Mumbai Diary: Friday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
In squint condition
We can't quite tell what caused Alia Bhatt to pucker up her face, but we hope it wasn't the movie screening she attended. Pic/satej shinde
Camping at the MET
Noted artiste Nikhil Chopra has been selected as an artist-in-residence for the MetLiveArts' 2019–20 season, the performing arts program of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. The residency was made possible by the Bagri Foundation with the support of the Serendipity Arts Foundation.
But that's not all. Chopra, whose work comprises theatrical acts and large scale landscape paintings, will also be presented a live performance for the Met's galleries titled, Lands, Waters, and Skies, this September. Here, he will inhabit various personae and interact with the museum's collection for eight consecutive days. Chopra, who will also be presenting another project at the Met in 2020, wrote, "I am excited to share, say, do, make, collaborate, perform, draw...".
The Modi mood
Kunal Kamra has not been one to shy away from critiquing people in power. Only last month, he launched a full-blown campaign on social media, with photoshopped pictures of himself holding a placard that read "Don't vote for Modi" and, "But also f*** Congress". Yesterday, in light of BJP's landslide victory, Kamra posted this picture on Instagram with the caption "mood", and his grim face drew a slew of hilarious comments from fellow comedians.
City-based comic Azeem Banatwalla comforted Kamra by replying, "It's okay bro, 5 more years of content", while Rahul Subramanian took a dig at his caption. "You misspelled Modi," he said. But Sanjay Manaktala made a real discovery. Pointing out a detail from the bottom of the image, he commented, "love the cigarettes by your feet and also the no smoking sign." We can't wait to see Kamra's post-election content.
Open and close season
Two movies that will book-end 160 films from 43 countries to be screened at the 10th edition of Kashish Mumbai International Film Festival aptly sum up desi-videsi flavours.
Stills from Just Friends
The opening film, Just Friends, is a rom-com from the Netherlands about a young Dutch man falling in love with a Syrian refugee. It won the Audience Award at the Milan International Lesbian and Gay Film Festival.
Njan Marykutty, which will bring the curtains down on the queer film fest to be held from June 12 to 16, stars Malayalam actor Jayasurya as a transsexual fighting societal stigma. The film won the Kerala State Film Award for Best Actor.
While the Malayalam film seems to be more personal, the Dutch angle reminds us of the opening movie at Kashish a few years ago called Out in the Dark, a love story between a Palestinian student and Israeli lawyer played out against the simmering political potboiler that is the Palestinian-Israel problem.
Farewell, Byculla's hope
When Goyaa, a chic Asian restaurant and chef Siddharth Somaiya's brainchild, opened last year, it came with the promise of fun cocktails and more importantly, a buzzing future for Byculla. To the patron, the restaurant's journey — from a warehouse to a modern eatery to a thriving space for music — looked like an upward affair.
So, this week, when we learnt that it's shutting down, it came as a surprise. "We are just taking a break. It will give us some perspective. When you're working every day, you can't take a step back and see how you can do things better.
The monsoons are a lull period in the F&B industry, so why not make the most of it by reinventing yourself? We will be back," Somaiya told us.
In a new avatar
After Kamling shut, for days, people couldn't help but share and relive their time at the beloved Churchgate eatery.
Now, we hear, Keenan and Ryam Tham's food venture will be taking over the space to launch the second outlet of their one-year-old property, Foo, which will open the next month.
"Kamling was started in the 1960s by my grandfather and now, it's been handed to me. Keeping with the times, and the ever evolving customer, we feel the Asian tapas route is a fresher offering," Keenan told this diarist.
Not so funny anymore
Last year, Tanmay Bhat and Gursimran Khamba of comedy collective All India Bakchod (AIB), came under fire during the #MeToo movement. After staying dormant for months, AIB has now posted an update on social media.
They detailed how they had to let go of their team overnight. While Bhat's suspension has been lifted, he will no longer be the CEO, and Khamba won't be involved in AIB's operations. Although Rohan Joshi and Ashish Shakya will be helming AIB, we won't be seeing the videos any time soon.
Rajasthan's Suman Rao bags Miss India 2019 crown