Entertainment

GulfNews Entertainment

Legendary DJ Paul Van Dyk is coming to Dubai this August

Dubai: Coca-Cola Arena, has announced that German Superstar DJ Paul van Dyk will be bringing his Shine Ibiza residency to Dubai on Thursday August 19, in partnership with Dubai Summer Surprises. Presented by international festival organisers, Pico Pro, tickets are now on sale to see Paul van Dyk and SHINE DXB set to take centre-stage at the Coca-Cola Arena for the first time in the Middle East, bringing a unique and authentic Ibiza-style experience for dance music fans. One of the most iconic DJs and producers in dance music history, Paul van Dyk has been synonymous with trance since the mid-90s. One of the first truly renowned DJs, he was the first artist to receive a Grammy Award nomination in the newly added category of Best Dance/Electronic album for his 2003 release Reflections. He was named the World's number one DJ in both 2005 and 2006, something few DJs have ever achieved. He was the first ever DJ to be named number one by Mixmag in 2005. By 2008, he had sold over 3 million albums worldwide. Egyptian DJs and producers Aly & Fila have also been confirmed as part of the SHINE DXB line-up. The duo was formed by Aly El Sayed Amr Fathalah and Fadi Wassef Naguib, and, inspired by Paul Van Dyk, they achieved international recognition in 2003 with the single Eye of Horus. Endorsed by heavyweights such as Armin Van Buuren and Tiesto, the duo has appeared at dance music festivals all over the world including Tomorrowland & Ultra Music Festival, and will play to a rocking crowd at the very first Shine DXB. COVID precautions In accordance with current governmental guidelines, Coca-Cola Arena will be working to a maximum capacity of 1,500 guests, with all attendees required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 to enter and follow strict social distancing regulations throughout the event. In light of Covid-19, Coca-Cola Arena also asks fans to remember Dubai Government’s important message of “we are all responsible” and to not attend a live event if feeling unwell. Coca-Cola Arena’s new protocols and procedures have been developed considering the guidance provided by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Government Authorities, Dubai Municipality Health & Safety (DMHS), Dubai Health Authority (DHA), Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) and international safety guidelines as well as the Arena’s management company, ASM Global. Ticket holders are advised to read Coca-Cola Arena’s Covid-19 protocols. Tickets for Paul Van Dyk’s SHINE DXB event are available to purchase from coca-cola-arena.com.

GulfNews Entertainment

Bollywood: Aditya Roy Kapur to star in Hindi remake of Tamil hit ‘Thadam’

BollyWood|: Aditya Roy Kapur has been roped in to star in the Hindi remake of the Tamil hit film ‘Thadam’. Based on true events, this yet-to-be-titled thriller will see Kapur in a double role for the first time. Helmed by debutant director Vardhan Ketkar the film is tentatively planned to go into production in September this year. “I am inspired and excited to be part of telling such an interesting story. The original film was incredibly riveting and entertaining, and it left a lasting impression on me. As an actor, getting a chance to do a double role is double the preparation and double the challenge, and I’m certainly up for it,” Kapur said. Talking about his latest association with Murad Khetani and working again with Kapur, producer Bhushan Kumar said: “When Murad Bhai shared the idea of the Hindi remake of ‘Thadam’ I was excited as it had received a lot of acclaim down south. Working with like-minded people is always fun, that is why I like collaborating with Murad Bhai.” Since the release of ‘Thadam’ in 2019, producer Murad Khetani was keen to make the film for the Hindi audience. “When I watched ‘Thadam’ I instantly knew that this story needs to reach the masses. Soon after I reached out to the Tamil makers and acquired the rights of making this film in Hindi. When I shared the story with Bhushanji, he came on board immediately. Aditya has been doing great work and his image as an action hero is being highly appreciated,” Khetani added. The film is being produced by Bhushan Kumar’s T-Series and Murad Khetani’s Cine1 Studios.

GulfNews Entertainment

Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty’s mother files cheating complaint in Rs16m land deal case

BollyWood|: Actress Shilpa Shetty’s mother Sunanda Shetty on Thursday lodged a cheating complaint in a Rs16 million land deal case. According to the Mumbai Police, one Sudhakar Ghare has been named by Sunanda Shetty in her complaint. She has alleged that the accused, with the help of fake papers, had sold land to her for Rs16 million, said the police. A case has been registered under relevant sections of IPC, added the Mumbai Police. This comes amid the ongoing pornography racked case against actor Shilpa Shetty’s husband and businessman Raj Kundra. Kundra was arrested by the police on July 19 along with 11 other people on charges related to the alleged creation of pornographic films. He has been named as the key conspirator by the Mumbai Police which has slapped charges against him under Sections 420 (cheating), 34 (common intention), 292, and 293 (related to obscene and indecent advertisements and displays) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) besides relevant sections of the IT Act and the Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act, said the police. On Sunday, the police had informed that four employees of Kundra have turned witnesses against him in the pornography racket case, increasing troubles for him. Read more Raj Kundra arrest: Bollywood star Shilpa Shetty’s husband sent to judicial custody for 14 days Raj Kundra pornography case: New complaint by actress names company run by Shilpa Shetty’s husband and TV star Gehana Vasisth Bollywood: Shilpa Shetty, Raj Kundra fined Rs300,000 for insider trading On Monday, the Bombay High Court adjourned the hearing on Kundra’s bail plea till Thursday. The court has also asked the investigating officer to remain present during the hearing in the pornography racket case. The court has not given any interim relief to the businessman. Kundra and his associate Ryan Thorpe have been sent to judicial custody for 14 days. On Tuesday, Mumbai Crime Branch said that actor Shilpa Shetty has also not been given a clean chit in the pornography racket case yet, where her husband and businessman Raj Kundra is the prime accused. According to officials forensic auditors have been appointed to investigate the transactions in all the accounts of the people involved in the case.

