Freida Pinto stuns in Elie Saab at Melbourne festival

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Indian actress Freida Pinto poses for a photo with the Melbourne skyline in the background after a press conference on the opening day of the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne on Aug. 10. (AFP)
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Indian film director Tabrez Noorani, left, answers question with Bollywood and Hollywood actress Freida Pinto during a press conference on the opening day of the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne on Aug. 10. (AFP)
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Indian actress Freida Pinto poses for a photo with the Melbourne skyline in the background after a press conference on the opening day of the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne on Aug. 10. (AFP)
Updated 12 August 2018
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Freida Pinto stuns in Elie Saab at Melbourne festival

  • In Melbourne, the actress hoped to raise awareness about the topic of sex trafficking through her latest film Love Sonia, which was screened at the opening of the Melbourne film festival
  • Global human trafficking is estimated to be worth around $150 billion, and every year, millions of vulnerable children and women are forced into sexual slavery

 

JEDDAH: Indian actress Freida Pinto turned heads at the opening of Australia’s Indian Film Festival of Melbourne in an Elie Saab gown. The cobalt blue number was from the Elie Saab resort 2018 collection and featured net detailing on the front. 

Pinto posted a photo of herself in the outfit standing against the backdrop of the Melbourne skyline, captioning it: “Always a pleasure to be back.”

She chose another outfit, a black gown featuring embroidery, created by the Lebanese designer, for the evening’s red carpet event.

The label, which has been a popular choice among Hollywood’s A-list stars for the red carpet, also posted Pinto’s image on its Instagram account, with the caption:  "Shades of blue | A radiant @freidapinto in Elie Saab resort 2018 while in Melbourne.”

Saab has long been a favorite of the Indian actress. Her forest-green gown from Elie Saab’s fall 2017 haute couture collection worn to a Cartier event in Paris in July this year or the shimmery blue gown she wore to the Vanity Fair Oscar Party 2017 were both showstoppers.

In Melbourne, the Slumdog Millionaire actress hoped to raise awareness about the topic of sex trafficking through her latest film Love Sonia, which was screened at the opening of the film festival.

The film, directed by Tabrez Noorani, received rave reviews and a standing ovation in Melbourne, following its successful premiere in the UK recently. It is nominated in three categories at the Melbourne festival — for best Indie film, best director and best supporting actress for Pinto and Richa Chadha.

Love Sonia is a hard-hitting story about a 17-year-old girl who risks her life to rescue her sister from the sex trade and then gets caught up in it herself. It was shot in India, Hong Kong and Los Angeles and stars Chadha, Mrunal Thakur, Manoj Bajpayee, Rajkummar Rao, Anupam Kher and Demi Moore. The latter agreed to be part of the movie due to her NGO that works to abolish sexual slavery and human trafficking. 

Global human trafficking is estimated to be worth around $150 billion, and every year, millions of vulnerable children and women are forced into sexual slavery. For over a decade, Noorani worked alongside NGOs to rescue girls forced into sex work. The plot of Love Sonia is based on real women’s experiences.

The theme of this year’s Melbourne film festival is “inclusion,” and many of the films tell the stories of marginalized communities. The event will conclude on Aug. 22.


Models make their way to Milan

Halima Aden is set to touch down in Italy. AFP
Updated 19 September 2018
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Models make their way to Milan

DUBAI: The who’s who of the fashion world, including Somali-American model Halima Aden and Lebanese-Australian influencer Jessica Kahawaty, have touched down in Italy for Milan Fashion Week.

The event kicked off on Wednesday with cutting-edge couturiers taking over the city to present their women’s ready-to-wear Spring/Summer 2019 collections, while doffing a collective cap to the environment.

Aden took to Instagram to share her excitement, while Kahawaty has posted various snapshots of herself posing around the city.

Following on the high heels of New York and London fashion weeks, and ahead of the biggest of them all in Paris, Milan’s catwalk season will see dozens of shows by the likes of Dolce & Gabbana, Prada, Versace, Cavalli, Armani and Fendi, AFP reported.

Notably absent will be Gucci, which this year escapes to Paris so creative director Alessandro Michele can pay homage to the City of Light that inspired his new collection.

Gucci, founded in Florence in 1921, will nevertheless host an exclusive performance by iconoclast Scottish dancer and choreographer Michael Clark at its Milan offices on Wednesday.


Some renowned designers will be absent, such as Emilio Pucci and Trussardi, while others will return, like Philipp Plein and Iceberg, along with some surprises such as 1990s sportswear giant Fila.

Last year’s collaboration with Fendi, which saw the two brands’ logos playfully mingled by artist Hey Reilly, catapulted Fila back into the limelight.

Continuing the trend of mixing street fashion with haute couture, French couturier Louis Vuitton in March appointed Virgil Abloh as director of its menswear collection.

Ghanaian-American Abloh previously created the Off-White brand, coveted by hip-hop artists.

While fashion houses put on exhibitions on the sidelines of Fashion Week, including by French photographer Sarah Moon at Armani’s museum, the week’s overarching theme is sustainable development or so-called Green Fashion.

The Italian Fashion Chamber of Commerce, which organizes most of the week’s events, will hand out the Green Carpet Fashion Awards to the most environmentally friendly fashion houses, according to AFP.

Celebrities and key industry figures will attend the awards ceremony at the world-famous Scala Theatre — dress code green — on Sunday, the climax of the week’s more than 60 catwalk shows and 90 presentations.

While the fashion world is not known for particularly caring about the environment, British luxury fashion group Burberry last week announced that it would stop burning unsold goods — an industry-wide practice.

Burberry and its peers routinely burn tens of millions of dollars worth of products every year to maintain the exclusivity and luxury mystique of their brands.

Environmental concerns notwithstanding, fashion houses will also be battling it out for who can put on the most extravagant, exclusive and, of course, fashionable show.