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Shakira's Addiction

Shakira, the Columbian rockstar is back with her extravagant moves with her honest hips. As the dim lights sets the mood, check out the latin sensation gyrating her hot sexy body like never before in her new music video 'Addicted To You..'

Celebs Photo Gallery

Celebs Factory presents an exclusive image collection of Celebrities across the globe. Check out the uncensored and unseen images of celebrities exclusively in our Gallery section. Your search for Celebrity Images ends here..

Poonam for Playboy!!?

Poonam Pandey, the controversial Kingfisher model all nude much to the delight of her fans after the victory of Shahrukh Khan's IPL franchise cricket team Kolkata Knight Riders. Find out if she's willing to go full frontal for Playboy..


Ponnar Shankar, an upcoming Indian epic film adapted from a novel of the same name by M. Karunanidhi, a fictionalized retelling of the Ponnar Shankar epic. The film is directed by Thiagarajan and features his son Prashanth in lead dual roles as warrior princes Ponnar and Shankar with Pooja Chopra and Divya Parameshwaran making their film debuts as princesses. The film is based on true story about KONGU NADU.The film also features an extensive cast of supporting actors with Rajkiron, Napoleon, Prakash Raj, Jayaram, Sneha and Kushboo amongst others.

'Prashanth had entered into films very early and since then I've always wanted to do something big for him. The story of Ponnar - Shankar had immense scope for exhibiting not just his acting skills but also his expertise in the Martial Arts. I approached Chief Minister M Karunanidhi, with the project and he immediately gave me the go ahead, 'says Thiagarajan.

'The star cast comprises some of the biggest stars in the industry and to assemble them all on the sets was quite a challenge. If I got the call sheets of one actor, another would be busy shooting somewhere else. Another challenge was shifting the war battalions from one location to another. Moreover, to give an authentic touch, I have avoided graphics as much as possible.

So, in one scene, if you see a clash of 10,000 horses, in another, you will see 2000 dancers in action. The war and dance sequences will surely be talked about,' claims the directorm being very happy about the way his project had shaped up.

Discussions for the production of Ponnar Shankar had been ongoing since 2007 and filming started in August 2009. The film has progressed slowly due to the difficulty of fixing schedules to feature all the supporting cast together, and is expected to release in April 2011.

Anurag Kashyap has supposedly got engaged to his live-in girlfriend Kalki Koechlin. The couple reportedly has had an informal engagement last month and are planning to tie the knot by the end of this year or early next.

In two years Kalki has turned the brooding director in a happier person, and a fitter one, as he has shed kilos.

When TOI bumped into him at Rani Mukerji's house two weeks back, he told us that he was maintaining his health because Kalki was on his case about him being healthy. Ciao, at least now he looks like her boyfriend, and not a cradle snatcher. Congratulations to the lovely couple.

Abhishek Bachchan has managed to win a new fan for himself and the young woman who has now been floored by his charm is Shahana Goswami, his co-star in upcoming thriller Game.

The Rock On!!! girl is charmed by the Junior B, who bonded well with the huge starcast of the movie.

"I have always felt that he is very charming. Since the film required us to travel extensively, it was imperative that we spend a lot of time together. He is every bit the wonderful guy he is made out to be," says Goswami who has worked with the likes of Arjun Rampal (Rock On!!!), Imran Khan (Break Ke Baad) and Randeep Hooda (Ru-Ba-Ru).

Goswami can't stop going gaga over her co-star who is one of the many principal characters in Game, a whodunit thriller.

"Abhishek is very well read and knowledgeable and makes for great entertainment both on set and off it. Also, what sets him apart is the fact that he is very warm, very genuine and very funny," Goswami told PTI.

Just like her earlier hit Rock On!!!, Game too is one of those films where there is no hero or heroine but boasts of a set of characters brought together.

Since Game also features Sarah Jane Dias, Kangna Ranaut and Jimmy Sheirgill as the other key protagonists, but Goswami says her character is well etched out.

"Working in an ensemble cast is always great. In case of Game it works all the more better as every character is so well etched out. And you also get to spend time with so many different talented actors."

She has been a part of another ensemble affair earlier called Firaaq though it was more episodic in feel with multiple stories running in parallel. However in case of Game multiple strangers are together right from start to finish though they are unknowingly tied to each other.

Though Rock On!!! was a good success, Goswami hasn't quite seen much success coming her way with Jashnn being a flop, Mirch going largely unnoticed, Imran and Deepika benefiting most from Break Ke Baad and Tera Kya Hoga Johnny being stuck in the cans.

But Shahana is keeping her fingers crossed for Game.

"Honestly one can only hope and believe. What happens finally is another matter. I think Game is exciting and a gripping thriller. It has some great actors and a very different and interesting look. I hope the film does well."

Also starring Anupam Kher and Boman Irani, Game is a Farhan Akhtar-Ritesh Sidhwani production which is directed by debutant Abhinay Deo. The film releases all over on April 1.

The actor is in Hyderabad while his family goes to Mohali for the India-Pak World Cup cricket semi finals...

Actor Rana Daggubati, who was in Mumbai, to promote his film 'Dum Maaro Dum'. Ask him about his take in cricket and India playing Pakistan in the semi-finals, and he says, "I've been following the cricket World Cup closely like most others. It's an exciting day. I wish I could be in Mohali with my family. They are all going to watch the match live in the stadium. I guess, I'll just have to have my fun back home with friends."

