe Chinthavishayam, Sathyan's message is against the increasing number of unhappy marital relationships in Kerala presently. This is the fourth time award-winning actress Meera Jasmine plays the heroine role in a Sathyan film continuously and it is the 17th film of Mohanlal with Sathyan Anthikkad.
Ilayaraja tunes for the lyrics of Gireesh Puthancherry and the songs of the film Kasthoori Pottum and Kando Kando already reached on the top of the charts.
Sathyan, who always give more importance for the title of his films has finalised an appropriate title for his forthcoming film at the last days of shooting. The movie is produced by Antony Perumbavoor under the banner of Aashirwad Films is the first Vishu release of the year.

Annan Thambi
Megastar Mammootty will play a double role in Annan Thambi directed by Anwar Rasheed. Annan Thambi is the third directorial venture of Anwar Rasheed after Rajamanikyam and Chotta Mumbai, which carved a niche for him.
This is the second time Mammootty is playing the lead in Anwar Rasheed film after the highly successful Rajamanikyam. Annan Thambi, scripted by popular scenarist Benny P Nayarambalam, tells the story of two brothers Appu and Achchu. They are the sons of Ravunni, a ballet artiste played by Janardhanan. The twins are born with a difference of one-and-a-half minutes, but totally distinct in character.
Appu is a tough and talkative and Achchu is cool and vocally challenged. Mammootty for the first time dons a mute person's role in his long span of around three decades in films. The makers of the film were searching for a character that Mammootty had not enacted earlier.
The story of the film revolves around Appu and Achchu. Although they are brothers, they never liked each other and their rivalry increases each day. Their parents decide to separate Appu and Achchu, the noisy Appu was sent to their relatives in Pollachi at Tamil Nadu. Appu created a gang and finally became the henchman of a criminal gang in Pollachi.
Achchu, who grows up with his parents, is a good person, always ready to help others. He runs a drama troupe and he is the main artiste of the troupe. Although the two brothers are enemies, their parents and close friends want them to live as loving brothers. The film goes deep into the strength of blood relations and the brothers are forced to realise the strength of their association.
Gopika and Rock 'n' Roll fame Lakshmi Rai are the female leads of the film. Lakshmi Rai appears as Thenmozhi, the love interest of Appu. Gopika as Lakshmi is the wife of Achchu and she is also a co-artiste in the troupe.
Annan Thambi is produced by Shahul Hameed Marikkar and Anto Joseph under the banner of Marikkar Films. Other artistes of the film are Siddique, Janardhanan, Harisri Ashokan, Suraj Venjaramoodu, Salim Kumar, Rajan P Dev, Cochin Haneefa, Kunjan, Manianpilla Raju, Bijukuttan, Master Monu, Master Sonu, KPAC Lalitha, Urmila Unni etc. In his latest film Annan Thambi, Anwar Rasheed has added all the ingredients of a racy entertainer.
The film will grace more than 70 centres in Kerala on Vishu day and is the biggest Vishu release. Its victory will fetch a hat-trick of successes for Anwar Rasheed.

De Ingottu Nokkiye
The film directed by versatile all rounder Balachandra Menon tells the love story of a chief minister. Jayasurya, Jagathy Sreekumar, Salim Kumar, late Bharath Gopi etc. are playing important roles in the film.
Menon is a favourite for family audiences and he is directing a film after an interval of five years. He is presenting a Vishu gift to cinelovers with an entirely different title De Ingottu Nokkiye. Like the title, the film will be very simple with a typical Menon touch. Menon has entertained the audience with his typical humour and has created more than 35 films in his long career of more than two-and-a-half decades.
Menon is not only famous for directing and acting in superhit films but also for introducing new talents. He is presenting a new face, Sara, as a heroine in his latest film De Ingottu Nokkiye.
Sara is born and brought up in Chennai and completed her education from USA. She started her career as a model and has appeared in commercial advertisements for reputed brands. Her modelling career opened her way to filmdom. She is the daughter of Chennai based businessman ML Moorthy and Sreedevi.
Like Balachandra Menon's earlier heroines Shobhabna, Parvathy, Lisi, Karthika, Annie, Rohini, Nandhini (Kausalya), Usha etc., Sara also hopes to become the darling of the industry.
De Ingottu Nokkiye, produced by AV Anoop under the banner of AVA Productions, will find its way to theatres on the second week of April.

