An Australian Film Initiative announces an expanded second edition of India’s only annual Australian film festival.

Australian Film Initiative announces an expanded second edition of India’s only annual Australian film festival.

AFFI 2012 will have screenings at multiple cities, a Baz Luhrmann retrospective and the Indian premier of the award-winning documentary on Kiran Bedi ‘Yes,Madam Sir’ by Australian film maker, Megan Doneman

The Honorable Barry O’Farrell MP Premier of New South Wales made the announcement in a special ceremony and press conference in Mumbai the home of popular Indian cinema earlier today.

“India is a passionate film making nation and the 2012 Australian Film Festival of India is a tremendous opportunity to highlight our State’s outstanding film industry and what it has to offer. The festival provides the perfect forum to show off our film making credentials”. Mr O’Farrell said.

Founding directors of the initiative and festival, Anupam Sharma and Peter Castaldi stated that they were overwhelmed by the unprecedented support the festival received across the board. “From the generous backing of Baz Luhrmann, Catherine Martin and Bazmark to universities, film bodies, and filmmakers, everyone has been extremely generous with their support in taking Australian screen culture to one of the most film loving nations in the world – India.”

The festival boasts of widespread support lead by Strategic Partner- Destination NSW along with Australia India Council (DFAT), Screen NSW, Screen Australia, and University of NSW. From private multiplexes, to government venues and leading film schools – “the rich spectrum of support from India also signifies the interest for Australian films here and possible growth of this market as a revenue generator for Australian cinema” Anupam Sharma said speaking at the conference in Mumbai with NSW Premier Mr. O’Farrell where the Promo of the festival by Peter Castaldi was also screened.

The festival is also the first to be held in state of Uttarakhand, fulfilling the initiative objective of taking Australian cinema beyond the metro cities of India. After launching in Dehradun, AFFI will tour the cities of Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai among others. The highlights this year include the first ever Baz Luhrmann retrospective who is known for his love of India and Indian cinema.

Commenting on the 2012 retrospective, Baz Luhrmann said: “Our first visit to India was nearly twenty years ago to research a Hindi interpretation of Benjamin Britten’s opera of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. During that trip, a light bulb went on when we experienced our first Bollywood grand entertainment. The parallel between what Shakespeare did by taking song, music, drama and comedy and mixing all into one cinematic gesture, and the style that is alive in Bollywood (at that time almost unheard of outside of India), was a significant part of the force behind my own creative development and the subsequent evolution of the Red Curtain trilogy: Strictly Ballroom, William Shakespeare’s Romeo+Juliet, and Moulin Rouge.

Baz is finishing The Great Gatsby in US which features the Bollywood Mega Star Amitabh Bachchan. Complimenting the initiative of the festival Baz Luhrmann further said, “I think it is well known that I have had a profound and natural connection to India: to the country, to Indian culture, and, most importantly, to the Indian people. This is not just in cinema and art, but also in terms of spirit. As a result, nothing excites me more than the prospect of our films playing in a special celebration of Australian cinema in the beloved city of Mumbai, and beyond”

“Having just recently worked with the legendary Amitabh Bachchan, I was reminded how organic the connection between the Australian and Indian film industries is, as is the shared cultures of both countries. As someone who has visited India many times, and having drawn inspiration from the cinema and culture of India for my own work, I am very honoured that a retrospective of my films is being celebrated in the Australian Film Festival of India. Wish I could be there, but I am currently putting the finishing touches on The Great Gatsby. I look forward to returning to India soon, and wish you all the best for a great festival. Baz”

The opening film of the festival, YES MADAM, SIR by award winning Australian film maker Megan Doneman is an intriguing portrait of one of the India’s most controversial ‘revolutionaries’- India’s first woman police officer- Kiran Bedi. Filmed in India over 6 years and narrated by Academy Award winning actor Helen Mirren, the film looks at how the very qualities that propel Kiran Bedi to triumph could ultimately spell her downfall. Given its rave reviews during its run on the worldwide festival circuit, YES MADAM, SIR is the most anticipated film of the festival. Indian supporters of AFFI 2012 include FICCI- Industry Partner, Silver city multiplex- Screening Partner and UFO Digital- Digital partner among others.


An Australian Film Initiative was launched last year to market, promote, and distribute Australian films and screen culture in emerging and non-traditional market. Starting with India AAFI is dedicated to deepening cinematic ties between two diverse film cultures and creating a unifying platform for the sharing of stories, ideas and possibilities.


