Moroccan-Belgian directors ‘shocked’ over Warner Bros. decision to pull ‘Batgirl’

Moroccan-Belgian directors ‘shocked’ over Warner Bros. decision to pull ‘Batgirl’
Director duo Adil El-Arbi and Bilall Fallah. (AFP)
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Updated 04 August 2022

Moroccan-Belgian directors ‘shocked’ over Warner Bros. decision to pull ‘Batgirl’

Moroccan-Belgian directors ‘shocked’ over Warner Bros. decision to pull ‘Batgirl’

DUBAI: The directors of “Batgirl” — Adil El-Arbi and Bilall Fallah — have reacted to the axing of their $90 million DC superhero film, saying they were “shocked” by the news.

Warner Bros Discovery announced on Tuesday they were stopping the release of the movie adaptation of the DC Comics character, which was to star Leslie Grace in the title role, alongside actors Michael Keaton as Batman, Brendan Fraser as Firefly and J.K. SImmons as James Gordon, which means the movie won’t see the light of day in either theatres or on the streaming platform HBO Max.

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Adil El Arbi (@adilelarbi)

“We are saddened and shocked by the news. We still can’t believe it,” directors El-Arbi and Fallah wrote on Instagram in a joint statement. “As directors, it is critical that our work be shown to audiences, and while the film was far from finished, we wish that fans all over the world would have had the opportunity to see and embrace the final film themselves.”

The movie had completed shooting and much of the post-production work was also done, according to reports.

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Adil El Arbi (@adilelarbi)

 

“It was a dream to work with such fantastic actors like Michael Keaton, JK Simmons, Brendan Fraser... and especially the great Leslie Grace, who portrayed Batgirl with so much passion, dedication and humanity,” the duo, who also worked on the Disney+ “Ms Marvel” series, said.


K-pop group BLACKPINK to perform in Riyadh

K-pop group BLACKPINK to perform in Riyadh
Updated 09 August 2022

K-pop group BLACKPINK to perform in Riyadh

K-pop group BLACKPINK to perform in Riyadh
  • BLACKPINK’s anticipated concert will follow the 2019 K-pop band BTS performance at the King Fahd International Stadium in Riyad

RIYADH: All-girl K-pop band BLACKPINK will perform in the Saudi capital Riyadh on Jan. 20, 2023.

The group, which celebrated its sixth anniversary on Aug. 7, took to Twitter to announce the schedule for their “Born Pink World Tour”, including Asian concerts in Abu Dhabi, Manila, and Singapore.

Group members Jennie, Jisoo, Lisa, and Rosé are set to entertain Saudi K-pop fans with sets from their album “Born Pink,” which will be released in September. For those who cannot wait, the group will drop a single called “Pink Venom” on Aug. 19, at 7 a.m. Saudi time.

The tour kicks-off in the South Korean capital Seoul on Oct. 15, before coast-to-coast performances across North America. The European leg of the tour includes stops in Barcelona and Paris as well as two dates in London.

BLACKPINK’s anticipated concert will follow the 2019 K-pop band BTS performance at the King Fahd International Stadium in Riyadh.

Venue details, tickets and timings are yet to be announced for the tour.

The Saudi capital hosts Riyadh Season, a series of cultural, entertainment and sporting events during the winter months, which attracts local and international participants each year.


Olivia Newton-John, ‘Grease’ star and singer, dies aged 73

Olivia Newton-John, ‘Grease’ star and singer, dies aged 73
Updated 08 August 2022

Olivia Newton-John, ‘Grease’ star and singer, dies aged 73

Olivia Newton-John, ‘Grease’ star and singer, dies aged 73
  • Olivia Newton-John gained worldwide fame as high-school sweetheart Sandy in the hit musical movie ‘Grease’

LOS ANGELES: Australian singer Olivia Newton-John, who gained worldwide fame as high-school sweetheart Sandy in the hit musical movie “Grease,” died Monday, her family said. She was 73.
The entertainer, whose career spanned more than five decades, devoted much of her time and celebrity to charities after being diagnosed with breast cancer in 1992.
Newton-John “passed away peacefully at her ranch in Southern California this morning, surrounded by family and friends,” said a statement from her husband John Easterling posted on her official social media accounts.


Kylie Jenner sports part Arab label during London trip 

Kylie Jenner sports part Arab label during London trip 
Updated 08 August 2022

Kylie Jenner sports part Arab label during London trip 

Kylie Jenner sports part Arab label during London trip 

DUBAI: From shopping sprees to date nights, US reality TV star and beauty mogul Kylie Jenner has been setting style trends this week in London with chic and sporty looks. 

As the Kylie Cosmetics founder prepares for her birthday on Aug. 10, the entrepreneur was spotted wearing Romanian Jordanian designer Amina Muaddi’s mini patent Giorgia top handle bag. 

Jenner was on a shopping trip to Harrods department store with her four-year-old daughter, Stormi Webster. 