GulfNews Entertainment

Popular show ‘Arthur’ to end on PBS Kids after 25-season stint

TV|: ‘Arthur’ will soon come to an end. PBS Kids plans to end the long-running children’s series after 25 seasons, said an original developer of the show during a podcast released Wednesday. The final season will air in 2022. Kathy Waugh, who was a guest on the Finding DW podcast, said the animated series is no longer in production. She said the show’s wrap party was two years ago. Children's book author and illustrator Marc Brown, an Erie native, meets with Grandview Elementary School students on March 4, 2020 in Millcreek Township, Pennsylvania. Brown is a three-time Emmy award winner and the creator of the Arthur TV series adapted from his books. [JACK HANRAHAN/ERIE TIMES-NEWS] Image Credit: AP “I think (PBS) made a mistake, and I think ‘Arthur’ should come back and I know I’m not alone in thinking they made a mistake,” Waugh said. “I don’t know if it was a ratings issue or if it felt like it needed to be retired.” The series, which first aired in 1996, is based on the popular book series by Marc Brown, who created the Arthur character in 1976. It stars the aardvark character along with his family and friends. Executive producer Carol Greenwald said PBS Kids will continue to air reruns of the show. During its more than two-decade run, ‘Arthur’ won an enduring audience and a number of awards, including multiple Daytime Emmys for Outstanding Children’s Animated Program, as well as a Peabody Award. The show first aired on PBS in 1996, and for a time ranked as the most popular television show for children ages 2 to 11. In the series as in the books, Arthur (an aardvark in third grade), his friends (a variety of other anthropomorphised animals) and their school faculty and families have adventures, learning lessons about everything including friendship, schoolwork, public libraries and loss. Ziggy Marley, the son of Bob Marley, performed the theme song — itself about empathy and believing in yourself and others. Available to a wide audience on public television, ‘Arthur’ was the rare children’s series that garnered fans among both children and their parents. The main character, Arthur, had an “Everyman” quality to him that made him so relatable, Waugh said on the podcast. “The best kids television — and ‘Arthur’ is absolutely at the apex of that particular genre — expands a child’s life, reflects a child’s life and makes children of all shapes and sizes feel seen,” Waugh said. She added that ‘Arthur,’ unlike many children’s shows that it outlived, confronted not only the experiences of the playground and classroom, but also difficult realities like bullying, the fear of death and cancer. The tone of the show reflected that, she said. Being incessantly cheerful or chirpy, she said, would have been “a disservice to children.” — With inputs from New York Times

GulfNews Entertainment

Bollywood actress Priyanka Chopra praises Simone Biles for being ‘the GOAT’ after withdrawal from Tokyo Olympics

BollyWood|: Bollywood actress Priyanka Chopra has praised Simone Biles following the US gymnast’s decision to drop out of the Tokyo Olympics due to her mental health struggles. Chopra posted a video from when she hung out with and interviewed the athlete for her YouTube Originals Special, ‘If I Could Tell You Just One Thing’. In the interview, which was released in March 2019, Chopra talked to the gymnast about dealing with the expectation of being perfect. “I feel like that’s the hardest part of my career. I don’t want to say job because I chose to do it, but I feel like always meeting people’s needs, every single day, all the time is probably the hardest thing that I go through,” Biles says in the clip. Alongside the video, Chopra wrote a touching note for Biles and called her the ‘GOAT’ (greatest of all time). “I had the joy of getting to know @simonebiles a few years ago, and she blew me away then with her vulnerability and self awareness,” Chopra wrote in the caption. “Simone, yesterday we were reminded why you are truly the GOAT, and why nothing supersedes taking care of ourselves…body AND mind. I cannot fathom the impossible pressure you all perform under, but knowing where you need to draw the line and step away - TO CHOOSE YOURSELF - is most important.” The ‘Quantico’ actress appreciated Biles’ decision and noted how it normalised taking care of one’s mental health. “Only when we are okay can we perform at our best, and enjoy doing so. Thank you for helping normalise that even under tremendous pressure, it’s ok to be human. Thank you for your courage and strength. You are a role model, and just like the rest of the world I’m so inspired and awed by you. Once again you have shown us what it truly means to be a champion,” Chopra added. Biles, 24, is widely considered the greatest gymnast in history. She won four gold medals at the 2016 Rio Olympics. However, at the Tokyo Olympics she cited the pressure of living up to expectations and a need to protect her mental health for her decision to pull out of the team competition and subsequently from the individual all-around competition.