Apparently, Rana Daggubati is busy. "There are too many things happening, and I can't run away from work. Two of my movies are on the brink of release. I have to be available to promote them. Also, I start shooting for my next South film with Genelia D'Souza in a couple of days. I am required to be in Hyderabad. I run a studio here. So yes, duty calls, as much as I want to be in Mohali."

So what's the plan then? "I'll watch the match with a few friends. But yes, I won't work during that time, no phone calls, no meetings, no nothing," he laughs.

A day after we reported that Rana Daggubati could have brought about a rift between John Abraham and Bipasha, the actor denied the reports, saying that Bipasha and he shared nothing more than a professional relationship. Reports emerged that Rana and Bipasha discovered a mutual chemistry in the sets of Dum Maro Dum, but Rana said that Bipasha rid him of his nervousness of acting in a Hindi movie for the first time.

Rana, who is weak in Hindi, said that Bipasha helped with his lip movements and body language. Rana will appear in the movie as a Goan DJ who gets tangled in the complex drug trade. Abhishek Bachchan, Prateik Babbar and Aditya Pancholi too appear in the movie, which is on a fast track production to hit screens on April 22nd.

While Rana's maiden attempt in Bollywood has been tagged with girl troubles, the actor seems to be enjoying all the attention. Rana, responding to the reports, said that he broke into a laugh after reports emerged that he spends time with girls. Rana added that he is alone and feeling bored in conservative Hyderabad.

The latest buzz in tinsel town is that Karan Johar, the self-avowed non-believer in the institution of marriage, has decided to tie the knot.

The source of the buzz lies in a Dubai-based Bollywood glossy which claims that the master of mush is finally going to settle down.

The 38-year-old filmmaker will reportedly get married to a family friend from New York. The girls name is Vandana Melwani.

K-Jo is one of the most eligible bachelors in Bollywood, apart from, of course, Salman Khan. There have in the past been rumours about Johar tying the knot, but he has managed to keep single till now. Though, he’s often heard grumbling about his age and the increasing white streaks in his hair, he’s shown no real excitement in getting hitched.

So the question on everybody’s lips is - is Karan tying the knot at last?

Karan Johar, Bollywood's most speculated bachelor is all set to tie the knot with a gorgeous New York-based girl. The reports have put an end to the speculation about the director's sexuality. The director who coaxes celebs to spill the beans about personal lives has himself become the centre of gossip this time.

But Apparently, Johar's numerous trips to New York and London to "write scripts" were actually secret rendezvous with his to be bride 31-year-old Vandana Melwani, reports Mid Day.

While B-town is abuzz with the gossip, Karan Johar refused to comment. On being asked about the reports, the usually chatty was tongue tied and could manage only a "Hmmm", reports Mid day.

Previously, the director had confessed that he feels married to his mother. But though he has always showed disinterest in holy matrimony, seems like he has finally decided to take the plunge.

Karan Johar is shooting his finale episode of Koffee With Karan. And it won't be Salman Khan as planned. KJo has decided that much as he wants the actor on that couch, he doesn't want to pay him to be a guest on his chat show.

Says a friend of the filmmakers, "He is happy to give any amount of money to Salman's charity, but he doesn't want it to be a condition for him to come on the show.

Also, it is not fair to other stars like the Bachchans and Shah Rukh Khan who have appeared on the show in every season, if one pays one actor and not them. So, he decided to leave Salman out for now."

One of the films that has been the talk of B-town ever since it was first announced has been Shah Rukh Khan's ambitious Ra.One directed by Anubhav Sinha . The film which also stars Arjun Rampal and Kareena Kapoor is a good vs. evil, superhero highly FX laden action adventure, plus of course it being Bollywood, has some romance sprinkled in the mix, as well. With the release of the teaser trailer the buzz and excitement about the film is already huge and we still have seven months to go before the release.

The story is about a superhero, which was inspired by Marvel comics and the Hollywood films X-Men. Khan says, "I just thought that we don't have any background of a superhero in terms of comics like 'Spiderman'. We have superheroes like 'Krrish' and 'Drona' but they are film superheroes."

Describing Ra.One's superhero, SRK says, "I tell people this is the one who's gonna do... he is going to fly, he has these powers and once this becomes known, then people would like to come and see the film."

Co-star Arjun Rampal had nothing but praise for SRK and the film when he spoke to PTI, "This is something that I can confidently state that Ra.One is the most ambitious film and expensive film that is being made out of India. The film is about superheroes and when you explore such a genre, you have to go all out to make it something special." Adding, "Shah Rukh is leaving no stone unturned for Ra.One. I have worked with Shah Rukh before and seen his commitment and passion. However, the kind that I am seeing in Ra.One is unparalleled. The way he is going all out to make this film extra special is commendable. His passion is just so contagious."

You can see that because Shah Rukh Khan is very enthusiastic about this project, which he says because of the high caliber of special effects will change the way films are made in India, "It's an indigenously made film and it's made in VFX studios in India and is trying to create something which will change the genre of films. If Indian filmmakers would like to make something alike, they have the access to the technology."

