Posts Tagged ‘NY


Oscar winner Philip Seymour Hoffman left us too soon

The Oscars will be a bit bitter-sweet this year.

Not because some of the most amazing films or actors were not even given a nod nor will it be because some of them were given one.
It will be because a leading member of the Hollywood film fraternity will no longer be among his peers cheering them on as they sit in hopes of winning  the most prestigious honor in cinema.
By now, many of you already know who I am talking about but I will be more than honored to mention his name just in case some of you may not know. I’m talking about Academy Award winning  Philip Seymour Hoffman, one of the greatest American actors that Hollywood will ever see.

Hoffman won an Academy Award in 2005 for his portrayal of Truman Capote in the film "Capote"

Hoffman won an Academy Award in 2005 for his portrayal of Truman Capote in the film “Capote”

The 46 year-old brilliant and gifted film and theater actor passed away on Feb. 2, 2014  from an apparent drug overdose.
It was sudden. Shocking. Tragic and of course disturbing.
Hollywood lost a great actor and three kids lost their loving father.
I’m not going to sit here and write about what has already been written about the late gifted actor over the past several weeks including everything from drug abuse to the details of Hoffman’s will. However,  I will say that the actor’s death has brought serious attention (again) to the ongoing issue of the dangers of  drug addiction and how prevalent and on the rise it has become.
According to a recent New York Times editorial written by the well-known and astute NY ER physician Dr. Robert S. Hoffman, heroine-related deaths have increased 84 percent from 2010 to 2012 in New York city.  Dr. Hoffman also  states that the actor’s sudden death was more of a “wake up” call for society to try to help prevent the hundreds of other unknown deaths that are never mentioned or talked about.
Philip Seymour Hoffman took Hollywood  by storm with his innate ability to dig deep into the core of his being to bring to surface the kind of immense talent that only a few privileged individuals are blessed to achieve in a lifetime.
My first introduction to Hoffman was from the powerful  film Magnolia. The deep and emotional 1999 movie centers around 9 individuals with various levels of dysfunctional issues. Hoffman stars as the hospice nurse Phil who tries to reunite a son (played by Tom Cruise) with his dying father. Although it was clear that Tom Cruise was the protagonist in the film, Hoffman gave the kind of performance that not only made Hollywood take notice, but also gave the world the kind of versatility and  gut-wrenching performances that only a few gifted actors can achieve.
Magnolia was the reason I watched all of Hoffman’s films and I, like millions, was able to see  how over the years, the simple and unassuming actor transformed into a megastar by portraying versatile characters that quite frankly, were tailor-made for him.
Hoffman won an Academy Award in 2005 for his brilliant performance in the movie Capote. Who can forget that heartwarming speech afterwards in which he thanks his human rights lawyer mom, Marilyn Hoffman O’Conner for taking him to his first play as a child. Not a dry eye in the house when he spoke.

Hoffman with cast members and good friends Laura Linney and Philip Bosco

Hoffman with cast members and good friends Laura Linney and Philip Bosco

I was privileged to have met and interviewed Hoffman in 2007  at the NY premiere of  Savages.  Hoffman along with the stunning Laura Linney play brother and sister in the movie who end up caring for their  abusive and ill  father played by the brilliant Philip Bosco.  It’s an emotional family drama that is certainly a must watch. I’ve seen it twice.
Hoffman was indeed one of the most sincere, humble and intelligent actors I had ever met.
RY: How did you prepare for this role? Did you draw anything from your own life experiences?
Hoffman: You prepare for it like you prepare for any part….it’s always different yet always the same and you know that’s a long really is…it’s not something you can just sound bite…it really is..there is a lot of questions and a lot of thought that goes into preparing for something.

RY: What did this role do for you artistically as an actor?

Hoffman: Wow..(pause)…I have no idea…very deep question. Probably nothing…(laughs)..well it’s just another opportunity to explore something that I find pertinent that interests me now …do you know what I mean?… which I hopefully think artists are about.

RY: What attracted you to the role?

Hoffman: It was a great script….it’s never just the role…it’s always the role and the story…they have to go hand in hand and this is a really a great script and it’s a role that pertains to where I am in my life…where being 40 is in your life….and I do think it’s interesting and I do think that’s the answer to your first question…it’s interesting to explore something that you find pertinent to life at this time in your life…you find that your interest and curiosities change over time. There are things that I did ten years ago as an actor that I would not want to do now as an actor.

RY: How did you prepare for this role? Did you draw anything from your own life experiences?

Hoffman: You prepare for it like you prepare for any part….it’s always different yet always the same and you know that’s a long really is…it’s not something you can just sound bite…it really is..there is a lot of questions and a lot of thought that goes into preparing for something.

After the interview, Hoffman gracefully shook my hand and headed into the theater with good friend Linney and the rest of the cast.

What has been written about the past several weeks and what will continue to be written about the late actor has opened up new conversations about drug overdose, addicts who try to fight their inner demons and personal struggle with rehab.

When Hoffman tragically and suddenly passed away, the media compared his death to those of other talented actors who battled drug addiction including River Phoenix and Heath Ledger. The premise seems to be the same.

When the 86th Academy Awards begins on Sunday, March 2, 2014, millions will be watching the broadcast around the world while Hoffman’s spirit will be lingering among the  actors as he sends his congrats to the winners from above while fixing his trademark uncombed hair.
The journey continues….and for Hoffman, it was indeed a short and unfinished one.


International boxer Vladimir Klitschko with girlfriend, the stunning actress Hayden Panettiere smile for The Ravi Report

International boxer Vladimir Klitschko with girlfriend, the stunning actress Hayden Panettiere smile for The Ravi Report

The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences  34th annual Sports Emmy Awards were recently celebrated  in NY. A major  event that brings out  top producers, hosts,  writers and directors from television networks also included gorgeous actresses and international athletes  from the world of sports.

Celebrities from the sports world including the famous Russian boxer Vladimir Klitschko who along with  his stunning girlfriend, “Nashville” star Hayden Panettiere were among the list of prominent sport figures and celebrities who graced the occasion.

