THE GRAPEVINE

Published June 23, 2024

Blame System

The whole Pakistani nation felt utterly dejected when its national cricket team lost a crucial match against India in the ongoing T20 World Cup being held in North America. Social media was full of negative comments against the squad. TV actor and host Anoushey Ashraf didn’t like it. She wrote in a message on Istagram: “Let’s not just blame the boys. Their performance is a clear reflection of who we are as a nation today. Unstable, disorganised and walking on eggshells all the time. The whole system is responsible for this collapse.” We agree. Even certain hosts on TV sound unstable.

The Offer

What’s with Pakistani actors and their talk about getting offers from India? The recent example is of Sonya Hussyn. According to her, in the past, she received three offers to work in Indian movies. One of them, she says, was a version of a Shakespearean comedy, another was a remake of a Santosh Kumar film, and the third was alongside Emran Haashmi, for which she never had a meeting with the makers of the movie. Aside from the fact that the third film seems to have had no story, given Emran H’s reputation for doing certain scenes well, Sonya H probably borrowed from Shakespeare and said, ‘Forsooth.’

The Face with Stories

Filmmaker Saqib Malik is an ardent admirer of Lollywood superstar Meera. His film Baji, which came out four years ago, had her as the chief protagonist. Last week, the director gave an interview in which, among other things, he said the following about the actress: “She’s extremely talented. Her face talks a lot. You don’t have to do much with her face. You put her there and her face has thousands of stories to tell.” To be honest, it’s not just the face. Meera is not a reticent person; she herself has thousands of stories to tell in three languages — Urdu, Punjabi and English.

Wedding Bells

Dabangg girl Sonakshi Sinha is about to marry her boyfriend actor Zaheer Iqbal. In fact, the wedding is scheduled for the same day this news item will see the light of day, ie June 23. The two have been seeing each other for a few years now and, if insiders are to be believed, they have been together since they worked alongside each other in the film Double XL. We congratulate the two and wish them a happily married life, whether double XL or dabangg!

Gaza, Ruffalo, Hollywood

When Israel announced on June 8 that four hostages kidnapped by Hamas were rescued, actor Mark Ruffalo wrote these lines on X: “It’s so good to see the hostages return. A ceasefire would have gotten many more hostages back and no civilians and children killed. This siege is cruel and senseless. Grinding innocent human beings and their culture into blood soaked rubble and dust, to be buried and forgotten. Four for 274 including kids. It’s a sinful equation that keeps repeating.” Mark R, you’re a true gentleman and a conscientious human being, unlike countless of your Hollywood colleagues.

Two Times Happy

Almost a year ago, the acting duo Naomi Watts and Billy Crudup tied the nuptial knot in New York. They received congratulatory messages from all across the globe. But not finding it enough to prove that they have decided to be husband and wife in front of the entire world, on June 8 they had another wedding ceremony in Mexico City, attended by friends and families of the pair. By the way, their three children from their first marriages — Naomi W’s two and Billy C’s one — were also present on the occasion. Now that’s what we call confidence about being second time lucky!

Published in Dawn, ICON, June 23rd, 2024

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