Amitabh Bachchan gets better, comes out to greet fans

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Megastar Amitabh Bachchan appeared to have recovered well from his abdominal surgeries when he came out to greet his fans and thanked them for their “love and enthusiasm”.

The 69-year-old, in a white kurta pyajama, Sunday addressed the well-wishers gathered outside his home Jalsa.

“God bless the well wishers. God bless them for their permanence in my life. God bless their consistency, their love and enthusiasm. I am indebted for life. It is a debt I shall never be able to repay; the one burden that shall remain with me unattended. One burden that shall make me happy,” Amitabh posted on his blog bigb.bigadda.com.

The megastar was operated upon last month and is currently recuperating at his home here.

He is advised complete rest by his doctors with restricted movement and diet. – IANS

Live Chat: Shazahn Padamsee

Raajneeti

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This cute and bubbly actress debuted opposite Ranbir Kapoor in Rocket Singh: Salesman Of The Year. She then was seen opposite Ajay Devgn in Dil To Baccha Hai Ji and is now all set for her next big release Housefull 2. Yes, we are indeed talking about the pretty and talented Shazahn Padamsee.

Shazahn will be live on Bollywood Hungama‘s video chat talking about her forthcoming film on Wednesday, March 14, at 1600 hrs IST. Don’t miss!

Watch ‘Housefull 2’ Promo

How Aloha Can You Go?

Jeff Garlin

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By Libby Molyneaux

Writer/radio commentator Sarah Vowell comes to town to sit down with Jeff Garlin and talk about her latest book, Unfamiliar Fishes, a funny and lively history of America’s acquisition of Hawaii.

LA WEEKLY: Like The Wordy Shipmates, you’ve made learning about history informative yet funny and entertaining. But why did you choose Hawaii?

SARAH VOWELL: Oh, the same reason anyone chooses Hawaii — because its story offers a triple whammy of three of life’s most lovable subjects — whaling, President McKinley and overbearing Protestants. I wish I were kidding. In nonfiction, we’re always trying to organize chaos. In tracing the Americanization of Hawaii in the 19th century, there was something so compelling to me about the way these two groups of antithetical New Englanders — the whalers and the missionaries — changed the islands so radically. Between 1819, when the first ships of New England Bible thumpers and whale hunters made a beeline for Hawaii, and 1898, when the missionary descendants who had overthrown the Hawaiian queen handed the place over to the United States, it’s possible to witness an absolute revolution in the political, ecological and racial makeup of Hawaii. Whatever one thinks of that handful of white folks, they certainly made their mark. And the story is so small and contained and incestuous that the grandson of a couple of missionaries from the first boatload in 1819 becomes the architect of overthrowing the Hawaiian monarchy in the 1890s. Besides that, the way the U.S. acquired those islands in 1898 is part of another radical change, that being the United States becoming the empire we are now, essentially in one, war-mongering, colonizing summer.

Read more.

Willie Nelson & Family

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The fact that Willie Nelson recently penned the tune “Roll Me Up and Smoke Me When I Die” serves as proof that some things in life remain comfortingly constant, like Nelson’s laid-back, warbly voice, his wry sense of humor and his penchant for pot. That said, this show likely will be a more buttoned-up affair, as it’s Nelson’s first time headlining Disney Hall. He’ll be joined by members of his family, including son Lukas Nelson, whose band Promise of the Real opens the show. There’s no telling what surprises the 78-year-old country crooner has up his sleeve, but it’s a safe bet he’ll pull out some standards from his most recent album, Remember Me, Vol. 1, and a classic or two like the ramblin’-man anthem “On the Road Again.”  by Laura Ferreiro

The 4th Annual Norouz Gala

HollywoodNews.com: On March 1stTI TV Networks sponsored the by invitation only of 4th Annual Norouz Gala at the Taglyan Cultural Complex in Hollywood. It was a who’s who of the Persian entertainment world walking down the red carpet.

Solmaz Niki-Kermani Prodcuer & Pop Singer Mohamad Mohebian

Solmaz Niki-Kermani Producer & Pop Singer Mohamad Mohebian

The invitation only event brought out a many stars and entertainers like Navid Negahban who has appeared in over sixty films and numerous hit TV shows like Homeland with Damian Lewis and 24 starring Kiefer Sutherland. Also attending was bestselling musician Mohamad Mohebian and Solmaz Niki-Kermani, Executive Producer  of Mahtab Entertainment.

THE DVD SHELF: “Anonymous,” “Shakespeare in Love,” “A Star Is Born,” “Nothing Sacred,” “Tall Story”

English actress Vanessa Redgrave at the press ...

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This month’s column looks at Shakespeare on screen in “Anonymous” and “Shakespeare in Love”; newly-mastered releases of David O. Selznick’s “A Star Is Born” and “Nothing Sacred”; and three manufactured-on-demand attractions.

Who was the Steve Jobs of 1602? The equivalent of Bill Gates? Hugh Jackman, Eli Manning, Madonna? The celebrities of the day — whoever was monopolizing the front pages, or their equivalent — are long forgotten. Yet we keep hearing about that enigmatic scribe from Stratford-upon-Avon, who wrote all those plays. Or maybe didn’t write all those plays. And who hobnobbed with the queen, or didn’t. Yes, it’s old Will Shakespeare who is once again on our minds, our stages, and even on our wide-screen television. In this case, we have Roland Emmerich’s Anonymous [Columbia]. The folks out in movieland have taken those centuries-old rumors — did he? or didn’t he? — and latched onto one Edward de Vere, just then the Earl of Oxford. Did he write the plays and let some illiterate bumpkin take credit? This is not an argument I’ll jump into; I would guess that Will wrote the plays, but I haven’t done decades of research on the subject and am glad to stay out of it. (I can, however, authoritatively speak about stuff written — or not — by the likes of Irving Berlin and Jerry Herman.)

