When a Bollywood movie is set to release, the promotions begin well in advance. “Qarib Qarib Singlle” opens tomorrow, and its stars have been going all out. Directed by celebrated filmmaker Tanuja Chandra, and starring critically acclaimed actor Irrfan Khan in the lead role, it’s on my “must-watch” list. It also marks the Bollywood debut of Parvathy, a talented actress from the South Indian film industries.
As part of promotions, the production company- Zee Entertainment Enterprises, tied up with bookmyshow.com, an online ticketing platform (now expanding to other fields). I book tickets for films and events solely on their website, and so was eligible to participate in their Book My Show Superstars “Coffee Date with Irrfan and Parvathy”.
With Tanuja Chandra
Frequent users of their website and app, received an email to register for the contest. We were asked why we’d like to meet the stars of the film. The system’s algorithm assessed the best answers and allotted points, through which four winners were picked. I entered the contest on Saturday, and on Sunday I was informed that I had won. The meeting was set for 7:30 p.m. on Sunday evening at ITC Maurya Hotel Delhi (read my review of the hotel’s iconic restaurant, Dum Pukht, here).
The co-stars clearly had a strong camaraderie
It was short notice, but I wasn’t going to pass up a chance to meet my favourite Bollywood actor! With great anticipation and excitement, I set out for the hotel that evening. We were asked to wait in the lobby, as the stars were busy with interviews. We were promised half an hour exclusively with them, over coffee. This was my first time speaking to movie celebrities one on one (except for my stint in a Bollywood movie, but that’s another story!).
The four winners of Book My Show Superstars
The four ‘superstars’ who won the contest included Simardeep, a native of Amritsar who currently works in Gurgaon; Rohit Jain, a huge fan of all things Bollywood and a fitness buff; Vikas, who came all the way from Faridabad for the event; and I. We had Shamail from Book My Show, waiting with us.
It was an hour and a half before we finally met them. Though that was a bit annoying, I spent the time asking about the Book My Show Superstar program. Running successfully in Bombay, this is its first foray in Delhi. It’s an attempt to kill two birds with one stone- promoting upcoming movies and rewarding their loyal clientele.
In conversation with the stars of “Qarib Qarib Singlle”
Book My Show had invited the team to Delhi for this contest, but of course they were inundated with other interview requests. As a result, the actors (especially Irrfan Khan) were clearly tired and in a rush to leave. We did ask them a few questions though. I wanted to know Irrfan’s basis for choosing films, as he’s covered multiple genres. He said something must ‘click’ after reading the script, and the film-making team counts too.
Parvathy was delightful- open, fun to speak with and refreshingly down to earth. Even more humble was the immensely talented Tanuja Chandra, who obliged us with photos, despite not being part of the contest.
That’s a wrap
A quick 15 minute chat with an even quicker photo session was all we got (no mention of the coffee!). Honestly though, for people who love all things Bollywood, it was definitely worth it. If you’d like to be considered for upcoming rounds of Superstar meet-ups, keep booking on bookmyshow.com.
Event rating: 4/5