Posts Tagged ‘Hollywood


Frieda Pinto: A Star Is Truly Born!

Superstar Freida Pinto smiles for The Ravi Report

Frieda Pinto needs no introduction. Plain and simple folks. 

“Oh my God, did you see how beautiful she is?” said one alluring brunette with almond-shaped exotic brown eyes who was lucky enough to get a ticket to Pinto’s recent movie premiere in NY.
“I’d marry her in a second,” boasted a stylish male Calvin Klein model who among many models was a  guest at the premiere.
Such is the kind of phenomenon that the young, stylish and sought after actress possesses.  And oh by the way, she’s also a  fine actress and when you see her latest film “Trishna”, you will totally agree.

Ravi Yande with Freida Pinto at “Trishna” NY Premiere

Pinto  is a star in every sense of the word and over the years, as I have met and interviewed her,  I have found her to be the most well grounded, mature and focused individual. As a child, she has always wanted to be an actress and has reached her dream at a very young age. Born and raised in an academic family in Mumbai, India, Pinto modeled, did some plays and  took acting classes at the famous Barry John Acting Studio in Mumbai before hitting it big.

The Slumdog Millionaire superstar who became an instant overnight sensation after the amazing film took home eight Academy Awards, has now become one of Hollywood’s favorite young actresses  working with some of the biggest stars and directors. A chance only a few lucky and gifted actresses get in a lifetime.
Pinto 27,  had very little acting experience before she landed the role as Latika in “Slumdog Millionaire” and to be honest, her part in the film wasn’t even substantial compared to the star of the film Dev Patel. But when Pinto made screen time, you noticed. The captivating facial expressions, the on-screen chemistry with Patel combined with her innocent beauty, all catered to making her role an integral part of the movie. In other words, she had arrived.

Friends of The Ravi Report at “Trishna” premiere

Pinto’s latest film, “Trishna” directed by the brilliant Michael Winterbottom (Yes, THAT Winterbottom) and based on the novel Tess of the D’Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy,  is one of the most interesting and thought-provoking films that I think Pinto has ever done. As the lead actress , Pinto holds the film on her own and one can  see that Latika has grown into a refined  actress.  Winterbottom is a gifted director. Plain and simple.

Pinto plays the role of a simple, lower-caste Indian girl in exotic and beautiful Rajasthan, India who meets a dashing handsome man only to be swept off her feet in a short fairy tale romance. When the fairy tale  is over, reality sets in and THAT’s where the drama gets good. Ok, no more on the story line folks.

Calvin Klein and friend were special guests at premiere

Pinto does an exceptional  job playing the role of Trishna showing the multiply sides of her emotions when acting. Winterbottom clearly knew what he was getting when he cast Pinto in the lead.

Pinto spoke exclusively to The Ravi Report about her journey into stardom and her new film. 
 RR: Freida, always great to see you. You look simply gorgeous. It’s been a terrific journey for you so far, your thoughts?

FP: Thank you so much.  The journey so far has been fantastic but honestly, there is a lot more for me to learn and I have a good feeling that it is going to be upwards for me in terms of what I am going to learn from now on.
RR: You are the lead actress in the film, carrying it completely on your own and you did an outstanding job. What kinds of pressures did you face working as the lead and with a brilliant director like Winterbottom?

Pinto shares a laugh with The Ravi Report


FP: This film (Trishna) is really my genesis and I never thought that I could carry a film and this is the first one. Michael (Winterbottom) really believed in me…and I am so happy that I took on the project.
RR: One thing that is known in Hollywood, is that you do in-depth research when you accept a new film. How has your past performances in films helped with Trishna?
FP: What’s really interesting for me is that I had such a good team and I have worked with the best in the film (Hollywood) industry and if I didn’t work with any of the directors like Danny Boyle, Woody Allen, Julian Schnabel, and Rupert Wyatt, none of this would have happened and I would not have had the understanding of how different directors work and how you can mold yourself into whatever character they envision you to be and understanding different nuances that I would not have understood.

RR: You always speak so graciously to me about your projects Frieda. I will say you are one of the most well- grounded and humble stars I have ever met and it is  always a pleasure to meet you.

FP: Thank you for saying that, it’s kind and I am so grateful for it all. I really and truly am.

Gorgeous models attend premiere

The non-stop working and jet setting actress still makes time for family and friends. With parents in Mumbai and close friends in Hollywood, the captivating actress is constantly on the go.  Now, with the tile of Global Brand Ambassador of Plan International’s Because I am a Girl campaign, the actress has added one more project to her already full plate embracing it with that million dollar  smile!

“Trishna” is now showing in selected theaters across the country and in India. For more info, visit
The journey continues…and for Frieda Pinto, it’s an AWESOME  one!

Paul Giamatti & Amy Ryan Are In a “Win Win” situation

Superstars Paul Giamatti and Amy Ryan smile for The Ravi Report

 The Spring is here folks and you know what that means. Brighter days, warmer weather, extensive gym workouts, sprouting tulips and the box office blossoming with an amazing film. It’s a “win win” situation. Get it? Read on.