GulfNews Entertainment

Bollywood: Shilpa Shetty, Raj Kundra fined Rs300,000 for insider trading

BollyWood|: Mumbai: The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) on Wednesday imposed a penalty of Rs300,000 (Dh14,835) on ‘Hungama 2’ actress Shilpa Shetty Kundra, her businessman husband Raj Kundra alias Ripu Sudan Kundra and their company Viaan Industries for violating its insider trading rules. As per the SEBI order, Kundra, Shetty and their company were fined for a three-year delay in the disclosure of an allotment of preferential shares. In 2015, Viaan Industries had made a preferential allotment of 500,000 equity shares. Of this 128,800 equity shares each were allotted to Kundra (referred to as Ripu Sudan Kundra) and Shetty, the promoters of the company. (FILES) In this file photo taken on May 8, 2018 Indian Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty and her husband Raj Kundra pose for a picture during the wedding reception of actress Sonam Kapoor and businessman Anand Ahuja in Mumbai. - Mumbai police have arrested Bollywood star Shilpa Shetty's husband Raj Kundra for allegedly producing and broadcasting pornographic films online, six years after the businessman was banned from cricket-related activities over match-fixing charges. (Photo by Sujit Jaiswal / AFP) Image Credit: AFP According to SEBI’s Prohibition of Insider Trading Rules, 2015, the promoters had to disclose this transaction to the company within two days if it exceeded Rs1 million in value. The company, in turn, has to relay this disclosure to the stock exchanges within two trading days. In this case, SEBI said the value of the transaction was Rs25.6 million each and the disclosures pertaining to the 2015 transaction were made only in 2019. In reply to a notice from the regulator, Shetty and Kundra acknowledged the mistake and said it was not done with malafide intent. “Securities and Exchange Board of India had conducted an investigation into the trading/dealings in the scrip of Viaan Industries Limited (formerly known as Hindustan Safety Glass Industries Limited), during the period September 01, 2013, to December 23, 2015. Pursuant to the investigations, it was observed that Ripu Sudan Kundra, Shilpa Shetty Kundra and Viaan Industries Ltd had allegedly violated the provisions of Regulations 7(2)(a) and 7(2)(b) of SEBI (Prohibition of Insider Trading) Regulations, 2015,” SEBI order said. The market regulator further ordered the Noticees — Kundra, Shetty and their company — to remit/pay the penalty within 45 days of the receipt of the order. Kundra was arrested by the police on July 19 along with 11 other people on charges related to the alleged creation of pornographic films. He has been named as the key conspirator by the Mumbai Police, which has slapped charges against him under Sections 420 (cheating), 34 (common intention), 292, and 293 (related to obscene and indecent advertisements and displays) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) besides relevant sections of the IT Act and the Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act, said the police. Read more Raj Kundra arrest: Bollywood star Shilpa Shetty’s husband sent to judicial custody for 14 days Raj Kundra pornography case: New complaint by actress names company run by Shilpa Shetty’s husband and TV star Gehana Vasisth Raj Kundra arrest: A look at Bollywood star Shilpa Shetty’s husband, the pornography racket and whether this is his first brush with the law On Sunday, the police had informed that four of Kundra’s employees have turned witnesses against him in the pornography racket case, increasing troubles for him. On Monday, the Bombay High Court adjourned the hearing on Kundra’s bail plea until Thursday. The court has also asked the investigating officer to remain present during the hearing in the pornography racket case. The court has not given any interim relief to the businessman. Kundra and his associate Ryan Thorpe have been sent to judicial custody for 14 days. On Tuesday, Mumbai Crime Branch said that actor Shilpa Shetty has also not been given a clean chit in the pornography racket case yet, where her husband and businessman Raj Kundra is the prime accused. According to officials forensic auditors have been appointed to investigate the transactions in all the accounts of the people involved in the case.

GulfNews Entertainment

A painting or an NFT of it: Which will be more valuable?