The superstar turned superhero says he made Ra.One for his fans, "I have made one promise to every one in India. I have been working for 20 years and I have been given too much; much more than I deserve as an actor, as a star, and I think it's time to give back some."

But not only for his fans, Ra.One was also made for his two children, "Ra.One is a very special film I made for my kids. I hope I can make my children proud and this country proud."

He is very passionate about Ra.One and has worked hard to make it a great film, "You make a film with passion and love. You want to make it right and want the world to watch it. I am trying my best to make it a very good film."

In case you missed it feast your eyes on the cool, the exciting and the totally rockin’ first look at Ra.One.

The much-awaited film from KV Anand starring Jiiva, Ajmal and Piaa Bajpai has yesteryear leading actress Radha's daughter Karthika playing the leading lady. The director who is very happy about his third film says “KO is Double Ayan”! referring the Surya starrer that propelled KV Anand and Ko to be twice as good!

With Harris Jayaraj’s music topping the charts, it is hoped, to repeat the success of Ayan which had some timeless numbers. Producer, RB Chowdhary of Super Good films will be releasing this movie simultaneously in Telugu as Rangam. This is a first for the production house and reflects the confidence the makers have in their film. Lets see what awaits this coming new year.

The most downloaded hot model on internet, Poonam Pandey has hit headlines with her sensational statement that she would go n*** if team India wins the world cup. Poonam is a die hard cricket fan and she has done a special photoshoot with cricket theme recently.

Now, as India is two steps closer to the world cup, Poonam Pandey has found her own hot way to motivate the team. She said that she would bare all in Mumbai stadium if India wins the cup.

Poonam Pandey takes a leaf out of lingerie models Larissa Requelme and Luciana Sarazar who stated that they would go n*** if their football teams win FIFA world cup.

Watch out for Poonam Pandey's hot pics and spicy photos before you could imagine her going n***in front of a jam packed stadium. Now India has one hot reason to win this cup, isn’t it?

Tamanna who made her debut in Tollywood has always a special place in her heart for Telugu cinema. Despite being worshipped and made a star by Tamil audience, she has always preferred to be in Telugu cinema industry.

However, it took a while for her Happy Days to start in Tollywood. Now, Tamanna’s time has come and she is right now ringing with plum offers. Tamanna’s 100% Love and Badrinath are gearing up for summer release.

She is also playing the heroine roles in NTR’s Rachcha and Ram’s Mana Love Story movies. Recently, she was roped into play Ram Charan’s love interest in Sampath Nandi’s film. With Tollywood dreams finally coming true, Tamanna has deliberately put Kollywood aside. She has just one Tamil film, Venghai on her hands at the moment.

The Duo starting from Roja (1992) till Raavanan (2010) has always resulted in producing exceptional music thats magic to the listeners and the upcoming extravagant epic venture Ponniyin Selvan will be magic again only to be in its best form.

Ponniyin Selvan with a cast that is yet to be finalized has A.R. Rahman determined to do his best again for Mani and has already completed five songs. The tunes are said to be outstanding and Mani was moved by his gesture. He seems to have approved the songs and is keen to begin shooting for them as he wants to make them memorable.

As per the news circles, The film would have Vijay, Mahesh Babu, Arya, and Sathyaraj portraying keyroles with Anushka playing Vijay's love interest. Mani Ratnam is in plans for casting a top heroine from Bollywood opposite Mahesh in this movie. Stay tuned for more scoop.

The latest passenger from Kollywood to get a ticket to Bollywood is Sneha. The smiling beauty of Tamil cinema has been roped in for an upcoming Hindi movie, to be directed by Revathy Varma.

Sneha will play Naseeruddin Shah’s wife in the film titled ‘Mad Dad’. Popular Bollywood actress Ayesha Takia will play her daughter. “It is a challenging role and I love being part of the film,” she says.

According to Revathy Varma, Sneha’s looks in the film will be in 1980s style. “Sneha is a talented actor. She can perform any role with ease. This is the reason behind selecting her for the role,” the director says.

Sneha, who was last seen in ‘Bhavani’, is currently acting in ‘Vidiyal’, ‘Ponnar Sankar’ and ‘Murattu Kaalai’ in Tamil. Sources close to the actress say that “She has given bulk dates to Mad Dad and is eager to shoot for her maiden Hindi film.” Guess we're all eyes to see Sneha speaking Hindi, shouldn't hurt much as watching Daniel Craig speaking our national language.

Suriya has now set all his focus on ‘Ezham Arivu’ and considers it as his magnum opus… The actor has been taking scrutinizing efforts to make it the best of his career. Now we hear it from the closer sources that he plays the role of a circus clown and another one as a Chinese martial arts expert before 2000 years in China.

The actor had to look fatigue and tired without food and continuous as a clown for a particular sequence in the movie. Merely for this scene, he remained without food and water and started looking pale. Even his father Siva Kumar started yelling at him in his house.

‘Ezham Arivu’ with Shruti Hassan playing the lead opposite Surya will have the audio launched in May while the movie release is scheduled to be sometime in June.

