Jessica Kahawaty touches down in Milan for football, fashion week

Jessica Kahawaty flew to Milan from New York, just before the Italian city kicked off its own fashion week. (Getty Images)
Updated 17 September 2019

Jessica Kahawaty touches down in Milan for football, fashion week

DUBAI: Lebanese-Australian model and influencer Jessica Kahawaty jetted to Milan this week to support her favorite Italian football team Inter Milan, which she incidentally models for.  

Kahawaty is also expected to attend Milan Fashion Week, set to take place from Sept. 17-23.  

The model teased her 898,000 followers, writing on her Instagram Story, “NYC-Milano for something big tomorrow, can you guess?”

On the following story, the model revealed to her fans that she was flying over to attend a Champions League game between Inter Milan FC and SK Slavia Prague , which took place on Tuesday. She wrote, “You all guessed it! Going to be at the Champions League game supporting @inter. See you at San Siro Stadium Milano!”

In July, Kahawaty unveiled her gritty ad campaign for Inter Milan.

The clip, which Kahawaty and Inter shared on their Instagram pages, featured various dedicated professionals, from a dancer to a kite surfer, refining their craft through sheer hard work.

“Whatever they say/ don’t bother trying. Triers can quit/ while I’m here, flying,” a male voice says in the video, before adding, “I’ve failed without guard/ I’ve fallen hard. I’ve been so wrong/ And that made me strong.”

The camera then panned to Kahawaty, wearing the club’s signature black-and-blue striped kit, who seems to be standing in a cavernous tunnel, as she says, “But this is not for everyone.”

The model took to Instagram to share the clip at the time, captioning the post: “Proud to reveal my international campaign for @inter football team” in English, Italian and Arabic.

She stars alongside Chinese contemporary dancer Duan Jingting, the former Shanghai Ballet dancer who shot to fame on “So You Think You Can Dance China” and Airton Cozzolino, a champion kite surfer.

Kahawaty studied business, finance and law in Sydney and then made a move into modelling and event hosting.

The social media influencer, is also keen supporter of a number of humanitarian causes, including UNICEF and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

Last year, fashion house Louis Vuitton selected Kahawaty to work with UNICEF at the Za’atari refugee camp in Jordan to help children affected by the Syrian crisis, which has seen millions of people displaced.

The multi-talented celebrity also gave a talk at the TEDxSciencesPo event in Paris in April 2018.

The conference, according to a press release, brought together influencers “who work toward breaking the wall between the East and the West” and aims to “provide an essential bridge, to fuse the gap between rising trends of neo-conservatism predominant in the South of France and the cultural diversity that characterizes the Arab world.”


‘It Must Be Heaven’: Elia Suleiman’s sardonic take on the world

Suleiman, who plays the lead role as himself, explores identity, nationality and belonging. (Supplied)
Updated 23 October 2019

‘It Must Be Heaven’: Elia Suleiman’s sardonic take on the world

MUMBAI: Elia Suleiman’s “It Must Be Heaven,” which was screened at the Mumbai Film Festival, is pure cinema. Like his earlier works, here too the Palestinian director uses wit, sarcasm and minimalism, this time to present a series of vignettes that are funny but also a powerful lambast of the world we live in. Suleiman, who plays the lead role as himself, explores identity, nationality and belonging.

He says people worldwide now live in fear amid global geopolitical tensions. Today, checkpoints are just about everywhere: In airports, shopping malls, cinemas, highways — the list is endless.

“It Must Be Heaven” was screened at the Mumbai Film Festival. (Supplied) 

Suleiman’s earlier features, such as “Chronicle of a Disappearance” and “Divine Intervention,” showed us everyday life in the occupied Palestinian territories. This time, it is Paris and New York. 

The first scene is hilarious, with a bishop trying to enter a church with his followers. The gatekeeper on the other side of the heavy wooden door is probably too intoxicated and refuses to let the priest in, leading to a comical situation. Suleiman’s life in Nazareth is filled with such incidents — snippets that have been strung together to tell us of tension in society. Neighbors turn out to be selfish, and only generous when they know they are being watched. 

The Palestinian director uses wit, sarcasm and minimalism, to present a series of vignettes that are funny but also a powerful lambast of the world we live in. (Supplied)

In Paris, the cafes along the grand boulevards, and the young women who pass by, are typical of France’s capital. But a cut to Bastille Day, with tanks rolling by in a show of strength, jolts us back to harsh reality. In New York, Suleiman’s cab driver is excited at driving a Palestinian. 

The film has an interesting way of storytelling. The scenes begin as observational shots, but the camera quickly changes positions to show Suleiman watching from the other side of the room or a street. The camera then returns to where it first stood, and this back-and-forth movement is delightfully engaging.

The framing is so perfect, and the colors so bright and beautiful, that each scene looks magical. And as the director looks on at all this with his usual deadpan expression, a sardonic twitch at the corner of his mouth, we know all this is but illusion. There is bitter truth ahead!