Win Win” is a movie that is for everyone. Plain and simple and “wins” in every category. Casting, story, music, emotion, direction well you name it, it wins. Plus, the story takes place in my home state of New Jersey where  some of the best Hollywood films (and TV shows) are made and where some of the biggest stars in Hollywood came from.

Writer-director Tom McCarthy knows how to write, director, act and  how to make great movies. He can also discover talent as he did with newcomer Alex Shaffer.  McCarthy is known for tapping into the emotional side of people with his scripts and this film is no exception. It’s a great film people!

The cast includes the incredibly talented Paul Giamatti (I’m a big fan since his film “Sideways”), the versatile & amazing actress Amy Ryan (I think the “R” should stand for “Rocks”), Bobby Cannavale, Jeffrey Tamor and Burt Young and  Alex Shaffer, who already has won the hearts of millions  as a first -time actor who clearly knows how to hold his own on screen.

The talented cast of "Win Win" pose exclusively for The Ravi Report

The story revolves around  Mike Flaherty(Giamatti) a lawyer married to Jackie (Ryan) living a simple life in suburbia New Jersey and trying to make ends meet. Flaherty  is given legal guardianship of an elderly client (Bert Young) and does a little wheeling and dealing in client care when he gets a visitor- the client’s grandson Kyle (Shaffer). Kyle is a high-school talented wrestler who needs a lot more than hair gel and pretty girls to get back on track. With mom in rehab, Kyle has no place to go so he stays with Flaherty and in essence, turns their lives upside down, but in a good way.  Did I mention that Flaherty also happens to be moonlighting as a  part-time wrestling coach? The story transforms into one of the most emotional and heart-warming movies you will ever see. You will also be astounded at Shaffer’s remarkable performance. How good? Ah, let’s just say you may see the young star on the red carpet soon behind a 75 feet high golden statue.

 Academy Award nominee  Paul Giamatti is simply brilliant in the film. What else is there to say?

Directed and written by the ingenious actor turn director Tom McCarthy,  the gifted filmmaker  is probably one of the few directors that knows how to touch the soul of the audiences through his way of making films and his way of  bringing characters to life. His previous films “The Station Agent” and “The Visitor” were brilliant films based on human emotions and unexplainable friendships. So I knew what to expect when I saw “Win Win” and got exactly what I had hoped for- an emotional film that shows the strength of the human spirit  and will  make you think about the story long after you leave the theater.

Amy Ryan is awesome.  Her versatility in acting has always been noted by the  critics.  Her role as Adele in the HBO  show “In Treatment” (one of my favorite shows) gave the show a special  refinement while her role as Holly in the hit television series “The Office”  raised the caliber of the show in many ways. Ryan has been one of my favorite actresses for a long time and “Win Win” proves that the pretty actress is indeed one of the most  talented actresses we have today.

Giamatti in my opinion is one of the most proficient and versatile actors there is today in Hollywood.  The  actor earned a SAG Award for his compelling performance in “Cinderella Man” as well as an Academy Award nomination. The star recently finished up “Ironclad” in which the award-winning actor portrays “King John” in the year 1215.

During a media event in  NY, director McCarthy talked about how he wanted amazing music for the film but didn’t have the budget to pay a big rockstar.  And we all know that big time musicians don’t even bat an eyelash unless they see $$$$ up front.  But the  influential McCarthy managed to rope in the mega superstar and well-loved singer Bon Jovi who allowed McCarthy to use his song “Have A Nice Day” in the film for next to nothing.  Now that’s clout people!!

What I found  special about the film and meeting the cast in person,  is that  besides having a great storyline and being well-respected and talented actors, there was a certain positive energy and feel-good chemistry that came from both seeing the film and meeting the talented group. For more info on the film and national release dates,  go to

So in all it’s been a “Win Win” experience for The Ravi Report!

The journey continues….



Good Luck Oscar Nominees!!!

 Well, it’s finally that time. The annual Academy Awards.

The best of the best come out to show off their talent, designer clothes, jewellery and beautiful nearly perfect bodies on the red carpet for the world to see and of course criticize (Joan, you listening? LOL).

The 83rd Annual Academy Awards is on tonight on ABC at 8pm (EST) giving the world a look at the creme de la creme in the world of movies and trust me, there were some great movies, roles, music and screenplays that were well worth watching this year.

I hope you all got to watch the films being nominated tonight. I have to be honest, I liked all of them. The Best Picture category includes  Black Swan, True Grit, Inception,  The FighterThe Kids Are All Right, The King’s Speech, 127 Hours, The Social Network, Toy Story 3, True Grit and Winter’s Bone. 

A film critic for a leading entertainment magazine asked me the other day which picture I thought would win. That is a great question which I have been asked over and over again in the last few weeks. The same goes for Best Actor. But to be honest, I think all the performances and movies  were excellent. Seriously. I think everyone that is nominated tonight has done an outstanding job in their role.

Academy Award nominated actor Geoffrey Rush speaking to The Ravi Report

  Geoffrey Rush’s acting in “The King’s Speech” simply rocked! The actor is just gifted. Plain and simple. When I met the actor, I saw a humble person who just loved doing what he does best.  Rush is one of the finest actors we have today. He continues to shine in films or on stage with his God-given talents and is very gracious to the press.

