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Thursday, December 09, 2021

Tandoori Takes,High Stakes

All because SRK's wife 'Gauri is a Punjaban' and he has received 'immense love from Punjab'.

Written by Jaskiran Kapoor |
November 7, 2011 2:25:40 am

The first edition might have been a blur,but the second one will stay in the memories for a long time because it had Shah Rukh Khan shouting “kabaddi,kabaddi”. At the inauguration of the World Cup Kabaddi Championship event this week,King Khan was the guest of honour,and performer. All because his wife “Gauri is a Punjaban” and he has received “immense love from Punjab”.

Post his first high profile press meet in Punjab this June for Ra.One,it’s rumoured that Khan will return for ‘Don 2’. In a first for the actor,Salman Khan also held a media meet for Ready in Chandigarh. Besides,while he was struggling with the facial nerve disorder before the release of ‘Bodyguard’,he made it a point to send Kareena Kapoor here to promote the film,who kept gushing how Punjabis made her a star after she played Geet in ‘Jab We Met’.

For his upcoming film Rockstar,it is learnt that Ranbir Kapoor made a request to his PR managers to put Chandigarh on the publicity circuit,followed by Amritsar. “We wanted to experience the earthiness and the rustic feel of Punjab,” explains director Imtiaz Ali.

Even Akshay Kumar stopped by the holy city of Amritsar to pay his respects at the Golden Temple,along with the stars of Speedy Singhs. Shahid Kapur and Sonam Kapoor-starrer Mausam,which was shot extensively in Punjab,made news when the two met with fans and mediapersons at the Chandigarh Air Force Base. Not so long ago,the entire team of Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara (ZNMD) rocked the city.

Their love for large-hearted Punjabis and butter chicken notwithstanding,it’s the big bucks and huge market size that’s driving the tinsel town here. Darshan Aulakh of Darshan Aulakh Productions,who facilitated the shoot of Yash Chopra films in Punjab agrees that the region has lately proved to be an ideal revenue model for filmmakers because of its infrastructure,rising multiplexes,virgin landscape and fan base.

Trade website points at crores that Punjab market rakes in: Ra.One made history by making two crore in a single day,ZNMD and Bodyguard,too,made crores over the weekend here as compared to other markets like Rajasthan,Bihar and West Bengal. “Based on collections and the factthat single-screen theatres still run here,Punjab is the most important territory after UP and Delhi because these are the predominant Hindi speaking belts,” says Danny of Add On Entertainment,a Mumbai-based PR company,which brought cast and crew of films like Teen Thay Bhai,Sahib Biwi Aur Gangster and ZNMD to Chandigarh. “The city is well planned,crime-free,has great facilities,” adds Danny.

Nav Nirman Singh of Enn Enn Communications,whose company handles events for filmmakers Anurag Kashyap and Raj Kumar Gupta,credits the rise in number of acting schools and film workshops for establishing a film culture here. Anurag Kashyap and Leslie Udwin held the first shows of their films,Dev.D and West is West respectively,here. There may be another reason,says Danny. “Stars are a nobody in big cities. So,they explore new cities where they can reap the benefits of stardom.” No wonder then that Jimmy Sheirgill and Mahie Gill exploit their home-and-roots turf whenever they come to Chandigarh. MTV’s Raghu Ram feels there is something irresistible here. “Punjab never disappoints us,” he sums it up.

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