Season of goodwill for Bollywood smash PK

Plus: Indian police hunt internet imposter; and harry Potter actor David Ryall dies at 79.
Aamir Khan and Anushka Sharma in PK, which has done phenomenally well internationally as well as in India. Courtesy  Rajkumar Hirani Films
Aamir Khan and Anushka Sharma in PK, which has done phenomenally well internationally as well as in India. Courtesy Rajkumar Hirani Films

The holiday season seems to have worked some Christmas magic on Aamir Khan’s latest film PK – as the producers say the movie has been doing incredibly well not only in India, but also in the international market since its release on December 19. “PK has performed exceptionally well in India and many international markets, and with each day of its theatrical run, the movie is setting new benchmarks in many countries. Our distribution strategy ensured a wide availability for the movie across countries in all key centres,” said Amrita Pandey, the vice president and head of marketing and distribution, studios, for Disney India. “The film has performed phenomenally well – and is now the highest-grossing Hindi film ever in its first week in India, North America, Australia and many more. Most importantly, the movie has seen an unprecedented growth trajectory. The occupancy rates in most theatres all over have been very encouraging. We look forward to a long theatrical run for the movie.” In India, PK earned 1.83 billion rupees (Dh10.5bn) during its first week on release. The film, directed by Rajkumar Hirani, also stars Anushka Sharma, Sushant Singh Rajput and Sanjay Dutt. – IANS

Police hunt internet imposter

Police in India are hunting a man who has been impersonating the actor Hrithik Roshan and the filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali, The Times of India reports. A conman has been posing as Bhansali on social-network sites and created a fake email address from which he asked people to invest in a film and invited aspiring actors to auditions. It comes a month after Roshan reported a similar case. Police believe the same person is responsible for both. A Juhu police officer said: “It appears that the accused wants to harm the reputation of the filmmaker. Claiming he is Bhansali and is facing a cash crunch, he has been inviting people to finance his new project. We suspect he may have been turned down by Bhansali and Roshan, and hence is targeting both. We are questioning staff of both the celebs for more information.” – The National staff

Harry Potter actor dead at 79

The veteran British actor David Ryall, who played the wizard Elphias Doge in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1, and appears in Mike Leigh’s latest film, Mr Turner, has died at the age of 79. The actor and writer Mark Gatiss, of the TV series The League of Gentlemen and Sherlock, broke the news on Twitter, saying: “The great David Ryall left us on Christmas Day. A twinkling, brilliant, wonderful actor I was privileged to call a friend. RIP.” Ryall’s other recent credits included a recurring role as the grandfather on the hit BBC family sitcom Outnumbered. He also played former British prime minister Winston Churchill three times. – The National staff

Published: December 28, 2014 04:00 AM

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