Hayden Panettiere smiles for The Ravi Report

Hayden Panettiere smiles for The Ravi Report

The world of sports has certainly changed over the years with athletes gaining  notoriety for enormous salaries, extracurricular activities off the field and of course dating hot supermodels. Then there are those few gifted athletes who till this day, continue to maintain their legendary status and world-wide fame without being in mainstream sports. One such superstar who continues to receive the kind of respect and fame that most players work a lifetime to achieve is the famous  former NY Jets quarterback, the popular and very well liked star Joe Namath, fondly known as Broadway Joe and one of the greatest athletes known to mankind.

NFL legend Joe Namath being interviewed on the red carpet

NFL legend Joe Namath being interviewed on the red carpet

The NFL legend’s HBO documentary Namath won an Emmy for “Outstanding Sports Documentary”. The film displays Namath’s personal sports journey and features close friends, family and influential people who shaped his incredible career. Co-produced by NFL Films and HBO the documentary was executive produced by  Rick Bernstein, Howard Katz and Steve Sabol. It’s a MUST SEE FOLKS!! Incredible film.
I have to admit here. I have been a long time fan of Joe Namath. As a journalist,  I follow the careers of a few very talented superstar athletes like Namath who literally rocked the word of sports during their reign. Namath was unstoppable and yet despite after all these years, the  former Jets quarterback continues to maintain a massive following from Jets fans from around the world and he still has that youthful appeal that captured the attention of millions.
Joe Namath poses with Ravi Yande at the NY Sports Emmys

Joe Namath poses with Ravi Yande at the NY Sports Emmys

The Ravi Report exclusively spoke to the NFL superstar backstage after his Emmy win.

RR: It is indeed an honor Joe. Congrats on the Emmy win. It was such a terrific documentary filled with personal details about your life and profound career. You  clearly are still well-loved and appreciated for your contribution to the world of sports. Your thoughts?
You just said something there that is hard to accept all the time and I so respect that. After this documentary, I would be walking down the street and people would stop and talk to me about the documentary. When I’m in the supermarket to this day, people said they sincerely loved it.
RR: The documentary  was very well produced. And you know what is interesting is that those who didn’t closely follow your incredible career or had not been Jets fans, truly loved this documentary and have praised you and the HBO team for their efforts. How does that make you feel?

Emmy winning HBO team

Emmy winning HBO team

Namath: Being a former athlete, knowing what it takes to do your part, I had a small part in that sense. The hours and time that the crew put in is mind blogging and the passion that they put into it and of course without all that, it was not going to work. I had  a very small part in this. It was an incredible team that did most of the work.
RR: You had a legendary sports life. To this day, new star athletes often try to become the “next Joe Namath” on the field. How does it make you feel that your legendary status still continues  to this day?
Namath: Well, thank you. I love life and people! I feel that karma and I like to have that feeling felt by others and want to make sure when I say hello to someone it’s a good thing and it comes from the heart. I insist on feeling good and it came along the way. I learned it. It’s selfish to a degree, but I want to connect with people and  feel good about it.
RR: How has the journey been for Joe Namath, the NFL Legend?
Namath: Boy, I’ve been lucky and it’s ever changing. But the main thing is the spirituality and health is there.  Life takes some twist and turns health wise and accidents and things and you know if we are fortunate, we need to enjoy it.  I enjoy it and respect it.
RR: Today’s NFL has changed so much in terms of players, salaries and talent. What are some of the major changes that you have seen over the years that have transformed well into the NFL?
Namath: It’s mind blogging to see how good the athletes are today. We have come a long way and we should. You learn from your past and you are supposed to get smarter. The athletes are better because the coaches are better, the nutrition is better. I think it’s more competitive because  it’s exposed to a far wider audience now then before. When I played, we had three main TV stations, now look at how much access we have to sport programming. We are winning Emmys for our work and we are getting more out of sports.
RR: Congrats again Joe on the honor. You and your team so deserve it.
Namath:Thank you. I feel blessed.
Emmy winning reporter Jeff Verducci speaking to the press backstage

Emmy winning reporter Jeff Verducci speaking to the press backstage

Another Emmy winner included the very talented MLB star reporter and renowned Sports Illustrated baseball writer, Tom Verducci,  who won for Outstanding Sports Reporter. Verducci has been with the MLB Network for years as an on-air reporter and is considered a top and respected journalist in the sports world.

A life long baseball writer, Verducci has gained an enormous amount of notoriety as both an award-winning  writer and reporter among his peers and the public.

“I have always loved sports.. writing about it, talking about it, being in the  center of it, so it’s not a job for me because I love it so much,” Verducci exclusively told The Ravi Report after his win.

For a complete list of 2013 Sports Emmy winners , please  visit
The journey continues….

Oscar Winning Danny Boyle Talks Career, Bollywood & Films on The Ravi Report

Larger than life Oscar statue awaited Oscar winning Danny Boyle's entrance!

Larger than life Oscar statue awaited Oscar winning Danny Boyle’s entrance!

He is brilliant, hardworking, world-famous and continues to give his “midas” touch to films. Oscar winning director Danny Boyle, whose film Slumdog Millionaire walked away with eight Academy Awards in 2009 including Best Director, continues to give a bit of that midas touch to Hollywood with his recent work.

I first met Boyle years ago at the NY premiere of Slumdog Millionaire and we chatted about India, his film and the chances he takes on a good script when he reads one.