Regarding the actresses, I will say that Natalie Portman’s performance in “Black Swan” is really incredible.The girl can act!  I met Portman over the year on the red carpet and at other events and she is much, much prettier in real life.  Nicole Kidman  gave a strong and powerful performance in “Rabbit Hole“. It’s a great film .My long time favorite Annette Bening got nominated for her role in “The Kids Are All Right“. Another powerful film.

I will say that one of my favorite actors nominated this year (again folks!) is the multi-talented and super nice actor Jeff Bridges. No matter how busy his guy is, he always makes time to talk to the press and he does so with such grace and charm. 

 Bridges is nominated this year for his role in “True Grit”.  He did an excellent job. Bridges’s ability as an actor gets even  more refined as he gets older. He’s also proven a very important point in Hollywood- that  despite being a youth-oriented-buffed body industry, the actor  has shown that  TALENT is the real key to success with his films, nominations and Oscar wins.  

Oscar nominated Jeff Bridges smiles for The Ravi Report

I am also happy for actor James Franco whose film “127  Hours” was among the favorite of many critics this year (even the tough ones!) and the first time nominee is pretty excited and surprised at the win he told me earlier during the year. But should he be? After all, the film director by the brilliant Danny Boyle ( Hello Slumdog Millionaire!!) who usually attaches his names and talent to a script that he knows will bring out the best in whoever he choses to be in his films. “127  Hours” did very well at the box office and besides Franco being nominated for an Oscar For Best Actor in a Leading Role, the film has also grabbed a nomination for Best Picture. Not bad at all for a newcomer!!!

Am I surprised at any of the nominations? Not really . I think everyone who got nominated this year really proved to be outstanding in their given role and based on what I have seen, they truly deserve the nomination for all their hard work, dedication, sacrifices and determination.

My reporter friends are in LA tonight gearing up to report from the red carpet and I am heading to some Oscar parties tonight in NYC to get New Yorkers reaction to who wins and loses. So  make sure you watch the Oscars and let’s compare notes after the wins! For more info on the 83rd Academy Awards, go to for a complete wrap up of all the nominees and tidbits about the most “famous golden statue” there is!!

The Journey continues…..




The other day, one of my reporter friends mentioned to me that she was going to the 2010 Willifest Film Festival. She asked me if I was going. 
“Was I going?” I eagerly replied.
“I”m all over that already” I then boasted. 
And I am.
The Williamsburg Film Festival, (  fondly known as Willifest will begin on Sept 23 and run until the 26th in one of the hippest and stylish places in Brooklyn. The newly establish film festival will bring together hundreds of film professionals and thousands of movie fans over the course of three days in the famous town full of artists and some of the most creative people you will ever meet.
The festival will feature the works of some of the most talented directors, producers, writers and actors from NY showcasing their short films and documentaries. It with also feature special Q&A with the directors, industry executives and producers after specific screenings.  If it’s anything like their recent press party, you are NOT GOING to want to miss this exciting film festival folks!
Co-Founded by talented veteran filmmaker Michael Helman and film/TV/music producer Robin Adams, The Williamsburg Film Festival was established so that accomplished and up and coming artistic  filmmakers from NY can showcase their films to a live audience while meeting industry professionals and networking with their peers.

Ravi Yande with "Dream Team" filmmakers Beth Aala, Jonathan Bricklin and Morgan Spurlock

One of the most successful and eminent filmmaker to attach his name and films to the festival this year is the resplendent Morgan Spurlock.  