Asin is busy in the Hindi film Ready which has Salman Khan in the lead role. She has also been signed for the Hindi film House Full 2 which has Akshay Kumar in the lead role. There is news that Asin has agreed to act with two piece swim suit. When asked Asin about this, she said,” People who know me well will not believe this news. What is the necessity for me to act in two piece swim suit? Everybody knows very well that whatever big is the film, I will not commit unless the story is good. When things are like this, there is no truth in the news that I am acting in two piece suit. Maybe the people who spread this rumor might have the intention that I may act in two pieces because the Part 1 of this film had such scenes.

After the release of the film, people will come to know that whether I had acted with two piece or not. Apart from this the shooting of the Ready has to be completed and the shooting of House Full Part 2 will be commencing during September. I don’t know how such news is being spread so fast.”

Bollywood beauty queen Aishwarya Rai looked stunning at the 83rd Academy Awards in a shimmery outfit. She donned a Giorgio Armani Prive gown.

Aish was looking eye-catching with her shining outfit and she adorned it with a Jimmy Choo clutch. Her makeup and hairdo for the event was also apt and in total she looked amazing. Her husband Abhishek Bachchan wore a black tuxedo.Well enjoy Aishwarya Rai's Stunning Hot New York City Photoshoot 2011.

Actress Bipasha Basu is comfortable in her skin and though she hadn’t planned life, she tells DNA that she’s happy with it all...

Coming up
The character I play in the film Dum Maro Dum is called Zoey who is a happy-go-lucky yet ambitious and wants to achieve something in life. Essentially, DMD revolves around four pivotal characters and each one has a story which combines into one. The film represents the essence of Goa and shows how the dark past of each of the four catches up with them. DMD is not thequintessential Hindi cinema flick where concentration is on the leads, it’s a new-age thriller and there are no leads — just four characters.

Hollywood bound
Singularity is going to be my first English film. I had never a planned on doing an English film. It was chance meeting with Roland Joffe that landed me the role. It’s a fabulous script and I feel that after 10 years in the industry, it’s a step forward. It’s a great thing to be able to get noticed by the global audience. It so happens that in this industry, even before you do one international film, they are ready to send you away. I am totally excited about it and absolutely open to world cinema. People abroad think actors in India are unapproachable. That’s why we need to go out and work more often to show them that we are available and they need not think twice about expressing their interest in casting actors here. I guess it gets easier when you are seen around and heard of.

The change
I am one of the changes in the Hindi film industry. Since I began acting, people have looking at dusky as sexy too. Initially, it was tough. Films did not come easy either. But later, I was considered to be the unconventional hit. People seem to have realised that 90% of the population here is brown skinned, and there’s nothing wrong with that. In fact, people abroad spend so much money to acquire our kind of skin tone and colour. Yet, on the other hand, we are a nation that is obsessed with fairness creams. Interestingly, a lot of the fair-skinned heroines too use bronzers to look dusky these days.

Brand Bipasha
Brand Bipasha has made a great journey over the years. A lot of people look up to me and I don’t want to send out the wrong message. I have been extremely careful about the things I choose to do and even about the brands I choose to endorse. For instance, I will never endorse alcohol. Recently, I was offered a deal with an alcohol brand and I know for a fact that there is a lot of money in it, but I will never associate myself with something I don’t believe in. I am extremely passionate about fitness and my first DVD has been selling like hot cakes. Piracy is the best form of flattery and the fact that people are buying pirated DVDs too makes me feel good, though I know it’s not ethical and we lose a lot of money because of that. As for the DVD, it’s something I came up with after trying it on myself. I am now working on the second DVD. There’s also my line of clothing called Love Yourself, with Reebok, which is doing extremely well. Every brand I endorse has shown tremendous faith in me.

A few obstacles
I am a positive thinker and have always been easy on myself. I am very content in my own zone and have been able to carve a niche for myself. I got the acceptance and support from the audience, which makes me happy, because I have tried different roles that were accepted by people. I did not have too many hurdles and I have always believed that life is a process and you got to take it in your stride.

Moments of glory
I have had many! My second film saw a golden jubilee, not many see people see that these days and that’s quite an achievement. Also, when Jism happened, not many mainstream actors were looking to do negative roles. I did, and even won an award for it. Corporate too attracted a different set of audience. Every film has had its moments — be it Omkara for 'Beedi Jalaile' or Dhoom or Dum Maro Dum.

The success
I always believed in myself. But honestly, I did not know I would come such a long way. There was no planning involved and as I am very instinctive by nature. My purpose is to entertain. I try to have a thick skin when a film releases, as there are various other reasons why a film does or does not do well.

My dear family
I am proud that I have achieved a lot, yet kept the innocence for which my family is responsible. I am glad that I haven’t changed a bit over the years and my family has been with me through it all.

The hot and happening Rana Dagubatti says he's very much single...

Rana Dagubatti, who forays into Hindi cinema with 'Dum Maaro Dum', has been more in the news for his alleged affairs with Bipasha Basu and the constant speculation about the relationship he shares with actress Shreya Saran. However, we got in touch with the dashing actor, who told us that he appreciated the 'warm welcome' extended to him by one and all from the Hindi film fraternity.

About matters of the heart, he chooses to remain as candid as can be. Rana told www.timesofindia.com , "They've made me a Casanova, here!" This was followed by a heart laugh. Now, of course, the guy wouldn't mind the 'Casanova' tag if it were true!

