FLORENCE HALL, CMC – Shimron Hetmyer led a triumvirate of left-handed batsmen that collected half-centuries, as the WICB President’s XI made Pakistan toil in the field all day in their first-class tour match yesterday. Hetmyer led the way with a typically enterprising 97 (11×4, 2×6), fellow Guyana Jaguars batsman Vishaul Singh was unbeaten on 81 and resurgent Kieran Powell made 58, as the President’s XI reached 311 for five in their first innings at the close, after deciding to bat on a windy, but clear first day of the three-day contest at the Trelawny Multiplex. Hetmyer dominated the first half of the day and shared 148 for the second wicket with Powell to give a solid platform for the rest of the home team’s batting to flourish which Singh did to anchor two half-century stands with Jahmar Hamilton and left-handed Jaguars teammate Raymon Reifer to advance claims for higher duty. The day started bitterly for the President’s XI, when Kyle Hope, one of the contenders to open the batting with Kraigg Brathwaite in the forthcoming three-Test series against the Pakistanis, was caught at forward short leg for two from a sharply rising, second ball of the match from left-arm fast bowler Muhammad Amir.
Wanted: Brains with originality and backbone.If this ad ever hit the Bollywood-specific glossies, chances are, blind panic would ensue. “Original script? What’s dat Boss?” To the howling fans who drool and salivate over sexy, glam and glitzy stars and shimmering, seductive fantasies that Bollywood dream-merchants dish out, it may come as a surprise, but truth is, for years, the Maharajas of mush and masala have shamelessly “lifted” (ooops, sorry, the politically correct euphemism is “inspired”) from Hollywood. In the last 15 years, this movement has really caught fire, reflecting a pathetic bankruptcy of original ideas, concepts and stories.There were no ifs and buts in Vikram Bhatt’s Fareb, the film that portrayed his version of An Unlawful Entry. Charged by the rave response, he sallied forth to pay tribute to the classic Brando-starrer On The Waterfront with Ghulam. His subsequent Kasoor borrowed heavily from Jagged Edge and Ankahee from his earlier mentor Mahesh Bhatt’s brilliant, memorable, powerful and moving essay on the extra-marital scene, Arth.Tanuja Chandra’s early films Dushman (Eye For Eye) and Sangharsh (Silence Of The Lambs) likewise were “inspired” efforts. Even the talented Mansoor Khan, succumbed. His Akele Hum … had Kramer v. Kramer plastered all over it, and as for Josh, seen West Side Story anyone? Dharmesh Darshan’s Aamir-Manisha starrer Mann is a sad deja-vu of the evergreen romantic classic An Affair To Remember, while Rahul Rawail – the gifted creator of Arjun and Dacait – created a pale imitation of the Hailey Mills super-popular Parent Trap with Kuch Khatti Kuch Meethi. Even Kajol’s bravura performance couldn’t save it! At one point Bollywood seemed to have been totally fixated with Fatal Attraction. Pyaar Tune Kya Kiya… was only one of the many “inspired” versions. The same syndrome struck Sleeping With The Enemy. Except for Agni Sakshi, all bombed badly.Undeterred, “inspiration” shamelessly thrives. Recent examples include Tera Jadoo Chal Gaya (Picture Perfect), Har Dil Jo Pyar Karega (Wedding Singer), Kahin Pyar Na Ho Jaye (While You Were Sleeping), Dhai Akshar Prem Ke (A Walk In The Clouds), Pyar To Hona Hi Tha (French Kiss), Sirf Tum (You’ve Got Mail), Aap Ki Khatir (Wedding Date), Baazigar (A Kiss Before Dying) Papa Kehte Hai (My Father, The Hero), Jism (Body Heat), Masoom (Man, Woman And Child), Mere Yaar Ki Shaadi Hain (My Best Friend’s Wedding), The Killer (Collateral), Murder (Unfaithful), Sarkar (Godfather), Dewangee (Primal Fear), Sauda (Indecent Proposal), Zinda (Hellboy), Partners (Hitch), Raaz (What Lies Beneath), Karishma (A Woman Of Substance), Krazzy 4 (Dream Team), Champion (Mercury Rising), Pyaar Ishq Aur Mohabbat (Something About Mary), Shaurya (A Few Good Men), Humraaz (A Perfect Murder), Ajnabi (Consenting Adults), Aitraaz (Disclosure), Naqaab (Dot The I), Welcome (Mickey Blue Eyes) …Even the acclaimed Bheja Fry borrowed from a French comedy Le Diner De Cons. Sanjay Bhansali’s much raved about and awarded Black was a knock off of The Miracle Worker and his recent Saawariya found “inspiration” from White Nights. Is nothing sacred …?“No, nothing is!” says Mahesh Bhatt, the self-appointed spokesman of Bollywood. The high-priest of hard-sell and self-promotion genius, is pragmatic, realistic and doesn’t give a damn about being politically correct. “Let’s get real. Movies are not about creativity. They are about entertainment and engaging audiences across the spectrum. Films don’t run – or flop – because of plagiarism or originality. My Dil Hai Ki Maanta Nahin saluted Chori Chori and It Happened One Night and the recent thumper Race was an adaptation of Hollywood hit Goodbye Lover, so? They were big hits, weren’t they? Today big bucks are involved in an environment that is insanely competitive. A young, impatient, distracted and promiscuous audience-base, with an inviting platter of several alternative entertainment avenues at their disposal, have to be engaged in any which way, who gives a shit to