Spurlock, whose 2004 Academy Award nominated film “Super Size Me” is still one of the most famous and most watched documentaries of all time,  is one of the nicest, humorous and talented filmmakers I have ever met. Spurlock spoke exclusively to The Ravi Report about his involvement in the Williamsburg Film Festival this year. I caught up with Spurlock and his team of amazing producers at one of the hottest & sexiest places in NY, the ping-pong social club SPIN New York. (
“This festival became a great showcase for what I think has become a NY platform for films for NY based filmmakers and I am surprised by the amount of talent I see in NYC.” said the NY based director. 
” I came from West Virginia to NYC to find my way into this business and I want to help people get their movies seen,” added the award-winning screenwriter.
 The acclaimed filmmaker gained nationwide fame with his  documentary creating ripples through the fast food industry  by showing the world what a diet of McDonald’s fast food can do to you and your body.  The success of the film made Spurlock one of the most sought after filmmakers in Hollywood and NY.
Spurlock is executive producer of the opening night  film “Pool Party” which is directed by long time friend, the talented and beautiful Beth Aala. The film tells the story of how one of the largest abandoned pools in NY became a venue for bands and musicians. The buzz on this film is pretty intense.
“Morgan is one person that  loves to take chances” said  Aala. The director also believes that due to Spurlock’s ability to work well with people and his ability to be trusting in new producers and directors, the masterful documentary filmmaker  is revered by many of his peers.
“For Morgan, it’s aways been about quality and story and it shows in his work or whatever project he gets involved in” stated Aala,
Then for a split second during my interview, Spurlock became the reporter (Spurlock is an excellent journalist by the way who was voted by Time magazine in 2007 as one of  the top 10 “Best Journalists of The World”) and I became the listener.
“What do you expect from your film. What do you hope for?” the  filmmaker asked Aala.
“My hope is that an audience is going to experience this film and appreciate the changes and music in Williamsburg. I knew it back in the day (1999) and it is completely different from it is now” said Aala.
Spurlock is also the executive producer (the guy never rests!) of another incredible and engrossing film called “The Entrepreneur” based on the life of Malcom Bricklin, the gentleman responsible for bringing Suburus to America in the 1960s and for importing Yugos. The film is director by Bricklin’s son, the gifted filmmaker and co-owner of SPIN New York, Jonathan Bricklin.
” I asked if he (Spurlock) could help me finish the film and he said yes. I think its his great vibe and the fact that he is very approachable, really made this happen.” said Brickin Jr.
Spurlock said he took to the film because of one main thing the premise.
“Jonathan related the story and I saw so many similarities with it in my own life. I also grew up with a dad who was an entrepreneur who did not rest until he became successful so I could so related to this film in so many ways” stated the filmmaker.
This is Bricklin Jr. first documentary.
“As a filmmaker, just screening a film for  live audience is satisfying but when Morgan came into this project, that was pretty much it for me. To be endorsed by a great filmmaker who is so creative that was a great satisfaction for me in making this film” stated the NY based filmmaker.
Bricklin also says that Spurlock fully understands both the creative and business process which is  rare in a highly successful filmmaker.
Spurlock says his love for documentaries began in college when he saw the documentary  “Brother’s Keeper” (1992), the story about the murder trial of Dilbert Ward. Spurlock says that film directed by Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky really impacted his life in terms of following his decision into making documentaries.
“There is a great way to tell engrossing stories through non-fiction film making that does exist through narrative filmmaking”  pointed out the director who also believes that documentaries have grown to a place where they have become popular and accepting and that  now is the chance to make more docs that will eventually become mainstream.
Spurlock’s next film will be an adaptation of the book Freakonomics”  by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J Dubner due out in October.  Spurlock will be working with four other directors includng Heidi Ewing, Rachel Grady, Alex Gibney and Eugene Jarecki.
With his sense of filmmaking and passion for telling realistic stories, I had to ask the talented filmmaker about what his thoughts were on making a documentary on Bollywood.
” I would love to head to Mumbai to make a documentary. That would be amazing.” said the director.
“He should be a consultant to Bollywood films” chimed in Bricklin.
“They would welcome him with open arms” smiled Aala.
Indeed they would.
The journey continues…..




Illustrious actors Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones arriving at the 37th Chaplin Award

 Humanitarian, actor, producer, husband, father and friend are just a few of the words to describe legendary Michael Douglas and if you see  his latest film “Solitary Man” you may also want to add  “ingenious” to the list. 

The iconic star latest performance  proves that  the 65-year-old actor   is one of the most multifaceted,  talented and sought after names  in Hollywood today. For his outstanding contribution to the world of cinema, Douglas was recently bestowed the distinguished  Chaplin Award at a star-studded gala given by The Film Society of Lincoln Center.  

Who can forget the actor’s captivating performance in the sexual thriller   “Basic Instincts” (1992) or  the international box office hit  “Traffic” (2000)  in which he co-stars with his beautiful wife  award-winning actress Catherine Zeta- Jones.  The legendary “Wall Street” (1987) movie in which Douglas portrays a ruthless money man is about to  resurrected  in “Wall Street 2: Money Never Sleeps”  due out later this year. The film is being directed by Oliver Stone.  

Michael Douglas, mom Ann Buydens Douglas, wife Catherine Zeta- Jones and father Kirk Douglas

Douglas won two Academy Awards so far in his career. One for as producer in the film “One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest”  in 1975 and one for best actor in the hit film “Wall Street” (1987).  

But let’s back track a bit. Like many top stars in Hollywood, Douglas has had his share of ups and downs.  For years after his role in the film “The China syndrome” with Jane Fonda (1979), the actor’s career seem to have been at a  stand still with occasional roles in films that ever made a splash at the box office.  

Recent Tony award winning actress Catherine Zeta Jones listens to a question from The Ravi Report.

But the award-winning actor’s luck seemed to have changed in 1984 with the film “Romancing The Stone” which became an instant hit putting the star  right back up on the A list. Followed by the equally popular sequel “A Jewel In The Nile” , the films made Douglas one of the most sought after actors in Hollywood. It didn’t stop there folks.  

Fatal Attraction” (1987) with Glenn Close,   “Disclosure” (1994) with Demi Moore,  “War of The Roses” (1989) with Kathleen Turner and of course who can forget “Black Rain” (1989) with Andy Garcia which became an  international hit.  The  innovative star  was on a roll  

Michael Douglas addresses questions from the press

The actor married the stunning Zeta-Jones in 2000. Both youthful looking  actors share the same birthday, September 25.  The couple has always planned a special celebration on their Day of Glory  and  last year, they celebrated in NY with friends and family for the big 4-0 for Zeta-Jones.   