Now, fast forward five years later and with an Best Director Oscar win, Boyle is still the same humble, kind and personable director I met years before. Immense success has not changed this family man and there has been plenty of successes since Slumdog including 127 Hours, which got six Oscar nominations in 2010, Trainspotting and most recently, the psychological thriller Trance.
Academy award-winning Danny Boyle greets the anxious NY press

Academy award-winning Danny Boyle greets the anxious NY press

Trance is one incredible movie that will keep you on the edge of your seat until the very end. The film stars  the stunning  Rosario Dawson  as a hypnotherapist who helps an art  auctioneer (played by the super talented James McAvoy) try to recover memories of where he has hidden a stolen Goya painting. Ok, that’s it no more details. It’s a MUST see folks!
In between working on his film, Boyle was also the artistic director for  the spectacular opening ceremony of the 2012 Summer Olympics which included her Majesty,  Queen Elizabeth II who appeared along with “James Bond” actor Daniel Craig. The ceremony was watched by almost a billion people worldwide and Boyle was offered a special Knighthood afterwards but declined to accept saying it was more of a group effort and not a solo one.

The Ravi Report  recently caught up with  director at the The Academy Theater at Lighthouse International in Manhattan, NY where Boyle was invited to speak after the screening of his first successful film Shallow Grave (1995) which Boyle directed and went on to become a huge success among the masses.

RR: Danny, indeed a pleasure to see you again. The last time we met, we were discussing the tremendous success of Slumdog Millionaire and now you have another great film out Trance which I must say is pretty intriguing and intense.  How has the journey from Shallow Grave to Trance been for you so far? 
Ravi Yande interviewing acclaimed director Danny Boyle

Ravi Yande interviewing acclaimed director Danny Boyle

Boyle: Well, the journey has been extraordinary and seems like a blink of an eye really. I was very lucky with my first film that went

well and I have learned a lot of lessons from it and have remembered from those experiences as well.
RR: What is the one most important thing that you have remembered in all those years of making films?
BOYLE: Well….the one thing I remembered is how important it is that you get good actors! That is the most important thing…believe me and let them work and help them a bit and you will be half way home.
RR: Getting the right actors is indeed a crucial element to a film’s success but  is there something that as a director you have learned  that you applied to your craft in terms of honing it to perfection?
Boyle posing for the NY press

Boyle posing for the NY press

BOYLE: Try to make every film a discovery. Don’t try to go into thinking “I now how to do this”, that kind of confidence is dangerous sometimes. Filmmaking should be full of discoveries that you find as you make them. How you tell a story from the script each day and try to discover and stay a bit naive in the process to learn is very important as a director.

RR: Many people, especially those in Bollywood, have credited you for opening up the doors for other Bollywood stars to go Hollywood after the success of Slumdog. The gifted actor Anil Kapoor, who played the game show host in the movie, has gone on to become an international star doing American TV shows and Tom Cruise’s film Mission Impossible. Now Bollywood iconic legend Amitabh Bachchan is set to debut in Baz Luhrmann’s soon to release  The Great Gatsby. What are your thoughts on the fact that you  opened the doors for Bollywood stars to go Hollywood?
Boyle is a favorite of the Academy Theater!

Boyle is a favorite of the Academy Theater!

BOYLE:   Amazing actors!  It’s nothing I can teach Bollywood stars. I have said it many times that the range and depth of acting talent there (Bollywood) from the big stars you mention right down  the ranks is amazing. It’s a slightly different taste from ours at times but they can easily adjust

once they know about it and that was one of the factors of the film (Slumdog) being a success is the sheer depth of talent we can draw from a great star like Anil Kapoor right to the kids who had no fear of cameras and filming
felt very natural for them. The sense of song and dance  is so present and the love of movies is felt everywhere.
RR: So here is the millionaire dollar question: Would you direct a Bollywood movie?
BOYLE: Yes…I mean I tried to do one over there…a version of Slumdog Millionaire!
RR: Thank you Danny. As always, it is indeed an honor.
BOYLE: Thank you.
The journey continues…

Garden of Dreams Bring Laughter, Hope & Inspiration to Children

Beastie Boy members Michael Diamond (r) and Adam Horovitz pose for The Ravi Report

Beastie Boy members Michael Diamond (r) and Adam Horovitz pose for The Ravi Report

Garden of Laughs was one of the most anticipated and exciting star-studded event at Madison Square Garden that was not only full of iconic comedians, TV & film stars, top athletes and musicians, but was an event that brought awareness to one of the most amazing children’s organizations in the world, The Garden of Dreams Foundation. (

The Garden of Dreams Foundation is an organization founded in 2006 that makes dreams come true for children facing struggles and life obstacles. The foundation collaborates with 22 other organizations and sport teams to make dreams comes true for children and their families by connecting them to the magic of The Madison Square Garden Company. Garden of Dreams produces nearly 500 events a year and has helped achieved the dreams of over 220,000 children. Can you say GREAT karma folks?

Actor David Duchovny and comedian Ray Romano speaking to the press

Actor David Duchovny and comedian Ray Romano speaking to the press

“I looked forward to this event for months and got my tickets just before they sold out,” said a gorgeous tall blond ignoring the frigid cold weather and wearing a short sexy tight form-fitting dress with long diamond earrings.

“This is what the Garden is all about” said a stunning brunette who looked like she just came from a Vanity Fair photoshoot.

Actress Brooke Shields posing with the Garden of Laughs symbol for the press

Actress Brooke Shields posing with the Garden of Laughs symbol for the press

Actor and popular comedian Ray Romano was part of the massive ensemble of the creme-de-la creme which included Wanda Sykes, Darrell Hammond, Adam Ferrara, Robert Klein, Brian Regan, Bob Costas, Brooke Shields, Whoopi Goldberg, Billy Crudup, David Duchnovy, Steve Schirripa, Tony Sirico, John Leguizamo, Darrly McDaniels, Michael Diamond and Adam Horovitz of the Beastie Boys, John McEnroe and John Starks. What a line up folks!

Whoopi Goldberg who is also a board member of the foundation, spoke to The Ravi Report about the children’s dream.

Board member, host, producer and amazing actress Whoopi Goldberg came in style!

Board member, host, producer and amazing actress Whoopi Goldberg came in style!

RR: Whoopi, always great seeing you. You have been actively involved in Garden of Dreams Foundation for a while and have donated your time and support to the children which is amazing. What does helping these children personally mean to you?

GOLDBERG: Well, thank you…I really don’t think about it..I just do it.If somebody needs help, well, I do it..and that’s it.

