x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

John Abraham to headline football film

Plus: Maya Angelou remembered at service; Akshay Kumar opens self-defence school; and MTV Africa Music Awards held.

John Abraham poses during a press meeting. AFP
John Abraham poses during a press meeting. AFP

There’s another football film in the works: the Bollywood actor John Abraham will play Sibdas Bhaduri in the biopic 1911. Bhaduri captained Mohun Bagan in the historic 1911 IFA Shield Final, where they defeated the East Yorkshire Regiment to become the first Asian team to win the competition. “Football is in my DNA not by design but by passion,” Abraham told reporters. “I am very happy to make a film on football based on such a legendary footballer. It is a very special film. It is a true story about victory, resilience and freedom.” 1911 will be directed by Shoojit Sircar. — IANS

Angelou remembered at service

Family and friends — including Bill Clinton, Michelle Obama and Oprah Winfrey — gathered Saturday to remember the poet, author and civil rights champion Maya Angelou in a memorial service in North Carolina’s Wake Forest University, where she taught for 32 years. Angelou died May 28 at age 86. “Maya Angelou is the greatest woman I have ever known,” Winfrey said, then almost sobbing: “She was my anchor. So it’s hard to describe to you what it means when your anchor shifts.” Obama said: “She celebrated black women’s beauty like no one ever had before. She told us that our worth has nothing to do with what the world might say.” The service featured performances by the singers Lee Ann Womack, BeBe Winans and Alyson Williams. — AP, Reuters

Akshay opens self-defence school

The Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar is opening school in Mumbai next month that trains women in self-defence. He says the initiative, which he co-launched with the young politician Aditya Thackeray, is not for personal gain. “We are here to give something to the society. There is no monetary gain from it. I am doing it because I have earned a lot in life due to martial arts and it is my way to give back,” said Kumar, a black belter in taekwondo. “Whenever I will get time and if I’m in Mumbai, I would teach martial arts to them.” Kumar’s latest film Holiday is out now in UAE cinemas. — IANS

MTV Africa Music Awards held

Lupita Nyong’o won the personality of the year award at the 2014 MTV African Music Awards held in Durban on Saturday, though the 31-year-old Oscar winner was not present to receive her award. South Africa’s afro-pop duo Mafikizolo took the best group award, while their track Khona was voted song of the year. The Nigerian afro-pop artist and producer Davido won the favourite artist of the year award. He also took the best male artist prize while his compatriot, the multi-talented sensation Tiwa Savage took the best female artist award. — AFP