Douglas and Zeta-Jones are also actively involved in charitable causes and spend a great deal of time in Wales attending events close to their hearts.  

Long time friend and colleague actor Danny Devito was part of the celebration.

Long time friend and colleague actor Danny Devito came to honor his friend Michael Douglas.

The 93 year-old  Kirk Douglas  Sr.  was  also present during the tribute to his son.  A rare treat indeed. 

The award began in 1972 in honor of Charles Chaplin who had returned to the US from exile to accept the award.  The award has honored many since then including Alfred Hitchcock, Billy Wilder, Laurence Olivier, Federico Fellini, Elizabeth Taylor, Martin Scorsese, Meryl Streep and most recently last year’s recipient, Tom Hanks. The rare treat for us press folks was to see the entire Douglas family coming together to honor the versatile actor and his dedication to his craft.  The Film Society of Lincoln Center produces the gala every year.  

Brooke Shields gives a quick smile for The Ravi Report

Friends, long time associates and well wishers who have known Douglas for years  came to be part of the celebration.  Brook Shields looking as beautiful and classy as the statuesque mom always does, came to honor her friend as did  Danny Devito, the comical actor who also stars in “Solitary Man” with Douglas.  

Douglas’s striking wife Catherine Zeta Jones who just recently won a Tony for her performance in “A Little Night Music” was at her husband’s side at the Lincoln Center Gala  along with her in-laws posing for pictures and answering questions from the press.  

Catherine Zeta- Jones herself has had an incredible journey in Hollywood as well. The 40 year singer, dancer and actress  has both a successful career as a film and stage actress.  Films like “American Sweethearts” (2001),  “The Phantom” (1996),No Reservations” (2007) “The Mask of Zorro” (1998) and “Traffic” (2000) have all done well at the box office making the Welsh actress one of the highest paid actresses in Hollywood today.  She won an Academy Award for her role in 2002 in the film “Chicago” which she did her own dancing and singing.  Her stage work on Broadway has proven that people appreciate her work and her recent Tony win, Outer Critics Circle Award & Drama Desk Award  for “A Little Music Night”  only validates her talent even more.  

Friends of The Ravi Report Graff USA President Henri Barguirdjian with guests arriving at the gala.

There are also some industry rumors circulating that both Douglas and Zeta-Jones may be in the film “Racing The Mansoon” a story about a diamond robbery on an Indian train. The RR will  keep you posted on any updates.   

 2010 already seems to be a favorable year for Douglas and his family. With “Wall Street 2″ releasing  later this year, his wife winning a Tony, a hit movie currently in the theaters and the Chaplin Honor, things are looking pretty good for the star these days.  

The journey continues…and for the Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones it just got sweeter.  




Ok folks let’s face it. We’ve all had a  “date night” from hell at some point or another in our lives (some of us more than others but that’s another story). Things  just didn’t go right.  The restaurant gave away your reservation because you couldn’t find a parking spot or the genius who took your reservation, accidently gave you the wrong date for your special night or the photo that the person posted on an online dating service turned out to photoshopped so well,  it created a new image.  You get the idea.
 So when I saw the new hit comedy movie “Date Night” with mega stars Steve Carell and Tina Fey, I couldn’t help but think about the millions of people around the world watching this movie and thinking “I can relate to that.”
Let me just say one thing about versatile & mirthful actors Carell and Fey. They have the best on-screen chemistry I’ve seen in a long time and they are two of the nicest actors that you are ever going to want to meet. Plain and simple.
“Date Night” is a whimsical  movie filled with witty humor and heaps of intelligently written scenarios that will make you think about all those crazy date nights you all have had. I know I can throw in a few!! LOL!

Actor Steve Carell gives an exclusive pose for The Ravi Report

“Tina! Tina! We love You” screamed fans across the street  when the “30 Rock” star got out of her limo and ran across the street to sign  autographs for fans who waited  hours just to get a quick glimpse of  her before the star entered the official red carpet at the world famous Ziegfeld Theater in midtown.
“I waited two hours to get Tina’s autograph” said one very  cute brunette  who was holding images of Fey from her SNL shows.
“Steve you rock!” shouted fans as “The Office” star also  walked across the street to sign autographs  before he hit the throng of paparazzi waiting for him.

Superstar Tina Fey speaks to the press on the red carpet

I have to be honest, I’ve been a long time fan of both Carell and  Fey.  Carell, for his ingenious humor in the hit series “The Office” and Fey for being a very talented and excellent writer/actress  and for her famous Sarah Palin impersonation which brought her world-wide attention.  The actors shine working together.

I’ve met  both of them before and every time they enter the red carpet, there is almost a wave of prodigious & positive energy that follows.
Date Night” focuses on the “Fosters” (Carell & Fey) who have let family life and raising kids take the spice out of their marriage. So like most married couples who have limited quality time to spend together, the Fosters decide to  make a special  “date night” to rekindle the romantic side of their marriage.  Well, their date night turns into a roller coaster of adventure when they accidently use someone else’s identity to secure a table  at a fancy restaurant. I won’t give away any more than that folks!