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It was a dream come true to work with Pyarelalji- Pankaj Chaturvedi

It is said that the dreams seen with eyes open often come true and one such dream will turn to reality of Singer Pankaj Chaturvedi. Pankaj had always been passionate about music. He had won many competitions as a child and one of the prestigious awards that came his way was winning Star Trek Talent Hunt competition organized by ABCL in 1995. After having served Baskin Robbins as board of director for 10 years Pankaj is now the executive director of Rich Graviss Company. Pankaj’s debut music album “Aawaaz dil se” will soon be launched by “Eternal Dreams” Music Company. The attractive asset of the album is the music which is composed by the living legend Pyarelal Sharma of Laxmikant-Pyarelal fame. With this album not only Pankaj is making a debut in music industry but the album is also special as Pyarelal returns after a decade of exile as a composer. Following are the excerpts from the exclusive interview of Pankaj Chaturvedi –

How did you meet Pyarelal Sharma?

I am a big fan of Pyarelalji’s music. Once when I met him I summed up the courage and told him that I wish to work with him and I hummed a few lines of a song. After listening to the song, Pyarelalji agreed to work with me. His consent meant everything to me; I was overwhelmed and full of joy. I never thought that a mere word yes and a nod of assent would make me so happy! I hadn’t experienced such happiness even when I won the ABCL Star Trek Talent hunt contest.

Tell us something about your album.

My album “Aawaaz dil se” will be released by music company “Eternal Dreams”. It has 6 songs in it and the lyrics have been penned by Sameer and all the songs have been blended into melodious music by ace composer Pyarelalji. One of the songs in the album is a tribute to my mother, there is one romantic number and also few remix songs in the album.

Why is your album named as “Aawaaz dil se‘’?

The album has been christened by Pyarelalji. He believes that a voice which comes from the heart reaches million other hearts. So the album has been aptly named as “Aawaaz Dil se”. Sing from your heart and reach million other music loving hearts that’s how it ought to be!

How was the experience of working with Pyarelalji?

It was a dream come true for me. The experience was splendid; you cannot seam this experience in words!

In this album “Aawaaz dil se” you have sung with your heart but what else will attract the listeners to this album?

The most attractive thing about the album is that the listeners get to listen to Pyarelalji’s music after a decade. Apart from that, we have recorded with a live orchestra after so many years! Also the album has the song “Main shayar toh nahi” which is been sung by 100 people in chorus. Not one but there are many things that make this album unique.

So will we be seeing you in the role of the playback singer after this album?

I am wishing the same and also that that my album garners much love and appreciation from the audience.

You aspire to sing for which Bollywood actor?

I wish to sing for the world’s beloved bollywood actor Amit ji

Making a video on the album songs is the trend of the day, so have you made a video of any song?

Yes, we have made a video of the song “Maa” and it is directed by “My friend Ganesha” fame director Rajiv Ruia.




Mumbai, 29th October 2012: 92.7 BIG FM, India’s largest radio network and Broadcaster of the Year at the Golden Mikes Awards will light up the lives of its listeners this Diwali with BIG Family Jackpot, India’s biggest family game show on radio. Starting November, 92.7 BIG FM’s listeners in 44 cities will get to be a part of BIG Family Jackpot that will engage and entertain its audience like never before and bring wealth and prosperity to them in the form of exciting prizes.

BIG Family Jackpot allows up to 4 families each day from every city to compete against each other to win assured prizes for every correct answer to questions focusing on city-specific trivia. Including a mega jackpot prize every time the game is played! Listeners will be able to register for BIG Family Jackpot by SMS-ing BIG FAMILY NAME AREA TO 55454.

Along with BIG Family Jackpot, 92.7 BIG FM will further celebrate Diwali by enriching listeners through its afternoon women’s magazine radio show, BIG Memsaab. The show will feature expert advice and tips on how to look good this Diwali and how to entertain guests in style with a Diwali special lineup from BIG Chef Rakesh Sethi.

Speaking about the upcoming Diwali celebrations, A Company Spokesperson said, “Diwali is the biggest festival in India and marks happiness and prosperity in everyone’s lives. Through our multiple initiatives this Diwali, we hope to make the festival a complete celebration for our listeners. BIG Family Jackpot is the first of its kind family game show on radio and will allow people to unite on this occasion and celebrate the spirit of togetherness. Diwali is a festival which has something for everyone and we look forward to make this Diwali bigger and better for all our listeners.”

About Reliance Broadcast Network Ltd.

