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BY SUGANDHA RAWAL
Did the trailers of “Panipat” and “Tanhaji: The Unsung Warrior” remind you of “Game Of Thrones”? Or the action of “War” and “Saaho” bring memories of “Mission Impossible”? Well, that’s because the canvas of Bollywood is getting glossier, with the creative geniuses of Hollywood increasingly working on Bollywood projects.
From action gurus, stunt directors, VFX experts, cinematographers, musicians, make-up experts, technicians to physical trainers, talent from the West is being roped in to deliver world-standard content in Hindi films.
The trend of roping in experts from Hollywood is not new, but something which is growing popular with filmmakers acquiring global sensibilities, and the Indian audience getting receptive towards foreign content.
With larger-than-life Hollywood movies, backed up with advanced make-up and technology techniques, high on breathtaking action sequences and on point cinematography, winning hearts in India, Indian filmmakers are updating the look of the project to match up with their foreign counterpart.
Star-driven vehicles such as Salman Khan’s “Tiger Zinda Hai”, “Race 3”, “Bharat”, Hrithik Roshan and Tiger Shroff-starrer “War”, Akshay Kumar’s “Kesari” and Rishi Kapoor’s “Kapoor & Sons” are infused with Hollywood mastery.
“Now that we are used to watching global content, from films to content on Netflix and Amazon Prime Video, people have more expectations. They want everything to look good. It makes a difference. The production value, the look and lighting has to be on par with the Hollywood standard. It works well for all as it improves the whole get up of the project,” trade expert Rajesh Thadani told IANS.
According to Thadani, historical projects such ad Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s “Padmaavat”, Ashurosh Gowariker’s “Panipat” and the Ajay Devgn-co produced “Tanhaji: The Unsung Warrior” need to be credited for driving the trend forward.
“Historical films are more into that because all the VFXs are intact,” Thadani added.
Some notables projects with foreign twist include “Kesari” with “Mad Max: Fury Road” stunt coordinator Lawrence Woodward, “Bang Bang” with “Thor” stunt coordinator Andy Armstrong, Sunny Deol’s “Ghayal Once Again” with Hollywood stunt coordinator Dan Bradley, “Krrish” franchise, Prabhas’ “Saaho” with Hollywood stuntmaster Kenny Bates, Taapsee Pannu’s “Naam Shabana” with Hollywood stuntman Cyril Raffaelli and Rishi Kapoor’s “Kapoor & Sons” with makeup artist Greg Cannom.
When not hiring talent from the West, filmmakers are looking out to the foreign world to add Hollywood appeal to the project.
“Our technicians are better trained, our facilities have become better, production values as well as budgets have gone up, and then in many cases we are hiring Hollywood talent. In this case, peer competition goes up and everyone wants to learn new techniques and what eventually happens is that everyone is updated…It benefits the film. The look, sounds, and colours get better, which audience love,” trade expert Girish Johar told IANS, adding that “it used to happen earlier too, but now it is on a wide scale and in larger quantity”.
Hollywood action director Paul Jennings, who has worked in movies such as “The Dark Knight” and “San Andreas” among many others, says the action spectacle in “War” is on par with films like “Mission Impossible” and “Fast and Furious”.
“What I love about Bollywood is I believe you can push the action a little bit further. You can do things which push the boundaries of believability right to the edge and it means you can end up with more spectacular sequences,” Jennings said, who designed jaw-dropping action sequences for “War”, which is his first Bollywood film.
Famous action director Tom Struthers, who has choreographed action for Christian Bale in “The Dark Night”, for Tom Hardy in “Dunkirk” and Salman in “Tiger Zinda Hai” and “Race 3”, is also impressed with the world of Bollywood.
“I think Bollywood is in a great place right now. They are experimenting with culturally different professionals in the camera, stunts, action-directing departments,” said Struthers, whose first tryst with Bollywood was with Nikkhil Advani’s 2013 film “D-Day”.
