Eid last week, saw a frenzy of activity outside of the usual festivities — an elaborate Iftaar party with fragrant mogras and rajnigandha decorations announced the celebrations along with the arrival of the gangster flick, Once Upon A Time in Mumbai Dobaara! The party, at one of Mumbai’s suburban five-star hotels, JW Marriott, was hosted by producer Ekta Kapoor. Given her frenetic schedules, brother Tusshar Kapoor had been looking into all the necessary details to ensure that the evening was an enjoyable one. A bevy of stars including those who are in the film and others — Abhishek Bachchan, Akshay Kumar, Emraan Hashmi, Imran Khan, Ranveer Singh, Rishi Kapoor and Rakesh Roshan, Shruti Haasan, Sonakshi Sinha, Sonam Kapoor, Chitrangada Singh and Kangana Ranaut — joined the festivities. Politicians were not too far behind, what with Maharashtra CM Prithviraj Chauhan, Shatrughan Sinha, Shahnawaz Hussain and Rajiv Pratap Rudy joining in.
Close on its heels came Shah Rukh Khan’s Eid party spread over two days. An afternoon of media interactions accompanied by lunch post the release of his film Chennai Express, was just a sidelight to the main event where the crème de la crème of Mumbai fetched up. The Bachchan family, Dilip saab and Saira Banu, Hrithik Roshan, Mukesh and Nita Ambani, Rajkumar Hirani, Karan Johar, Ritiesh Deshmukh and wife Geneila, Sonam Kapoor, Sushmita Sen, Sridevi and Tabu among others were present. In a first of sorts, Khan greeted the media and countless fans gathered outside Mannat, with his entire family in attendance. It was a Kodak moment indeed.
Given that Chennai Express and Once Upon a Time In Mumbai Dobaara! were both slated to release on the Eid weekend, (before the latter’s release was deferred to August 15), the festive spirit and joie de vivre were somewhat outweighed by the promotional zeal. A far cry from earlier times when festivals were primarily a ruse to get together with colleagues and making merry.
For those who assiduously followed the film glossies of yesteryear, showbiz festivity was almost synonymous with Raj Kapoor’s grand Holi celebrations where stars and starlets, directors and technicians alike were doused in colour and merriment. It was an occasion to remember. Decades later, Bachchans took on the mantle of hosting sparkling-with-fun “Holi bashes” wherein being invited was a big deal. Eid and Diwali get-togethers too were largely meet-and-greet events for those within the film stars’ intimate friend circles.
Of late though, life