Your Weekend Planner November 13: Happy Diwali from Amazon, Netflix, Hotstar. And Maldives

How are Bollywood stars celebrating Diwali in Maldives? What has released on OTT this week? All this and much more in our weekend planner.

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Images posted on Instagram by Amitabh Bachchan and Katrina Kaif.
Images posted on Instagram by Amitabh Bachchan and Katrina Kaif.

Dear Reader,

If you are not as loaded on money as the average Bollywood star, you too are probably cooped up at home, dusting out last year's Diwali lights and decking up your home. This is a strange Diwali. This is a strange year. Thanks to Villain No 1, coronavirus. But trust Bollywood to show you how to party even in times of a pandemic. Nothing to emulate, given the constantly rising number of cases. But then, they can afford the best of treatment and hospitals and everything else. The rest of us are not as lucky.

So while some of Showbiz is in Bombay, all decked up, masks in place, attending Diwali parties; a lot of the rest are in Maldives, soaking up the sun and sea. Disha Patani and Tiger Shroff, Katrina Kaif, Elli AvrRam who just got back and more. If those crystal-clear turquoise waters are not in your fate this year, you can always fall back on screens to take care of the #wanderlust. Virtually, of course.

On OTT, there's a lot happening this weekend. Ludo on Netflix, Chhalaang on Amazon Prime, Laxmii on Disney+Hotstar, and Suraj Pe Mangal Bhari in theatres. More when you reach that section. From the bookshelf our pick is a Naipaul classic, A House For Mr Biswas. Inside our own house - the kitchen, to be precise, there's some Chicken Fillet cooking. The recipe is all yours if you want a bite. But if you reallllly cannot miss that family get-together, take some fashion inspo from - who else - our celebrities. Now this is the season for a LOT of gorging on sweets. There's a set of workouts to take care of that obstinate flab that we're all sure to gain after all the Diwali love.

That's all about India. Meanwhile, the US is preparing to say goodbye to its first ALL-CAPS President. Madame Tussauds London has gone one step ahead though.

This is the best time of the year, they say. Any year but this probably. But still, we gotta make do with whatever we have, coronavirus notwithstanding. So make the most of the festive season but don't skimp on the precautions. Keep the sanitiser away from the diya. Keep your spirits high and masks on. That's a wrap from us.

Have yourself a happy happy Diwali!

Here's your Weekend Planner.

WHAT'S TRENDING?

Joe Biden it is. After that weird suspense, Amreeka has elected Joe Biden as their new President. Kamala Harris is Vice President and her husband Doug Emhoff is super proud of her as he celebrated her win with a delightful Instagram post.

So is the Biden parivaar. You cannot afford to miss this picture that Joe Biden's granddaughter Naomi shared on social media after the results were announced.

Also, this might interest you that Mallika Sherawat partied with Kamala Harris in 2009. Where? What? When? Why? In case you missed it, here's the story. Meanwhile, Donald Trump is coping somehow. The 45th President of the US is now just another man in golf attire. Sigh!

Aao hamare des ab jahaan bas outrage hi outrage hai. Tanishq has removed another ad, this one, specific to Diwali. Sayani Gupta asked people to celebrate the festival without crackers in the ad, and ended up offending people.

But Bihar might not agree with Sayani Gupta at the moment given that the state is in the mood to celebrate after Nitish Kumar-led ruling NDA scraped through the assembly elections, victorious, on Wednesday. For the seventh time, Nitish Kumar is all set to assume office as the Chief Minister of Bihar soon.

Mumbai, meanwhile, has dropped everything aside as Rohit Sharma's team defeated Delhi Capitals in the final match of the Indian Premier League (IPL) in Dubai on Tuesday. The internet celebrated, but with memes.

Now, we are aware of the fact that Diwali is right here and if you care to step out of home to celebrate, do keep in mind that India has recorded over 86 lakh novel coronavirus cases. Wear a mask, please. It should be yours. Not your friend's. In short, don't be like this man, who without batting an eyelid, put his mask on his friend's face. Uff!

By the way, Laxmii has released on Disney+Hotstar and Akshay Kumar has managed to enrage every section of the internet with his new film. Burj Khalifa dilaana toh door ki baat, Akshay couldn't even manage to make us smile. But we can do that for sure. Just head to our next section.