So, it is all about keeping up with Hollywood, and the trend will only grow in the time to come. (IANS)
Along with the undeniable natural beauty, the Kashmir valley has developed a reputation for adventurous activities like trekking, hiking, and river rafting. Kashmir has maintained its charm, allowing us to time-travel into beautiful destinations which make one forget about the stress and worries of life. The hikes in Kashmir offer adventurers to go on a self-discovery trip through nature's lap over the mountains while taking in the breathtaking scenery that surrounds them on their journey. In addition to the hikes, there are many thrilling adventure activities, like rock climbing, rope climbing, etc. Trekking across the region of mountains and lakes will allow you to experience living in the "Paradise on Earth," and you wouldn't want to return to your regular life after that.
The following are some of the finest hiking destinations in Kashmir:
#1: Kashmir Great Lakes Trek: You will be transported to a heavenly and unseen aspect of Kashmir on the Kashmir Great Lakes Trek. In addition to three high-altitude passes and five river valley crossings, this is the only trip in the Himalayas that includes seven alpine lakes, each of which is a stunning shade of green, blue, or turquoise. The extravagance is limitless and breathtakingly stunning every day: infinite blue sky, a larger-than-life backdrop of the Rocky Mountains, colourful meadows overflowing with wildflowers, river crossings are just a few examples of what you will encounter during the trek.
You will be transported to a heavenly and unseen aspect of Kashmir on the Kashmir Great Lakes Trek. | Photo by prayer flags on Unsplash
#2: Sonamarg-Vishansar-Bandipora Trek: The Sonamarg-Vishansar-Bandipora trek is a one-of-a-kind experience that provides a glimpse into Kashmir's undiscovered regions. Sonamarg, famously known as the Meadows of Gold, is the starting point for this fascinating journey that is the perfect experience for anyone looking to get away from the frantic tourist rush. This trek is a fascinating journey that allows nature enthusiasts to bask in the splendour of nature's grandeur. The trek goes over many high mountain passes, some as high as 4000 metres in elevation. The hiking route, in addition to providing breathtaking views of the magnificent Vishansar Lake, provides visitors with the chance to see more than 50 alpine lakes.
Sonamarg, famously known as the Meadows of Gold, is the starting point for this fascinating journey. | Photo by YASER NABI MIR on Unsplash
ALSO READ: Top 10 Beautiful Sights To VIsit In Kashmir
#3: Tral-Narastan-Marsar Trek: The Tral-Narastan-Marsar trek is filled with a range of exciting experiences from beginning to end. The hiking trail passes past a waving saffron field, beautiful meadows, and several streams. The path also crosses the Dachigam National Park, where there is an opportunity to see various animal species. Trekkers may take in spectacular views of the high mountains running parallel to them as they cut and pass through Narastan, a Hindu pilgrimage place.
The Tral-Narastan-Marsar trek is filled with a range of exciting experiences from beginning to end. | Wikimedia Commons
#4: Chhatargul-Mahlish-Gangabal: The journey, which passes through beautiful locations such as Chattargul, Mahlish, Kolsar, and Trunkul, provides a peek into an utterly uninhabited wilderness of Kashmir. There are lakes and meadows adorned with flowers along the route as one trek into the alpine wilderness. Trekkers can also enjoy fishing in the crystal clear lakes, camping, or just seeing towering snow-capped mountains while on their journey.
There are lakes and meadows adorned with flowers along the route as one treks into the alpine wilderness. | Wikimedia Commons
#5: Kolahoi Base Camp Trek: The Kolahoi Base Camp trek in Kashmir has been famous since the early 1900s and has been a goal for many seasoned hikers from across the world. While Srinagar serves as the beginning point for the trip, it is in Aru Valley that the actual hiking begins. The Kolahoi Base Camp Trek is a gentle adventure that is ideal for novices and families with children. The breathtaking sight of the peaks rising into the sky on the horizon of the Pirpanjal and Karakoram ranges is certainly worth capturing. It is considered to be one of the most popular treks in the Kashmir valley.
The Kolahoi Base Camp Trek is a gentle adventure that is ideal for novices and families with children. | Wikimedia Commons
Kashmir's natural splendour, with its beautiful valleys and towering mountains, is really unlike anywhere. Trekking through various valleys and peaks while taking in the scenic beauty is something that always calms the heart and provides us with memories that we will remember for a lifetime.
