The music industry and concert scene in Bangladesh are highly indebted to some of the legendary rock icons who performed their hearts out to enamour music lovers with their musical offerings. Among them, one special name is the National Award-winning rock icon Faruq Mahfuz Anam James, popularly known as "Nagar Baul James" and "Guru", who turned 59 on Monday. To date, music lovers get amped and geared up for any new concert spectacles in the country or anywhere in the world if the concert has James headlining with his electrifying performances. His name not only sells tickets but always ensures that the concertgoers are guaranteed to have marquee memories. After 'I Love You,' James' new song coming soon On the legendary rockstar’s 59th birthday, his friends in the industry and fans-admirers across the world showered him with tremendous respect and affection across the world and also on virtual platforms, sharing photographs and emotional posts on social media platforms regarding their celebrations and memories of attending his concerts. "Nagar Baul," drummer and friend Ahasan Elahi Fanty, shared a couple of photos with James celebrating his birthday, wishing him prosperity with prayers. Many other prominent music artists and bands, including Shunno and others, have also wished the rockstar on his birthday. Born in 1964 in Naogaon of Rajshahi, James was brought up in Chattogram due to his father Mojammel Haque's work who later became the Chairman of the Dhaka Education Board. His family did not approve of his wish to become a music artist; thus, he left home in 1976 and started living at Aziz Boarding in Pahartali. Without the approval of his family, James started his profound journey in music in his youth during the late 1970's. He formed his band "Feelings" in 1977 as the vocal and lead guitarist and released the band's first album, "Station Road," in 1987. The band was later renamed "Nagar Baul", a moniker that James has also adopted as the music artist. James, Miles withdraw cases against Banglalink Besides the other two companions, LRB and ARK, in the "Big Three of Bangladeshi Rock" in the 90's era in the Bangladeshi music industry, James garnered immense popularity among fans all over the world with his versatile style in psychedelic rock. He has also established his legacy as a solo artist and a successful playback singer in both Dhallywood and Bollywood. In 2006, he debuted in Bollywood as a playback singer in Anurag Basu's film "Gangstar", and his journey in Bollywood was continued with three other films: 'Woh Lamhe' (2006), '"Life... in a Metro" (2007), and "Warning" (2013). In his motherland, James received the Bangladesh National Film Award for Best Male Playback Singer twice for the films "Desha: The Leader" (2014) and "Swatta" (2017). As a solo artist, he has released a total of eight albums and many mixed albums with renowned artists from Bangladesh. "Taray Taray Rotiye Debo" (penned by legendary poet Shamsur Rahman), "Maa", "Bangladesh", "Pagla Hawaa", "Dushtu Chheler Dol", "Guru Ghor Banaila Ki Diya", and "Mirabai" are some of James's iconic Bengali rock numbers that cemented his legacy as 'Guru' to his fans all over the world. 12 years in the making: Rockstar James to launch new song on Eid-ul-Fitr eve Besides being the most iconic living legend in the country’s rock scene, James has also proved his versatility in other mediums as a photographer and media entrepreneur. He is the founder and chairman of the board of the renowned Bangladeshi production house, Red Dot Entertainment.
French cultural institution Alliance Française de Dhaka (AFD) organised an exclusive musical event titled “An Evening with Geet and Ghazal” on Saturday night at its “La Galerie”. Ghazal artists Manzurul Islam Khan and Somdutta Banerjee performed at the event. Agriculture Minister Dr Abdur Razzak attended the event as the chief guest, while additional Commissioner of Dhaka Metropolitan Police AKM Hafiz Akhtar, and Chairman of Asian TV Limited and Director of FBCCI Alhaj Harun Ur Rashid were present as special guests. Manzurul Islam Khan, a vocalist of the country’s mainstream music and semi-classical music, after completing his music education from Chhayanaut, obtained a higher degree in music from Mumbai University, India. He took training at different levels from the music gurus of both countries. At present, Khan is working as a Coordinator at the classical music workshop of Alliance Française de Dhaka. Somdutta Banerjee is a unique and popular artist of West Bengal and Indian Raagasrayi music. She obtained her higher degree from Calcutta University with training under eminent teachers of India. The event was open to all.