Reliance Broadcast Network Limited is a multi-media entertainment conglomerate with play across radio, television, intellectual properties, television production and out of home. It is part of the Reliance Group and specializes in creating and executing integrated media solutions for brands. It houses the following verticals: 92.7 BIG FM – India’s largest FM Network with 45 stations, reaching over 4 crore Indians each week; BIG CBS Networks – A joint venture with CBS Studios International offering 3 English Entertainment Channels – Prime, Love, Spark and a regional general entertainment Channel for the PCHP region – Spark Punjabi; BIG MAGIC – a regional general entertainment channel for the Hindi heartland; BIG PRODUCTIONS – the television content production division, catering to the creative needs of the Indian television landscape and BIG STREET – which acquires and markets long term premium out of home inventory. The Company also distributes Bloomberg UTV, India’s premier business news channel as part of its television bouquet. For more information log on to:

For further Information:

Richie Mehta | Manager, Public Relations | Reliance Broadcast Network Limited

9920020730 |


SAB TV announces Jeannie and Juju
Starring Gia Manek & Ali Asgar show premieres on 5
It’s the season for some otherworldly romance on SAB TV as the channel brings you a
fascinating show about the love of a genie for a regular mortal. Owning a genie is everyone’s
dream since their childhood but how does one believe their eyes and ears when they actually
have a gorgeous genie appear in front of them? Getting your wishes granted is one thing, here,
the hero of our show falls in love with the quirky Jeannie and what follows is more comical than
romantic. SAB TV’s latest show Jeannie Aur Juju is an Indian adaptation of the supremely
popular American sitcom of the 80’s with a fantasy premise called ‘I dream of Jeannie’. The
show used to be aired in India, in the 90’s, after being dubbed in Hindi.
Sticking mostly to the original content and story of the show originally created and produced by
the legendary author Sidney Sheldon, the Indian adaptation on SAB TV will show a pilot
liberating a genie from two thousand years of imprisonment inside the proverbial bottle, and
the two eventually falling in love. It’s love at first sight for the genie and the realisation of
glorious freedom after 2000 years of incarceration. Having been trapped in a time warp, she is
gifted with eternal youth. With Ali Asgar playing Vicky, the pilot and Giaa Manek playing
Jeannie, the show promises to be charmingly funny and irresistibly cute.
Commenting on the launch of the new show, Mr. Anooj Kapoor,EVP and Business Head SAB TV
said, “Its a romantic comedy and is sure to win hearts instantly. The concept will appeal to all ages
and it’s a complete family entertainer. The kids would love the magic and mischief while the adults
can relish the emotional layers and the humour. And all this is further enhanced by special effects
and entertaining visual gimmickry.”
Page 2
In the show, Vicky is constantly caught between a rock and a hard place. He has nosy
neighbours. and friends who constantly feel that Vicky owns something suspicious that’s
responsible for all the sudden magical changes in his life. Vicky tries in vain to keep Jeannie
away from prying eyes only to complicate matters further worse. Meanwhile, we discover Vicky
is already engaged and to make matters worse, his fiancée is his boss’s overzealous daughter!
The hilarious chaos as a result has everyone running after Vicky to try and find out his secrets
but Jeannie saves the day with her magic tricks and gets Vicky out of trouble.
Gia Manek and Ali Asgar are both popular names on Indian Television. Gia has experimented
with daily soaps and even reality shows and won the hearts of her audience in every avatar. As
for Ali Asgar, he has spent more than a decade doing a variety of shows and is now one of the
most sought after television actors of today. He is the winner of a popular stand-up comedy
show and is rib tickling when it comes to his comic timing and rendition of humour. Gia and Ali
are supported by a host of acclaimed artists like Kurush Deboo, Shoma Anand,Jatin Mukhi etc
who play pivitol roles in the show.
In keeping with SAB TV’s belief that “Asli Maaza toh SAB Ke saath aata hai”, gather all
generations of your family and enjoy this adorable show with its mischievous charm and
humour. Welcome this new flavour of comedy on SAB TV every Monday-Friday at 9:30 p.m.
Pradnya Dike
| +91 9920718428 | pradnyad@se


Tia Bajpai gets catty for 1920 : Evil Returns

Actress Tia Bajpai has already impressed quite a few as the first glimpses of Vikram Bhatt’s 1920: Evil Returns saw its release and for those wondering the inspiration behind Tia’s spooky act, the actress confirms she got under the skin of character by hooking herself onto wildlife videos on Youtube.

Confirms Tia “I started observing a lot of animals. In fact I actually saw a lot of videos on YouTube where these cats, lions and tigers fought it out with each other. If you notice my act in the film, quite a few expressions of mine have come from these deadly animals. The way they growl or the look they give when on the hunt or their faces turning really scary with narrowing eyes and all; all of it makes for an unpleasant sight. This is what makes my character as well and you can say that these animals have actually helped me perform for the film. Resultantly, I developed an animal instinct.”

After the stupendous success of his last directorial venture, the 3D horror Raaz 3,Vikram Bhatt now dons the producer cum writer’s hat for 1920-Evil Returns, which marks the dir

ectorial debut of Bhushan Patel.Starring Aftab Shivdasani and Tia Bajpai, BVG Films and ASA Production‘s 1920- Evil Returns, a tale of mysterious evil, merciless killings and possession comes to a theatre near you 2nd November,2012.

Rajendra Ganotra is the Editor of Spicy Stars Mumbai

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