Not People Like Us

Unfriended

Rajeev Masand is Entertainment Editor and film critic at CNN-IBN
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Desperate Measures | Love Actually?

The once-envied friendship between Karan Johar and Kajol appears to have soured beyond repair. The filmmaker and the actress famously fell out after her husband Ajay Devgn got into an ugly war of words with Karan, and the actress refused to apologise on behalf of Ajay. Recently, in the weeks since it became clear that Ae Dil Hai Mushkil and Shivaay would clash during the Diwali release week, the actress explicitly made it known that her loyalties lie with her husband, going out of her way to tweet supportive messages for Ajay while he was involved in an open takedown of Karan in the media.

Earlier this week, thanking his ‘mentor’ Aditya Chopra and his ‘friend’ Shah Rukh Khan for “making my dream come true” while celebrating the 18th anniversary of his debut film Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Karan conveniently ‘forgot’ to mention his leading lady in his grateful tweets. ADHM will also be his first directorial venture in which Kajol will not appear. Instead, he picked Alia Bhatt to make a fleeting guest appearance as a deejay in a song sequence.

Sources close to the filmmaker say it is unlikely he will forgive Kajol for the ‘betrayal’. “It’s not something he’s obsessed with or thinks about all the time, but it’s a bitter memory for him,” one source close to KJo explains.

Desperate Measures

Rakesh Roshan has probably figured out that it’s going to take some work to put his son Hrithik Roshan’s career back on track, after Kangana Ranaut and Mohenjo Daro pretty much knocked off the Krrish star from his envied place in the hearts of fans.

His next release, Kaabil, directed by Sanjay Gupta, looks set to clash with the Shah Rukh Khan-starrer Raees at the Republic Day release weekend next year. Despite Roshan Sr’s requests to his Karan Arjun star to defer his release, Raees producer Ritesh Sidhwani is believed to have decided not to budge.

It’s hardly surprising that pressure on the Roshans is building. Turns out Rakesh Roshan reached out to Priyanka Chopra, his Krrish and Krrish 3 leading lady, with a request to do a special item song in Kaabil. But PC, who’s neck deep shooting the second season of Quantico in the Big Apple, is believed to have politely declined. Sources close to the actress say she’s currently in the process of figuring out what her next film project should be. Apparently, she doesn’t want the first appearance she makes on the big screen since Bajirao Mastani to be an item song in another actor’s film. Ouch!

The Roshans are believed to have reached out to Katrina Kaif as well, but no word on that yet.

Love Actually?

Given the volume of newsprint and internet space devoted to their very public break-up recently, you’d imagine these two A-listers had battle lines drawn. But that’s not what studio employees witnessed when they were on set for a photo-session that the stars were participating in for the poster of their new film together, which is slated to release next summer after being delayed for two years.

Both actors were in good spirits, and not merely cordial to each other, but especially warm and friendly. On this day, they joked with each other, ribbed each other playfully, and didn’t appear even slightly conscious about the fact that at least two dozen eyes were on them. At one point, the male star helpfully flicked a curl of hair that had fallen on her face during the shoot; she didn’t flinch.

Either they were way more evolved than anyone had expected them to be, or just two very intelligent people who had obviously decided mutually that they didn’t want to fuel the salacious instincts of their gathered audience. Or, like some have suggested— although it’s highly unlikely—the break-up is all a sham; just a way to renew public interest in them at a time their careers are floundering.

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