Steve Carell carefully listens to a question from The Ravi Report

At the recent premiere,  Carell  told reporters how he balances fame and family.
“When I’m not a work I’m with my family. I come right home. I wake up and take my kids to school. Those are  the only two things I do. Work and home.” stated the star  of such  hit films such as  “Get Smart”,Bewitched” and “40 Year Old Virgin”.
The versatile actor also said  that his character Michael Scott from “The Office” and his role as Mr. Foster from “Date Night” have common traits.

Tina Fey filming a promo for "Date Night" from the red carpet!

“I think Phil Foster is who Michael Scott would want to be,” said the star when asked about how the two characters are similar in nature. “Because he(Foster) is successful with a  family, kids he has that life that Michael Scott would want.” 

When asked by The Ravi Report what the intelligent actress finds the most enjoyable part of her work,  Fey smiled and added ” I always felt lucky making a living at doing what I like doing. Being able to write stuff and being in it is very enjoyable to me” stated the married mom.
The reviews for “Date Night” have been positive and fans on the social media sites are asking if they can expect a sequel anytime  soon.  Hey, what about a follow-up entitled ” Date Night 2: Revenge of the Fosters!” LOL!
Now, the important question here. What ABOUT having a special date night of your own? Well,  I spoke to a few married couples who said that the movie inspired them to try to do a date night  to spice things up in their marriage but they would stick to keeping their own reservations! LOL!
For info check out the movie website at and kudos the terrific folks at Fox Searchlight for doing a great job (again) with the premiere.
The journey continues…


Iconic actor Jeff Bridges attributes winning the Oscar and his successful career to his parents support.

Well, “The Dude”  finally did it!  

 After five nominations and countless amazing roles, actor and iconic Hollywood star Jeff Bridges is part of the Oscar fraternity! (claps please!!)  

The legendary & humble actor known for his realistic acting and charismatic personality finally won an Academy Award for his role as the drunk but loving country singer Bad Blake in the film “Crazy Heart“.  

A MUST SEE FOLKS!!!! If you haven’t seen the film yet PLEASE put in on your to do list!  

Ever so grateful to his showbiz family Bridges thanked his parents  for paving his road to success in his acceptance speech.

“Thank you mom and dad for turning me on to such a groovy profession,” … “I feel an extension of them; this is honoring them as much as it is honoring me!”  said that actor while holding the golden statue that took three decades to reach his hands.
The veteran actor is so well-loved by the Hollywood community and it showed at the Academy Awards shows when fellow actors screamed in joy when the superstar’s  name was announced  by the graceful and ever stunning actress Kate Winslet for winning the Best Actor award.  
“People were just screaming his name when he entered the red carpet” texted one fan to The Ravi Report who was lucky enough to attend the awards.

"Crazy Heart" director, producer and screenwriter Scott Cooper has every reason to smile!

“Bridges wife is so beautiful!”  wrote freelance producer Tina from the red carpet.  Susan Bridges who has been profusely thanked in almost every speech given by the Oscar winner,  has stood by her man for over three decades and has been the backbone of his success says the actor.  If marriages are made in heaven than their marriage is living proof.  

First time actor turned director Scott Cooper truly knows how to select a winning team and was able to project it with his debut film.  The well liked filmmaker also was able to bring in heavy hitters for his first film which is almost impossible for a first time Hollywood director. Cooper proved everyone wrong.  

“He really set the precedent for first time directors to work with Hollywood big wigs now. He gave them hope.” emailed one fan from the awards to The Ravi Report.  

Cooper knows that he will have a tough act to follow now when he makes his next film. Damn Cooper! You’ve set the standards so high on our first film and now look at what you have done to yourself! LOL!
Congrats to the entire “Crazy Heart” team for doing a great job and for letting “The Dude” bring home the gold!
The journey continues and it’s even sweeter for Academy Award winner Jeff Bridges! It couldn’t have happen to a nicer guy!

Tribeca Film Festival:Closing Night Celebrates “My Life In Ruins”.

Red carpet entrance to the 2009 Tribeca Film Festival

Red carpet entrance to the 2009 Tribeca Film Festival

The Tribeca Film Festival has ended and I do hope that many of you had a chance to attend the incredible festival this year that included first time screenings, opening night celebrity filled premieres and award winning documentaries and short films.  Most of my friends who went had a great time watching new documentaries,  meeting celebrities, directors, producers and actors.   Co-founded  in 2002  by legendary & twice Academy Award winning actor Robert De Niro (The Godfather II  & The Raging Bull) and highly acclaimed & brilliant producer Jane Rosenthal, the festival has over the years  proven to be one of the most popular and prominent  film festivals around the world.

 I unfortunately got caught up in some projects  this year so I was unable to go  to many of the events.  But luckily I had the time to attend the closing night red carpet premiere  for the much anticipated  movie  “My Life In Ruins”  (produced by Tom Hank’s Playtone Production Company) starring Nia Vardalos, Richard Dreyfuss, Greek

Festival Co-Founder and Academy Award winning actor Robert Di Nero along with lovely wife Grace Hightower smiles at The Ravi Report.

