Plus: Kunal Kapoor loses trademark beard, Katrina Kaif to do Knight and Day remake and Zee Aflam film channel showcases Saif Ali Khan.
Esha Gupta 'de-glams' for role
The actress Esha Gupta says her friends advised her against doing the role of a police officer in Prakash Jha's new political thriller Chakravyuh. "Lots of people told me it's a 'de-glam' role. Also, the character's age is around 30 to 35 years and I'm 23," said Gupta. "But I took it as a challenge to play such a strong, straightforward role, regardless if it was not glamorous. Prakash believed in me by casting me in the role, so I just had to give it my best." Coming out on October 24 in India, Chakravyuh also stars Arjun Rampal, Abhay Deol and Manoj Bajpayee. * IANS
Kunal Kapoor loses beard for new family comedy
The actor Kunal Kapoor has got rid of his trademark beard for his role in the new film Luv Shuv Tey Chicken Khurana, directed by Sameer Sharma. "The director told me he wanted to cut my hair and beard, which I had. He wanted to try something new," said Kapoor. "For me, the character is the most important. Whatever the script needs should be done. I feel that this is the only way to make the film honestly and successfully." Produced by the Gangs of Wasseypur filmmaker Anurag Kashyap, the movie features Kapoor as a US-based Indian who goes back to his hometown in Punjab to hunt for his grandfather's secret chicken recipe. Coming from the northern Indian state himself, the 34-year-old actor says: "If you have been brought up in a Punjabi family, you automatically like to eat." Kashyap has devised an innovative promotional strategy for the film: the team will be visiting different cities in India to hunt for the best chicken recipes. "The promotion is unique as the concept of the film is unique," said Kapoor. Scheduled for a November release, the movie also stars Huma Qureshi and Rajesh Sharma. * IANS
Katrina Kaif to do Knight and Day remake
After the recent success of her film Ek Tha Tiger, the actress Katrina Kaif will star in another romantic action thriller, a remake of the 2010 Hollywood movie Knight and Day, which starred Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz. The actor Hrithik Roshan will play Cruise's role, while Kaif will portray Diaz's character. Siddharth Anand is directing the as-yet untitled film, which is scheduled to begin shooting in January. The movie will be produced by Fox Star India. Vijay Singh, Fox's chief executive, said of casting Roshan and Kaif: "The Hrithik-Katrina pairing in Zoya Akhtar's Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara was well received by the audience. Both of them are very popular with the youth." * IANS
Free-to-air channel Zee Aflam to showcase films starring Saif Ali Khan
This month Zee Aflam, the first pan-Arab 24-hour, free-to-air Bollywood film channel dedicated to Arabic audiences, will showcase a selection of films starring the actor Saif Ali Khan. Siddharth Anand's 2007 family drama Ta Ra Rum Pum will show on Friday, while the 2005 romantic comedy Salaam Namaste will screen on October 12. Love Aaj Kal, Khan's 2009 blockbuster with Deepika Padukone, is scheduled for October 19. The detective action thriller Agent Vinod, released last March and co-starring Khan's fiancée Kareena Kapoor, will make its first TV broadcast in the Middle East on October 26. For timings, visit www.zeeaflam.com.