Bollywood news



Ujjwal V. Thengdi is a committed filmmaker possessing the concepts for making innovative & realistic films. In his debut Marathi film “VAZIR” (A Queen in a Chess Game) itself he succeeded in bagging 6 Maharashtra State & 3 Filmfare Awards. Not to mention that he received 3 independent awards

His 2nd feature film (Hindi) “IN THE NAME OF TAI” (‘Tai’ means elder sister) is on the verge of release. He has once again taken up a realistic cause inspired by Social Activist Navleen Kumar who was protecting farmers’ land from the land mafia barons. Caught up with him for his original thoughts!


“My 2ND Hindi feature film IN THE NAME OF TAI is a female orientated story based on a dreadful tragedy of a dedicated and educated village woman (lawyer), respectfully known as Tai (Tai means elder sister) who chooses a valiant but a perilous avenue. She unfortunately suffers sexually (not rape!) as well as psychologically in her personal life, yet altruistically battles for a common cause of protecting acres of land owned by the village farmers and deprived poverty stricken village community from the clutches of the corridors of Power, Builders, (The land sharks) and of course not forgetting the voracious politicians. I have made this film to generate awareness amongst young and energetic generation of today and to let them know what’s waiting for them in future.”


“The film leans towards a realistic value in every realistic situation of life obviously conveying a strong message for one and all. Regarding my expectations from the film, I would say that my film being very emotional and hard hitting depicts a parallel government run by hardcore politicians. The masses should know and understand the truth behind such tragedies occurring more often.”


“IN THE NAME OF TAI” is a film with a difference. It is a film with strong performances. It is a film with a vision. It is a sensible film with no nonsense. It is a film with visuals and of course good melodious music and it has characters all befitting the storyline whether they have spoken lines or emoting only through expressions and gestures.

The film is releasing in June and I am the producer – director besides handling 12 other segments viz. story, screenplay, dialogues, music, lyrics, vocalist, choreography, action, acting et al. Don’t you think I deserve a place in the guinness book of world records?” (and he laughs)


“IN THE NAME OF TAI” has been co-produced by Palvie (Babita Dhap), Kalpesh Mehta & Constantinho Graciano Rebebello, DOP Ajay Arya, editor Dilip Kotalgi (JO JEETA WOHI SIKANDER fame).

It has artist of repute like Dr. Nishiganda Wad, G K Asrani, Mahesh Thakur, Dr. Vilas Ujawane, Parag Azgaonkar, Parag Jadhav, Kalpesh Mehta, Suzanne Bernert, Jai Kumar Nair (DID fame), Palvie (Babita Dhap) & Ujjwal V. Thengdi. I have discovered 45 new talents for this film and my latest new finds are Shilpa Waghambare, Tanvi Gada (both dancers), Basudeo Kumar & Raquel Rebello. Just wait and watch out for them. I pray they succeed.”


“It will again be a Hindi film. Sometimes I feel I am a magician who can pull out a rabbit through his hat. But this time I want, I repeat I want a great actress of yesterday, today and tomorrow to say “yes” to my project which will prove to be a lifetime role for her.

If you ask me who is she? I would say she is Madhuri Dixit. As I address the Master Blaster as Sachin Centurikar and not Tendulkar I am speechless but I would still like to say that she is Sriram ji ki most talented Madhuri ji!!”


“It’s you media guys who have highlighted me and brought me into limelight with my Hindi feature film “IN THE NAME OF TAI” (‘Tai’ means elder sister) and as stated above it is inspired by Social Activist Navleen Kumar. In this film I have handled 12 segments including producing, directing and acting and now I am being pushed more and more into the acting arena in negative roles in outside banner. Yes it’s true, your information is indeed correct. As of late I have really been simultaneously offered 2 negative roles in 2 big projects by 2 topmost banners. I am considering them no doubt but if at all then I will accept them only after the June release of my most talked about ambitious film. Period!!”


