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BRIDE & PREJUDICE
USA: Miramax Films
UK: Pathe Distribution
Cast: Aishwarya Rai, Martin Henderson, Naveen Andrews, Indira Varma, Namrata Shirodkar, Peeya Rai, Meghna Kothari, Nadira Babar, Anupam Kher, Daniel Gillies, Nitrin Ganatra, Marsha Mason, Alexis Bledel, Sonali Kulkarni
Director: Gurinder Chadha
USA & UK: 111 mins
USA Rated: PG-13 for some sexual references
UK Certificate: 12A contains one use of moderate language
USA Release Date: 11 February 2005 (Limited Release - Los Angeles and New York)
UK Release Date: 8 October 2004
UK Release Date: 7 October 2004 (Limited Release)
From the team behind international smash hit BEND IT LIKE BECKHAM, comes a Jane Austen adaptation like never before. Pride & Prejudice gets the Bollywood treatment and the result is a spectacular fusion of East meets West. Austen's classic love story unfolds in a riot of colour and emotion, song and dance that jet sets from rural India via London to Los Angeles and stars Bollywood's reigning queen Aishwarya Rai who debuts in her first English language film as our heroine Lalita [Austen's Lizzie Bennet] and rising star Martin Henderson takes on Darcy in a wet T-shirt.
Aishwarya Rai - Lalita Bakshi [Elizabeth Bennet]
Martin Henderson - William Darcy [Mr Darcy]
Naveen Andrews - Balraj Bingley [Mr Bingley]
Indira Varma - Kiran Bingley [Miss Bingley]
Namrata Shirdokar - Jaya Bakshi [Jane Bennet]
Peeya Rai - Lakhi Bakshi [Lydia Bennet]
Meghna Kothari - Maya Bakshi [Mary Bennet]
Nadira Babar - Mrs Bakshi [Mrs Bennet]
Anupam Kher - Mr Bakshi [Mr Bennet]
Daniel Gillies - Johnny Wickham [Lt. Wickham]
Nitrin Ganatra - Mr Kholi [Mr Collins]
Marsha Mason - Catherine Darcy [Lady Catherine De Bourgh]
Alexis Bledel - Georgie Darcy [Georgiana Darcy]
Sonali Kulkarni - Chandra [Charlotte Lucas]
'It is a truth universally acknowledged that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.' Jane Austen
"No Life Without Wife" Traditional Indian Saying.
Meddlesome mother Mrs Bakshi [Nadira Babar] is an eligible bachelor seeking missile for her four long suffering daughters. And when the ultimate single male specimen, one Mr Balraj Bingley [Naveen Andrews], private jets into town for a wedding, he's a match made in heaven for her eldest daughter Jaya [Namrata Shirokar].
Balraj has dragged along his disdainful sister Kiran [Indira Varma], and his best friend, international hotelier Darcy [Martin Henderson]. During the wedding dance Balraj is bewitched by Jaya and Darcy's eyes alight on Lalita [Aishwarya Rai] - Jaya's younger sister - an intelligent feisty beauty. But through Darcy's incompetence he snubs Lalita and she resolves he's a very pompous twit.
Balraj continues to court Jaya and invites her and Lalita on holiday with them in Goa. The romance of the beach setting is offset by Darcy and Lalita sparing, and Lalita's not surprised when handsome traveller Johnny Wickham [Daniel Gilles] emerges from the surf and tells her Darcy is a nasty piece of work.
The sisters return home, arriving simultaneously with Mr Kholi [Nitrin Ganatra], a distant relative, now gauche LA accountant who has come to choose one unfortunate sister to be his bride.
With Jaya practically engaged to Balraj, Lalita knows she's first in the proposal firing line and is hugely relieved when Wickham pays a visit, endears himself to her loving father [Anupam Kher] and flirts outrageously with her.
At a local traditional dance, Lalita re-encounters Darcy, risks life and limb dancing with Kholi and introduces the latter to her best friend Chandra. Meanwhile Mrs Bakshi invites Bingley, his sister Kiran and Darcy to dinner in the hope that Balraj will bite the naan bread and propose to Jaya. Bingley disappoints poor mama but Darcy, speaking candidly about the death of his father and relationship with his mother and sister finally impresses Lalita.
The same cannot be said for Kholi's subsequent proposal and Lalita rejects her comedy suitor. [Mrs Bakshi is devastated. Mr Bakshi delighted]. Suddenly all glamorous visitors evaporate and leave the girls to furiously check email for news from suitors. [P.S On the quiet little sister Lakhi has developed a serious crush on Wickham].
The hiatus is broken by the shock announcement that Kholi and Chandra are to marry in LA and that the sisters are invited. They travel via London, glamorous Southall specifically and Jaya's attempts to see Balraj are thwarted by his sister, whose invitation to tea and cucumber sandwiches at their estate in Windsor is a slight - she informs them Balraj has gone off to investigate a far better marriage proposal.
Checking in at Heathrow, who should be on the same flight to LA but Darcy. Lalita, distinctly chilly at the prospect, is again forced to reconsider her views of him when he relinquishes his seat in first class to their mother. During the wedding preparations at Darcy's Beverly Hills Hotel, the family meet his formidable mother Catherine [Marsha Mason] - though Lalita is up to the challenge and she and Darcy begin a tentative romance. But Lalita's hopes are dashed at Kholi and Chandra's wedding where not only does Mrs Darcy introduce her to Darcy's girlfriend Anne but his sister Georgie [Alexis Bledel] tells her that it was Darcy who put Balraj off marrying Jaya.
Lalita rejects Darcy's explanation and confessions of love and storms off. Then Lakhi runs away with Wickham. Darcy turns up to help the family and he and Lalita scour London for the runaways apprehending Wickham and rescuing Lakhi.
All return to India where Jaya and Balraj, Darcy and Lalita tie the eternal knot in a lavish and vibrant twin wedding ceremony.
Subtitles: Hard of hearing
Audio Commentary by Director, Gurinda Chadha (1hr 50)
Making of Bride & Prejudice (24mins)
Aishwayra Rai Featurette (9 mins)
Martin Henderson Featurette (5 mins)
Production Design Featurette (4 mins)
Make-Up Featurette (4 mins)
Dance/Choreography Featurette (8mins)
Interactive 'Dance Along' (8 mins)
Composer Featurette (4 mins)
Crew does 'Balle! Balle!' (5 mins
Extended Scenes/Songs - full length of Ashanti song (20 mins)
Cast & Crew Biographies
UK Premiere Featurette (6 mins)