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October 1, 2001
Up next, served hot!
The long line of wannabe stars seems never-ending in the Hindi film industry even though no newcomer has reached the staggering heights scaled by Hrithik Roshan last year.
The new brigade includes star kids, beauty queens, supermodels and even complete novices who are young, brimming with confidence and ready to work as hard as it takes to make it in the Hindi film industry.
Among those hoping to climb the ladder of success are Vikas Kalantri and Ashima Bhalla, who will test the box-office waters on October 5 in K C Bokadia's Pyaar Zindagi Hai.
Vikas, son of prominent industrialist Vijay Kalantri, says he took to acting because he got addicted to films after seeing Sholay and Andaz Apna Apna more than 30 times. The rookie has also been taking Urdu, dance, fighting and acting lessons at the Kishore Namit institute.
His debut may not be as smashing as Hrithik's in Kaho Naa... Pyaar Hai but he can surely hope to duplicate the unexpected success of yesteryear actor Jeetendra's son Tusshar Kapoor and model-turned-actor Arjun Rampal.
Pyaar Zindagi Hai, slated for release Friday, also marks the return of yesteryear romantic hero Rajesh Khanna who plays Ashima's onscreen father.
Ashima hopes to join the already long list of actresses like Preity Zinta, Kareena Kapoor, Amisha Patel, Preeti Jhangiani, Kim Sharma, Keerthi Reddy, Shamita Shetty and Bipasha Basu, who have already become household names.
But her real competition will come from Hrishita Bhatt who stars in the much-delayed Abhishek Bachchan-starrer Shararat by debutante director Gurudev Bhalla.
Following Malaika Arora-Khan's sizzling Chhaiyan Chhaiyan in Dil Se and Nikhil Chinappa cameo in Snip veejays like Hrishita jumped onto the Hindi cinema bandwagan.
A former veejay, she will also be seen in Asoka with actor Shah Rukh Khan and Kareena.
Malaika's sister and veejay, Amrita Arora stars in Kitne Door Kitne Paas with Fardeen Khan and has untitled films with D. Rama Naidu and E. Niwas in her kitty.
Keeping pace with Cyrus Broacha, who has shot for a cameo in Om Jai Jagdish, is Channel (V) veejay Purab, being launched in Padam Kumar's Supari.
But the industry is keenly awaiting the debut of Miss Asia-Pacific Diya Mirza who is expected to make waves in producer Vashu Bhagnani's latest venture Rehnaa Hai Terre Dil Mein.
Diya also has Anupam Kher's Om Jai Jagdish which will mark her formal Bollywood debut as Rehnaa Hai Terre Dil Mein is a remake. With these films, Diya has stolen a march over fellow beauty queens Yukta Mookhey and Priyanka Chopra.
Yukta marks her debut opposite Aftab Shivdasani and model-turned-actor Zulfi Syed in Pyaasa directed by A. Muthu who made Tera Jadoo Chal Gayaa, while it is still unclear what Priyanka's first film will be as she has signed quite a few in quick succession.
Rehnaa Hai..., which is a remake of a southern hit film, stars southern superstar Madhavan in the lead. The film will mark his debut in Hindi cinema as well.
The most-hyped debut, however, will be that of Esha Deol, daughter of yesteryear stars Dharmendra and Hema Malini, in Koi Mere Dil Se Pooche, opposite Aftab Shivdasani and Sanjay Kapoor in the Boney Kapoor production.
But for every success story, an equal number have fallen by the wayside. Take for instance Karan Nath, son of star secretary Rakesh Nath who debuted in the box-office disaster Paagalpan. Like him, co-star Aarti Agarwal, a ninth grader from New Jersey, is nowhere to be seen.
Then there is Riya Sen, granddaughter of yesteryear Bengali actress Suchitra Sen, whose long-in-the-making debut Love You Hamesha is yet to see the light of day.
Riya, nevertheless, has been keeping busy and has shot many commercials, music videos, and a southern Indian film Taj Mahal. She also has Deewana Tere Naam Ka opposite Akshaye Khanna and Style in hand.
Her sister, Raima Sen, meanwhile, has been making her presence felt in offbeat cinema and got noticed in Godmother and Daman.
The new crop has surfaced even as others like Fardeen, Aftab, Lisa Ray, Rahul Dev, Shamita, Preeti, Keerti, Bikram Saluja and Jimmy Shergill wait for their careers to take off.
The best thing going for them is that Bollywood producers and distributors, who once refused to look beyond the Khan trio -- Shah Rukh Khan, Aamir Khan and Salman Khan -- are placing their trust in Generation Y.
This willingness has led N. Chandra to cast four newcomers in his latest venture Style which is likely to be released in October.
Similarly, Ashok Mehta has cast Arjun opposite Manisha Koirala in Moksha and Tanuja Chandra has placed her trust on Jimmy in her next flick Yeh Zindagi Ka Safar opposite the much-in-demand Amisha of Gadar-Ek Prem Katha fame.
Ram Gopal Varma, who has a reputation of successfully re-launching fading stars, has gone a step forward by casting Vivek Oberoi as one of the leads in Company that also stars Mohanlal, Ajay Devgan and Manisha.
Cricketer Ajay Jadeja is also facing the camera in director Yusuf Khan's next film that co-stars Sunil Shetty. There's also Panini Raaj Kumar, second son of late legendary actor Raaj Kumar. Panini, who debuts in a film titled Mumbai Masti, apparently chose it because he didn't believe in clichéd love stories.
Also waiting in the wings is Tejaswani Kolhapure, sister of yesteryear heroine Padmini Kolhapure, in Paanch. The film is carrying rave reviews, but is stuck with the censor board.
With Bipasha already having made the transition from supermodel to an actress with Abbas-Mustan's Ajnabee, Achala Sachdev is hoping to make an equally favourable first impression in Na Tum Jaano Na Hum
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