Nokia and Carl Zeiss extend partnership to continue setting standards in smartphone imaging

Espoo, Finland – Nokia and Carl Zeiss today announced that the exclusive partnership between the two companies, which has resulted in some of the industry’s best camera smartphones such as the Nokia N8 and the Nokia 808 PureView, has been extended.

The Nokia 808 PureView, which starts rolling out in May, combines high-performance Carl Zeiss optics with Nokia developed algorithms and a super-high resolution sensor to set a new standard in high-end smartphone imaging.

“Carl Zeiss was a crucial partner in the creation of the first PureView experience,” said Jo Harlow, executive vice president of Nokia Smart Devices. “The benefits of our ongoing collaboration will be more PureView innovation and further advancements in smartphone imaging in coming months and years.”

Michael Kaschke, CEO, Carl Zeiss AG: “When joining forces with Nokia in 2005, we wanted to push the boundaries of mobile photography. Looking back at seven years of successful partnership, we are proud of the innovations and outstanding products created in this shared journey. Today we are celebrating the extension of our collaboration with a new technology that sets another real benchmark in this sector.”

About Nokia
Nokia is a global leader in mobile communications whose products have become an integral part of the lives of people around the world. Every day, more than 1.3 billion people use their Nokia to capture and share experiences, access information, find their way or simply to speak to one another. Nokia’s technological and design innovations have made its brand one of the most recognized in the world. For more information, visit

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p and close with Dipti Mehta, winner of the ‘Best Actress’ Award for her performance in LIFE! CAMERA ACTION…

For most actors, to win an award for their outstanding work in film or TV is a dream they can only hope will come to pass. Screen legends such as Madhuri Dixit, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and many others illustrate what a long history Indian actors have in the world. Despite this history and the number of Indian actors based outside of the US who continue gracing the silver screen today, only a handful of Indians can be counted among those who’ve won International Awards for acting.

Mumbai born, New York based Indian actress Dipti Mehta won her first interntional award in the ‘Best Actress’ category for her performance in the highly praised internationally acclaimed award sweeper drama- feature film, LIFE! CAMERA ACTION… produced & directed by Rohit Gupta, that most recently snapped up nine most popular and special board of directors awards presented by the jury at the 28th Goldie Film Awards held in Florida. Without a doubt first of many to come for Mehta, here is what she had to say about her experience working in LIFE! CAMERA ACTION…

Can you tell readers a bit about your role in the film LIFE! CAMERA ACTION…?
DM: I play Reina a girl who is on a pursuit to make her dreams come true with the approval of her parents. She has to deal with internal and external challenges to find the true path, to make her dreams come true. While playing the role one thing that I kept bringing to life was the simplicity and truth that Reina lives by.

·You have just won your first award. How does it feel?
DM: It is great to be acknowledged for what you know to be your true self expression. It feels like you have started to arrive.

. LIFE! CAMERA ACTION… is your first lead role in a feature film, is that correct? Can you tell us how you came across this role?
DM: Yes, it is my first lead role in a feature film. Rohit and I met as someone had suggested my name for this role, but in that meeting he told me,”I was not right for the part, and maybe in future we would work together on another project”. I still got an audition call from his assistant. I thought it was probably a mistake that I had been called in, but decided to go anyway. Since I had nothing to gain or loose, I went without dressing up like an actor (to impress). I was wearing regular shirt and jeans and no make up at all. Rohit did not recognize me at first and then when I introduced myself he said “you look very different today.” Anyways I auditioned and he offered me the part.

· You play ‘Reina’ in the film. How close is that character in the film to you?
DM: Reina’s character is quiet close to me. I had to struggle with my parents to pursue my dreams of being an actor. I was not allowed to work in professional theater so I kept doing experimental theater. At the same time I went to graduate school and got what they wanted. So while Reina and I both had our own struggles to make our dreams come true the paths we chose were not exactly the same. Reina chose the path of following her dream at any cost after getting kicked out by her parents, fortunately my parents didn’t throw me out. So that being on your own part is unique to Reina but we both struggled with parents and society for our dreams.