SOMETHING TO MAKE YOU SMILE

Dogs are the best, bas! No questions asked. This little puppy realised that his friend, a baby, is too little to walk. So, he taught the child to crawl instead.

Railway Minister Piyush Goyal delighted wildlife lovers with a short video from West Bengal where a train driver stopped the vehicle so that three elephants could cross the rail tracks safely. "This is the news that we are here for," netizens asserted.

Also, if you are in the mood for major nostalgia, here's a video of Lucky Ali singing O Sanam. Aaah. Life is good.

To conclude, Farhan Akhtar shared a touching video of an elderly ballet dancer - an Alzheimer's patient - who recalled her choreography after she was made to hear the tunes of Swan Lake. Marta C Gonzalez is no more but this clip is something that she will always be remembered by.

DON'T STOP WORKING OUT

Ankita Konwar inspired fans to work out this week straight from the scenic beaches of Goa. The 29-year-old took to Twitter to share a picture of herself doing Eka Pada Pranamasana or the One-Legged Prayer Pose. For the yoga session, she donned a hot pink bikini top and distressed denim shorts.

Ankita also indulged in a post-run stretching session and shared a clip with her followers. Dressed in a pink tee and shorts, Ankita did several yoga asanas in a garden in Goa.

KHAANE MEIN KYA HAI?

Do you know Chicken Fillet helped a boy wake up from a two-month-long coma? As unbelievable as it may sound, a boy in Taiwan regained consciousness after his brother mentioned the name of his favourite dish - Chicken Fillet.

That's great news and do you wish to celebrate with some Chicken Fillet as well? Here's the recipe.

HOW TO MAKE CRISPY CHICKEN FILLET?

Chicken Fillet. (Photo: Pexels)

Start by combining 675 grams of skinless and boneless chicken breasts, cut into thick strips, with one cup of buttermilk. Then, refrigerate it for four hours or overnight. Now, in a bowl, combine half cup of flour, 1 tablespoon of chilli powder, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder and season it with salt and pepper.

Add 3 lightly beaten eggs in a second bowl and 2 1/2 cups of breadcrumbs in a third bowl. Drain the buttermilk off the chicken strips and pat it in the flour mixture. Take it out and dip in the eggs and shake to remove any excess.

Then, press in the breadcrumbs to coat thoroughly. Once you are done, take the strips out, place them in a sealable plastic bag and freeze for about 4 hours. Once the strips are frozen, in a non-stick skillet, fry them in oil for about 3 minutes on each side over medium heat. Take them out and after a few moments fry again until they turn golden brown. Serve hot with spicy sauce.

WHAT TO READ?

A House For Mr Biswas

The novel coronavirus has set in a new normal. Many, who are working from home, are understanding home dynamics with each passing day. This is thus, the best time to read VS Naipaul's classic novel A House For Mr Biswas. The novel focuses on Mohun Biswas, who juggles from one job to another and spends 46 years of his life just to own a house. As Naipaul writes, "How terrible it would have been to have lived without even attempting to lay claim to one's portion of the earth." The book is episodic and is filled with humour and drama. It also makes you appreciate the simple joys of life, perhaps what we need the most in these trying times.

FASHION KA JALWA

Hina Khan and Karishma Tanna at Ekta Kapoor's Diwali party. (Photos: Yogen Shah)

Diwali is round the corner and if you are wondering what to wear for the celebrations, take cues from celebrities such as Karishma Tanna, Ridhi Dogra, Mouni Roy and Hina Khan, who attended Ekta Kapoor's Diwali party in Mumbai on Thursday. More on Fashion Friday.

Also, the fourth season of The Crown, the much-loved series that has people obsessed with the Royal family, will be releasing on November 15. As we wait patiently for the weekend to arrive, we are also excited for one of the new characters that will be introduced this season - Princess Diana. So, as we all wait, we thought of taking a trip down the memory lane and reminisce the most pivotal fashion moments of the People's Princess, who is the greatest fashion icon of the 20th century. From the OTT wedding gown to the revenge dress, we remember all of Diana's iconic looks here.

MOVIES MALDIVES MEIN KYA CHAL RAHA HAI?