Invited children got to pose on the red carpet like stars!

Invited children got to pose on the red carpet like stars!

Award-winning actor David Duchovny has been a strong supporter of Garden of Dreams and was honored to be part of the iconic ensemble of entertainers and sports legends.

RR: Pleasure to see you again David. As a well known celebrity with young children, what advice would you give to these children today that look up to celebrities as role models and mentors?

Duchovny: That’s a good question. Well, it’s the same thing I tell my kids. Do what you are interested in,stay open and do all the work. You know with my kids, some subjects in school are harder then others,but I tell them,just try and see if you have any interests and don’t not do something because you might fail.
I tell my kids it’s OK to fail.

RR: You’re a Princeton University grad so have you been back recently to visit?

Duchovny: Go tigers! I went back 5 years ago and I think I am do for a visit. I have some friends there so I will come back. Miss it.

Tennis legend John McEnroe and multifaceted actor Billy Crudup pose for The Ravi Report

Tennis legend John McEnroe and multifaceted actor Billy Crudup pose for The Ravi Report

Actor Billy Crudup, who is also a parent of a young child, says he is grateful everyday for being able to live his dreams and says that he wishes the same for the children.

RR: Always a pleasure Billy. Your personal reasons for coming here tonight?

Crudup: I have been extremely lucky in my career and worked very hard at it. Most people who are actors, don’t get to do it professionally and I am one of the lucky few that does so to have that opportunity to use my good fortune to help
other people and children…well, it’s a real pleasure for me.

Superstar Ray Romano stops to answer a question from The Ravi Report

Superstar Ray Romano stops to answer questions from the press

RR: Being the father of a young son, what advice would you give these children here tonight that are just starting out in their life journey?

Crudup: Trust yourself and keep your eye on your dreams. They will come true!

A few of the children got to walk the red carpet giving them that special “star” feeling and they spoke about how they were blessed to be able to meet their favorite stars in person and how grateful they were for everyones support.

It was indeed an incredible event filled with world famous celebrities, sport legends and television stars. But the most important part of the evening was how much these famous individuals cared and donated their time and support to the children by giving them hope while adding a bit of laughter into their lives.

The journey continues folks…one filled with hope and a ton of dreams!



Retirees Find Hope, Love & Adventure in Romantic Comedy

Dame Judi Dench posed for The Ravi Report

Dame Judi Dench poses for The Ravi Report

What do you get when you mix a powerhouse of gifted British actors, a brilliant director and an exotic Indian hotel? You get one of the best films you will ever want to see!

Academy Award-winning actress (and “M” persona) Dame Judi Dench, Bill Nighy, Maggie Smith, Tom Wilkinson, Penelope Wilton, Ronald Pickup and Celia Imrie are thrust  into a world that is so foreign yet so familiar in the new romantic comedy “The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” directed by the ingenious John Madden (Shakespeare in Love) The movie also stars super talented “Slumdog Millionaire” actor Dev Patel and beautiful  newcomer, actress Tena Desea who plays Patel’s love interest. The story is based on the novel “These Foolish Things,” written by Deborah Moggach.Dame Judi enters wearing her new Indian accessories!
But first, let’s start with the basics here folks, Dame Judi Dench rocks. At 77, the captivating actress has NO PLANS of retiring anytime soon. And why should she? The silver-haired captivating lady is one of the most sought after and versatile actresses in the world today and after you see her latest film, you will see why. And what would happen to Bond? He needs “M”!
When Dench enters the room, it’s as if an aura of royalty has trickled into the air trailing behind elements of grace, sophistication and beauty. “Judi is beautiful, classy and a gifted actress whose work is  such a privilege to see,” said a gorgeous, tall, blue-eyed British lady to The Ravi Report  as she  waited hours just to get a glimpse of the star at the recent NY premiere held at the world famous Manhattan Ziegfeld majestic theater.
Tena Desea, John Madden and Penelope Wilton at NY press eventWithout giving much of the story line away, the film focuses on a group of recent retired British folks who decide go to India for a life of tranquility, serenity and relaxation. What they get in return is anything but and the glamorous hotel that they all had signed up for, turns out to be well, NOT what they signed up for. Dench plays the part of Evelyn, a recent widow whose character is an “independent soul” who takes a chance on exploring a new life  and comes to India  and faces uncertainties and unexpected incidences along with the rest of the group. OK, that’s it folks. No more giveaways. You must watch the film. It is a terrific movie full of hope, dreams, desires and beauty.

The cast recently attended a “yellow carpet” premiere in NYC with marigold flowers laced along the walkway bringing a bit of India to the premiere.  Dressed in a shimmering blue jacket matching her captivating blue eyes, Dench spoke about her love for India. “It’s an assault on your senses” she tells reporters “and I loved every bit of it,” she added.

India  can be in fact an overwhelming experience for first timers.  The people, the crowds, the colors, the food and the traffic is all part of what makes the country of over one billion people so mesmerizing, welcoming and challenging. I love it!!