British artist Damien Hirst, best known for putting a shark in a tank of formaldehyde, has gotten on the NFT bandwagon. NFTs, or nonfungible tokens, rely on blockchain technology to designate an official copy of a piece of digital media that would otherwise be cheap or free. Hirst is selling a collection of 10,000 NFTs, each of which corresponds to a physical dot painting, for $2,000 each. A year from now, the collectors of the series, called "The Currency," will have to decide whether to keep the NFT or the painting; whichever one they do not choose will be destroyed. Is it better to keep the NFT or the physical artwork? Which will be the more valuable investment? It is hard to know. Certain NFTs are fetching large sums of money, but not all of them are. As with any new art form, what happens over the next few years is hard to predict. And anyone investing in NFTs with an eye on earning investmentlike returns needs to understand the risks. "It's such new territory," said Diana Wierbicki, a partner and the global head of art law at Withersworldwide. "It can go up; it can go down. It's like any type of contemporary art: The values aren't fixed, so you're taking on a risk." What an NFT can be varies widely. Beeple, the digital artist whose real name is Mike Winkelmann, made headlines when an NFT he created called "Everydays - the First 5000 Days" sold for $69 million at a Christie's online auction in March. The NFT was a collection of 5,000 images he had already posted online, beginning in 2007. Among the most widely known NFTs is the NBA's Top Shot NFTs - essentially an NFT of a single highlight or multiple ones. Their prices range widely. A pack of NFTs can sell for around $20, while an NFT of LeBron James doing a reverse dunk as a tribute to a famous dunk by Kobe Bryant, who died in 2020, sold for $387,000. And it was not even the only one. (It was No. 3 of 59 in an NFT series of the dunk.) "NFTs are an asset class, like fine art," said Alex Tapscott, managing director of Ninepoint Partners' Digital Asset Group. "They're newer, so they're riskier, but ultimately they're still an asset. People buy them with the expectation that they can sell them for more." There are certainly people who are bullish on the tokens. Chris Ciobanica, a cryptocurrency investor better known as Silver Surfer, began buying NFTs last summer. He said he had amassed more than $10 million worth of these digital images, most of them linked to physical artworks. (His wealth from crypto investments is many times that amount, said Ciobanica, a former tech system administrator, but he declined to be more specific.) "I don't see NFTs as collectibles like baseball cards," he said. "I see them as these rare digital artworks. They're just a different form from what you'd see in traditional art." He has collected works by the artist known as Pak, whose NFT artwork has been auctioned by Sotheby's. One work of a gray pixel sold for $1.35 million. Ciobanica said he paid $20,000-$40,000 for NFTs by Pak last year but more recently paid around $1 million for one. While his collection has appreciated, he said, he became interested in NFTs as an escape from the volatility of cryptocurrency prices. He owns or mines Bitcoin, Ether and Dogecoin. "I'd never collected traditional art," he said. "This was very new to me. I just liked the community and the artists. I'd collect these pieces and make friendships with all of these artists." Evan Beard, who runs the art services group as head of specialty segments at Bank of America Private Bank, said he divided NFT buyers into four categories. There is the crypto diversifier, who has bought cryptocurrencies for years and sees NFTs as another form of currency; the digital native, who is used to paying real dollars for virtual stuff in online games; the enterprising collector, who is also financially driven but is attuned to art history and sees NFTs as the beginning of something new; and the segment specialist, who is focused on the content, be it a piece of art or a James dunk. "If auction houses and museums are part of this, NFT collecting has the potential to be really big," Beard said. "It also has the potential to be like Beanie Babies, a fun folly, and we'll look back and say, 'Can you believe we bought these digital tokens?'" Jeff Marsilio, who led the introduction of NBA Top Shot, started a new NFT platform, Nifty's, with the release of 92,000 NFTs related to the film "Space Jam: A New Legacy," which stars James. The majority of the NFTs were free in exchange for the recipients' doing certain promotional things online. Those who bought the NFTs were charged $2.99 apiece. The Nifty's platform is also responsible for managing the release of Hirst's "The Currency," and the expectation is that these NFTs will appreciate over time like many of Hirst's other works. "The platform is somewhat agnostic to the value of NFTs or their investment potential," Marsilio said. "It's a place to keep your collections and discover new NFTs. It's also a place to engage in commerce to buy and sell NFTs." Like Hirst's work, some NFTs are testing the connection between the virtual and the physical worlds. Cult Wines, a company that advises on fine wine investments, is auctioning off a barrel of Château AngElus via an NFT. The highest bidder will get the barrel - equivalent to about 300 regular-size bottles of wine and worth at least $100,000 - but also decide what size bottles to put the wine in; have a virtual tasting with the estate's chief executive, StEphanie de Bouard-Rivoal; and participate in next year's wine harvest. But because of the underlying blockchain technology, the company sees NFTs linked to French wine as something that can provide security to buyers of Bordeaux futures, who buy through the en primeur system, which collects money now for wine that will not be bottled and delivered for several years. Bordeaux chateaus that sell wine futures as nonphysical assets have always been open to fraudulent activities, said Tom Gearing, chief executive and co-founder of Cult Wines. "If a company says, 'I have a bottle of wine I'm going to sell you in two years,' but if that company goes bust, you can lose that wine," he said. "If an NFT can identify the owner of a barrel that is going to be delivered at a future time, this could open up the idea of en primeur buying to a whole new audience." Cameron Smith, director at Mayfair Private Office, which invests in real estate around London, has been bidding on the wine NFT. The auction of the NFT linked to a barrel of wine opens up the buying experience to more people, Smith said. "They've also created something with the NFT to bring buying wine futures into the 21st century," he said. One issue that has not caught up with the technology is how NFTs will be taxed. Cryptocurrency is taxed at the capital gains rate, and many experts say they believe that NFTs will be considered collectibles, which are taxed at a 28% rate. But the tax issue gets more complicated because many NFTs are bought using cryptocurrency. So any transaction would be considered a realization of the gains in that cryptocurrency. "It's a perfect example of where the law hasn't caught up with the technology," said Jere Doyle, senior vice president at BNY Mellon Wealth Management. "Collectible in code sections says any work of art, rug or antique, metal or antique, or any other tangible personal property. Would any work of art be tangible or digital? Does tangible modify a work of art? We don't know." One thing is certain, Doyle said: If NFTs appreciate in value, the owner will have to pay tax on that.