Seems like the whole of Bollywood is heading to the Maldives. First, it was Taapsee Pannu, and then it was Kajal Aggarwal and hubby Gautam Kitchlu who headed to the picturesque island for their honeymoon. And now, Tiger Shroff and Disha Patani are stirring the still waters of Maldives. News is that Krishna Shroff, Tiger's sister will also join them today. Eli AvrRam is also soaking up the Maldivian sun. And last but not the least, Katrina Kaif too! Maldives ko Mumbai hi ghoshit kardi jaye, we say!

Waise back in Mumbai, and the rest of the country, this Friday is a crucial one. After theatres reopened post the novel coronavirus pandemic, today janta will get to watch a fresh release - Suraj Pe Mangal Bhari (SPMB). The film, starring Manoj Bajpayee, Diljit Dosanjh and Fatima Sana Shaikh, therefore, has a lot on its shoulders. But then, Diwali weekend hai, advantage ho sakta hai. We will tell you about how it fared next Friday, for now, here's the review. Padh lo so you know pandemic se ladke jana chahiye ya nahi.

This day is as crucial for the SPMB team as it is for the multiplex owners. Just this Monday, November 9, Akshay Kumar's Laxmi dropped on Disney+Hotstar, which is just one in a long list of other big-ticket films waiting for an OTT release. SPMB's reception and the audience reaction, therefore, will pave the path ahead. Edge-of-the-seat suspense, honestly.

Speaking of edge-of-the-seat, there's Anurag Basu's Ludo available on your nearest OTT screens as well. The multi-starrer that sees Pankaj Tripathi, Abhishek Bachchan, Rajkummar Rao, Aditya Roy Kapur, Sanya Malhotra, Fatima Sana Shaikh, among others, is super gripping. If you have absolutely no plans for Diwali, what with social distancing and avoiding crowded places and all - as you should, BTW - catch Ludo tonight itself. We did, and here's what we think.

But you know what'll calm you down? A cup of hot chocolate and an old movie. Our weekly stories specials can help. On Monday Masala, we revisited Irrfan's Qarib Qarib Singlle, and if you're looking for a cosy romantic story to warm up your heart, re-watch this one. Tuesday Trivia taught us how Jayalalitha refused a role in Billa opposite Rajnikanth. Now that's powerful, right? For Wahiyat Wednesday, we were caught between Akki's Laxmii and Housefull 4. We didn't know which is worse. Can you tell? And on Throwback Thursday, we rolled back to the time when Priyanka Chopra made her presence felt in Bollywood and we had absolutely no Aitraaz.

But if new content is what you want, there's plenty to choose from. In our next section.

OTT PE KYA CHAL RAHA HAI?

WHAT'S ON DISNEY+HOTSTAR?

What to watch: Laxmii

You will like it if you liked: Bhool Bhulaiyaa

Akshay Kumar and Kiara Advani's new film Laxmii released on November 9 after much anticipation. The film, a horror-comedy, is a remake of the 2011 Tamil film Kanchana. Raghava Lawrence, who also directed Kanchana, makes his Bollywood directorial debut with Laxmii. Akshay Kumar plays the role of Asif, a man who gets possessed by the spirit of a transgender in the film. Read our review of the film here.

WHAT'S ON AMAZON PRIME VIDEO?

What to watch: Chhalaang

You will like it if you liked: Bala

Rajkummar Rao is all set to impress fans with his new film Chhalaang where he plays a Physical Education Teacher (PET). It is Hansal Mehta's first comedy drama and fifth film with Rao. The director-actor duo has worked together in films such as Aligarh and Omerta. Rajkummar Rao will be seen romancing Nushrratt Bharuccha in the film. Saurabh Shukla, Satish Kaushik, Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub, Ila Arun and Jatin Sarna will be seen in other pivotal roles. Chhalaang will premiere on Amazon Prime Video on November 13. Ajay Devgn is one of the producers of the film. Read our review here.

What to watch: Superman: Red Son

You will like it if you liked: Superman movie

The new animated film, Superman: Red Son is set in an alternate universe during the Cold War-era in Stalinist Russia. Unlike the earlier Superman films, which showed the caped superhero as a proud American, this film shows Superman's spaceship crash land in Russia. And therefore, he's grown up as Soviet Superman. The superhero joins an army comprising Green Lanterns, Wonder Woman and Batman in this action film. A good news for DC fans! The film is releasing on November 13.

WHAT'S ON MX PLAYER?

