Brooklyn Loves Bollywood

Bollywood Loves Brooklyn

I was just on the phone with Anne Marsen. She is the woman in the video.

Bachna Ae Haseeno (BollyBrook Remix) from Anne Marsen on Vimeo.

She was a friend of a friend of Nick Gray who happened to be in Mumbai. So one day Nick calls and talks about his idea for the music video. Would she do it?

She had only seen some clips of videos of the Bollywood variety. But there was much immersion once she was in Mumbai.

The street scenes were not at all hard to shoot, she says. It is not like they had to pay off police officers or shopkeepers. Maybe one shopkeeper.

Group dance choreography would have been nice, she says, but that was beyond the scope of the project.

"Who is the lad?"

She met him on She was using Couchsurfing for her travels in India, staying with strangers. And the actor Yatharth Agnihotri approached her saying he thought she was the female version of him. And they clicked. Clicked enough to do a music video together.

He is shortly coming to New York to study hip hop dancing.

I suggested to Anne they should do a NYC sequel. Nick Gray has Times Of India ambitions. The sequel could take him there. What I have in mind is a sequel where about 20 characters from NY tech get inserted into the video, 20 or more.

Anne says her wish is that Amir Khan sees her music video.

Anne says the take home lesson is, it bothers her that New Yorkers, American in general look so depressed walking out and about, in the subway, wherever. We could use some of the Bollywood playfulness/happiness/frivolousness, she says.

As for Nick, he says he just had so much fun working on the video.

This video has been making the rounds in the NY tech circles today, which is how I found out about it. It just hit 10,000 views. I have a feeling this thing is going viral big time.

The cross cultural tint of the video is what grabbed me. We are different, but we can be together.

New York Magazine: Meet Nick Gray, Thrower of ‘Culturally Significant’ Williamsburg Parties: Nick Gray, who has styled himself as a sort of Lois Weisberg for the Tumblr age. Every month or so, Gray, who is 27 and lives in Williamsburg, has a party for a whole bunch of young people who are largely strangers. Some he's met on Facebook or through Tumblr. Some he meets at McCarren Park or Whole Foods or bowling; he hands them his card, which has his e-mail address on it, and adds them to his "Friends Newsletter," which gets sent out once a month and updates everyone on what his friends are doing. ...... Last night, Nick — whose day job is working for the family business, which manufactures entertainment equipment on jets — greeted everyone as they walked through the door. Even though everyone gets a name tag, he seemed to remember all the names, even those of people he'd only met once. In the kitchen, a young woman named Rachel Eakley had provided hors d'oeuvre like Parmesan polenta, Gruyère and thyme crackers, and pommes annettes. ....... "Nick's parties are all about togetherness — not about exclusivity," said Anthony Volodkin, the 23-year-old founder of mp3 blog aggregator the Hype Machine. "It's very un–New York." ...... "These parties are very culturally significant in Williamsburg," said David Karp, who is the founder of the blogging platform Tumblr and is also Eakley's boyfriend. He said this completely without irony...... being un-ironic and nice seemed a key qualification for attending a Nick Gray party. Also, doing things. There was a furniture-maker, the founder of a dance troupe, and two women who had just started an ice-cream company called "Milkmade." There was a band, the Freelance Whales, who performed on instruments like the banjo and the glockenspiel. With all this business, perhaps it stands to reason that a Nick Gray party has a schedule, which had been sent out in an e-mail the day before. The third item on the itinerary was "Juggling Lessons."

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