Parthan Kanda Paralokam
Although Jayaram films are continuously drowning at the box office for the last couple of years, the actor continued playing lead roles. After the box office disaster of Novel, Jayaram joins his favourite director Anil (of the director duo Anil-Babu) for Parthan Kanda Paralokam.
Although Anjil Oraal Arjunan, the last film of Anil-Jayaram miserably failed at the box office, the duo Anil-Babu earlier created hits like Pattabhishekham, Uthaman, Aramana Veedum Anjoorekkarum etc. with Jayaram.
Parthan Kanda Paralokam tells the story of Parthasarathy, who has close encounters with death. Jayaram plays the role of Parathasarathy, who is said to have come back more than once from the hands of death. Parthasarathy is popularly known as Parthan and lives at Krishnapuram Village, which is known for the ancient Balagopala Temple. Parthan's father was an ardent devotee of Lord Krishna. He died in an accident after returning from a pilgrimage from Guruvayoor Temple.
The good-hearted Parthan is a graduate from Jawaharlal Nehru University. He became an atheist after his father's death and also got associated with naxalite movements.
Parthan has many friends and he always stands for truth and justice. His rebellious nature created a few enemies too. His uncle and the Panchayath president Phalgunan Thampy is the most prominent among them. Thampy's daughter Sathyabhama returns to the village after securing a first rank in LLM and Thampy takes all the precautions to avoid Parthan meeting his daughter.
Mukesh plays a pivotal role as Madhavan, a close friend of Parthasarathy. The female leads of the film are played by Sreedevika and Sona. Other characters of the film are played by popular artistes in the industry like Kottayam Nazir, Salim Kumar, Kalabhavan Mani, Narayanan Nair, Chali Pala and Shohbana Mohan.
The light hearted comedy film scripted by Rajan Kiriyath is produced by Screen Cine Entertainment Company. The makers expect the film will perform well at the box office and will favour Jayaram from his sinking career in Malayalam films.
Jayachandran scores music for Kaithapram's lyrics for the three songs of the film. If Parthan Kanda Paralokam couldn't survive in the box office, it will not only harm the producers but also demote Jayaram as a second hero, character and villain roles in future. The film will release on Vishu day.

The youthful film Positive directed by VK Prakash with music as the backdrop has the right dose of suspense. It is scripted by SN Swamy who is credited for the success of many superhits. Positive tells the story of a group of youngsters — Raju, Winnie and Cherry. The trio teams up with a drummer Udayan and forms a music troupe. Raju was attracted by a young girl Jyothi and a romantic affair blossoms between them. But Jyothi's parents wants her to marry a police officer named Aniyan. At the same time, something serious happens in the life of Raju which also has a lot to do with the others in the troupe.
The key roles of the film are played by Notebook fame Skanda (Suraj), Manikkuttan, Vani Kishore, Jayasurya, debutante's Ramesh Pisharody and Ayilya. Other artistes of the film are Jagathy Sreekumar, Sai Kumar, P Sreekumar, Boban Alummoodan, TG Ravi, Sreejith Ravi, Augustine, Mala Aravindan, Bindu Panicker etc. Since music is the backdrop of the film, the songs by Vayalar Sharath and Alex Paul team will be the highlight. Positive will release in theatres at the end of April, one week after Vishu.

An impressive line-up of new films with reputed directors and actors makes the festival season memorable for cinegoers. Nobody doubts the success of Innathe Chinthavishayam, Annan Thambi and De Ingottu Nokkiye because the films are directed by success guaranteed directors like Sathyan Anthikkad, Anwar Rasheed and Balachandra Menon. Although Innathe Chinthavishayam and De Ingottu Nokkiye are family entertainers, Innathe Chinthavishayam will be a hot favourite because the most versatile superstar Mohanlal's star value will give the film more chances to reach the top.
Anwar Rasheed, who surprised everybody with his directorial debut Rajamanikyam with Mammootty, teams up with the superstar again in Annan Thambi. The pure entertainer will definitely ring the cash registers at the box office.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Back to soul-Vijayaraghavan

Back to soul

Vijayaraghavan plays a soulful character after five years in Innathe Chinthavishayam directed by Sathyan Anthikad, writes KK Moidu.
Vijayaraghavan was always defeated by the screen heroes for the last couple of years. His encounters against the hero with red eyes and brusque dialogues were always welcomed by the audience. But the faiure of a villain is inevitable for the climax of the film.
However, after a long wait of five years, Vijayaraghavan grace the screen with an important role in forthcoming film Innathe Chinthavishayam. His character name in the film is Pitambaram and he is a gulf returnee. His crucial role in the film has ample scope for humour. Former heroine Mohini plays the wife role of Vijayaraghavan.
Vijayaraghavan, the son of veteran theatre personality NN Pillai made his film debut in Kaapalika. The film released in 1973 was based on his father's play of the same title. Although he played a full length role in Surumayitta Kannukal, he came into limelight after playing the role of Ananthan in Mammootty starrer New Delhi.
His role as Ramji Rao in superhit Ramji Rao Speaking directed by Siddque Lal and its sequel Maannaar Mathai Speaking made him noticeable in the industry. He excelled in cop's role in Naaduvazhikal, Commissioner, Mayilattam, CID Moosa etc. He also proved his mettle as an actor in offbeat films like Desadanam, Danny, Mankamma, Neythukaran, Naalu Pennungal etc.
Vijayaraghavan runs his father's theatre and has directed many stage plays. His directorial experience in stage plays helped him a lot in his acting career to understand and study the characters. His father NN Pillai also acted in few films like Godfather and Pingaami. Pillai's immortal role as Anjooran in Godfather is the most favourite for Mimicry artistes and their imitation of the legendary personality made him favourite among the young generation.
Vijayaraghavan played hero, second hero and character roles was typecasted in venomous villain roles for the last couple of years. His villain roles in last year released Mammootty starrer Mayavi, Nasrani and recently released Raudram were noticed by his performance. The gulf returnee role in Sathyan film will be a release for the actor from the regular villain roles. Will he breaks his typecast image with Sathyan's Innathe Chinthavishayam?