Was Lebanese singer Elissa just cast in Netflix’s ‘La Casa De Papel’?

The show, also known as “Money Heist,” is about a daring heist. (Getty)
Updated 28 August 2019

Was Lebanese singer Elissa just cast in Netflix’s ‘La Casa De Papel’?

DUBAI: Lebanese singer Elissa took to social media to share a gift hamper sent to her by the team behind hugely popular Spanish Netflix original “La Casa De Papel” this week, sparking rumors that she is joining the show.

The package included one of show’s infamous Salvador Dali masks and a red card with a personalized message that read, “The third season's ending left the professor broken and you surprised. But have hope, because the fourth season will make you the happiest. To the queen of emotions, or whom we now call Beirut.” 

The star wrote to her 13.9 million followers, “I am ready to be part of the gang with the professor and the team! Thank you @NetflixMENA and @lacasadepapel. Nairobi, we’re coming to save you.
Love, Beirut!”

The Netflix Mena account replied to her video saying, “Beirut, the time is yours! Welcome aboard,” echoing the show’s use of city names for each of the characters.

The show, also known as “Money Heist,” is about a daring heist.

Since its launch in May 2017, “Le Casa de Papel” has become the most-watched non-English language series in Netflix’s history.

In July, Elissa told fans that she would be spending her evening binge watching the show. She tweeted, “Spending the night watching La Casa De Papel season 3 on Netflix. If you were with the professor, which city would you name yourself after in the gang? I would definitely go for Beirut! Suits me, no?”

The show’s Twitter account account replied, “Beirut sounds great.”

The 46-year-old star recently made headlines when she announced on Twitter that her next album will be her last, explaining that she cannot be productive in a “mafia-like” field.

“I am preparing this new album with a lot of love and passion. The reason is that it will be the last one in my career. I am announcing this with a heavy heart but with a lot of conviction because I can’t work in a field that is similar to mafias. I can’t be productive anymore,” she said. 

So, is she joining the Netflix team? Some fans think it’s all a joke, but here’s to hoping we will see the pop superstar trade in her microphone for a stint on the screen.


Film review: ‘Parkour(s)’ takes obstacle course through class conflict

The sport of parkour forms the backdrop of this Algerian film. Supplied
Updated 29 min 22 sec ago

Film review: ‘Parkour(s)’ takes obstacle course through class conflict

  • Fatma Zohra Zamoum’s “Parkour(s)” is set in a small city in Algeria
  • It screened at the recent Cairo International Film Festival

CHENNAI: The fast-paced sport of parkour — or negotiating obstacles in an urban environment by running, jumping and climbing — forms the backdrop of this Algerian film.

Fatma Zohra Zamoum’s “Parkour(s)” is set in a small city in Algeria, and it seems that the director has used the title to convey the kind of histrionics her characters indulge in. Take, for instance, Youcef (Nazim Halladja) — a sportsman playing parkour — literally cartwheeling through the urban landscape. His reckless antics also include threatening people with a gun and pleading with would-be bride Kamila (Adila Bendimered) to ditch her future husband, Khaled, (Mohamed Bounoughaz). 

The movie, which screened at the recent Cairo International Film Festival, unfolds during a day and takes us to the wedding and the assorted group of men and women gathered there. As we see these people making their way toward the occasion, we get to see that they are all motivated by different pulls and pressures.

The film unfolds during a day and takes us to a wedding and the assorted group of men and women gathered there. Supplied

Youcef is there to try to persuade Kamila from walking up the aisle. The kitchen help is set to make an extra buck. However, other characters have not been written with much conviction.

Zamoun says in a note: “The multi-character drama shows how a normal situation turns into major clashes reflecting the conflict between classes, ideas and generations in Algerian society, whose youth try to take control of their lives. But they are surrounded by those who try to handcuff them.” 

The movie is not convincing on this count. For example, how is the bride — who willingly prepares for the wedding (that was my impression, anyway) — “handcuffed?” The same can be said for other characters we encounter.

What comes across loud and clear, however, is the class difference. No clarity is lost when Khaled gives money to Youcef to buy a “decent” suit for the wedding and he is offended by Khaled’s arrogance. Youcef makes no bones about this to his friend — and perhaps he is taking his revenge when he tries to sow discord among his fellow characters. Also worthy of note is the performance by the young daughter of the kitchen help, Nedjma (Lali Mansour), who gives one of the most moving and natural sequences in “Parkour(s).”

The cinematography is nothing to rave about and Youcef’s parkour antics are rather intrusive and add little to the narrative.