"It isn't true," he states, "I'm very much single. Bipasha and I are co-actors. We are not having a torrid affair. Shreya and I have been friends. We've never been in a relationship. And that's the truth and the whole truth. People who think I have this rocking life with the girls should come and meet me in Hyderabad, the city that I belong to. They'll find out how boring I am."

"I've no romantic inclination with either of the girls I'm being linked with. They are beautiful human beings, and good friends. But that's all. I am so neck deep in work, that I really have little time for anything else." Well, with his good looks, Dagubatti is going to have a number of girls flipping for him. And he just sighs and says, "If only..."

Bipasha denies being with him, but his girlfriend of five years has walked away

South siren Shriya Saran and Rana Daggubati have split. The decision to break their five-year-old relationship (they managed to keep it discreet for the first three years) came after Shriya learnt about his proximity to Bipasha Basu during the shooting of Dum Maro Dum, in which he debuts in Bollywood.

Southern actor Rana Daggubati, who is set to make his Bollywood debut in Dum Maaro Dum, has squashed rumours of a relationship with co-star Bipasha Basu.

"I have immense respect for Bipasha as a co-star and it's embarrassing that people should think otherwise. Don't know where the rumors keep creeping up from over and over again!"

The 25-year-old actor, who has been reportedly dating Shriya Saran for the past five years, is said to have had a rift with her -- thanks to his closeness to Bipasha. However, Daggubati has denied anything more than a friendship with Shriya.

"Shriya has known me since I was in college. We've been great friends for over 8 yrs now. All other gossips are FALSE! (sic)," he added on the Twitter.

Dum Maaro Dum, also starring Abhishek Bachchan, releases April 22.

In an interview with The Mail, the star of 'You Will Meet A Tall Dark Stranger', who appeared in the magazine last autumn, said that she firmly believes in positive female sexuality.

She said: "The decision to do those pictures was mine. I definitely knew how I wanted to look.

"A stylist may have chosen the clothes but the decision to wear them was mine.

"I would hate to feel that I was being objectified. I have always said that a woman's sexuality should not be used in a way that is demeaning to her.

"But, you know, I don't think this is a sexist issue anymore because actors are strutting their stuff in photoshoots just as much as actresses now."

Pinto recently revealed that her success in 'Slumdog Millionaire' gave her the chance to take a greater variety of film roles.

They met and fell for each other on the sets of their debut film 'Slumdog Millionaire' which went on to win eight Oscars, but Freida Pinto says that she and Dev Patel will never share the screen again.

The 26-year-old said that they will never be able to recreate the "magic" of the Mumbai-based potboiler, reported Daily Mail online.

"I wouldn't want to work with him, but I don't mean that in a bad way. He said something similar in an interview that was misinterpreted. What he was trying to say is that so much happened on Slumdog Millionaire, in terms of it becoming so big, that if the two of us were paired in a film as a couple again it wouldn't live up to that. Nothing ever could. It's too much magic to live up to on screen" said the 26-year-old.

The actress who is winning rave reviews for her role as a Palestinian orphan in the Julian Schabel film 'Miral' said that she and Patel, 6 years her junior, have already

'Slumdog Millionaire' star Freida Pinto, who raised eyebrows last year ('10) with a series of racy shots for the U.S. version of GQ, is now defending the photoshoot.

Rumours suggested that the photoshoot for the men''''s magazine was a deliberate attempt to shake off her 'nice-girl' image, but Pinto has now spoken out to stress that she was not manipulated into taking part and it was entirely her decision to pose for the pictures.

"The decision to do those pictures was mine. I definitely knew how I wanted to look. A stylist may have chosen the clothes but the decision to wear them was mine. I would hate to feel that I was being objectified," the Daily Star quoted her as telling You magazine.

"I have always said that a woman's sexuality should not be used in a way that is demeaning to her. But, you know, I don't think this is a sexist issue any more because actors are strutting their stuff in
photoshoots just as much as actresses now," she added.

Interestingly two former Femina Miss India winners Puja Gupta and Sarah Jane Dias are making their debuts on the same day.

Pretty and petite Puja is one helluva confident girl and certainly not a bundle of nerves, as one would expect a debutant to be. This former Miss India is quite sure that her debut film opposite actor Jackky Bhagnani will make its mark. On her way back from Shirdi to Mumbai after seeking Sai Baba's blessings, Puja is elated with the response.

Interestingly, on April 1, Friday, Puja, who won the Pantaloons Femina Miss India title in 2007, will be facing her contemporary Sarah, who had bagged the Pantaloons Femina Miss India-World title in the same year. While Puja's debuting opposite Jackky, Sarah is debuting opposite Abhishek Bachchan in Game. Both the films are due to release on Friday, across India. Naturally, audiences are already drawing comparisons. But Puja is ready for a fair chance. "I am really happy for Sarah as she and I started our Miss India journey together. Soon, we will initiate our B-town journey together.

And I'm excited. Both the films - Game and F.A.L.T.U. are promising. While Abhishek Bachchan's a huge star, Jackky Bhagnani's the future. You got to wait and see." Puja's also enjoyed all the fun she's had during the 60-day shoot of the film in Mauritius and Mumbai.