· What do you feel that LIFE! CAMERA ACTION… is saying about today’s times at large? What do you think is the universal quality of the film that has made it so well received all over the world?
DM: In my opinion ‘Life! Camera Action’ stands for “Nothing is impossible”. Any one can relate to the characters and the story in today’s times. The unbroken and untouched spirit of a human being when the times are completely against her. And most of us have had road blocks in our lives, some of us took a de-tour and some of us removed the blocks and kept walking in our own path. The film talks about this journey through “impossible”, a journey that is every man’s journey and still so unique to each. Also it talks about parent and daughter relationship. The film has many under tones and sub texts. It’s a story in a story that has a universal and timeless spirit. Parents are our source an

· Please tell us where you are originally from and what inspired you to get into film and TV?
DM: I am from Mumbai-India. Ah! that is a difficult question. I have always wanted to be an actor. When I was in second grade I was in a play. And I along with many other kids was taken up-to the stage. All the other kids started to cry or panic and I felt like I was at the top of the world. I must have known then in my little kid brain that this was my destiny. I have never known stage fear. I kept being chosen for school plays. I directed a play on Krishna for my class in the fourth grade. So it was a simple wish in a child’s mind that kept getting stronger and stronger, and soon that is the only thing I wanted or dreamed of. Not the answer you are looking for, is it?

· What is the hardest part about acting? Is the process different working in NYC as compared to Mumbai?
DM: The hardest part about acting is the fact that if you ACT you rarely get the part. It is through the truth that you play in the character that you nail it.

Mumbai was very different compared to NY. I still had to audition and get the parts but a lot gets done when you know the right people. Also most female parts are for Indians so there was a large pool of possible roles that I could audition for. The most important thing that was different was every thing is paid and paid really well. In NY if you are a new actor without an agent and a manager you are in for a hard time. There is lot of non-paid work that you will land up doing. I did too. Even after you get an agent and a manager it is quiet a job to get paid jobs.

There is lot more work in Mumbai, considering Mumbai produces more films then anywhere else in the world and TV channels are booming like crazy so there is lot of work. Although NY gives you more opportunities to create your own work. I do like the spirit that NY brings, while in Mumbai it is about who you know in NY even without having any contacts based on your talent and spirit you can book really good work.

· What’s next for you?
DM: My next project that I am really excited about is “Yaatra” a 30 mins short film. I play the character of Priya. The film is based on a true story and is very close to my heart. It is a touching and a moving story. I have also produced this film which will be completed this summer. The other project that is in the works right now is my one woman show “Honour”. “Honour” takes us through the journey of a teenage girl and her mother in the red light district of Mumbai. Both the pieces are written by me. I have also finished working in two short films, one of which has been selected in the Short film corner at Cannes film festival.

· Was there any other career you were/are interested in besides acting?
I do write and direct. But in terms of interest, the only career that I am interested in is acting. I do work in cancer research and that is my second career, sustaining career as I call it.

· What do directors/talent hunters look for in an actor?
Every director is different and it wouldn’t be correct for me to generalize. The one thing I have noticed that has worked for me; is the excitement and energy. Most directors I have worked with hired me for my enthusiasm and will to commit and push myself to unknown places and heights. This again is not my opinion it is just my experience.

· What advice would you give to actors starting off?
DM: The only other thing I can say is, if you really believe in your dreams, nothing can stop you. YOU get to say, what your destiny is and no one else. If someone tells you otherwise; well move on, and find someone who will believes in you or else walk alone. Watch Life! Camera Action…if you need any further boost (laughs)…

Watch Dipti Mehta at the Premiere of Life! Camera Action…


Rajendra Ganotra is the Editor of Spicy Stars Mumbai

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