The world’s first Malayalam-language digital radio station is now broadcasting from Abu Dhabi.
Pravasi Bharathi 810 AM was launched with a live broadcast from popular playback singer, G Venugopal.
The official switch-on was performed by Abdul Rahman Awadh Al Harthi, executive director of radio for Abu Dhabi Media, and Noushad Abdul Rahuman, chairman of Pravasi Bharathi Broadcasting Corporation. Also present at the inauguration ceremony were K C Joseph, Kerala’s minister for rural development, planning, culture and Norka.
Pravasi Bharathi 810 AM is also the first digital-radio station in the Middle East and North Africa region. The channel is broadcast under the licence of Abu Dhabi Media and Media Zone Authority, Abu Dhabi.
The station hosts analogue transmission from 5am to 12.10am each day, with digital transmission between 12.10am and 5am every day, broadcast from its headquarters in Al Maqta. – The National staff
Priyanka Chopra among Oscar presenters
Bollywood star Priyanka Chopra will present an Academy Award at the Oscars ceremony in Los Angeles this month.
Also in the second group of Oscar presenters, announced yesterday by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, are Steve Carell (Foxcatcher, The Big Short), record producer Quincy Jones, Jared Leto (who plays the Joker in the upcoming DC Comics movie Suicide Squad), Julianne Moore, Olivia Munn, Margot Robbie, Jason Segel, Andy Serkis, J K Simmons (who won the Best Supporting Actor Oscar last year for his role as a sadistic music teacher in Whiplash), Kerry Washington and Reese Witherspoon.
Chopra made her international acting debut last year in the new US American terrorism thriller Quantico, in which she stars as a trainee FBI agent.
The first group of presenters, announced last week, included Benicio Del Toro, Tina Fey, Whoopi Goldberg, Ryan Gosling, Kevin Hart, Lady Gaga, Sam Smith, Charlize Theron, Jacob Tremblay (the young star of Oscar-nominated drama, Room), The Weeknd and Pharrell Williams.
The Oscars ceremony is on February 28. – The National staff
Revathy working on Queen remake
South Indian actress-filmmaker Revathy is directing an as-yet-untitled Tamil and Telugu remake of Vikas Bahl’s 2013 film Queen.
Her previous films include Mitr, My Friend and Phir Milenge.
Queen is the story of a young Punjabi girl, played by Kangana Ranaut, who sets off alone on her “honeymoon” in Paris after her fiancé calls off their wedding. Work on the remake is already under way.
A source said: “[Revathy] will spend the next couple of months finishing work on the second half. By October or November, the film will most likely go to the sets.” The remake is being bankrolled by Tamil producer and actor Thiyagarajan. – IANS
George Miller to head Cannes prize jury
Mad Max creator George Miller will head the jury at the Cannes film festival this year.
He will be the first Australian to preside over the world’s leading film event. The 70-year-old director of The Witches of Eastwick and Babe, who launched the career of Mel Gibson and an entire genre of “outback gothic” films with his Mad Max series in 1979, responded to his selection in typically flamboyant fashion.
“What an unmitigated delight,” he said. “Such an honour. I’ll be there with bells on.”
Choosing the unapologetically populist Miller may ruffle the sensibilities of Cannes arthouse diehards. But organisers said: “Throughout his career, George Miller has constantly experimented with a variety of genres, brilliantly reconciling mass-audience expectations and the highest artistic standards.”
They said Mad Max broke the mould and was “an ultra-violent futuristic film that brought the action-film genre a touch of class with its masterly combination of road movie, Western and science fiction elements”.
The fourth film in the series, Mad Max: Fury Road, opened last year’s Cannes festival and is in the running for 10 Oscars this month. It scooped nine prizes at last week’s Critics’ Choice Awards, including best director. The 69th Cannes festival will run from May 11 to 22. – AFP
SVU and Chicago trilogy creator signs new deal
NBC has signed a new production deal with producer Dick Wolf, ensuring an 18th season for Law & Order: SVU and the continuation of his Chicago trilogy of dramas.
The deal binds Wolf to NBC Universal until 2020. He had seemed close to the end of his run at NBC at the start of this decade, with the long-running Law & Order franchise down to a single show – but he has come roaring back with a new series procedural dramas, this time focusing on Chicago.
The deal promises a second season of the newest addition, Chicago Med. NBC earlier renewed Chicago Fire and Chicago PD.
Wolf is also developing a fourth series, Chicago Law. He is also working on a reality series, Law & Order: You the Jury, in which the audience decides the verdict in a court. case. – AP
Men’s Fashion Week kicks off
Men’s fashion week kicked off in New York this week for a second season.
Still in its infancy, the fall/winter 2016 season is already a step up from the spring/summer 2016 men’s fashion week debut that graced New York last July.
There are 60 shows this time, compared with 51, and nearly twice as many media-accreditation requests – 800, up from 500. The show is sure to whet appetites for the style explosion and buyers’ bonanza that is New York fashion week for women, which is due to begin on February 11.
“The success of the inaugural New York Fashion Week: Men’s surpassed our expectations,” said Steven Kolb, the head of the Council of Fashion Designers of America. “We are only in our second season so we still need to prove that what we are doing is worth the attention of journalists and retailers.” – AFP
Source: art & life