She says, "I am thankful to producer Vashu Bhagnani for giving me a launch as big as this. Since this is my first film, my co-stars and director helped me and guided me." Vashu, who has worked with former Miss Indias including Dia Mirza and Lara Dutta too in the past, says, "We auditioned a lot of girls before Puja came in. But Puja is surely very promising."

She took people back to the black and white era with her role in the period film 'Parineeta'. Then came her fashion faux pas and a dip in the career graph. But a careful and confident Vidya Balan is on the rise again in Bollywood.

Though at 33 she is just six years old in the Hindi movie industry, her oeuvre is so impressive that there was a Vidya Balan retrospective at the Indian film fest in two Australian cities.

From playing a foul mouthed, manipulative vengeful woman in 'Ishqiya' to the mother of a progeria patient to a grieving sister in 'No One Killed Jessica', Vidya has been proving her versatility with her nuanced handling of different characters.

Her much-talked-about forthcoming releases - director Milan Luthria's 'The Dirty Picture', based on the life of Silk Smitha, south Indian cinema's sex symbol, and Sujoy Ghosh's thriller 'Kahani' in which she plays a six-month pregnant woman - are expected to take her creativity to another level.

Applauding her work and choice of roles, director Sudhir Mishra said: "She is very brave and very gutsy. Hats off to Vidya. She will last longer. It will pay her off very well. She will be remembered as another kind of actress and remembered more than a lot of people. She should continue doing this kind of roles. She should do what she can do well. She should retain that uniqueness."

Director Anurag Kashyap feels what Vidya is doing is pathbreaking. "I think she is showing the way for everyone else. Vidya's fan following has increased 50-fold after the kind of work she started doing. We need her," he added.

This Iyer girl from Palakkad in Kerala grew up in Mumbai. She did her graduation in sociology from St. Xavier's College.

After award-winning debut with the period drama 'Parineeta' (2005), she charmed her fans in a modern avatar in 'Lage Raho Munna Bhai'. Her small but impressive role in 'Guru' too earned her accolades.

But after a meteoric rise to fame, her career took a dip post 'Salaam-e-Ishq: A Tribute To Love' and it seemed as if lady luck had deserted her completely. She was in the news for all the wrong reasons -- from her choice of roles to co-stars to her looks in movies like 'Heyy Babyy' and 'Kismet Konnection' -- she was criticised for everything.

But the rough patch ended and wagging tongues came to a halt when Vidya returned as Amitabh Bachchan's mother in critically acclaimed 'Paa' (2009) after staying away for a year. Undoubtedly it was one of her best performances and Vidya walked away with the Filmfare Best Actress Award for portraying the dilemma of a woman living with her child's illness.

There are reports that Vidya may work with southern superstar Rajnikanth as well.

"She should start a legacy of such kind of acting. She is one of the top actresses in the industry because she does such kind of unique roles," said director Vikramaditya Motwane whose 'Udaan' amassed trophies at every award function this year.

Not only that, Vidya's sartorial elegance has been at its peak ever since she appeared in "Paa". Be it flaunting ethnic saris by her favourite designer Sabyasachi Mukherjee or her plain Jane look at public events to promote "No One Killed Jessica", the talented actress floored everyone.

Mumbai-based designer Anand Bhushan, a regular face at Lakme Fashion Week, said: "Yes it's true that designer Sabyasachi Mukherjee did an awesome job with her Indian image, giving her all sorts of dresses which not only reflected her Indian face but also made her look glamorous."

"But who says we only want to see Vidya Balan in Indian dresses. It's time to get some credible Western designer to celebrate her persona. Her dressing sense has always been a point of discussion for the media and film critics, especially whenever she is portrayed in Western wear."

She made a late entry in films, but it hasn't taken her long to carve a niche.

Yes, we mean "dearest" in both senses: beloved and costly. Ileana D'Cruz makes her comeback in Kollywood with Shankar's 'Nanban'. The actress sure does want to make her presence felt on her return to Kollywood. She began by demanding Rs. 2 crores remuneration for the movie, the highest pay packet ever demanded by a South Indian actress.

The shocked producers, Gemini Film Circuit, were unwilling to pay the record amount, but realised that unless they negotiated with her, the successful Ileana would give them the slip. Finally, they agreed on Rs. 1.5 crores, which is still the highest remuneration for any actress in South India.

Ileana's popularity has multiplied in Tollywood, as she is appearing in 'Shakti' opposite Junior NTR. The movie holds the record for being the costliest movie ever made in Tollywood. The actress was able to leverage this popularity and demand more in Tollywood, which resulted in her next project being signed for 1.75 crores and another in Bollywood for 2 crores.

Her Kollywood comeback movie is a remake of the Hindi blockbuster'3 Idiots'. Ileana will reprise the role of Pia (which was originally played by Kareena Kapoor). Call it coincidence or the quality of the character, Kareena was recently announced as the costliest actress in Bollywood, after she was paid Rs. 7 crores for her role in 'Golmaal 3'.

There were reports that reigning Tamil-Telugu actress Kajal Aggarwal is likely to be the lead lady in actor Simbu's Tamil remake of Salman Khan's super hit 'Dabangg'. But the makers of the Tamil version made it clear that Kajal Aggarwal will not be part of the film.

Apparently, they are looking for a top heroine from Bollywood and efforts are on to make Sonam Kapoor sign on the dotted line. Notably, the original heroine Sonakshi Sinha refused the role in Tamil remake.