Jenner showed off Amina Muaddi’s mini patent Giorgia top handle bag. (Instagram)

She wore the black bag with a hot pink figure-hugging top and skirt set from Japanese Paris-based label Comme des Garcons. She also wore Italian brand Gianvito Rossi’s Aileen PVC slingback sandals. 

The 24-year-old star documented her shopping spree on TikTok. 

“We just pulled up to Harrods to see Kylie Cosmetics and Kylie Skin. I brought my daughter to see it. I also haven’t seen it so I am a little excited and I am bringing you guys along with me,” she told her 45.4 million followers. 

On one of Jenner’s strolls this week, she wore a head-to-toe denim look from French label Marine Serre’s Spring 2023 collection. (Instagram)

Jenner then shared clips of her and Stormi walking through the entrepreneur’s products booth. Stormi had a small basket to which she added a few items from her mom’s brands. 

The businesswoman then showed a room filled with high-end clothes, accessories and toys. 

“Look what Harrods did for Stormi to go shopping,” Jenner told her fans in the video. “Is this not the craziest? You are a spoiled, spoiled girl.”

On one of Jenner’s strolls this week, she wore a head-to-toe denim look from French label Marine Serre’s Spring 2023 collection. 

For a date night with her partner and the father of her two children, Travis Scott, Jenner stepped out wearing a white-and-red leather motorcycle zipper jacket by French fashion house Mugler, which she paired with a mini skirt from clothing brand Devised Antithetical. 

On Saturday, Scott performed his first arena concert since the Astroworld tragedy last year that saw a surge in the concert crowd leaving 10 individuals dead and many others injured.

Both Jenner and Stormi attended the concert at London’s O2 Arena. 


Review: Netflix’s ‘Keep Breathing’ is a survivalist story that lacks drama

‘Keep Breathing’ is now streaming on Netflix. (Supplied)
‘Keep Breathing’ is now streaming on Netflix. (Supplied)
Updated 08 August 2022

Review: Netflix’s ‘Keep Breathing’ is a survivalist story that lacks drama

‘Keep Breathing’ is now streaming on Netflix. (Supplied)

CHENNAI: “Keep Breathing,” a limited series on Netflix created by Martin Gero and Brendan Gall, is a survivalist drama that could have done with a little more drama. 

The six-episode show sees Liv (Melissa Barrera) board a small plane with pilot George (Mike Dopud) and his friend, Sam (Austin Stowell), after her routine flight to Inuvik in Canada is delayed. She is a hotshot, hotheaded Manhattan lawyer who bulldozes the two virtual strangers at the airport — even offering them a bribe — to take her to her destination on their private plane. 

But disaster strikes when the small Cessna aircraft crashes somewhere in the Canadian wilderness and Sam and George are killed. Bereft of survival skills or food, Liv’s efforts to get back to civilization form the premise of the series. Sadly, the show lacks tension or the kind of magnificent performance we saw in Tom Hanks’ “Cast Away.” Barrera hardly conveys the helplessness or urgency of her plight, and most of the time looks too made up for the mess she has got herself into. 

 

 

The work relies mostly on flashbacks to move the narrative along, telling us how Liv uses her past problems and difficulties as lessons to try to escape from the remote place. Her experiences with her dull mother (Florencia Lozano), sickly father (Juan Pablo Espinosa) and her boyfriend (Jeff Wilbusch) help Liv on her mission to get back to civilization. 

It all seems a tad contrived and forced, with plenty of missed opportunities for a few thrills. Unfortunately, the hint of heightened adventure never materializes and even the introduction of a wild bear does little to save this middling survival story. A tantalizing tenet is fleetingly introduced when Liv finds tubes full of money and tubs of opiates that her shady pilots were smuggling across the border. However, any possibility of an exciting storyline is shut down by the creators, who chose not to follow up on the plot point. 

Despite the focus on the supporting characters, they are not well written and hardly make an impression. The series struggles to find the right balance, veering off into Liv’s past too often and ignoring the gripping potential of her present circumstances.


Artist Osman Yousefzada unveils new installations in London 

Artist Osman Yousefzada unveils new installations in London 
Updated 08 August 2022

Artist Osman Yousefzada unveils new installations in London 

Artist Osman Yousefzada unveils new installations in London 

DUBAI: British Afghani Pakistan multi-disciplinary artist Osman Yousefzada has unveiled a series of installations titled “What is Seen and What is Not” at London’s Victoria & Albert Museum.

Running until Sept. 25, the artworks respond to Pakistan's 75th Independence Day and explore themes of displacement, movement and migration.

“What is Seen and What is Not” runs until Sept. 25. (Supplied)

The site-specific works created by Yousefzada, who is also a world-famous fashion designer, bring together textiles, wrapped objects and a seating installation.

“It’s a great honor to be commissioned to reflect on the 75 years of Pakistan’s independence,” said the artist in a released statement. “‘What is Seen and What is Not’ offers a portrait of contemporary Pakistan, through a British diasporic lens as it attempts to reel away from colonial subjugation.”