After the chaotic altercations happened at the Celebrity Cricket League on Friday night, organisers have postponed the league until further notice. They also informed the media that cases have been filed against the assaulters on Friday night’s game at the Mirpur Shaheed Suhrawardy Indoor Stadium in the capital. The brawl took place during a friendly group match between two teams headed by filmmakers Mostafa Kamal Raz and Dipankar Dipon, resulting in several players being injured, and six of them were taken to the National Institute of Traumatology and Orthopaedic Rehabilitation in the capital. Also read: Star-studded Celebrity Cricket League turns nightmarish amid chaotic fights On Saturday night, the organisers arranged a press conference at the venue where the league was supposed to be concluded on the same day, instead, they had to clarify the foreseeable future surrounding the teams and the league itself. The two team captains were present at the press conference, along with producer Arshad Adnan, who said neither Raz nor Dipon were behind the incident, but the organisers have evaluated the available video footage from multiple sources and filed cases against them. Also read: I was blamed even though I did nothing wrong: Shakib Khan However, the name of the police station and the alleged assaulters were not revealed at the press conference. “The regrettable situation that occurred yesterday (September 29) is quite distressing. Everyone saw that we did not initiate the fight; it began when four or five individuals suddenly assaulted us. They were dressed in supporter t-shirts, and the assaulters even threatened one of our players, actor Manoj Pramanik,” said Dipankar Dipon. “My assistant was brutally attacked by being thrown to the ground. We were stunned, wondering: who are they and where did they come from? After the incident, we demanded from the authorities that we would not leave the field if the situation failed to get resolved. They asked us for one day, and credit goes to them for taking action in the meantime,” he added. Also read: 12 Bangla Dramas to Watch During Eid-ul-Fitr 2023 Meanwhile, producer Mohammad Mostafa Kamal Raj has apologised for his team’s behaviour. "I'm sorry," he said. “I am ashamed of this unexpected incident. Legal action has also been taken against those involved in my party. Since we belong to the same family, we are the ones who solved the matter.” Mostafa Kamal Raj's team won the toss and elected to bat on Friday. They scored 119 runs in the stipulated six overs. Dipankar Dipan's team was scoring runs at a proportional rate when they came out to bat for a big score. But in the end, they lost by 7 runs. The team scored 112 runs in the stipulated 6 overs. The fight broke out after the match. On the other hand, Mostafa Kamal Raz apologised for the behaviour of his team. At the press conference, he said, "I wholeheartedly apologise and am ashamed of this unexpected incident. Legal action has also been taken against the assaulters who were on my team. As we are members of the same family, our showbiz industry, we resolved the matter internally among ourselves.” The organisers, however, did not clarify whether the league will resume shortly or will restart entirely. They did not provide a tentative timeline as well, but informed that it would be announced soon.
Aiming to encourage the Bangladesh National Cricket Team in the upcoming ICC Cricket World Cup, the star-studded 'Celebrity Cricket League' featuring the country's showbiz stars, turned into horrific chaos on Friday night at the Mirpur Shaheed Suhrawardy Indoor Stadium when an unpleasant incident took place. The aforementioned incident took place during a friendly group match between filmmakers Mostafa Kamal Raz and Dipankar Dipon. In the match, Raj's team won the toss, decided to bat first and scored 119 runs in the allotted six overs. Dipankar Dipon's team then collected 112 runs in the allotted 6 overs and lost the match by 7 runs. Top 12 Most Anticipated South Indian Films Releasing in October 2023 However, tensions on the turf intensified during the match and despite efforts to restore normalcy, the situation deteriorated further after the game ended late Friday night, with some players from both sides involved in furious altercations with each other, notably Dhallywood actor Sariful Razz. Video footage has been surfacing online showing the altercations, and the brawl resulted in several players being injured and taken to the National Institute of Traumatology and Orthopaedic Rehabilitation in the capital. 'Jawan' director Atlee says got calls from Hollywood because of this scene Actor Shimul from Dipankar Dipon’s team said that many outsiders played in the match and attacked with ‘an attempt to murder’ while actress Raj Ripa said that Mostafa Kamal Raz and actor Sariful Razz physically assaulted her during the post-match, blaming the organizers for the management failure. Bongo BD to release South Indian comedy movie 'F2: Fun and Frustration' with Bengali version this week Dipankar Dipon said that an official statement will be announced soon after the management evaluates the entire situation. The three-day Celebrity Cricket League was launched on September 28 with 8 teams, each containing 16 members from the country’s showbiz industry. It was set to be concluded today.