Keywords: Kashmir, Lakes, Alpine, Hiking, Trekking, Treks, Sonamarg, Gangabal, Kolahoi, Chhatargul, Mahlish, Tral, Narastan, Marsar
The Pitru Paksha starts after the Full Moon day, and this day marks the beginning of the waning phase of the Lunar cycle. This event is roughly of 15-day period, and is of great significance. From this day, rituals like Tarpan or Tarpanam and Shradh are carried out to pay respects to dead relatives and ancestors.
It is believed that from the very first day till the last day, the unhappy souls of the deceased return to the Earth to see their family members. So, in order to ensure that the dead attain Moksha, i.e. to get liberation, family members of these souls quench their thirst and satisfy their hunger by performing the Pind Daan, which includes offering food consisting of cooked rice and black sesame seeds. The literal meaning of Pind Daan is the act of satisfying those who no longer exist physically.
For fifteen days, prayers are offered in temples and rituals are performed to help the souls get free from the cycle of birth, life, and death, and attain salvation.
At the same time, the Pitru Paksha is also an important period for people with Pitru Dosha, which means the curse imposed by the ancestors. Hence, in order to ask forgiveness, people perform Shradh rituals and offer food to the crows, who are considered as living beings that represent the dead. It is believed, if the crow eats the offered food, the ancestors are happy and pleased. But, if the crow doesn't eat the offered food and flies away, the ancestors are not happy.
The event of Pitru Paksha is widely observed by Hindus from all over the world, and they perform prayers and rituals in order to gain their ancestors blessings.
At the heart of Bangalore city, a large 300-acre space of lush greenery and heritage stands as a symbol of the city's past, present, and future. Cubbon Park is every child's favourite park, every Bangalorean's haven of fresh air, and altogether, the city's pride.
It stands testament to the past, in terms of the diversity of flora it houses. Bangalore traffic in the recent past has grown into a menace, but the stretch between MG Road and Cubbon Park is always a pleasurable place to stop and wait for the signal to turn green. The gust of wind that blows here, and the smell of mud, coupled with floral scents instantly transports citizens to Old Bangalore, where the weather was fine, and the trees loomed over roads with thick canopies that did not even allow rainwater to penetrate. Cubbon Park is also a historical site, and one of the few remaining monuments of colonial heritage in Central Bangalore. It houses many statues and among them, the most famous is that of Queen Victoria, which faces the St. Mark's Square.
The stretch outside Cubbon Park is cool and well-shaded from the canopy of trees over it. Image source: wikimedia commons
At present, Cubbon Park is known for the cultural hub that it is. It houses Jawahar Bal Bhavan, which is a large theatre that hosts film festivals through the year. Festivals, poetry open mics, and other such shows are conducted on the lawns every Sunday. A small stream runs through the park, where boat rides are held occasionally when the water level is high enough. There is a children's park on one corner, and a government-maintained aquarium, two-storeys tall, with exotic fish.
The Park has been renamed many times in the past. It was originally named Meade's Park, after Sir John Meade, the acting commissioner of Mysore in 1870. It was later changed to Cubbon Park after Sir Mark Cubbon, who was the longest-serving commissioner of the Mysore state. In 1927, the park was renamed after the Mysore Maharaja Sri Krishna Wodeyar, to celebrate his silver jubilee, since the park was developed during the reign of his ancestors. Even though it is officially named Sri Chamrajendra Park, it is still known as Cubbon Park all over the city. In fact, Bangalore was alluded the sobriquet of 'Garden City' because of the rich botanical diversity of this park.
Art Installation at Cubbon Park Image source: wikimedia commons
In many parts of the country, governments have renamed structures, places, and cities to remove traces of colonialism. But, in a city like Bangalore, there is too much evidence of the British rule. Many of the most prominent attractions of the city are known by their British identities despite the change in name. Even the city's name continues to be Bangalore, despite having been changed to Bengaluru. Last year, the British era and its achievements were celebrated in Cubbon Park when Sir Mark Cubbon's statue was moved from the grounds of the Karnataka High Court and placed in the Park.
Keywords: Cubbon Park, Mark Cubbon, British Colonialism, Cultural hub, Garden City