Vidur’s Telly Tales – 4

Yash Raj Films TV


January 2010 marks advent of Yash Raj Films on the firmament of television industry. They launched five shows simultaneously on Sony TV and changed the scenario of the industry. Though their first foray in TV industry was with a show called “ Khazana ” on Door Darshan ”, but this time it is totally different game altogether. The making and acting is so sleek that you feel as if you are watching a film. Quite a few of my students are working in all the YRF serials.

Mahi Way : As per TRP, this one is their most successful show. My student Viraf Patel is doing a very prominent part in it. He was Mr. India 2005 and is a famous model. He did many campaigns before this serial and now he will consolidate his place further after this show.

Rishta . Com : My student Bhisham Mansukhani is playing a prominent part in this serial. He, like Viraf, also started with modeling and did a serial “ Kahiin To Hogaa ” for Balaji Telefilms. He was there with Rajiv Khandelwal. After a brief hiatus he is doing this show.

Seven : This show is getting rave reviews in media. General public is also liking it. While watching it you would feel as if you are watching a sci-fi film. Special effects are marvelous and praiseworthy. An old student of mine, Himanshu Malhotra is working in it. He is playing a saviour who possesses power of fire. Himanshu was part of “ Zee Cine star Ki Khoj ” and after that he did a film “ Mr. Khujli ” with Mr. Raj Sippy. Unfortunately film is yet to get a proper release. Himanshu is playing his part brilliantly in the show.

Powder : This show is talk of the nation. It has brilliant and powerful performances. Editing is tight and again it has a film like feel. Narendra Jetley, who was in batch no. 32 of “ Kreating Charakters ” is doing a role in this show. I remember his first day in the class. He had lots of questions and I can say, he was bit confused. But he worked hard and after completing the course he is now in complete control of himself. I can easily say that he has now evolved and has become a thinking actor. After this show he is doing Sagar Bellary’s new film.

Another student, who is working in this show is Poonam Gibson. She was in the batch no. 2 of “ Kreating Charakters ”.

Lift Kara De : This is a chat show anchored by Karan Johar. So many celebrity students of mine are going to take part in this show as celebrity guests. Saif Ali Khan, Hritik Roshan, Kareena Kapoor and Katrina Kaif are few of them.

It is a very heartening situation. You switch on a channel and there are chances that you will bump into one or the other student of mine.


Vidur’s Telly Tales – 3

Reality Shows of Television


These days there are surfeit of reality shows on satellite television channels. After posting two successive blogs on my blog space about my relationship with the television industry, I suddenly realized that I do have couple of students working in these shows also. Here I am giving details of some of the prominent shows.

Nach Baliye : Till date they have done 4 seasons. Sachin Pilgaonkar won the title in the first season. But after that three successive titles winners were my students. Hussain Kuwajarwala, Amir Ali and Shaleen Bhanot won titles for 2nd, 3rd and 4th seasons respectively. I trained them for diction or /and acting, but because of their dancing skills they won the coveted title and got huge money also. Now they are working in various serials as anchors and lead actors.

Fear Factor : They have done 2 seasons till date. My student Urvashi Sharma took part in the first season. She got eliminated in the last but one round. She was sent to us by “ Tips ” and she was in the 9th batch of Kreating Charakters. She was already a big and established model before she took admission. After completing the course she was launched by “ Tips ” in “ Naqaab ”. She was the only female co-star of Akshaye Khanna and Bobby Deol in that film and performed brilliantly. She got rave reviews for her début performance. Unfortunately the film tanked and her career took a temporary beating. She is not a television star but she participated in “ Fear Factor : Khatron Ke Khiladi – Season 1 ”. She left her mark in that programme too. Currently Urvashi is doing a Priyadarshan film.

Bigg Boss : 3rd season of this programme ended recently. This season will always be remembered because of Mr. Amitabh Bachchan. Aditi Govitrikar, who is a student of mine, was there as an inmate. I used to watch the show quite often. Towards the grand finale, a feeling of déjà vu engulfed me. It is very uncanny that like Urvashi Sharma, she too was eliminated in the last but one round. She was a strong contender but alas, got eliminated when she was very close to the goal. She was ousted towards the end, after wading through the rough water valiantly.

Shamita Shetty was another inmate of the house. She is my student since “ Mohabbatein ” days. I trained her along with Uday Chopra, Jimmy Sheirgill, Jugal Hansraj, Preeti Jhangiani and Kim Sharma for that movie. She left the show mid way because of her sister Shilpa Shetty’s marriage. Like Urvashi Sharma and Aditi Govitrikar, she too is not a television artiste, but took part in the above mentioned show.