After many dramatic ups and downs, popular film actor couple Pori Moni and Shariful Razz are apparently divorced, according to their family sources. Pori Moni posted a status on her verified Facebook page that raised rumours of divorce on social media. Salahuddin Zaki, director of ‘Ghuddi’, passes away “Tomorrow (September 17) is a very important day in my life! A... (signature emoji)... Trust in Allah,” the actress wrote. However, there have been no direct comment from either Pori Moni or Razz on the subject so far. 'Nun 2' narrowly edges 'A Haunting in Venice' over quiet weekend in movie theaters Razz and Pori got married on October 17, 2021. The star couple then completed the formalities in January 2022. ‘We’re not just co-stars’: Deepika on working with Shah Rukh
Showcasing the brilliance of young European and Bangladeshi filmmakers, the five-day European Film Festival started at Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy's National Theater Hall auditorium in Dhaka on Sunday evening. With the tagline “A Celebration of European and Bangladeshi Young Cinema,” the festival is being organized by the European Union in Bangladesh with the Daily Prothom Alo as the prime associate. On Sunday evening, the inaugural ceremony began with an intriguing discussion session, conducted by Charles Whiteley, Ambassador of the European Union (EU) in Dhaka. Prothom Alo executive editor and poet Sajjad Sharif, renowned filmmaker Amitabh Reza Chowdhury, and former Dhaka University Visual Anthropology Club president and film activist Simin Ibnat Dharitree participated in the discussion, titled 'Youth in Cinema'. “This festival is taking place during such an exciting time for our film industry, and our young filmmakers are searching for new languages, presenting unknown experiences of the society. They are looking forward to changing the obstacles in our cinema, in which festivals like this can guide and help them,” Sajjad Sharif said at the panel discussion. Filmmaker Amitabh Reza Chowdhury said, “Whenever I ask people from our new generation, most of them say that they want to leave the country. We need to ensure an environment where they can thrive with their talents. If our cinema cannot tell our stories or cannot resonate with our lives and our own context, this problem will remain with us and we need the support of global film instructors-associates to guide our new generation filmmakers.” Read: ‘Eternal Existence’: Curtain rises on Sourav Chowdhury's 5th solo exhibition at AFD Simon Ibnat Dharitree said that the influence of cinema is very strong in the life of the youth and movies can be useful in the field of intellectual practice and social awareness apart from entertaining audiences. The film screening of the festival began with the screening of the Dutch film ‘Mally Can Fly’, after the inaugural panel discussion. After that, Prothom Alo Editor Matiur Rahman expressed his gratitude to the European Union Embassy in Bangladesh for organizing this film festival and thanked the associate organizers including Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy, Goethe-Institut Bangladesh, Alliance Française de Dhaka and British Council Bangladesh. Earlier, the festival authority organized a 'Masterclass' with young filmmakers to enrich the cultural diversity of Europe and Bangladesh through creative work. Last Friday and Saturday, director Syeda Nigar Banu, cinematographer Apu Rozario, and filmmakers Amitabh Reza Chowdhury and Piplu R Khan conducted the masterclasses at the British Council in Dhaka. At the festival's inauguration ceremony on Sunday, these instructors were honoured by the European Union (EU) Ambassador to Dhaka Charles Whiteley and Prothom Alo editor Matiur Rahman. Read: Curtain rises on 25th National Art Exhibition at BSA A short film competition was organized as part of the festival, and the filmmakers were honoured in three categories. Young director Mostofa Monowar received the Best Story award for his film ‘Passenger’ while Akib Mahmud won the Best Director award for the film ‘Ashlesha’. The festival crowned Mehedi Hasan Joseph's short film ‘Poster’ as the Best Film, and the inauguration ceremony concluded with the screening of the film. EU Ambassador to Dhaka Charles Whiteley, Prothom Alo Editor Matiur Rahman and Chorki CEO Redoan Rony handed over the prizes to the winners. The film screenings will be held at several venues across the country till September 23, including the Alliance Française de Dhaka, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy, Modern Language Institute of Modern Language in Dhaka University, the Dutch Club, Khulna University, Barendra University in Rajshahi and Jatiya Kabi Kazi Nazrul Islam University in Mymensingh. Ambassador Whiteley thanked all the partners and the panellists who have made the festival a reality with brilliant films from the Europe and Bangladesh. He also congratulated the winners of the short film competition. Read more: Curtain rises on Bangladesh Fashion Week 2023
Comedian Russell Brand denies allegations of sexual assault published by three UK news organizations
Three British news organizations reported Saturday that comedian and social influencer Russell Brand has been accused of rape, sexual assault and abuse based on allegations from four women who knew him over a seven-year period at the height of his fame. Brand denied the allegations and said that all of his relationships have been consensual. The Sunday Times, The Times of London and Channel 4's "Dispatches" said that one woman alleged she had been raped, while three others accused him of sexual assault. One of the women also said he had been physically and emotionally abusive. The women said that they only felt ready to tell their stories after being approached by reporters, with some citing Brand's newfound prominence as an online wellness influencer as a factor in their decision to speak. Before the stories were published, Brand posted a video online denying the allegations, which had been outlined in two "extremely disturbing letters" from a "mainstream media" television company and a newspaper. He didn't identify the news organizations by name. "Amidst this litany of astonishing, rather baroque attacks are some very serious allegations that I absolutely refute," he said. "These allegations pertain to the time when I was working in the mainstream, when I was in the newspapers all the time, when I was in the movies and, as I have written about extensively in my books, I was very, very promiscuous." "Now during that time of promiscuity the relationships I had were absolutely, always consensual," he added. "I was always transparent about that then, almost too transparent, and I am being transparent about it now as well." Brand also suggested that the reports were part of a coordinated attack designed to discredit him because of his views. Brand has been criticized for expressing skepticism about COVID-19 vaccines and interviewing contentious podcasters like Joe Rogan. "To see that transparency metastasized into something criminal, that I absolutely deny, makes me question is there another agenda at play," Brand said. Brand rose to fame as a stand-up comic in Britain in the early 2000s, which led to starring roles on Channel 4 and later BBC Radio, where he capitalized on a reputation for outrageous behavior and risque banter. He later made the jump to Hollywood, appearing in films such as "Forgetting Sarah Marshall" in 2008 and the remake of "Arthur" in 2011. Brand was married to U.S. pop star Katy Perry from 2010-2012. In recent years, he transformed himself into a political commentator and influencer posting YouTube videos on subjects such as personal freedom and the COVID-19 pandemic.
