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In all film units, the food for the cast and crew is the same and is catered from the same place. There are no dividing lines. But on the sets of Ritesh Sidhwani and Farhan Akhtar's Rock On, a board that has been put up, that distinctly demarcates people in two areas A and B.
Not only does this mean dividing people on the basis of class but even the food served is different. The unitwalas are upset over this secondhand treatment. There are about 40 people in category A, which consists of stars, cameraman, productions heads and assistants, who are served a lavish spread. The rest of the crew which includes the spot boys, light men and junior artistes get simple fare.
Says an insider, "The food served on the sets of Excel Entertainment (Ritesh and Farhan"s production company) is classified into two categories Class A and B, where actors get Class A food and the unit people are served Class B food."
Ritesh admits that they have divided the work area into two parts. He stresses that this has not been done to discriminate between the workers and cast but to save time, and for convenience. "Why just class A and B? When we shoot with a huge crowd, it becomes Class A, B, C, D etc. During a 25-minute break, a unit of 200 people descending on one area leads to waiting in queues and wasting time, therefore we have made two areas one for the production heads and the other for the unit.
In this way, people get to eat peacefully, save time and also get to relax after eating. Actors don't come to the sets to eat food and have them in their make-up rooms or personal vans, but let me clearly state that the food served to everyone is provided by the same caterer."
Ritesh adds the khaana on their sets is provided by restaurants and wedding caterers, and not by filmi caterers, "This system was in place from the Dil Chahta Hai days. Before the beginning of a schedule, someone from the office takes charge of the hospitality section." He continues, "The menu is then decided. The menu in Class A keeps rotating, to keep from getting boring. The Indian food remains the same but the food for the production heads and Class A area is shuffled.
While the upper end like their pastas, Continental and Chinese food, the lower end comprising of the lightmen, dressmen, unit people are not used to eating such kinds of food and like their dal-chaawal, and herein, the food changes. "But everybody gets access to each area. Class A can go to Class B and eat food there and vice versa. There is no distinction of class," Ritesh concludes.
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