More and more reality shows are being planned and I hope that many more students of mine would be taking part in those shows.


Vidur’s Telly Tales – 2

Mrunal Jain & Pooja Bose : Krishna & Radha Of Ekta Kapoor’s Mahabharat


After the arrival and advent of Veebha Anand in “ Balika Badhu ”, the most important new actor to hit the T.V. Industry was Mrunal Jain. He was signed by Ekta Kapoor’s Balaji Telefilms for the role of Bhagwan Krishna in “ Mahabharat ”. Later on when “ Mahabharat ” went off the air, he did a daily soap “ Bandini ” also for Ekta Kapoor.

I remember the day, when he came for admission in Kreating Charakter. He was in batch no.21. He completed the training and started his journey as an actor. It was a journey full of confusion and uncertainty. In the beginning he was very unsure of himself. He was called for audition by Ekta Kapoor and got selected for the role of Krishna because of his peculiar smile. After signing the contract he came to me for the preparation of characterization of Bhagwan Krishna. Preparing for this role was difficult because so many actors had already essayed the role of Krishna on silver screen. Abhi Bhattacharya, Shahoo Modak, Sachin Pilgaonkar and Vikram Gokhale, all have played this role with much success. Nitish Bhardwaj played this role in B. R. Chopra’s “ Mahabharat ” with so much success, finesse and aplomb that people thought that he was the ultimate Krishna. And I had seen all of them. So preparing one more Krishna was really difficult, really a daunting task. I worked with Mrunal on the body language of Krishna first. Then we worked on dialogue delivery and finally on the diction. I worked with him on Sanskrit diction and I must say that he worked really hard and perfected shlokas of “ Gita ”. The result was very satisfying because he was accepted by the classes and masses alike.

After shooting for few days, he told me that Pooja Bose,the girl playing Radha in that serial, is facing some difficulty. I told him to bring Pooja along with him for few days. Pooja Bose came and participated in the workshop with Mrunal Jain. She was not trained and hence was finding it difficult to emote. She is extremely beautiful and petite. She is a cultured Bengali girl. Mrunal and Pooja worked very hard for their roles and got success, which rightfully belongs to them.


Vidur’s Telly Tales – 1

Veebha Anand : T.V.’s Most Recent Success Story


Since I started my blog, I wanted to write about T.V. Industry and about some of my students who are working in that industry. I resisted the temptation for some time because it is impossible to keep track of all the shows on various channels. But the advent of Yash Raj Films Television changed the scenario completely. Suddenly TV industry became big and respectable. I thought that I should occasionally write about the important events and happenings in the television industry in my blog. When I look back into the past, I find that biggest success story of 2009 was the rise of Veebha Anand in a serial called “ Balika Vadhu ” on Colours channel.

Veebha Anand, a young girl from Dehradun, Uttarakhand, joined Kreating Charakters few years back. She left the institute without completing the training. I was heartbroken as I always feel that whether good or bad, one should and must complete the training. She started doing bit roles and later on realized the futility of her action and then leaving all her small assignments, came back to me , rejoined the ongoing batch and completed the training. She was in batch no. 19. She was sent to audition for “ Balika Vadhu ” by us and got selected. Colours channel was increasingly getting popular and very soon “ Balika Badhu ” was talk of the town. It was getting popular by each passing day and it reached its zenith when Veebha was widowed. She enacted the scene with panache and finesse of an accomplished actor and she didn’t look back after that. Her popularity skyrocketed by leaps and bounds and now she is a well known name in television industry. She also did a horror show “ Stree ” after that.

Recently Kavita Kaushik compared her with legendary Smita Patil. From a small town like Dehradun in Uttarakhand, to the metropolis of Mumbai, It is a journey well traveled. It is just a beginning, but a remarkable beginning indeed.


Vidur’s Film Diary – December 2009

As the world enters into 2010, and everyone is enjoying the celebrations, I am sitting in the study of my residence in Mumbai and taking stock of the happenings in the film industry in December 2009. It is depressing to remember deaths at this juncture, but whatever happened last month is the stark reality of life. And when we are on the threshold of a new year, why not remember those people who were with us only few days ago. They left us for another journey. Their body is gone but memory still lingers on.