There were also stories that Katrina Kaif might do the film, since she has already worked in some South Indian films. 'Dabangg' is being remade in Telugu as well with Pawan Kalyan in the lead.

'Dabangg' is setting new records not only in Bollywood, but also in Tamil and Telugu. With 'Dabangg' opening to an overwhelming response, the enthusiasm to acquire the Tamil and Telugu remake rights has increased overnight. Kollywood producers Mohan Apparao and T. Ramesh have recently purchased the remake rights of 'Dabangg' for a whopping amount, the highest ever paid for a remake.

Now the latest buzz is that Simbu will play the role of Chulbul Pandey (originally played perfectly by Salman Khan) in the Tamil version. The shooting is expected to begin soon after finalizing the director and heroine.

Madhur Bhandarkar's Bollywood super hit 'Fashion' (2008), which won Priyanka Chopra and Kangna Ranaut their first National Awards, will be soon remade in Tamil and Telugu. A source close to a Mumbai based production company revealed that the production house recently approached Trisha to play the lead role when they decided to remake the film in Tamil.

But now the actress has denied the news, "I am not doing a remake of 'Fashion' in Telugu and I am not doing any Bollywood films either," she stated. There are also reports that Priyamani is likely to reprise Kangna's role in the remake.

Bollywood beauty Vidya Balan considers Santosh Sivan's much awaited Urumi as the most special film in her career. Reason? She has dubbed for herself in Malayalam for the first time in her career. Vidya Balan has a special song in the movie that she dedicates to her parents. She says she did the movie because her parents always wanted her to do a Malayalam movie.

The award winning actress will reportedly enact the role of a traditional Mohiniyattam dancer in a very sensuous manner and her dance will be a fusion of various classical and contemporary dance forms.

Slumdog Millionaire star Freida Pinto admits that she is a little overwhelmed by the speed with which she went from being a Mumbai-based model aspiring to be an actress to becoming the kind of celebrity who is pursued by the paparazzi and features on the cover of GQ.

“There is always this fear that your moment is here and that it will never come again. Being in the right place at the right time, and being cast as Latika, is the story of my life as well as that of Slumdog Millionaire,” the Daily Mail quoted her, as saying.

The younger of two daughters born into a privileged middle-class family, Pinto became a model after gaining a BA in English Literature from St Xavier’s College in Mumbai.

Determined to move from modelling to acting, she experienced more than her fair share of rejection, auditioning for ‘hundreds’ of roles before Danny Boyle cast her as Latika.

The rest is history.

The fact that the love story in the Slumdog was echoed in real life with a romance between Freida and British actor Dev Patel has added to their growing mutual celebrity.

Six years her junior, Patel’s post-Slumdog success might not have equalled that of his girlfriend, but the couple remain very much an item even if their working schedules make time together difficult.

“It’s about respecting each other’s work and respecting the relationship. We have to think, “OK, you are working there and I am working here but we are going to have to make time for each other.” We have the same attitude to our work. When I am filming I can’t be thinking about him, and when he is filming he can’t be thinking about me,’ said Pinto.

The relationship seems to be strong enough to withstand the long periods apart and any resentment or jealousies that might naturally arise when two people are working in the same industry.

There will not, however, be a sequel to Slumdog Millionaire, and no chance of the couple being cast together in the foreseeable future.

"I wouldn’t want to work with him, but I don’t mean that in a bad way. He said something similar in an interview that was misinterpreted. What he was trying to say is that so much happened on Slumdog Millionaire, in terms of it becoming so big, that if the two of us were paired in a film as a couple again it wouldn’t live up to that. Nothing ever could. It’s too much magic to live up to on screen,’ she said.

Veena Malik is keen to buy a pad in Mumbai considering the offers coming her way...

Pakistani actress Veena Malik, who participated in the reality show Bigg Boss, finds herself hosting a couple of cricket shows, and claims that she is flooded with offers even for shows covering the Indian Premiere League, scheduled to begin soon after the ICC World Cup.

This has encouraged Veena to buy a house in Mumbai. We are told, that Malik, considering the opportunities here, is keen to buy a home in suburban Mumbai, however, Pakistan will remain her base. In fact, Veena, it is heard, even made a passing statement: I have six homes in Pakistan, it's only fair that I buy myself one in Mumbai!

Well, with her getting along famously well with Ashmit Patel, and with good work coming her way, it's not so much of a 'big toss' if the lady will actually buy a Mumbai house.

Mr and Mrs Bachchan will soon be back together in reel life with Rajkumar Santoshi’s romantic comedy, Ladies & Gentlemen, which flags off in July. Aishwarya says, “I met Rajji a week ago and he told me that before I start giving my dates to other producers, he wanted to lock a chunk for his film. Abhishek and I are his dream pair, he’s always wanted us for this film.”

She admits to having immensely liked this script, which she had heard years ago. Ladies & Gentlemen will be the star couple’s ninth film together. Their last film together was Mani Ratnam’s Raavan, which didn’t quite set the cash registers ringing.