Festival Co-Founder and Academy Award winning actor Robert Di Nero along with lovely wife Grace Hightower smiles for The Ravi Report.

superstar Alexis Georgoulis and

Rachel Dratch. You will truly enjoy it!
 The film is director by extremely talented actor turned director Donald Petrie (“Mystic Pizza” & “How To Lose A Guy in Ten Days”).  The guy has some serious talent folks!

Many of you are already  familiar with Vardalos. How could you not. I mean please. Her incredible & astonishing 2002 film “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” which the Greek actress both wrote and starred  in has been seen over and over again my millions.

Actress Nia Vardolas at the premiere of her film "My Life in Ruins"

Actress Nia Vardalos at the premiere of her film "My Life in Ruins"

 Who can forget that the  movie proved to be the highest grossing comedy film of 2002 putting the actress on the map and making her  an instant overnight sensation. So naturally “My Life in Ruins” in which Vardolas plays an unhappy Greek tour guide who has lost her “mojo” in life and is trying to find it was in fact the talk of the festival which was attended by  celebrities and hundreds of fans of who wanted  to see how the 46 year old actress got her mojo back! (I personally think she never lost it!)

Vardalos was looking Hollywood glamorous indeed at the premiere. “Wow” shouted one fan. “She looks so beautiful” said a sexy brunette waiting in line to get the actress’s autograph.  Vardalos completely transformed herself into a glamorous and sexy movie star with all the trimmings of an Hollywood actress.

The talented actress spoke to The Ravi Report about the making of her film and how after all these years, it’s still been a family oriented career for her.

Ravi Yande with Nia Vartolas at the red carpet press area.

Ravi Yande with actress Nia Vardalos at the red carpet premiere of "My Life In Ruins".

RR:Nia, you look terrific. Thanks so much for your time and congrats on the film.

NV: Thanks so much. I’m pretty excited.

RR: What excites you the most about your new film?

NV:For me, the hardest films to make are the ones that are so worth it at the end. You have to test your drive like we did we this film.We were trying to get permission to shoot at the ancient ruins in Greece and it was so tough for us,  so it made us work that much harder on the script, hone it and make the budget affordable and we did and it all turned out well at the end.

RR: The incredible success of your  film  “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” made history in Hollywood. Seven years later, people are still watching the film and loving it. Is that a tough act to follow with your future work?

NV:(laughs). Well for me, I think ok..that already happened so now I can concentrate more on other projects and things so I can be “been there…done that” (more laughs).

Vardolas also went on to speak to reporters about how she is teaching her newly adopted daughter the importance of family values and how having a close knit family for herself  is vitally important  in life and in her career.

Co-Founder of The Tribeca Film Festival Jane Rosenthal talking to the press

Co-Founder of The Tribeca Film Festival Jane Rosenthal talking to the press

Of course besides her movie, the talk of the red carpet was Vardalos’s new sensational look.

RR:Ok…so from cute actress to sexy siren. How did you do it?

NV:  I know!!! (Laughs in excitement) I designed my own program and in one sentence I will say this. I broke up with cheese!

 Despite the on going recession and other recent public concerns,  fans came out in droves to the festival this year. Most of the screenings I heard about were sold out and the Q&A afterwards with stars and directors were standing room only. De Niro &  Rosenthal and their  team of dedicated staff members  do an OUTSTANDING job every year and continue to face new challenges as the festival grows in attendance and in film entries.

Director of "My Life In Ruins" gives two thumbs up to The Ravi Report!

Director Donald Petrie of "My Life In Ruins" gives two thumbs up to The Ravi Report!

If you missed it this year, I highly recommend that you make Tribeca Film Festival one of the top ten things to do in 2010.

My Life In Ruins” opens nationwide on June 5.

The Journey continues…




When news broke of actor Kal Penn 31, deciding to give up the glitz, glamour, $$$ in  Hollywood to join the White House Office of Public Liaison in the Obama Administration in Washington,  I thought: Who could do a better job than the well known and  likable Penn? Quite frankly, no one. The award winning American born Indian actor will soon be given the job title of Associate Director and serve as a strong link to the Asian American and Pacific Islander communities. In other words, it’s a great job folks!

Kal Penn being interviewed on the red carpet in NY with Indian actor Irrfan Khan

Kal Penn being interviewed on the red carpet in NY with Indian actor Irrfan Khan

Penn, whose was born Kalpen Suresh Modi 31 years ago in Montclair, NJ  to immigrant parents from India,  is one of the most visible and talented Asian Indian actors today in Hollywood. Some of his   popular movies like “Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle,”“The Namesake,”Harold & Kumar Escape From Guantanamo Bay” have created massive cult like followings around the globe. The television and film actor  for the past few seasons  has been portraying  the popular role of Dr. Lawrence Kutner in the mega hit  Emmy Award winning television series “House”on Fox directed by Bryan Singer.  Penn’s role ended recently when his character committed suicide on the show. Not a very graceful farewell exit but nonetheless,  it allows the  award winning actor to take the  job at The White House.

