Deepika Padukone has bagged the role opposite Shah Rukh Khan in Farah Khan’s next directorial venture, Happy New Year. Other actresses reportedly considered for the part included Jennifer Winget Grover and Ankita Lokhande. Happy New Year, scheduled to be released in September 2014, also stars Abhishek Bachchan, Boman Irani, Vivaan Shah and the southern Indian star Prithviraj.
Psy plans new album in September
The South Korean Gangnam Style rapper Psy plans to release a new album in September and says he has already recorded three songs for the project. “Already done with three songs and they are kinda nice,” the singer posted on Twitter. His agent said Psy was working on the album in Los Angeles. Gangnam Style, released a year ago, made Psy an international star and is the most popular video of all time on YouTube, with 1.7 billion views. His follow-up video and single Gentleman was inevitably less successful, but still managed to top the charts in many countries and has had 500 million views since its release in April. – AFP
Actress Eileen Brennan dies
Whether she was issuing orders as an army captain in 1980’s Private Benjamin, rambling as a real-life rendition of Mrs Peacock from 1985’s Clue or playing a crazy cat lady in 2001’s Jeepers Creepers, the actress Eileen Brennan – who died on Sunday, at the age of 80, at her California home after a battle with bladder cancer – injected perfectly timed comedy into each of her roles. “Our world has lost a rare human,” said her Private Benjamin co-star Goldie Hawn. Brennan also appeared in the TV shows All in the Family, Mad About You and 7th Heaven. – AP
DIFF director Sheila Whitaker dies
The director of international programmes for the Dubai International Film Festival has died. Sheila Whitaker, who had been working with the festival since its founding in 2004, died of motor neuron disease on Monday in London. She was 77. She was the director of the London Film Festival from 1987 to 1996 and was the head of programming at the National Film Theatre in London from 1984 to 1990. The artistic director Masoud Amralla Al Ali wrote on DIFF’s website that Whitaker had “dedicated her life” to emerging cinema. “From the Arab world, Iran and Latin America … she engaged with the people of those regions, with their culture and true nature.” – The National staff
German exhibit honours Abbas Kiarostami
The east German city of Chemnitz is paying tribute to the Iranian filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami in an exhibit that focuses on his movies and also his photography and video work. The 73-year-old director made his name with Cannes entries such as Certified Copy (2010) starring Juliette Binoche, Like Someone in Love (2012) , and the 1997 Palme d’Or winner Taste of Cherry. The exhibition at the Kunstsammlungen Chemnitz museum runs until September 22. – The National staff
Teach sons how to behave with girls, says Shah Rukh Khan
To counter the rise in crime against women, parents must teach their sons how to behave with girls, says the Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan. “We have to change how we bring up our children. We need to teach boys to be respectful to women,” Khan told reporters in Kolkata on a visit to the city to promote his forthcoming film Chennai Express. “I think the whole country, the whole world for that matter, has issues when it comes to safety of women.” Chennai Express, which also stars Deepika Padukone, is due for release on August 8. – The National staff
Germany asks Bieber to pay monkey bill
German authorities have posted a public notice urging Justin Bieber to get in touch with them about an unpaid bill for his former pet monkey Mally. Bieber failed to produce the necessary vaccination and import papers for the monkey when he arrived for a European tour in March. Mally became the property of the German government in May when the Canadian singer failed to claim his pet. A spokesman for the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation says Bieber has one week to pay €1,130 (Dh5,500) for the monkey’s care. The spokesman said otherwise customs officials “have ways of making him pay” next time he enters Germany.