GulfNews Entertainment

Actor Bob Odenkirk collapses on set of 'Better Call Saul'

TV|: Los Angeles: Television and film actor Bob Odenkirk was taken to a Los Angeles-area hospital on Tuesday after collapsing on the set of his AMC cable network show “Better Call Saul,” according to sources close to the performer. The incident was first reported by celebrity news website TMZ.com, which said Odenkirk was stricken as he and cast-mates were shooting a scene in New Mexico, where the series is set, and that he was immediately surrounded by crew members who called an ambulance. Two sources confirmed the accuracy of TMZ’s account to Reuters by email, on condition that they not be named. TMZ, which cited its own production and law enforcement sources for its story, reported it was unclear whether Odenkirk, 51, was conscious when he was transported. As of 7:30 p.m. local time, TMZ said, the actor was still in a hospital under the care of doctors. “Better Call Saul,” currently in production for its sixth season, is a prequel to the hit AMC crime series “Breaking Bad,” which introduced Odenkirk as Saul Goodman, the sharp-witted criminal defense lawyer for the show’s protagonist, played by Bryan Cranston. Odenkirk’s spinoff traces his character’s evolution from a two-bit scam artist turned struggling public defender named Jimmy McGill into the morally conflicted attorney Saul Goodman, who ultimately makes a career representing drug traffickers and underworld figures. His performances on “Better Call Saul” have earned Odenkirk four Primetime Emmy Award nominations. His motion picture credits include supporting roles in such films as “Nebraska,” “The Post” and “Little Women.” More recently he starred in the big-screen action thriller “Nobody.” He previously worked as a comedy writer for “Saturday Night Live” and “The Ben Stiller Show.”

GulfNews Entertainment

Hollywood: Dwayne Johnson and Emily Blunt's new movie ‘Jungle Cruise’ brings back old-school adventure

