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THE GRAPEVINE

January 13, 2019

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BRAVO ALI AFTAB SAEED

This man never ceases to surprise us. Ali Aftab Saeed has of late impressed all and sundry with his witty hosting of a music chart show. But his recently released song Naina Te Singhar is simply out of the top drawer, cementing his position as one of the most formidable vocalists of his generation.

The song, like his Batti earlier, is a delight to listen to in terms of composition and at the same time the social issues that it touches upon, in a lighter vein, are something to mull over. Pure genius. It’s time serious social commentators took note of this guy. Invite him to lit-fests, at least, to pick his fertile brain.


VICKY’S FAN

Vicky Kaushal’s fan following is increasing by the day. He is one of those few young actors whose list of admirers includes both cine-goers and Bollywood bigwigs. 

One of them is director/choreographer Farah Khan. Listen to her when she fawns over him: “I’m a big fan of Vicky’s work and blown away by his incredible performances in each of his films. He just keeps growing with every movie.” The only problem for Farah K is his growth will probably not allow him to do fluff films such as her Happy New Year or Main Hoon Na.


DEFENDING HART

Strange is the word that pops to mind. After comedian Kevin Hart stepped down from hosting this year’s Oscars because of his homophobic tweets in the past, one thought that the matter was done and dusted. Nope. Look who came out in his support: none other than Ellen DeGeneres.

She invited him to her show and discussed the issue at length, adding that she had talked to the Academy about doing something to bring him back as host. She advised Kevin H not to pay attention to the ‘haters on the internet’. This elicited a mixed response from Ellen D’s followers, some of whom were not at all happy with her stance on the issue. To be honest, methinks it’s a good move. Since Ellen D herself is gay, sweet-talking him will perhaps change his views on her community.


LEAKED

The popular Kapil Sharma Show is back on the telly after a hiatus of a little more than a year. Everyone is chuffed about it. In the second episode of the new season, Bollywood big gun Salman Khan appeared as guest with his brothers Arbaz and Sohail and dad Salim Khan.

During the candid conversation, Salim K told Kapil S that the brothers used to pass their school exams with the ‘help of leaked examination papers’ provided to them by someone called Ganesh. Hmmm … So, a lot of baat cheat must’ve gone into their preparation for the exams. More cheat than baat.


PROPERTY OWNER

Once upon a time, Ben Affleck and his former wife Jennifer Garner lived in a palatial home in the Pacific Palisades. Then they parted ways. News is that singer Adam Levine has bought that piece of lavish property for $32 million. In case, you’re thinking that the Maroon 5 vocalist has spent way too much on a single house, think twice.

In the beginning the asking price of that particular property was $45 million. The couple’s split caused the price to come down drastically, and, perhaps, Adam L was waiting for that to happen. Clever crooner. 


NEW YEAR WITH THE KAPOORS

The Alia-Ranbir (alleged) affair is getting a bit serious now.

Why do I say that? Well, everybody has noticed how cozy and comfy the two have been in each other’s company for the past few months. Add to this the picture that’s doing the rounds on social media in which Alia Bhatt is seen striking a pose with the Kapoor clan in New York on New Year’s Eve.

The photo was taken by Ranbir K’s sister in which their parents (Rishi and Neetu) are also seen having a good time with Alia B. Definitely, there’s more to the Ranbir-Alia equation than meets the lie … sorry, eye.

Published in Dawn, ICON, January 13th, 2019