The Ravi Report exclusively asked  both Dench and gifted actor Tom Wilkinson  what there experience was like for them during their filming.
RR: India means many different things to people. What did being in India for 9 1/2 weeks mean to the both of you- both professionally and personally?
Wilkinson: For me, being in India was one of the most brain-curdling experiences ever. I couldn’t even begin to guess
what I was going to see when I got there. And if you have never been there, you don’t even begin to know the meaning of the word “culture shock” until you get there. I never quite fully recovered but I recommend it to everyone.”
Dench: I never had a desire to go to India although some of my family lived there for a while. But within 24 hours of landing there, I was completely fascinated and bewitched by the country.  The beauty of the people I thought was astounding, the colors, the noise, the smell everything about it is completely staggering and I can’t wait until I go back there.”
The renowned television and stage actress  also said she made many friends while she was there.
Dench: I made some remarkable friends who are very keen on their mobiles and if my mobile goes off now, it’s probably one of them! (laughs)
RR: You have done a phenomenal job Dame Judi and you are a true delight and privilege to watch on-screen.
Dench: Thanks for that. I’m coming to you for the next part! (laughs)
RR:  How are you dealing with the overwhelming and amazing response from the UK audiences? The film already has cleared over $70 million in box office receipts.
Dench: This is so exciting. But at the same time, you are hopeful  that people will enjoy your work. You know, there is no guarantee of that and that is a plus if they like your work.  I was in India for 9 1/2 weeks with great actors you can’t get luckier then that frankly.
Director John Madden spoke to The Ravi Report on why he choose to show real India to his audience.Director John Madden speaking to The Ravi Report
RR: It’s indeed an honor to meet you sir. Your film is a treasure. You have shown the world the “common man’s India.” Did you have any second thoughts after the film was made about your choice?
Madden:  Thank you.  I really stuck to my guns  with showing  the real India. I shot what inspired me about the place and what I thought was interesting. I had no wish to say anything beyond that. I literally drove around for months before we were shooting. I love the country.
The film opens May 4 in the US and May 18th in India. For more information, log onto www.foxsearchlight/thebestexoticmarigoldhotel/
Don’t miss this one!!
The journey continues…and with marigolds and curry!

Tom Cruise &Anil Kapoor Rock Mission:Impossible Ghost-Protocol NY Premiere

Hollywood A Lister Tom Cruise greeting reporters

Always front and center to get the story!

What you need to know about International star Anil  Kapoor is that besides being an award-winning actor, devoted father producer and writer, the in-demand Indian actor  is one of the most versatile and talented entertainer you are ever going to see. His 30 year acting journey in Bollywood as a the lead actor in over 150 Indian films, has made him one of the most sought after Indian actors today, not to mention one of the nicest!

The A-lister of Bollywood  Anil Kapoor has made a journey into the world of Hollywood via “Slumdog Millionaire”, the television series “24″ and now the highly anticipated “Mission: Impossible Ghost- Protocol.” The movie rocks by the way folks!

Bollywood A lister Anil Kapoor speaking to the press

Kapoor  52, (born on Christmas Eve)  is being coined  as the only Bollywood star to be linked up with names like Tom Cruise, Kiefer Sutherland, Danny Boyle and Clive Owen while becoming  an international sensation. Hollywood is taking notice at the man with millions of fans around the world and Kapoor’s talents have lead to many Hollywood  projects.  Kapoor is repped by the talent agency ICM, home to many Hollywood A-listers and will be seen in the coming film “Cities” with actor Clive Owen in 2012.

Anil Kapoor poses with Ravi Yande

The millionaire’s Oscar-winning film “Slumdog Millionaire” is still one of the most popular films of all times  and is watched even more enthusiastically today by fans around the world.

But enough about the Bollywood Kapoor,  let’s talk about  international star Kapoor who with Hollywood A-lister Tom Cruise had women screaming as they recently entered the red carpet premiere of Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol in NYC at the world-famous Zeigfeld theater in Manhattan.  The celebrity assemble attending included Katie Holmes, (who is just beautiful in person!), co-star  sexy Paula Patton with  husband Robin Thicke (the talented singer and son of actor Alan Thicke), Josh HollowayJ.J. Abrams, director Brad Bird and the brilliant  actor Simon Pegg.
“We love you Mr. India ” screamed a very  attractive Indian girl wearing a sexy black designer dress and referring to Kapoor’s 1987 first Indian sci-fi film “Mr. India” which broke all box office records in India.  The film was directed by the brilliant and acclaimed Shekhar Kapoor (no relation) and there are  strong rumors in Bollywood  that the director  is in talks with the superstar Kapoor to make “Mr. India 2”. 
 “I waited for three hours just to get a glimpse of Anil and Tom,” said another  gorgeous Indian girl with hazel eyes and high cheek bones clinching  Kapoor’s photo as if it were a winning lottery ticket.
The Ravi Report caught up with youthful Kapoor  who looked amazing for being jet lagged (he flies back and forth from Mumbai and LA several times a month) and  spoke to him about the movie and his role in bringing Hollywood’s attention to Bollywood.
RR: Congrats Anil on another great film and it’s great  to see you again. Hollywood, particularly A-listers are looking to Bollywood now for collaboration thanks to you and your Hollywood journey. Your thoughts?
AK: We (Bollywood) are very proud, excited and very happy about it and I think it’s time it’s getting it’s due!

Hollywood superstar Tom Cruise listens to a question from The Ravi Report

RR: Tell me if you will, what your experience was like working in such a major Hollywood production with Tom Cruise for the first time.

AK: You know, honestly, when you start thinking about a huge movie, huge stars, etc, you get stressed out. I just had a lot of fun and you know what?  I went with the attitude of having fun and that’s what I did. I hope the audiences enjoy  watching the film.
RR:The international media and film critics are saying that Anil Kapoor is the first major Indian star  to gain notoriety in Hollywood and is now representing both India and the Bollywood around the world. What are you thoughts on such an assertion?
AK: Well, I think it’s huge  responsibility on my shoulders to be honest and  frankly  I think too much is being said about me being an ambassador of Bollywood to the outside world. However, I do tell my colleagues that it is a great opportunity for all of us and to be honest here, it is fun to be on the global stage. (laughs)
RR:  Would you like to share  some  thoughts on  the recent passing of Bollywood legend Dev Anand ?
AK: He is immortal. I never felt he was gone us even after his passing.

RR: Regarding future projects, would you ever consider setting up shop in Hollywood?

AK: (laughs) I think I got the best of both worlds and today, you CAN have the best of both worlds.
RR: You were the catalyst behind Tom Cruise coming to India. What were his thoughts?

Anil Kapoor listening to the NY media

AK: He loved India very much. The people, the warmth and the culture all appealed to him.

Actor Josh Halloway is always in good spirits!

In “Mission: Impossible Ghost Protocol”, Kapoor plays the role of a rich Indian businessman and womanizer Brij Nath, who owns  a defunct Soviet military satellite that could potentially be used to transmit the order to fire a nuclear missile. His character role is small but essential to the movie.