Chandrakala : This yesteryear actor passed on December 04. She was a small time starlet, who worked in films like “ Teesari Manzil ”. Later on, she produced “ Pyar Hi Pyar ”. This film will be remembered because of the unique pairing of Dharmendra and Vyjayanthimala. Its musical score by Shankar-Jaikishan was hugely popular. Title song “ dekha hai teri ankhon me pyar hi pyar beshumar ” sung by Mohammad Rafi was hugely popular in those days. She was also one of the producer’s of Hrishikesh Mukherji directed “ Anand ”. This Rajesh Khanna and Amitabh Bachchan starrer is still popular and is considered a classic.

Bina Rai : She passed on December 06. I read about her sad demise in papers,and was overwhelmed with emotions. Memories of the eternal songs filmed on her rushed to me. As I have stated in my earlier blog about Lata Mangeshkar, I started listening songs first. Watching movies came to me later on. I remember even today the immortal Lata- Rafi duet from “ Taj Mahal ”, “ jo wada kiya wo nibhana padega ”. This song had many versions in the movie and all were hits. Sitting in my room in Krishna Kunj , my ancestral house in Deoria, I heard it for the first time and was mesmerized and emotionally stunned. That feeling is beyond description. Another gems from the same movie “ paon chhoo lene do phoolon ko inayat hogi ”, “ jurm-e-ulfat pe hamen log saza dete hain ”, “ jo baat tujhme hai, teri tasveer me nahin ” used to be played regularly on Radio Ceylone. To remind today’s generation, it would be pertinent to mention that Taj Mahal’s music was scored by Hritik Roshan’s grandfather Roshan.

Another Lata Mangeshkar gem, which was filmed on Bina Rai, and which used to haunt me in my childhood is “ ye zindagi usi ki Hai jo kisi ka ho gaya, pyar hi me kho gaya ”. This song from “ Anarkali ” used to haunt connoisseurs of Hindi film music of my generation. Needless to add that Bina Rai’s face was very important reason behind the success of above mentioned songs. Her ethereal beauty mesmerized the audience and gave them a beautiful star-actor. She was married to actor Prem Nath and she worked with him in many films. But her most successful pair was with Pradeep Kumar. “ Taj Mahal ” , “ Anarkali ” and “ Ghoonghat ”, all were jubilee hits. She won Filmfare award for best actress for “ Ghoonghat ” and that to against Madhubala, who was nominated in the same category for “ Mughal-e-Azam ”. Her last film was “ Dadima ” in 1966. In this film she was paired opposite Ashok Kumar.

Bina Rai is survived by two sons : Prem Kishan and Kailash Nath; and two grandchildren : Akansha and Siddharth Malhotra. Akansha made her film debut few years back with a film called “ Yeh Mahabbat Hai ”. Siddharth is making her directorial debut with Karan Johar Production’s “ Love You Maa ” starring Kajol, Kareena Kapoor and Arjun Rampal. Incidentally Prem Kishan also made his debut as an actor with Rajshri Production’s “ Dulhan Wohi Jo Piya Man Bhaye ”.

It is very sad that she is no more with us. Her body is gone but she will always remain in our hearts through her immortal films.

New Releases & Me

First Week – December 04

Radio………………………….Shenaz Treasuryvalla

Second Week – December 11

Rocket Singh…………………Ranbir Kapoor
………………………………….Shazhan Padamsee
………………………………….Aashish Singh

Third Week – December 17

World Cup 2011……………….x

Fourth Week – December 25

3 idiots………………………….Kareena Kapoor
Trump Card…………………….x

Fifth Week – December 31

Bolo Ram………………………..Rishi Bhutani
Accident on Hill Road………….x
Raat Gayi Baat Gayi…………….x

Total 9 films were released in December. Out of these my 6 students are there in 4 films. Out of these 6 students – 5 are are actors and one Aashish Singh is executive producer.

News This Month

1- Dev Anand’s landmark studio Anand in Pali Hill, Bandra has been demolished to make way for a swanky 8 storyed building.

2- Aamir Khan’s film “ Peepli Live ” directed by Anusha Rizvi, has made it to prestigious Sundance Film Festival.

Happenings & Events

1- Mohammad Rafi’s 85th birth anniversary was celebrated on December 27.

2- Sulochana, veteran Hindi and Marathi actor was awarded Maharashtra Bhushan on December 01.

3- Lata Mangeshkar was conferred Insignia of Officier de la Legionne d’Honneur by French government on December 04.

4- Mubarak Begam and Pyarelal were given first Mohammad Rafi award by Lal Krishna Advani to commemorate late singers 85th anniversary.

This is all for this month. I shall see you next month.



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