In the new Bollywood film Happy Ending, Yudi (played by actor Saif Ali Khan) suffers from commitment phobia. He is constantly on a lookout for casual dating—and he gets plenty of opportunities.
Complementing Yudi’s character is Aanchal (portrayed by Ileana D’Cruz), a writer of romance novels, who ironically shuns serious relationships.
It is their commitment-phobic attitude that made the use of Tinder a perfect match for the movie’s promotions.
Three days before the movie’s release on Nov. 21, their profiles were created on Tinder.
Happy Ending’s marketing team decided to capitalise on Tinder’s growing popularity in India. The location-based dating app made inroads into the country a year ago, and is a big hit among legions of urban youngsters.
A spokesperson said that Tinder helped the audience in “relating with the movie’s protagonists”—even before the film released.
Bollywood is increasingly coming up with out-of-box ideas to go beyond Twitter and Facebook for film promotions. Bollywood stars are taking a shine to another digital platform—YouTube.
It is not every day that a celebrity from Bollywood responds positively to a request for an interview across the miles in Doha. Not when the actress is about to release a star cast film and on the heels of a myriad projects. I considered myself fortunate when Kalki Koechlin agreed to an exclusive interview for Community.
Surprisingly, the voice on the other end of the line was friendly and totally unpretentious. “I’ve never been to Doha yet, unfortunately,” she said, “Of course, I’d love to visit. Who knows maybe we could come to promote a film there soon.”
Kalki isn’t like other celebrities who sometimes let stardom get the better of them. Her story is one that sets her apart from the crowd. For starters, she doesn’t have family ties or connections that would make it easy to land the laudable roles she’s been acquiring on merit.
Born to French parents, who have lived in Pondicherry, India, for more than 40 years, Kalki speaks Tamil as fluently as she does French. She says, “India has always been home.”
Perhaps, it is her unconventional looks that landed her a debut role in the film Dev D in 2009. But there was no mistaking the enormous talent. After playing the role of a prostitute in the film, she was later told by the filmmaker that other contenders had overdone the part during the audition, where as she was the only one who understood the role in its entirety. She won a Filmfare award for Best Supporting Actress for the film in 2010.
In retrospect, film producer Dinesh Vijan feels that investing more time on “Lekar Hum Deewana Dil” would have perhaps helped in favour of the film’s box office performance.
The movie, which marked the Bollywood debut of Armaan Jain and Deeksha Seth, turned out to be a dud.
Asked what went wrong with the movie, Vijan said: “I think we should have spent more time on it…it was a learning experience. While the film was on post-production, I was abroad with the team of ‘Happy Ending’ and was simultaneously managing both the things. I don’t want to blame anyone for this.”
The film, which released earlier this year, was directed by Arif Ali.
Vijan was recently caught amidst reports of a rift with his business partner Saif Ali Khan. But he says they share a happy and a healthy relationship.
“I know Saif for more than 10 years and our bonding is very strong. (Only now) The films that we want to produce together, we will do it together and the films that I want to produce on my own, I’ll produce it separately.”
Bollywood actor Saif Ali Khan like many other actors has gone through rough patches. Be it films or personal life. In a recent interview with a leading publication, the actor confessed that his first marriage (to Amrita Singh) was too early and a little unfair to the people in his life.
The publication quoted Saif as saying, “I think my mind was not fully grounded in the choices I was making. Even my first marriage was too early and a little unfair to the people in my life, including Amrita.”
“You feel different at 40. You feel more grounded because you’re no longer running around in your head. I think over the last few years, I’ve also gained maturity with occurrences like my father passing away. I’ve become more concerned about my mother, my children, my marriage…and I think that kind of maturity shows on your face with time.”
For his films and the box office failure of his last two films -Bullett Raja and Humshakals he said, “I had just had two hits (Race and Cocktail) and wanted to try something different. I thought Bullett Raja would be a nice rustic role and a comedy with Sajid Khan would be something that the whole of India enjoys. But these things go wrong.”