Melita wears Surily

May 23, 2014, 06:00 IST | Malavika Sangghvi

Malavika SangghviAmidst all the hype and hoopla of the L’Oreal Indian actress brigade and what it wore on the Cannes red carpet, an even more significant piece of fashion news might have just gone unnoticed, had it not been spotted by our eagle eye: Melita Toscan du Plantier, leggy widow of the French film producer Daniel, creative force behind the Marrakech film festival, friend of Louboutin and Lagerfeld, and dyed in the cashmere fashionista, chose to wear Surily Goel to the Vanity Fair and Chanel dinner during the festival.

Karl Lagerfeld and Sharon Stone. Pic/AFP
Karl Lagerfeld and Sharon Stone. Pic/AFP

"I'd gifted her the dress last December when she’d come to Mumbai,” said Goel when we spoke about the black silk jersey outfit that had just made its international debut, “And she said she’d wear it to the Cannes Film fest but I thought she was joking; but then she BBM’d me and sent me the pix-and I was thrilled!”

Surily Goel, who designed the dress worn by Melita Toscan du Plantier (below)
Surily Goel, who designed the dress worn by Melita Toscan du Plantier (below)

Toscan, it turns out, is an India lover and visits often with her friend Christian Louboutin, and now that we recall, we’d met her with him at Abu Jani’s birthday celebrations recently at China Garden. “We all met a couple of years ago when Mozez (Singh) had a party in Mumbai for Louboutin and Jimmy Choo. That’s when Melita got friendly with Suzanne (Roshan) and Arjun and Meher and promoted the idea of a special Bollywood section at Marrakech film festival a couple of years ago,” said Goel.

Melita Toscan du Plantier

As for the dress, it’s part of her collection that will debut at the Harvey Nichols India Caravan fest in Abu Dhabi curated by Mozez.

“Melita said Lagerfeld, Eva Longoria and Sharon Stone complimented her about my dress and asked who’d made it,” said Goel, “I wish I could show you the back. It’s really sexy!”

The view from John Oliver
And it’s not only the Indian media that’s been consumed by the wit and wisdom bug following the election results: the high and mighty amongst the international media has weighed in too.

John Oliver and Fareed Zakaria (right). Pic/AFP
John Oliver and Fareed Zakaria (right). Pic/AFP

Best amongst them has been HBO’s John Oliver who earlier had nicely sent up the Indian media and garnered many eyeballs in this neck of the woods for his show Last Week Tonight.

Well, this time he had CNN’s Fareed Zakaria last Sunday to discuss the significance of the election results. And though their on-air time was only about four minutes, the popular anchor and political satirist threw in another 12 minutes of the chinwag for web audiences.

And again there was some good-natured ribaldry about the Indian media and its love of hyperbole. “They’re one sentence away from bursting in to song,” said Oliver about them.


Whispering woods
For the past few days we have relocated to Goregaon in general and the Whistling Woods in Film City in particular, to pursue our dream of writing scripts for the movies, by learning the craft from some very august teachers. But more of that later.

Kareena Kapoor
Kareena Kapoor

Ensconced in Bollywood’s navel, one picks up all kinds of information about the film world. And for now this should suffice: guess who amongst the current crop of heroines is considered the kindest and most caring to her staff? Can’t?

Ok so here’s a hint: Not only is she Bollywood aristocracy but also a begum to boot: Yes, Kareena Kapoor, according to the Bollywood grapevine, is the most gracious and considerate of the people who work for her.

Glad to see Noblesse Oblige is alive and kicking!

Sunburn getting hotter
It may have started as an experiment on a beach eight years ago, but Percept’s Sunburn, that humongous electronic dance music festival is now the largest festival in Asia and a force to be reckon with.

Sunburn Team at WOW Awards
Sunburn Team at WOW Awards

And last night, this home-grown, ‘glocal’ – born locally, consumed globally – festival won not one, but two WOW Awards for ‘Entertainment IP (intellectual property) of the year’ and ‘Entertainment Event of the year’.

“An initiative of EventFAQs, the WOW awards are the only awards for events and event marketing, and set the benchmark for excellence in experience creation,” said Shailendra Singh, adding, “It’s been an incredible journey from inception to winning Event of the Year awards like this. Sunburn Season 7 was the biggest festival season on the planet. Ever.”

Interestingly, Singh’s pet project apparently won the award over the IPL and the IIFA!

Now that’s something.

Harvard for Mahindra
He’s always been something of a gold standard amongst Indian corporate leaders and now no less than The Harvard Alumni Association (HAA) has announced that Anand G Mahindra (Class of ’77, MBA) will be awarded the 2014 Harvard Medal.

Anand G Mahindra

'Anand G Mahindra’s dedication, generosity, and service to Harvard have been substantial. Co-founder of the Harvard Business School (HBS) Association of India, he is also a founding member of the University’s South Asia Institute (SAI), the HBS India Research Centre, and the SAI field office in Mumbai, India,’ said the Harvard Gazette about Mahindra, who in 2010, made a transformative gift of $10 million to the premier University’s Humanities Centre, renamed the Mahindra Humanities Center in honour of his mother, the late writer Indira Mahindra.

Other alumnus to receive the award this year will be J. Louis Newell and Emily Rauh Pulitzer, A.M.

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