So, why did she back out of it before, prompting her husband to suggest that they were not a “couple package” but “two independent actors who didn’t play any role in getting each other cast”? She reasons that she didn’t have the dates earlier since Guzaarish demanded two-three months of single-minded focus. “But the movie got delayed and with Abhishek and Rajji on board, I’m happy to be back,” she says. “As far as this script is concerned, it was always a yes.”

Since their marriage, the duo has been wary of over- exposing brand Bachchan, insisting that they’d work together only when a film would offer them something new and exciting. Earlier, Aishwarya had opted out of Dostana, Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Se and Game. More recently, she reportedly refused a Vipul Shah film opposite her husband, suggesting he cast Katrina Kaif instead.

She says that the last three years have been hectic. In 2008, she had Jodhaa Akbar and Sarkar Raj. In 2009, she was juggling between the English film, The Pink Panther 2, Raavan and the Tamil film, Raavanan. Last year there was Robot, Action Replayy and Guzaarish.

“I took a small break after The Pink Pather 2 but then the last couple of years have been really busy. We actors enjoy our work so much that there are times when we commit to projects without realising that we’ve locked away a lot of ‘own’ time,” she says. “I’ve tried to approach work differently but haven’t always succeeded. This break was necessary.”

She spent time with Abhishek in New Zealand where he was filming Players and then flew off to Los Angeles for a much-needed vacation that turned out to be eventful when they were invited to the Oscars. Now she’s raring to return to the sets. Ladies & Gentlemen will be shot across Mumbai, Rome, New York and Malaysia. “It’s wonderful to be doing another movie with Abhishek. We had a great time during Raavan even though I had to work really hard on both Raavan and Raavanan, which were critically acclaimed.”

She’s been in the news ever since she came into the country. Whether it’s her love life, her behaviour on the reality show Bigg Boss or the Taliban threat to her life, Pakistani actress Veena Malik seems to have become India’s (and Pakistan’s) latest controversy queen. But no one tells the true story, says Veena. Okay. So what is the true story? Over lunch at Jasmine, the Chinese restaurant at Hotel Ramada Plaza, New Delhi, a meal during which she toyed at her food, Veena opened up.

Why are you known for controversy?
You know, it’s very easy to create a controversy, and in a lot of ways, it is not really a bad idea. But I have never tried hard at it. It’s just come to me naturally. I am a star. And controversies are part of a star’s life. People need someone to talk about. Today it’s me, tomorrow it’ll be someone else.

Is it really that simple?
Well, almost. It’s as simple as what gets portrayed in the media. For instance, I decided to come clean about my previous relationships, but some negative stories were highlighted. In Bigg Boss, out of 24 hours, footage of only 45 minutes was shown, which was edited entirely to the benefit of the channel. So how does a real picture really emerge?

But you knew the format beforehand. So why go into the Bigg Boss house?
The Bigg Boss house was like a refuge for me. I was going through huge emotional turmoil when I was offered the show. I had broken off with Asif (the Pakistani cricketer), the match fixing scandal had just broken, and I was an emotional wreck. I wanted to get away from everything. Bigg Boss offered me just that. I could be disconnected from everybody and everything that I knew. So I jumped at it.

It also gave you the opportunity to work in India.
Absolutely. And it was amazing how people accepted me here. I was nominated seven times and saved by the audience seven times. So it gave me a lot of popularity. I love it.
Hasn’t it also given you anxious moments? What about the Taliban threat?
Yes it has. I am anxious, but not scared. I believe in destiny. If they have to kill me, they’ll do it anywhere. Why should I stop living my life?

What did they really say?
One media group in Pakistan has received a threatening letter from the Taliban saying that they will kill me for working in India. We are not sure about its authenticity but Pakistan officials are trying to verify it.

So do you have a lot of security?
Not too much here. I feel very safe in India. But back home, yes, I do have security. And more than me, it’s my family I worry about. I am here while they are there and facing it. So I am scared for them.

Have you ever thought of asking for political asylum in India?
I did, after Bigg Boss, when my own family and friends told me the public in Pakistan was very angry with me. My people told me that I’d be killed if I went back. But thankfully, all that passed.

How does your family react now?
They are okay now. Things took some time to settle down, but I guess they have started accepting me for the way I am. I never really lived with my parents or four sisters and brother. My grandmother brought me up in a small village in Punjab. So in a lot of ways, I grew up far more independent than my siblings. Mere abbu thode Hitler kism ke hain, so while he could dominate my siblings, I was away from it all. I am very different from my family. In fact they took a lot of time to reconcile to the way I was.
How did you get into the glamour industry at all?
To save myself from an early marriage. I took up work and did an ad to avoid marriage at the age of 14. I thought if I started earning, maybe my parents wouldn’t insist on marrying me off. It worked.

Veena Malik has been known for two things recently – Ashmit Patel and shoes…
Ohhh my shoes!!!! How I love them. I don’t go anywhere without them. I just bought six pairs from Aldo yesterday. I have 500 pairs of shoes and about the same number of gowns. I have a separate house for them. I keep only my shoes and gowns there.

And Ashmit Patel?
(Laughs) What about him? Okay, I won’t deny that he is the closest to me. I call him every free minute I have. I share my deepest secrets and fears with him. For a change, here is a man who watches my back and stands up for me. So I am loving it. But we haven’t made any formal commitments. Humne jeene marne ki kasme nahi khai hain… abhi tak!!!