The film had its premiere in Mumbai in early December with all  kinds of fanfare and a gala reception with the entire cast.  Kapoor played hosts to Cruise and the cast of the movie and posed in front of the historical Taj Mahal with Cruise before they left for the Dubai premiere. My contacts in Mumbai who attended the premiere said the streets were filled with people literally screaming Cruise and Kapoor’s names while they were walking the red carpet.  “It was pure mayhem” said one reporter.

Gorgeous model Tanya Callau and hubby Alan Thicke smile for The Ravi Report

“Mission:Impossible- Ghost Protocol” already broke box office records by clearing $161 million in box office receipts  over the Christmas holiday weekend proving that international powerhouses like Cruise and Kapoor can bring both Hollywood and Bollywood audiences together on an international level.
For more information on the amazing film, please visit
The journey continues….”impossible” and all!
Happy New Year everyone!

Larry King Receives Lifetime Emmy, Wants to be Frozen & Loves The LA Dodgers!

Emmy Award-winning Larry King poses exclusively for The Ravi Report

Larry King  wants to be frozen and is considering being a part owner of  the LA Dodgers- yeah, the iconic broadcaster has been busy lately folks!

But let’s first let’s talk about one of the best listeners and observers in television and radio receiving his  Lifetime Achievement Emmy Award.   The world-famous broadcaster with the gift to get people to open up about their lives, was recently honored by  the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences  with a Lifetime Achievement Emmy Award for his  five decades of service in the broadcasting and radio industries. The gala took place at the famed Jazz at Lincoln Center venue in NYC. The award was presented to King by NBC highly popular newsman, Brian Williams.

CNN’s “Larry King Live” was the highest rated and most watched show on the network for over two decades bringing in world-wide famous celebrities, leaders and politicians,  many of whom were first time guests  on the Cable News Network.

Even after King retired in December 2010, the suspenders- wearing family man  is still in demand with celebrities, world leaders and politicians.  King’s  recent and exclusive interview with Johnny Depp for CNN  is a prime example of the kind of special appeal that King has with celebrities.

Ravi Yande poses with Larry King backstage at NY Emmy Awards

Friends who came to celebrate the honor  included world-famous CNN medical host Dr. Sanjay Gupta (Gupta was just as kind and humble in person as he appears on TV folks!) several CNN producers, past employers and many, many family and friends.

The broadcasting legend wears many hats- best-selling author, father, husband and friend who shows no signs of slowing down at 78.

King spent 25 years at  CNN where he  conducted over 50,000 interviews while boosting the network in ratings. In his spare time (does he even have any?) he oversees his Larry King Cardiac Foundation, an organization that helps fund people in need of heart surgery. King suffered a major heart attack in 1987 which required bypass surgery. His own father passed away at the age of 44 of a heart attack. For more information on the foundation, visit

With thousands of interviews, countless stories and best-selling books ( his book Larry King, A Remarkable Journey is a must read folks!), King has for decades kept the world informed through his thought-provoking, laconic and  non-confrontational ways of interviewing everyone from world leaders to ordinary citizens which grace, style and sophistication.

Larry King speaking to Ravi Yande about his Emmy win (photo courtesy of The Creative Brainstorm)

I have been a long time admirer and have so enjoyed watching  the legend get the  most reserved, shy and reclusive  individuals to open up to him about their lives, personal issues and struggles. King’s  intelligent  interviewing style has appealed to millions of viewers across the world and to his  guests that often want to come back again and again knowing they will be treated fairly.

Larry King spoke exclusively to The Ravi Report about his win and a bit about his personal life as well.

RR: Mr. King, it is indeed an honor and a privilege to meet you. Congratulations on the Emmy. It is so well deserved. Please tell me what your secret to such a prodigious  career has been?
LK: Thank you. Well, I think Bill Clinton said it best in the program tonight…The New Yorker did a story on me and they called it “Street Questions”…I was always every man… I didn’t go to college…I was just a guy asking the questions…I think people associate with me...I think the guy on the street would have said ” I would have asked that”…I don’t think I was ever above anyone.

Larry King and wife Shawn Southwick-King smile for The Ravi Report

RR: A demanding and ambitious career often comes with both successes and sacrifices. Looking back now, is there something that you felt you  sacrificed for the sake of your rewarding career? 

LK: Well, for a long time and for those that know me…honestly, I was not a good father. I put too much emphasis on work and I learned a lesson for it. Now, I have two little children that I spend more time with. Nothing is more important than family.
RR: It sounds like family time  is very imperative to you.
LK: Everything else is secondary-children and your wife are first. You love your children no matter what they do or no matter what happens to them. Your child becomes President of the United States or ends up in prison, if you are the father of either one, you love them both the same.

The ravishing  Shawn Southwick-King was by her husband’s side during the honor  and summed up her own personal thoughts about King  in one sentence.

The Kings pose backstage for the excited paparazzi

SSL– We are each others strength and that is so important to me.

Interesting facts about Larry King:

1. Born November 19, 1933 in Brooklyn NY.

2. When King was 9 years old, his father Edward Zeigler died  of heart disease. The family had to struggle financially and the death effected King emotionally.

2. Changed birth name Lawrence Harvey Zeiger to Larry King during his first radio show in Miami in 1957.

3.King married 8 times, twice to the same lady.  Current wife is the beautiful Shawn Southwick-King mother of their two children Chance 12, and Cannon age 11.

4. “Larry King Live ” on CNN  became the first international TV call-in show and the highest rated talk show on the air for years.

King has won to many awards to list but here are just a few  noteworthy ones that have been mentioned quite often in the media:

Guests& celebrities mingled while enjoying the Central Park view at the Jazz at Lincoln Center

1. The Peabody Award  for Excellence in broadcasting for both his radio (1982) and television (1992) shows.

2. King won  ten CableAce Awards for Best Interviewer and for Best Talk Show Series.

3. In 1989, King was inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame and  in 1996 into the Broadcasters’ Hall of Fame.

