When there’s a celebrity wedding, there’s another element that goes beyond watching the big day of the celebrity bride and groom. It’s seeing what gorgeous traditional ensembles which celebrity wore. At most celebrity weddings, press photographers are welcomed, but not given access to the inner spaces, so they photograph the bride & groom entering the venue, and other celebrity guests coming to wish the couple. WeddingSutra spoke to Bombay Times Photographer Prathamesh Bandekar on his experience with photographing so many celebrities at glitzy shaadis.
As the official photographer of Bombay Times, celebrity weddings are one of the events you photograph. What do you love most about them?
Weddings are such a joyous occasion and the frenzy is doubled when it’s a celebrity wedding. What I love most is the excitement to see my photos published the very next day. So many friends & colleagues ask me what the bride was wearing or who attended the wedding, and it’s a great feeling to answer all the questions through my photographs!
Rekha at Esha Deol- Bharat Takhtani wedding@ Lalit Hotel
Rekha at Genelia- Riteish wedding@ Grand Hyatt
Anything you dislike about such assignments?
Is the incessant crowds that gather to spot their favourite celebrities, creating difficulties for us photographers to capture photos. With tremendous pressure on us to shoot something different, the palpable excitement among the crowd can be a major problem.
Tell us about your most memorable assignment.
Abhishek Bachchan-Aishwariya Rai’s wedding on 20th April 2007 was a huge media circus. We actually spotted celebrity look-alikes lurking in the crowds and creating a lot of confusion, as the crowds mistook them to be stars.
Tell us about one celebrity family who were most the most hospitable to media personnel too.
Feroz Khan took wonderful care of all the media at his son Fardeen Khan’s wedding to Natasha Madhavi at Grand Hyatt. He played the perfect host and treated the media (over fifty in number) like his special guests. It has been one of the few occasions, where we didn’t feel as if we were media personnel, but VIP guests. The area where we stood was done by tastefully, and we were served delicious food- traditional biryanis and kebabs and more multi-cuisine specialities.
A celebrity you look forward to photographing, always
Rekha, for her impeccable dress sense and her ability to look gorgeous in anything she wears! The most attractive quality about Rekha is that she looks divine even when she’s not posing for the camera. Her candid shots capture her real beauty and those photos are much better than the posed ones. Another celebrity I look forward to photographing is Mr Amitabh Bachchan. There is no single reason why. Big B is always punctual, looks very dapper usually in a black suit, and he is one of the humblest celebrities I have interacted with.
Have you considered Wedding Photography as a career?
Yes, of course. When I commenced my career, wedding photography was more about capturing lots of posed family and guest photographs and a few candid moments of the bride & groom. But everything has changed so much in the last few years. Now, young, to-be-weds love experimenting with photography. Wedding photography is a booming business and I would love to be a part of it, if not in the immediate future, definitely in a few years.