where the material is sourced from as long as it gives the viewers the Big O! Brand loyalty is dead. It’s the age of instant gratification. Market forces and ROI call the shots. In this bizarre and complex scheme of things, who cares about authenticity and creativity? Grabbing and retaining audience attention – with some kind of sustenance – is the real challenge to all of us. Everything else is bull crap!” Coming from the maker of Arth, Saaransh, Daddy & Naam, that may sound disappointing, but hey, who said we live in a perfect world? Mercifully, there are a string of successful films – Life In A Metro, Khosla Ka Ghosla, Mithya, Pyar Ka Side Effects, Dor, Iqbal, Traffic Signal, Munnabhai, My Brother Nikhil, Chak De! India, Taare Zameen Par, Jodhaa Akbar – which charm the audiences while remaining fresh, interesting, fun and absorbing, without constantly looking over someone’s shoulders to jhado. At the end of the day, chor-eo-graphy may be lucrative, but imitation remains the finest form of flattery.However, with several Big Hollywood studios coming to Bollywood for co-production, Tinseltown has to brace itself.Sony Pictures, last year threatened to sue K Sera Sera for $30 million accusing it of lifting from the Will Smith starrer Hitch in making Partner. The case is believed to have been settled out of court. More recently, B R Films was sued by Fox for $1.2 million for allegedly plagiarizing from My Cousin Vinny in its production Banda Ye Bindas Hai. The case is also believed to have been settled. Now Warner Bros is threatening legal action against Vipul Shah’s forthcoming Action Replay, starring Aishwaya Rai and Akshay Kumar, which it suspects hues dangerously close to the story line of the Oscar-winning The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button. The Susan Sarandon-Julia Roberts film Stepmom is the inspiration for a Karan Johar remake with Kajol and Karina; Johar has reportedly bought rights to the film. Also on the cards is Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s adaptation of The Prestige. His version is entitled Guzaarish and will star Hritik Roshan and Ash Rai Bachchan. Interestingly, in a path breaking move, film makers Abbas-Mastan (whose Aitraaz was inspired by Disclosure and Ajnabee by Consenting Adults) are all set to legally acquire the rights of The Italian Job before Indianizing it. It is reported that among the hot male stars being considered for this film include Saif, Ranbir, Imran, Shahid and Neil Nitin Mukesh. Way to go, guys! As this goes to print, the latest Hollywood import The Hangover, a superhit in India, is on the list of several Bollywood directors for a remake. But, shaken by the legal threats from Hollywood, they are reportedly seeking rights from the studio. Related Items
Examining Refi Performance November 16, 2018 681 Views in Daily Dose, Government, News, Servicing Share The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) recently released its Q3 2018 Refinance Report. The report, which covers data from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac as well as the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP), found that the GSEs completed 253,135 refinances in Q3 2018, slightly down from Q2’s 299,460.Meanwhile, borrowers completed 1,865 refinances through HARP, down from 2,973 in Q2. Refinances through HARP have been on the decline, as they fell year over year by almost half between 2016 and 2017, dropping from 67,115 to 36,355 in that time frame.The report notes that the newest numbers bring the total number of HARP refinances since the program’s 2009 inception up to 3,493,005. HARP represents one percent of the total national refinance volume. Locally, HARP refinances represented 2 percent of total refinances in Florida, Michigan, Georgia, and Illinois, while nine states and one territory accounted for over 70 percent of the nation’s HARP-eligible loans with a refinance incentive as of June 30, 2018.HARP is scheduled to come to an end on December 31, but according to this new data, 38,818 borrowers may still be eligible for a HARP refinance. Borrowers with a remaining balance of $50,000 or more on their mortgage, a remaining term on their loan of greater than 10 years, and a mortgage interest rate that is at least 1.5 percent higher than current market rates still meet the basic HARP requirements. The FHFA states that “these borrowers could save an average of $2,290 annually by refinancing their mortgage through HARP.” Borrowers who refinanced through HARP had a lower delinquency rate compared with borrowers eligible for HARP who did not refinance through the program.According to the report, borrowers with loan‐to‐value ratios greater than 105 percent accounted for 16 percent of the volume of HARP loans. In September 2018 specifically, 6 percent of loans refinanced through HARP had a loan-to-value ratio greater than 125 percent. Additionally, 33 percent HARP refinances for underwater borrowers were for shorter‐term 15‐ and 20‐year mortgages, which, according to the FHFA, build equity faster than traditional 30‐year mortgages.Find the complete FHFA Refinance Report here. Fannie Mae FHFA Freddie Mac HARP loans Refinance 2018-11-16 Seth Welborn