THE GRAPEVINE

26 Apr 2020

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Travelling Woes

Thank heavens that the artists who were stranded in Thailand where they’d gone to film the Mohib Mirza-directed Ishrat Made in China have come back safe and sound. But the ordeal that they had to undergo at hotels in Thailand and after their return to Islamabad, as narrated by Sanam Saeed and Shamoon Abbasi, painted a pretty bleak scenario of mismanagement. However, the DC Islamabad’s statement in response to the artists’ complaints is also worth mulling over. Difficult circumstances require proactive measures on the part of both the government and the public. It’s time to understand each other’s constraints.

One of Us

Axe-man Faraz Anwar doesn’t get as much coverage in newspapers and social media as he deserves. The man has been churning out quality music, of course with heavy metal influences, for quite some time and is still at it. His song One of Them, released on the internet on the heels of another fine piece Piya, is a hardcore rock track, and a part of his album Ishq Ki Subah. Check out the guitar riffs and solos in the song. They’re just superb and remind you of the good old times, when unadulterated rock ruled the world of music. More please.

Hate Speech

They say artists belong to the sensitive segment of society. Not so in the case of Bollywood star Kangana Ranaut or her family. Last week her sister, Rangoli Chandel, tweeted something viciously Islamophobic. Twitter took immediate notice of it and suspended her account. The tweet was about the family of a member of the Tableeghi Jamaat in India — who had died of the coronavirus — allegedly attacking a group of doctors and the police. It was a news item that had already been proven false. But Rangoli C, because of her communal prejudice, went on with her tirade and even warned Twitter against taking any action against her, saying if it did, people would leave the site in droves. Twitter did the right thing by pulling the plug on Ms Scandal, sorry, Chandel. And last we heard, nobody left the social media platform because of her not being around.

No Plans

No, not happening. At least, that’s what Arjun Kapoor is claiming. The actor who has been dating the sultry Malaika Arora (former wife of Arbaz Khan) for more than a year now, was rumoured to have decided to tie the knot with her. Well, he put the khabar to rest when, last week, during a live session on social media, someone asked him about the prospective date of marriage. He replied that there are “no plans right now”, adding it’s not possible to get hitched in these coronavirus-hit times anyway. Everyone’s doubling down on the lockdown.

Pup Talk

One has to admire the spirit, though we’d still like Leonardo DiCaprio and his girlfriend Camila Morrone to be extra careful about stepping out of their cozy abode. The two were seen on April 17 taking their puppy, Jack, for a walk on the streets of West Hollywood in Los Angeles. Don’t worry, they were wearing masks and keeping a safe distance from each other. It was in March that Jack became part of their family and this was the first time he had been spotted with them ever since. We guess it’s time for some pup talk for the couple.

Thor, Interrupted

Thor is as cool as you think. Australian heartthrob Chris Hemsworth, who plays the god of thunder in the Marvel’s Avengers series of films, was giving an interview to Luke Darcy on the latter’s Triple M programme on April 16. You know how things are these days, when everything is done online with multiple screens. During the chitchat, the actor’s six-year-old son Tristan came and sat in his lap for a few seconds, looking into the camera inquisitively. The child got off and left the scene, only to then throw pillows at his dad. Credit to Chris H that he handled the situation with coolness, so that no one could say, ‘Take that, Thor!’

Published in Dawn, ICON, April 26th, 2020