4. In June 1998, King received an Honorary Degree from Brooklyn College, City University of New York for his life achievements.

Ok, now for the frozen part. King is still very active with CNN and is doing celebrity specials among other projects for the network. In his first show entitled “Dinner With The Kings” that aired on Dec. 4,  the legend sat down with wife Shawn and celebrities Conan O’Brien, Tyra Banks, Shaquille O’Neal, Seth MacFarlane, Jack Dorsey, Quincy Jones and Russell Brand to discuss everything from insecurities, friendships to well…being frozen.

“I want to be frozen on the hope that they’ll find whatever I died of and bring me back,” Larry King tells his  guests  at his swanky Beverly Hills home.

Regarding the L.A.  Dodgers and ownership, the life long fan and season ticket holder has offered a bid as part of an investor group to possibly own the franchise.  It would be King’s first ownership of a professional sports team.

The journey continues and for one energetic Larry King- it gets even better!



New Book Brings Photographer Reka Nyari Into The Spotlight

Acclaimed photographer Reka Nyari smiles for The Ravi Report

When  I first met the stunning photographer Reka Nyari years ago, I saw what most other people saw- a hard working, ambitious and very beautiful creative person who knew how to capture the world’s attention with her gift of artistic photography.

 Fast forward a few years and Nyari has become a good friend as well as an in- demand photographer in the world of fashion, business and modeling. The NY based beauty has recently added another title to her resume- published author. The  former model who wanted to be a painter while growing up in Helsinki,  has recently written a book that demonstrates her skills as an award-winning top photographer who has taken the world of sensual photography by storm. No kidding folks.

Ravi Yande with author Reka Nyari

Entitled  “‘Femme Fatale: Female Erotic Photography,” the 220 page book is a labor of love filled with countless stunning and provocative   sexy  photographs of some of the most beautiful models taken by the New York photographer.
“I had a hard time trying to put this book together due to the thousands upon thousands of photos that I had to choose from,”stated the dazzling author at her recent book signing party which was well attended  with over 800 of her closest friends and admirers who wanted a signed copy.  The book sold out in minutes.

Nyari signing books for her fans and friends

“I’ve known Reka for years and she is an incredible photographer,” said one gorgeous brunette model wearing a very sexy, low-cut silk dress who came from Brooklyn for the party. The event was held  at the famed Kiss & Fly club in the trendy Meatpacking district in Manhattan.
“It’s her first book and we are all so proud of her,” said one exquisite and tanned blond waiting on line to meet Nyari.
Putting the book together was no easy task says the former model.
“I spent countless hours trying to figure out which models to include in the book, which pictures would capture the attention of readers while trying to pick out some of my best work. It was hard but the final results were very satisfying,” states the author.
There is plenty to capture your attention here folks. No kidding.  Pages of pages of picture perfect female bodies wearing only their smile in exotic locations are  featured in the compilation of seductive beauty.
“I find  nudity natural and beautiful and love portraying women  in my photos as strong sensual beings,” said the accomplished photographer.

" I am so grateful to everyone for appreciating my hard work"

Nyari is no stranger to the world of glitz and glamor. The model turned author has been in the limelight for years with her exotic photography and visually captivating and alluring photos shown around the world.  For many years she says she was in front of the camera and now spends a great deal behind it to capture the visually appealing image.
Like most successful and driven people, Nyari started very young in her journey and knew right from the beginning that she wanted a creative and fulfilling career.
“I was always fascinated with the human form and  as a child, I knew that photography was going to one day play a role in my career on some level.”
Nyari’s  book has two roles she says. First it portrays almost a “canvas like appeal”  of some of the  best artistic photos from her years of going around the world shooting models .The other part it is  her personal  journey into the world of exotic photography that has become part of her branding which in turn, has  made Nyari one of the most sought after  photographers around the world. The journey she says has  also been a way for her to express herself in the most purest form of art.
One of the most interesting characteristics of the beautiful author  is that she has immense  interest in people and her desire to show different forms of them through her lens no matter where she is in the world.
” I always have been curious about the world, people, art and I feel that when I am taking pictures, I am “speaking” to the subject through my lens and the pictures are the end results of my dialog.”
For more information on Reka Nyari’s work or the book, visit her visually appealing website at
The journey continues…exotic and all.

Superstars Serena Williams & Darrelle Revis Launch Evoque

Superstars Serena Williams and Darrelle Revis are all smiles for The Ravi Report

It’s NY Auto International Show week folks and you know what that means- incredible and expensive new cars, beautiful people and exclusive press parties introducing the latest and hottest cars that many  of you will want to see before the show ends on May 1 at the famous Jacobs Javits Convention Center in Manhattan.

The Ravi Report received exclusive behind the scenes coverage of  one of the most talked about cars so far this year- the amazing and beautiful 2012 Range Rover Evoque

2012 Range Rover Evoque, just stunning!

which made its NY debut a few days ago in one of the most stylish launch parties that Manhattan has seen in a while that took place in the Meatpacking area of the city (need I say more?)  The  sneak peak is especially exciting for The Ravi Report  since the  Evoque will not be available to consumers until Fall 2011 so you can just image the kind of rush it was to get into this exclusive party. But let me tell you one thing first hand here folks- the Evoque is going to rock…big time. The buzz already is that it will be sold out before it hits the streets and with its appeal to both men and the sexy ladies, the sleek & fully loaded “people magnet” will become as popular as Land Rover’s other brands in no time.

NY Jets Cornerback Darrelle Revis exclusively poses for The Ravi Report

The Evoque was introduced by some of the most alluring people from the world of sports, fashion and style and who else to help promote something so amazing then two masterful athletes synonymous with all things  the Evoque symbolizes- speed, grace, charm and power – super athletes NY Jets Cornerback Darrelle Revis and world tennis sensation Serena Williams.  It was a dream come true for the hundreds of captivating party goers who got to see their favorite athlete in person during the launch.
“I missed my friend’s engagement party to come and see Serena,” said one stunning brunette wearing a red silk Versace dress. “I left my patients early tonight  just to see my man Revis,” said one beautiful doctor laced with David Yurman jewelery.  Also on hand to help celebrate the launch were the beautiful Georgiana Chapman, Josh Rubin (, Bevy Smith and  Piers Fawkes.