Uniting Turkish and Bangladeshi Artistic Visions, the Turkish Embassy in Dhaka initiated an exclusive diplomatic outreach on Friday evening, marking the inauguration of the upcoming "Rising From the Ashes Exhibition 2023." The exclusive exhibition is scheduled to take place from September 22 to September 26, at the Aloki Convention Center, Tejgaon in the capital, aiming to bring together the artistic finesse of Turkish and Bangladeshi creators in a vibrant display open to the public. On Friday, the outreach event was attended by the Turkish Ambassador to Dhaka Ramis Şen, alongside esteemed Turkish diplomats, art connoisseurs, and social leaders, and the event underlines the strengthening of cultural connections between Turkey and Bangladesh. Istanbul's esteemed fashion designer and artist Tuba Ahsan and the "Cemal Toy" Art School spearhead the "Rising from the Ashes 2023" series. Their united cause channels funds to support the construction of sustainable wooden homes for victims of the tragic Turkey-Syria earthquake which occurred on February 6th, this year. Read: PM opens Shahabuddin’s special arts exhibition in city In Dhaka, Tuba Ahsan expands the exhibition, amalgamating talent from Turkish and Bangladeshi artists. This synergy symbolizes her relentless passion for art and charitable causes, capturing the essence of the "Rising From the Ashes Exhibition 2023.”
Hugh Jackman and Deborra-lee Jackman have decided to end their marriage after 27 years and two children. “We have been blessed to share almost 3 decades together as husband and wife in a wonderful, loving marriage. Our journey now is shifting and we have decided to separate to pursue our individual growth,” they said in the joint statement. Their separation was first reported by People magazine. ‘Love doesn’t exist’: Immigrants defy forced marriage abroad They said the statement would be their only one on their breakup. They added that their family is their highest priority and that they’ll undertake “this next chapter with gratitude, love, and kindness.” The couple met in 1995 on the set of an Australian television show where both were actors. Deborra-lee Furness at the time was the more established of the two. They married in 1996 and had two children: Oscar, now 23, and Ava, now 18. Jackman also ascended to major stardom in Hollywood and on Broadway. The couple have been red carpet mainstays for years, posing together at the Oscars, at Broadway events and at the Met Gala, including the most recent edition in May. They attended Wimbledon together in July. Biden signs gay marriage law, calls it ‘a blow against hate’ In April, Jackman celebrated their 27th anniversary with a tribute on Instagram. “I love you so much. Together we have created a beautiful family. And life,” he wrote. “Your laughter, your spirit, generosity, humor, cheekiness, courage and loyalty is an incredible gift to me.” Furness, 67, is an advocate for orphans and adoption, especially in her native Australia, and one of the founding members of National Adoption Awareness Week. Bubly reveals dates of marriage with Shakib, son’s birth Jackman, 54, who played the superhero Wolverine in several movies, is reprising the role in “Deadpool 3,” which is on hold due to the actors strike.
The Biopic titled "Mujib: The Making of a Nation," directed by renowned Indian filmmaker Shyam Benegal, made its debut at the 48th Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) on 13 September 2023. The film, depicting the life and political odyssey of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the Father of the Nation of Bangladesh, resonated deeply with the audience, filling the entire TIFF Bell Lightbox hall to its capacity during the screening. In a statement, Director Shyam Benegal expressed his delight at unveiling the film at this prestigious festival. "I’m sure the story of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and his journey to create the Nation of Bangladesh will echo with people and communities across the globe. It has been an honour to be able to tell this inspiring story of the Making of a Nation."