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Clashes of the interesting kind this December
By Subhash K. Jha, IANS
Shah Rukh Versus Shah Rukh, Shahid Kapur Versus Kareena Kapoor, Mahesh Manjrekar Versus Mahesh Manjrekar -- just some of the curious Friday clashes lined up for this December.
Shah Rukh Khan's long-awaited film about reversed brain-drain "Swades" is eagerly awaited, not only for the return of 'King Khan' a month after the successful "Veer-Zaara" but also because it's Ashutosh Gowariker's post-"Lagaan" directorial venture.
Making Friday Dec 17 even more interesting is the release of the animation film "The Incredibles". Shah Rukh Khan and his son Aryan have lent voices for the dubbed Hindi version.
According to Columbia Tri-star officials, the decision to unveil their most prestigious film of the year on the same day as "Swades" originates from Shah Rukh Khan's immense star power. If audiences would want to see him in "Swades", they'd also want to hear him in "The Incredibles."
Then, they'll be seeing plenty of director-turned-actor Mahesh Manjrekar on Dec 10 when he appears in the comedy "Padmashri Laloo Prasad Yadav" (whose fate would depend on the outcome of this week's comic romp "Hulchal") and in the serious drama "Musafir". While Manjrekar is cast as a clown in one, he's a sadistic husband who makes Sameera Reddy's life a living hell in the other.
Curiously, Manjrekar doesn't consider himself an actor but a director. Yet he continues to be part of Sanjay Gupta's films -- first "Kaante", then "Plan" and now "Musafir". We've had many actors turned filmmakers (Subhash Ghai, Shekhar Kapur Manoj Kumar, Raj Kapoor to name a few), but Manjrekar is alone in his opposite journey.
The other interesting clash in December is between Shahid Kapur and his girlfriend Kareena on Dec 24 when Dharmesh Darshan's "Bewafaa" and Ananth Mahadevan's "Dil Maange More" release simultaneously.
Interestingly, Kareena has two men, Anil Kapoor and Akshay Kumar, craving for her love in "Bewafaa". And in "Dil Maange More", Ayesha Takia, Tulip Joshi and Soha Ali Khan pant after Shahid Kapur.
Clearly then, clashes of a very unusual kind awaits the box-office in the chilly wintry month.