Kal Penn talking at "The Namesake" party in NY

Kal Penn at "The Namesake" party in NY

But let’s be clear here. Penn is not leaving acting.  It is just being put “on hold for now” as he has been quoted saying to the press.  The actor said that during the Obama campaigning he was very passionate about public service and acting so he is now embarking on another journey and will do very well in.

Over the years, I have met Penn several times at movie premiers, parties and red carpets events and let me just say one thing about the well liked actor. He is PERFECT for the job and let me tell you why.  In my opinion, Penn is not  an actor trying to gain additional popularity nor is he seeking fame and fortune-he already has that. The young and smart celebrity is ideal for the position because he is passionate about serving the public and the White House saw it and that is why they asked him to join their team.   Choosing to give up a very lucrative acting career (that Penn has worked so hard to achieve along with landing a role on popular television series that many actors only dream of getting) shows the true passion that this  young democrat has about helping to serve the public.

The Indian actor  has always been very nice and gracious to me and other reporters as well.  During the premiere of his hit movie “The Namesake” in NY, the actor made time for all the reporters and was very professional and very receptive to the audience during an Q&A session after the screening.  Even when Penn is an invited as a guest to a movie premiere or party, he is flocked  by the media and is often in high demand by the press to get an interview at premieres and parties.

Penn talking to a guest with Pulitzer Prize winning author Jhumpa Lahiri of "The Namesake" in the background.

Penn talking to a guest at the NY Public Library with Pulitzer Prize winning author Jhumpa Lahiri of "The Namesake" in the background during a surprise visit to the party.

“I have always loved acting but life is full of other opportunities” he once told me at a red carpet party in NY when I asked the actor about his choice as an entertainer when most South Asians traditionally  choose medicine or other sciences as a career.

“I am so grateful that the South Asian community has been encouraging and supportive of my work. That’s very cool” he told The Ravi Report on the red carpet recently.

The Indian actor campaigned for Obama during 2008 mostly on college campuses around the country invoking the voice of the younger generation.  He also expressed during that time to the Obama team how much he had enjoyed the opportunity and that serving the public  is something that he has always been passionae about  besides acting. They saw, they listened and they agreed.

Some of the feedback that I have been receiving from the South Asian community  has been nothing but positive.

“Finally, The White House has some solid South Asian representation” said one stunning Indian girl with porcelain like skin at a Manhattan Starbucks studying for what else, the medical school entrance exam. She further said that South Asians contribute to the economy in so many ways, it’s about time that there is strong representation in Washington.

Up close & personal!

Washington, here I come!

“I feel that Kal will in fact do a great job and open doors to communication not just with South Asians but with many other immigrants and communities” said one very cute and very petite Korean girl.  She also said the Obama Administration is filled with diversity and this appointment will only strengthen the President’s close connection to the international communities around the country.

 I  personally believe that since Penn is well liked by many people both inside and outside of Hollywood and has demonstrated his devotion to public service, he will indeed bring a great deal of honor to both Hollywood and the South Asian communities around the globe with his new and exciting role in The White House.

Way to go “Kumar”!

The journey continues…




It was indeed a sad day for the world when we learned that talented actress, mom, wife,daughter and activist Natasha Richardson had passed away on Monday. March 18, 2009. It was shocking to many that such a vibrant, beautiful and extremely talented actress was no longer among us. 

Richardson 45, died from injuries sustaining from an epidural hematoma caused by an skiing accident that occurred on March 16 in which the actress  fell on a beginner’s slope in Quebec, Canada.

The talented daughter of Oscar winning actress Vanessa Redgrave  and the late acclaimed theater director Tony Richardson was married to Hollywood star Liam Neeson  and had two children Micheál 14  and Daniel 12.

Richardson had an incredible & enriching stage and film career.  At 23, she had her first major film role in Ken Russell’s “Gothic” and numerous other films followed including “Patty Hearst” and most recently “The Parent Trap”in which she portrayed Lindsay Lohan’s mother.

“I can’t believe it. So young, so beautiful” commented one very pretty girl who was reading the devastating news at a cafe in Union Square.

I first met Richardson about two years ago on the red carpet of an event in NY. She was attending a fundraiser and she was so humble and gracious.  I remember  she was running late and was being rushed into the event but still made time to talk to reporters making sure that everyone was able to speak to her and get some questions answered and she often stayed until she was done. Now, that’s class.

When I interviewed the Tony award winning actress at  The Foundation of AIDS Research (AmFar) event last year, she spoke to me about  how her father, the late director Tony Richardson had  died of AIDS related causes  in 1991. She was so passionate about  being involved in AmFar and said it meant  more then just lending her name. She told me she had lost many friends to the disease and wanted to help out in any way she could. Richardson was actively involved in the organization for more than 15 years. That’s just the kind of person she was.

Always impeccably dressed, the actress had the most captivating smile and dazzling eyes I have ever seen. When she walked the red carpet, she would bring with her grace, charm, style and a whole lot of class that will be  missed.

 Richardson wasn’t a friend but there is still a sense of sadness that I am feeling as if I have lost a good friend. Many people that I have spoken to in the last 48 hours feel the same way.

I will light a candle for Natasha Richardson and pray  for her family and hope they remain strong during this time of sadness.


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