Mumbai Diary: Thursday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
For a change, the recently sullen Alia Bhatt is all smiles while Ranveer Singh ditches his exuberance at the promotion of their upcoming film in Bandra. Pic/Pradeep Dhivar
A heavyweight graphic novel
He was one of the greatest wrestlers that India ever produced. And now, his story has been immortalised in a recently launched graphic novel called The Epic Journey of the Great Dara Singh. It's been created by graphic artist George Emmanual and was launched by Vindu Dara Singh, the wrestler's son. The author said that what makes the plot inspiring is the courageous choices that Dara Singh made in difficult circumstances, which, of course, is something to look up to.
A field day in UK
Things only seem to be looking up for YouTube sensation Bhuvan Bam. In 2016, he was given the award for the most popular YouTube channel at the WebTVAsia Awards held in Seoul. Then last year, he became the first person to hit 10 million subscribers on the video-sharing platform. He also made his acting debut in 2018 with the short film, Plus Minus. All these achievements brought him to the notice of the folks at Manchester City Football Club in the UK, who invited him over to witness a match that the team was playing against Arsenal. The idea was to increase the fan base of Manchester City in India, and the opportunity gave the avid football fan the chance to meet Pep Guardiola, one of the best coaches in the world. Now, that's a dream come true for any football aficionado.
Having had to bulk up for his 2018 movie Ranangan, playing a cricketer in the recently released Mi Pan Sachin didn't come easy to Swwapnil Joshi. A major part of preparing for his role required the actor to lose the pounds, and for that, we hear, he enlisted Dr Muffazal Lakdawala's help. For a few months now, Joshi has been undergoing a medically supervised weight-loss regimen, which involves the bariatric surgeon and his team keeping a close eye on his nutrition and fitness routine. We also hear that Dr Lakdawala is training Joshi for his next. Does that mean six packs are in the offing?
Twist and turn with B-boys
Last year, we were in for a pleasant surprise when we had walked into a nondescript building in the corner of Andheri West to witness a B-boy cypher aimed at identifying the best hip-hop dancers in the country. For, the level of quality we had seen had left us with genuine hope about where the scene was headed. So, we will keep a keen eye on what transpires when the competition returns this year. The starting date for it - February 21 - has just been announced, and the organisers add that the festival will be bigger and better this year. That's because those selected in the city cyphers (meaning one-on-one battles) will then have to qualify past a regional round, which makes things tougher than before. Plus, there will also be a separate competition for B-girls, with two winners - a B-girl and a B-Boy - finally being selected at the national stage to represent the country in a global event later in the year. Think you have what it takes? Then it's time to put on your dancing shoes.
Turning the tables on the right wing
There's no shortage of weird, satirical events on Facebook, but this one, set to take place on Valentine's Day, takes the cake. A production company has created an event called Trolling Bajran Dal (not to be confused with any right-wing organisation) on V-Day with basic instructions that include assembling at Bandstand and wearing saffron. But the saffron teeka is of prime importance. "If any individual or group is hurt by this event, it is their own unseemly dealing with personal emotions and no one is responsible for their delicate feelings. It is our firm belief, that no religion in the world is fragile enough to be hurt by love, laughter and life," they write.
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Mumbai protests against the Pulwama terror attack