What to watch: Aashram Chapter 2 - The Dark Side

You will like it if you liked: Aashram

Bobby Deol reprises his role of Baba Nirala of Kashipur in the second season of Aashram. The show began streaming on November 11 and takes us deeper into the world of politics, crime and religion. Aashram Chapter 2 is directed by Prakash Jha, who also directed the first season. Aaditi Pohankar, Adhyayan Suman, Anupriya Goenka and Tushar Pandey also play pivotal roles in the show.

WHAT'S ON EROS NOW?

What to watch: Modi Season 2 - CM TO PM

You will like it if you liked: Modi: Journey Of A Common Man

Modi Season 2 - CM to PM focuses on Prime Minister Narendra Modi's journey from a follower to that of a leader. The show began streaming on November 12 and focuses on the hurdles faced by the prime minister before, and during his tenure. Mahesh Thakur plays the lead role of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the show.

WHAT'S ON ZEE5 and ALTBALAJI?

What to watch: Mum Bhai

You will like it if you liked: Shootout at Wadala

If you like watching crime series, then your Diwali weekend is sorted. Mum Bhai, which is based on true events in Mumbai's underworld, premiered on ALTBalaji and Zee5. The series stars Angad Bedi, Sikander Kher and Sandeepa Dhar in the lead roles. The series shows the epic tussle for power in Mumbai between police and gangsters.

Now, if you wish to watch a film in theatres, we have news for you.

What to watch: Suraj Pe Mangal Bhari

Suraj Pe Mangal Bhari is the first big Bollywood film which is being released in theatres after cinemas reopen post lockdown due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. While people are still skeptical about going to a theatre, it will definitely be refreshing to finally watch a film on the big screen. The film stars Diljit Dosnajh, Fatima Sana Shaikh and Manoj Bajpayee in the lead roles. Going by the trailer of the film, it is going to be a hilarious ride. The film is directed by Abhishek Sharma. Read our review here.

TV PE KYA CHAL RAHA HAI?

What to watch: Bigg Boss 14 Weekend Ka Vaar

Where to watch: Colors TV, 9 pm (Saturday and Sunday)

Bigg Boss 14 host and contestants will celebrate Diwali with its viewers this weekend. Two contestants - Shardul Pandit and Rubina Dilaik are nominated for eviction. As it's a Diwali weekend, makers can go easy on them and no one might be eliminated this week.

What to watch: India's Best Dancer

Where to watch: Sony TV, 8 pm (Saturday and Sunday)

India's Best Dancer will witness a Diwali special episode this weekend. The show will select its finalists this week. Judges Malaika Arora, Geeta Kapur and Terence Lewis will welcome Indian Idol 2020 judges Himesh Reshammiya, Neha Kakkar and Vishal Dadlani, and host Aditya Narayan as guests. The show will replace IBD.

What to watch: Shaandaar Ravivaar

Where to watch: Colors TV, Sunday (12 noon)

Celebrate Diwali with the performances of your favourite stars on Sunday. Popular TV stars Avinesh Rekhi, Helly Shah, Vishal Vashishtha and Nimrit Kaur Ahluwalia will be seen grooving to popular dance numbers on Sunday.

What to watch: The Kapil Sharma Show

Where to watch: Sony TV, 9.30 pm (Saturday and Sunday)

Kapil Sharma will welcome Pratik Gandhi, Shreya Dhanwanthary and Hansal Mehta on the show this weekend. They will be on the show to promote their web series Scam 1992. Kapil will tease Hansal Mehta on this particular episode. The show will also welcome Govinda on the sets for the Sunday episode.

What to watch: Taare Zameen Par

Where to watch: StarPlus, 6.30pm (Saturday)

In this episode of Taare Zameen Par, performances of the young contestants will leave judges Jonita Gandhi, Shankar Mahadevan and Tony Kakkar speechless. Akriti Sharma will leave everyone in splits as Akbar. The judges will dress up as characters from an ancient era.

Happy Diwali and enjoy your weekend!

(Compiled by Ananya Bhattacharya, Nairita Mukherjee, Raya Ghosh, Krishna Priya Pallavi, Vibha Maru, Jyoti Kanyal, Janani K, Divyanshi Sharma, Shweta Keshri, Logesh Balachandran, Grace Cyril, Rishita Roy Chowdhury, Tiasa Bhowal)

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