HollyWood|: Inspired by the classic Disney theme park attraction, ‘Jungle Cruise’ is the studio’s latest summer blockbuster offering arriving just in time to celebrate the whimsical ride’s 66th birthday. “People love the Jungle Cruise attraction because of its rich history and its tradition,” says lead star Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson in a virtual press conference held over the week. “There’s a unique quality to Jungle Cruise that still feels as if it were fifty or sixty years ago. But that’s the charm of it. When you go around the world to some of these other parks, you see their iterations of Jungle Cruise that are just spectacular. I feel there’s a wish fulfilment factor for the audience that happens with the Jungle Cruise ride. That wish fulfilment, I believe, is the idea that you are being transported, and you are going on truly the adventure and ride of a lifetime.” Written by Michael Green, Glenn Ficarra, and John Requa, ‘Jungle Cruise’ is directed by Jaume Collet-Serra, who is also currently working with Johnson on Warner Bros’ ‘Black Adam’. Image Credit: Disney Written by Michael Green, Glenn Ficarra, and John Requa, ‘Jungle Cruise’ is directed by Jaume Collet-Serra, who is also currently working with Johnson on Warner Bros’ ‘Black Adam’, a live-action origin story for the eponymous DC anti-hero. For Collet-Serra, the ride and its various iterations over the years was a firm starting point for the tone of the film. “The Jungle Cruise ride is beloved by many people, not only because it’s been there for a long time but because it’s one of the only rides that the whole family can enjoy together,” says Collet-Serra. “You can bring a baby and you can bring your grandma so, in a way, we wanted to make a film that reflected that. A fi lm that the whole family could enjoy together. So, that was the starting point for us.” Jack Whitehall as Macgregor, Emily Blunt as Lily and Dwayne Johnson as Frank. Image Credit: Disney “The comedy of the ride has evolved through the years,” he continued. “So, we took that as a tonal guideline, and then from then on we built on a mythology and created characters and situations that would put the audience in the ride and expand on the experience of what they go through at Disneyland. But now they can experience that in the theatre.” Johnson, who also serves as producer on the film, says the dual responsibilities brought him closer to the project. “It was an opportunity to make a film that, if you do it right, has real lasting power and transcends throughout time. But I also felt like there was something cool and very important about paying homage to Walt Disney and this vision that he had. In 1955 when the first park opened, the Jungle Cruise ride was one of his babies. Not too many people know this, but Walt Disney himself was the very first skipper on the very first Jungle Cruise ride. He invested so much time and love and care and passion into this ride. And here we are, many decades later, with this opportunity to create something special.” The premise (L-R): Dwayne Johnson as Frank Wolff, Emily Blunt as Lily Houghton and Jack Whitehall as MacGregor Houghton in Disney’s JUNGLE CRUISE. Photo courtesy of Disney. © 2021 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Image Credit: Disney Set against the period backdrop of the First World War, ‘Jungle Cruise’ follows Dr. Lily Houghton (Blunt), an intrepid British physician looking to find a mythical tree deep within the Amazon that is said to possess miraculous healing properties. Along with her brother, MacGregor (Whitehall), Lily charters a ride on the La Quila, a ramshackle, yet charming, tramp steamer captained by the wisecracking Frank Wolff (Johnson). On their once-in-a-lifetime adventure, Lily, Frank, and MacGregor encounter dangerous wildlife and supernatural entities, as well as German royal (Jesse Plemons) who is also on the hunt for the magical tree. Edgar Ramirez and Paul Giamatti also star. The lead stars Dwayne Johnson is Frank Wolff and Emily Blunt is Lily Houghton in Disney’s JUNGLE CRUISE. Photo by Frank Masi. © 2021 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Image Credit: Disney Describing his character, Frank Wolff, Johnson says, “Frank is a skipper on the Amazon, and he takes a lot of pride in what he does. There are elements in the movie as the movie progresses where you start to rrealisethings about Frank that one would never have guessed. The man is an old soul who has a very unique perspective on life itself. Frank meets Lily [played by Blunt], who is ambitious and brave and funny and charming and beautiful, and all these things eventually remind him how great life can be.” About the tenacious Lily, Blunt says, “I was just so struck by Lily’s determination and tenacity, and the fact that she was so ahead of her time, considering that the film is set in 1917. There was so much inequality between men and women and what was expected of her at the time. But she doesn’t subscribe to what was appropriate for her sex. And I found her really funny. She’s very reckless and heedless and adventurous. I admired her spirit.” Collet-Serra is all praise for Blunt as well. “Lily wouldn’t exist without Emily,” he enthuses. “I think that it’s very hard to write a character like her in the script because you’re always trying to give those types of characters a lot of motivations and things that we’ve seen in other movies. But then when Emily steps in, she’s able to make Lily real and not need any of that stuff that normally you think you need in a script to motivate a character.” Throwback vibes Dwayne Johnson is Frank and Jack Whitehall is Macgregor in Disney’s JUNGLE CRUISE. Image Credit: Disney The script, a genre-twisting mash-up of classic adventure, suspense and action, takes ample inspiration from classic films like ‘’The African Queen’ (1951 hit starting Humphrey Boggart and Katharine Hepburn), ‘Romancing the Stone’ (1984’s action-adventure romantic comedy starring Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner) or the ‘Indiana Jones’ saga (starring Harrison Ford, with a fifth iinstalmentincoming in 2022). “I was so taken with the script because I grew up watching ‘Romancing the Stone’ and ‘Indiana Jones,’” says actress Blunt, who felt an immediate draw to the story. “Those were the films that I watched on a loop when I was a kid. I loved them and was transported by them, and I wanted to be in them. When I read this script, it just pierced my heart directly because it was so nostalgic and felt like a real event. I was so taken by the spirit of the whole thing.” Did you know? Behind the scenes of 'Jungle Cruise'. Image Credit: Disney Jungle Cruise is one of several upcoming projects based on Disney Parks attractions. Movies based on ‘The Haunted Mansion’ (to be directed by ‘Bad Hair’s’ Justin Simien), ‘Tower of Terror’ (to be executive produced by ‘Black Widow’s’ Scarlett Johansson), and Space Mountain (from ‘Obi-Wan’ and ‘Army of the Dead’ writer Joby Harold) are all in development at the studio. Don’t miss it! ‘Jungle Cruise’ hits UAE cinemas on July 29. Dwayne Johnson and director Jaume Collet-Serra on the set of Disney’s JUNGLE CRUISE. Photo by Frank Masi. © 2021 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Image Credit: Frank Masi (L-R): Emily Blunt, Dwayne Johnson and director Jaume Collet-Serra on the set of Disney’s JUNGLE CRUISE. Photo by Frank Masi. © 2021 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Image Credit: Frank Masi Emily Blunt as Lily Houghton in Disney’s JUNGLE CRUISE. Photo courtesy of Disney. © 2021 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Image Credit: Disney Dwayne Johnson and director Jaume Collet-Serra on the set of Disney’s JUNGLE CRUISE. Photo by Frank Masi. © 2021 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Image Credit: Frank Masi Dwayne Johnson is Frank Wolff in Disney’s JUNGLE CRUISE. Photo by Frank Masi. © 2021 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Image Credit: Frank Masi Scene from Disney’s JUNGLE CRUISE. Photo courtesy of Disney. © 2021 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Image Credit: Disney Dwayne Johnson is Frank Wolff in Disney’s JUNGLE CRUISE. Photo by Frank Masi. © 2021 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Image Credit: Frank Masi Director Jaume Collet-Serra and Dwayne Johnson on the set of Disney’s JUNGLE CRUISE. Photo by Frank Masi. © 2021 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Image Credit: Frank Masi Jack Whitehall is Macgregor and Emily Blunt is Lily in Disney’s JUNGLE CRUISE. Photo by Frank Masi. © 2021 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Image Credit: Frank Masi Dwayne Johnson is Frank and Emily Blunt is Lily in Disney's JUNGLE CRUISE. Dwayne Johnson as Frank Wolff and Emily Blunt as Lily Houghton in Disney’s JUNGLE CRUISE. Photo courtesy of Disney. © 2021 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Image Credit: Disney

