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    Feb 2010


    Default Raveena Tandon plays Shobha De

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    Even as Raveena Tandon gets ready to take her new film Shobhna’s 7 Nights about a rich bored columnist-author who gets into a relationship with a struggling actor moonlighting as a gigolo, to the Indian Film Festival at Houston, the film seems to be getting itself into a series of sticky situations because of the close resemblance that some characters bear to real-life figures from the Indian entertainment and publishing industry.

    To begin with, Raveena Tandon’s character is partly inspired by Shobha De, a fact that the director verifies. He admits that the character has been “expanded into a colourful scandalous avatar” which may not go down well with Ms De.

    Now we come to know that the character played by Rohit Roy of a dashing rakish glamour photographer is modelled on Atul Kasbekar.

    The director admits that Rohit’s character is indeed based on Kasbekar, “It’s true. When I wrote the character of a good-looking glamour-photographer who hobnobs with the sexiest models and actresses I could think of only Atul. In fact when I prepared the concept posters for Shobhna’s 7 Nights I put Atul’s picture in them. Later when I signed Rohit for the role I saw an uncanny physical resemblance with Atul Kasbekar. So you see, Rohit is not only playing a character modelled on Atul, Rohit even resembles Atul.”

    When asked about his on-screen avatar Atul Kasbekar appeared amused, “This is the first time I am hearing about it. I hope the reel portrayal is more interesting than the real.”

    In the meanwhile a third character played by Anupam Kher, playing a publisher named ‘Harry Davidar’ of ‘Walrus Books’ who gets into a serious controversy, also bears an unmistakable resemblance to real-life publisher David Davidar.

    David’s nephew has contacted Sudipto asking that his uncle’s name be changed in the film.

    Says the director, “David Davidar’s nephew Jonathan did contact me to change Anupam’s character’s name. But it was too late. There was nothing I could do about it. Whether it’s Shobha, Atul or David I hope they understand that the characters in my film are based on them simply because these are iconic names in the entertainment and publishing industry and you just can’t get away from it.”



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