Serena Williams gives her sexy pose exclusively for The Ravi Report

Revis, sharply dressed and ever so polite to the press, spoke about how he liked the Evoque with its new style and for what it represents- speed and class.  Revis is part of New York,City Shapers meaning the talented NY Jets star represents a group of influential people from the world of sports, fashion, film, design and style that consumers follow. The talented football star  always seems to bring positive energy where ever he goes or whatever red carpet events he is invited to. I’ve seen Revis at other NFL parties  and the NY Jets Cornerback has become part of a very distinguished and popular social circles of influential athletes.
Serena Williams is  a super star no matter what does. The polite and very pretty gifted athlete and part of the “City Shaper” group as well made such a grand entrance that people literally on the streets were shouting her name as if a  rockstar  had arrived while she made her way inside the Highline Stages where the event took place. Williams, wearing a stunning purple dress and looking beautiful has had a couple of stressful months lately regarding some health issues.

The world tennis champion listens to a question from The Ravi Report

The tennis champion had to undergo recent emergency treatment for a  pulmonary  embolism  in March and  she also had  foot surgery last year. As one of her biggest admirers,  I will say that  Serena Williams looked phenomenal. Plain and simple. The face, the charm, the politeness were all in tact when she attended the event. She was very polite when spoke to all the reporters.

For more info on the Land Rover Evoque, please check out the website
The journey continues…and come this fall, it will be a smooth ride for many!

Harold & Lee Make “Falling For Grace” Worth Falling For!

Actor Gale Harold smiles exclusively for The Ravi Report

We enter the restaurant and female fans  were already lined up to get his autograph. We sit down and pretty girls start to tap on the window just to get his attention and hopefully a picture. He obliges with a smile. 

That’s just the kind of guy actor Gale Harold is. Respectful and unassuming.  The talented actor was in NY recently promoting his  new romantic comedy movie “Falling For Grace” which he co-stars with the beautiful and talented actress Faye Ann Lee. You want to see  some on-screen great chemistry? Then you have got to see this movie folks! 

“It’s not just a comedy. It’s relevant and culturally meaningful,” states the 40-year-old actor known for his most recent role as Terri Hatcher’s love interest Jackson Braddock  in “Desperate Housewives” and for his provocative role as Brian Kinney in the 2005  Showtime  television series “Queer As Folk“. 

In “Falling For Grace”, Harold plays the role of Andrew James Barrington Jr., a rich, eligible bachelor who falls for the pretty and witty Grace Tang played by actress-writer-director- Fay Ann Lee. Without giving to much of the story away, the two accidently meet and with a few misunderstandings mixed in with a few white lies, you get a  surprised romance that everyone will enjoy.  The chemistry is written into the script so well that both Harold & Lee should do more movies together. Both are terrific actors by the way. 

The LA based actor known mostly for his serious, dark and internal acting, takes on this light and comical  role with ease. Lee is simply a natural born actress. The moment you see her, she lights up the screen!

“To be able to work in NY is a great think and I really enjoyed the script and the realistic aspects of it,” says the accomplished  actor who travels back to the Big Apple whenever he gets an opportunity. 

Actors Gale Harold and Clem Cheung attend the Q&A session after a special screening.

Harold has an impressive list of credentials. In addition to  “Desperate Housewives” the actor also has appeared on numerous top shows included “Grey’s Anatomy“, “Vanished” and “Deadwood“. This is his first comedy romance film. 

” I would like to try to develope ideas for television involving comedy because I like comedy performance and maybe with the freedom & input to talk developement as well for other shows,” asserts the actor.  

Maybe a little stand-up comedy action also? 

” Oh boy, that’s not me…to me that is the most terrifying thing I have ever seen. I’m not that brave,”  laughs the actor. 

Since he’s done it all (stage, TV and film)  Harold believes it’s all relative and that the quality of work has always been his first priority rather than the medium. 

“I think as long as you are fortunate enough to get an opportunity to get good work at what you love doing, it’s worth it, ” expresses Harold. 

Fond of French and Italian cuisine the actor  likes to travel to places like Mexico and Paris and even enjoys Bollywood films on his days off.

“I would love to go to India and I loved Slumdog Millionaire,”  smiles the actor who recently  finished a limited engagement  of  Tennessee Williams “Orpheus Descending” in LA which opened to great reviews. 

Ravi Yande, top model Richie Kul and beautiful actress Fay Ann Lee pose for The Ravi Report

Television and film actress Fay Ann Lee is driven. Plain and simple. She has not only proven that she can she act but also that she can write  an outstanding script and direct a great film. The multi-talented Hong Kong born filmmaker is proactive in nature and thanks to her dedication and passion, “Falling For Grace” was born.  Lee is hopeful that her film will create oppportunities  other Asian actors who have not yet gotten their major break.  The filmmaker started writing the script almost ten years ago while she was in “Ms. Saigon” because she felt there were no mainstream roles for Asians who are immensely talented actors she says and didn’t stop until her film was made. Not only did she direct, write and act in the film, she also spent years  raising money to make the film then travelled around the country promoting it.

Harold is all smiles for The Ravi Report

Her efforts paid off when it became one of the opening films of the 2006 Tribeca Film Festival with a star-studded red carpet. The film has also been featured at other film festivals including Los Angeles Asian Film Festival and the Vancouver Asian Film Festival. The film also had a special star studded premiere in March at the world famous Asia Society in Manhattan.

The multi-talented astute actress has  been nominated for an Emerging Artist Award by The White House Project so please you vote for this amazing actress  by March 31st!! Time is ticking!! 

Falling For Grace”  continues to play until April 1 at Big Cinema in NY. ( so get your tickets fast! For more information regarding the movie, check out the website at

The journey continues… 


Flickr Photos