GulfNews Entertainment

Raj Kundra pornography case: New complaint by actress names company run by Shilpa Shetty’s husband and TV star Gehana Vasisth

BollyWood|: A new First Instance Report or FIR has been filed in connection to the pornography scandal shaking up Bollywood, with Shilpa Shetty Kundra’s husband Raj Kundra at the centre of the storm. The Mumbai Crime Branch lodged a fresh complaint against producers of Kundra’s company, as well as actress Gehana Vasisth, who were late booked. According to media reports, the case was registered by the crime branch’s property cell after an actress approached the police and alleged she was forced to shoot for a pornographic film for the HotShots app. Gehana Vasisth. Image Credit: Supplied The FIR was registered under Indian Penal Code (IPC) section 420 (cheating), 392 (punishment for robbery), 393 (attempt to commit robbery), and provisions of the Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act and the Information Technology Act, the official stated. Kundra, 45, was arrested on July 19 by Mumbai Crime Branch for a case related to the alleged filming and distribution of pornographic films through mobile apps. The 45-year-old has been sentenced to remain in judicial custody until August 10, with his lawyer moving the High Court to get Kundra out on bail. According to the police statement at a magistrate’s court, Kundra earned close to Rs11.7 million between August and December last year, at a time when India was grappling with a coronavirus lockdown and entertainment arenas and theatres were shut across the country. Kundra and his wife Shetty Kundra have claimed he is innocent, adding that the films are not pornography but erotica and don’t engage in explicit sexual acts. Vasisth, who has also been named in the new FIR, has also repeated the same argument. Read more Raj Kundra arrest: Actress Sofia Hayat says Bollywood hopefuls are tricked into porn industry Raj Kundra arrest: Bollywood star Shilpa Shetty’s husband sent to judicial custody for 14 days Raj Kundra arrest: A look at Bollywood star Shilpa Shetty’s husband, the pornography racket and whether this is his first brush with the law Vasisth, who was arrested in February this year and later granted bail, and two others were recently summoned by the crime branch’s property cell. The Mumbai Crime Branch had started investigation into the case in February 2021 following complaints that small-time artistes who were eager on breaking into Bollywood were being lured by promises for a break in a web series. It was alleged that Vasisth, who starred in the Ekta Kapoor-backed ‘Gandii Baat’ was a part of this operation and had even shot some videos. A total of 11 people have been arrested in the scandal so far, which includes producer Roma Khan, her husband, actress Vasisth, director Tanveer Hashmi and Umesh Kamath (who used to look after India operations of Kundra’s firm), according to The Hindu.

GulfNews Entertainment

Hit reality TV show ‘Say Yes To The Dress’ coming to Middle East, casting open for UAE brides

TV|: UAE’s brides-to-be will get a chance at reality TV fame as ‘Say Yes To The Dress’ comes to the region for the first time. discovery+ has signed a two-year deal with streaming service StarzPlay to create a Middle Eastern version of the hit series, with casting now open for Arab and international brides-to-be who are currently based in UAE. One of TLC’s most well-loved and recognisable global franchises, ‘Say Yes To the Dress’ first kicked off in 2007 and follows brides who are in the middle of wedding planning and need to pick their perfect gown. The show gained fame in part due to its hosts — designer Randy Fenoli leads the US version, ‘Say Yes To The Dress: Lancashire’ is hosted by fashion icon Gok Wan, while ‘Say Yes To The Dress: UK’ is hosted by David Emanuel, best known for designing Princess Diana’s wedding gown. The series has had many spin-offs as well as regional and international versions. “Brides across the Middle East are renowned for bringing an added flair to their wedding gowns,” said Francesco Perta, Senior Business Development and Distribution Director, Middle East, Africa, Turkey and North East Europe at Discovery. “As one of TLC’s most popular franchises, we know that ‘Say Yes to the Dress Arabia’ is going to be a hit, taking things one step further as it highlights the unique pizzazz that our regional brides will bring to the show.” Danny Bates, Co-founder and Chief Commercial Officer of STARZPLAY, added: “We are excited to bring this long-standing popular series for our MENA viewers... Through this latest deal with discovery+, our subscribers can enjoy the world of reality shows and we are confident that the Arabian edition will win the hearts of audiences as well as prospective brides and their families.” UAE-based brides who are due to be married and are yet to find their dream dress can register their interest for featuring on the show by sending their name, address and phone number to syttdcasting@differentproductions.tv. ‘Say Yes to the Dress Arabia’ is set to air in Q1 2022 on StarzPlay.