I do not take “Anonymous” as serious scholarship on the W.S. question; those who do might well find the notions set forth in the movie to be infuriating. I see it, though, as a colorful and effective period adventure of the fictional variety. Vanessa Redgrave, as always, attracts our attention as the dame who put Elizabeth in Elizabethan; Joely Richardson, offspring of Redgrave and director Tony Richardson (of “Tom Jones”), plays her mother’s daughter. Or, rather, her mother’s — Vanessa’s — younger self. Rhys Ifans, whom you might remember from “Notting Hill,” plays Shakespeare. Or rather Oxford, this film’s anointed real Shakespeare, while the real Shakespeare (but not the authentic Shakespeare) is played by Rafe Spall.

The newly-released “Anonymous” arrives at the very same moment as the Blu-ray edition of the 1998 Best Picture winner Shakespeare in Love [Lionsgate]. This gives us a different series of conjectures on the life of the Bard. Whether the thing is at all realistic, let alone likely, is something else; it seems pretty certain that the actual Will was not a dashing leading man type and did not look remotely like Joseph Fiennes. Even so, “Shakespeare in Love” is pure delight, under which classification we can file the Oscar-winning performances by Gwyneth Paltrow (as the girl with whom the playwright is in love) and Judi Dench (as that same Queen Elizabeth). While the screenplay assuredly doesn’t come from the author of Hamlet, it does come from the fellow who penned Rosencrantz and Guildernstern Are Dead. He’s pretty good, too.

Tom Stoppard, that is, who shared an Oscar with co-author Marc Norman. The three aforementioned stars are accompanied by flavorful performances from Geoffrey Rush, Colin Firth, Ben Affleck, Simon Callow and more. Special features include commentary from director John Madden, more commentary from cast and crew, and “Shakespeare in Love and on Film.”

Visit PlaybillStore.com to check out theatre-related DVDs for sale.

Robert Redford’s Inaugural Sundance London Programs 14 Movies Including ‘Two Days In New York’

American actor and director Robert Redford. (C...

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LONDON – Robert Redford is serious about bringing the Sundance Film Festival independent movie ethos to a global audiences and sees Sundance London as a major move.

The inaugural British event, held at the sprawling O2 leisure complex over four days in April 2012, will play host to 14 hand-picked titles from Sundance’s lineup in January 2012 in Utah.

The titles selected to unspool in London include Julie Delpy’s Two Days In New York with Delpy and Chris Rock, glacier-melting documentary Chasing Ice directed by Jeff Orlowski and Josh Radnor’s Liberal Arts, starring writer director Radnor and Elizabeth Olsen.

Sundance Film Festival director John Cooper and the Utah-set event’s director of programming Trevor Groth told THR Redford’s aim is “to create more opportunity for independent films and filmmakers” and Sundance London.

Sundance Film Festival director John Cooper and the Utah-set event’s director of programming Trevor Groth told THR Redford’s aim is “to create more opportunity for independent films and filmmakers” and Sundance London.

Despite the daunting prospect of making noise with a start-up event in a city gearing up to host the summer Olympic games, Cooper and Groth have assembled the eclectic program of 14 titles to play alongside various music events under the banner.

“We definitely wanted to strike an equal balance between documentary filmmaking and fiction titles, as we do in Sundance, and we also wanted to bring representative films from our sections such as the new frontier strand we have,” Cooper said.

The festival programmers have also included Sundance’s Waldo Salt Screenwriting award winner Safety Not Guaranteed, penned by Derek Connolly and directed by Colin Trevorrow, about a trio of magazine employees who investigate a classified ad seeking a partner for time travel.

Youssef Delara and Michael D. Olmos’ Filly Brown, a hip-hop drama about a Mexican girl whose mother winds up in jail, starring Lou Diamond Phillips and Gina Rodriguez is on screening list alongside Kristi Jacobson and Lori Silverbush’s hunger in America crisis doc Finding North featuring original music by T Bone Burnett, The House I Live In, the Sundance 2012 U.S. documentary grand jury prize winner about drugs in America and Luv, a drama about an 11-year-old boy on the streets of Baltimore directed by Sheldon Candis and written by Candis and Justin Wilson.

And it’s not all about film with Sundance London also featuring music events with performances by musician, producer and actor Tricky and band Placebo jostling for attention alongside the event’s opening night bill featuring a scheduled on stage discussion between Redford and Burnett on the relationship between film and music.

Redford, wearing his official hat as president and founder of Sundance Institute, said: “Sundance London also is the perfect opportunity to continue our long-time commitment to growing a broader international community around new voices and new perspectives.”

Other films arriving in London from Sundance will be Ry Russo-Young’s John Krasinski and Olivia Thirlby starring drama Nobody Walks, Terence Nance’s live action and animation mix An Oversimplification of Her Beauty, Sundance directing nod winner Lauren Greenfield’s The Queen of Versailles, Shut Up And Play The Hits, a film which follows LCD Soundsystem front man James Murphy over a 48 hour period and Joe Berlinger’s Paul Simon music documentary Under African Skies, an exploration of the musician’s journey back to South Africa where he made and recorded Graceland.

The last film added to the 14-strong line-up is So Yong Kim’s For Ellen, a drama about a struggling musician who takes to the road overnight to track down his estranged wife and fight for the custody of his young daughter.

Redford is scheduled to attend the entire event, which runs April 26 through 29.