GulfNews Entertainment

Actor-model Milind Soman’s wife slams racism against people from North East India in light of Mirabai Chanu’s win at Olympics

BollyWood|: Even as all of India celebrates Mirabai Chanu’s silver win at the Tokyo Olympics, actor-model Milind Soman’s wife Ankita Konwar has used the attention on the weightlifter to highlight the racism people of North East Indian are subjected to; Chanu hails from the Indian state of Manipur. In an Instagram post, Konwar wrote about the bias they are often subjected to. “If you’re from Northeast India, you can become an Indian ONLY when you win a medal for the country. Otherwise we are known as “chinky” “Chinese” “Nepali” or a new addition “corona”. India is not just infested with casteism but racism too. Speaking from my experience,” posted Konwar in a scathing comment, captioning her post with: “Every. Single. Time! .#hypocrites.” The comments to her post brought out similar stories from people who spoke about their own experiences of racial abuse. “Totally agree, thanks for sharing this much needed post as your voice can be easily heard. I too am labelled and is still called names or past comments being from northeast,” wrote one user on Instagram. “It’s really sad and depressing, that despite of having such a diverse culture, we lack basic humanitarian things!” wrote another. “Absolutely Ma’am even I am an Assamese know this things very well,” wrote a third. Konwar followed up the post with a video. “Your disagreement to my lived experience is not going to change the truth. If it makes you uncomfortable look the other way like you always have been,” she posted with Big Deal’s ‘Are You Indian’ playing on loop. In 2018, Soman, then 52, took everyone by surprise when he announced he was married to Konwar, who was 26. The couple faced much negativity about their relationship and the age gap, prompting Konwar to address it on social media. When Instagram user asked Konwar: “How did you tackle/ manage this Indian stereotype of “I don’t marry an older man?” Konwar shared the post on her Instagram story, answering, “Anything that’s not common in a society, people usually like to talk about it. It’s not just limited to India. We as a species have the tendency to get weird about the unknown, the unexpected, AKA fear. A survival skill. Sometimes, we are not conscious enough to distinguish between the utility and waste of that skill. I have always done what makes me happy.”

GulfNews Entertainment

Paris Hilton denies rumours that she’s pregnant with fiance Carter Reum’s child

HollyWood|: Reality TV star Paris Hilton has refuted rumours that she’s pregnant, saying the only thing cooking was lasagna. Earlier, gossip sites quoted a source as saying that the hotel heiress was expecting her first child with fiance Carter Reum. “Woke up to thousands of texts about all the pregnancy news this morning. I want you to hear it all directly from me,” Hilton tweeted on July 27, along with a link to her ‘This is Paris’ podcast. Reum, an entrepreneur, popped the question in February while on holiday with Hilton and her family for her 40th birthday. Image Credit: twitter.com/ParisHilton In the episode, the 40-year-old star cleared the air. “I am not pregnant, not yet. I am waiting until after the wedding. My dress is being made right now so I want to make sure it looks gorgeous and fits perfectly so definitely waiting for that part,” Hilton said. “The only thing in the oven at the moment is my Sliving Lasagna!” she added, using the term that combines ‘slaying’ and ‘living’. She might also be referring to her upcoming Netflix show ‘Cooking with Paris’, which will premiere on August 4. Reum, an entrepreneur, popped the question in February while on holiday with Hilton and her family for her 40th birthday. The happy couple reportedly started dating in 2019 but have known each other for many years. “I am excited about this next chapter and having such a supportive partner. Our relationship is one of equals. We make each other better people. He was absolutely worth the wait!” she told Vogue after the engagement. While no wedding date has been announced so far, Hilton — in typical reality TV star fashion — will be documenting her preparations for the small screen. “We just started shooting our new show, ‘Paris in Love’, on Peacock and we’re shooting in New York just now, actually, and getting ready for the dress fitting and just planning the bachelorette party. There’s a lot,” Hilton told ET Online about the series. “So I’m really excited to share that with all my fans.” In the past, Hilton has also talked about wanting to be a mum and exploring IVF. “I’m really excited to just move on for the next step of my life, and finally just have like a real life,” she said on The Trend Reporter with Mara podcast. “We have been doing the IVF, so I can pick twins if I like.”