George, Amal Clooney meet Angela Merkel to discuss refugee crisis



George Clooney and his wife, human rights lawyer Amal Clooney, met with German chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin on Friday to discuss Europe’s growing refugee crisis.

The Clooneys' had a meeting with the German leader Friday morning, in which they discussed the issues surrounding what has been called Europe's greatest refugee crisis since World War II. meeting was also attended by former British foreign secretary David Miliband, who now heads the International Rescue Committee (IRC), according to Hollywood Reporter.

Merkel spokesman Steffen Seibert tweeted that they talked about “refugee policy and the commitment to the IRC.”

Clooney had earlier made clear he supports Merkel’s open-door policy with regards to refugees fleeing the war in Syria. He has called on the US to take in more refugees to help out Europe.

Merkel told reporters that she had had “a very good conversation” with the Clooneys’ and Miliband and exchanged ideas for how governments can cooperate with aid organisations to encourage citizens to volunteer to help refugees.

Clooney will also meet separately with recent refugees to Germany. The actor is in town promoting his film Hail, Caesar!, which opened the Berlin Film Festival on Thursday.

— The National Staff

Kanye West’s lyrics about Taylor Swift ignite new controversy

Kanye West's new album, The Life Of Pablo, has ignited a new controversy between the rapper and pop superstar Taylor Swift.

West debuted his album at the Yeezy Season 3 fashion show at Madison Square Garden in New York on Thursday. The album included a song called, Famous, in which he called the Bad Blood singer a "bitch" and said he made her famous.

On his Twitter account, he said the lyric was not an insult. “I did not diss Taylor Swift and I’ve never dissed her,” he wrote.

“I called Taylor and had a hour long convo with her about the line and she thought it was funny and gave her blessings,” he wrote.

Tree Paine, Swift’s publicist, said in a statement that West did not ask Swift for approval.

"Kanye did not call for approval, but to ask Taylor to release his single Famous on her Twitter account," the statement said. "She declined and cautioned him about releasing a song with such a strong misogynistic message. Taylor was never made aware of the actual lyric."

West defended his use of the word “bitch,” saying it was an endearing term in hip-hop.

Meanwhile, Swift’s friends have come to her defence on social media. Taylor Swift’s brother, Austin, posted an Instagram video of him throwing Yeezy shoes in a trashcan.

West famously interrupted Swift’s speech during the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards when she won for best female video. But the two apparently put differences aside and she introduced him when he won the video vanguard award at the 2015 VMAs. — AP

Barry Manilow’s surgery a success

Barry Manilow is out of surgery and doing well, according to his publicist, after the singer was rushed to Los Angeles following a performance in Memphis because of complications from emergency oral surgery this week.

The 72-year old singer, known for hits Mandy, Can't Smile Without You, Could It Be Magic and Copacabana, had performed a show in Memphis on Wednesday as part of his One Last Time — One Last Tour. His next two concerts were cancelled and are being rescheduled.

His publicist confirmed that the surgery was successful and there were no further complications, adding that he was instructed not to talk or sing for the next 48 hours.

“His doctors report that the surgery was successful and they expect no further complications,” said an emailed statement from Manilow’s publicist, adding that he had been instructed not to talk or sing for the next 48 hours.

A statement on the singers website stated that it was unclear if Manilow, whose latest album My Dream Duets is nominated for a Grammy Award, would attend Monday's ceremony in Los Angeles. — Reuters

Star Wars producers charged over on-set accident

Britain's Health and Safety Executive (HSE) have announced that they are prosecuting Foodles Production (UK) Ltd, Walt Disney's subsidiary, responsible for the filming of Star Wars: The Force Awakens in the country, for violating workplace health and safety laws.

The producers are charged over an on-set mishap that seriously injured actor Harrison Ford, reports aceshowbiz.com.

The 73-year-old actor was left with a broken leg after he was struck by a hydraulic door of the Millennium Falcon during the filming at the famed Pinewood Studios Buckinghamshire.

The HSE said they have sufficient evidence to bring a case against the company to court for violations.

Foodles Production responded that the cast and crew safety was always a top priority, and that full cooperation was offered during the investigation of the on-set accident that occurred in June 2014. — IANS

Anil Kapoor says Indian writers can learn from the West

Actor-producer Anil Kapoor, who is busy gearing up for 24: Season 2, feels there is a lot that writers in India can learn from those in the west.

Kapoor, who starred in and produced 24, the Indian adaptation of the eponymous American show, told IANS that he believes the west produces content that is "phenomenal". He said Indian has great content but not writers who could recreate them on celluloid or TV.

Since 24 launched in India in 2013, format owners — FOX Studios — have been keeping a close eye on the overwhelming response that the show has received from Indian viewers.

24: Season 2 will see more action and thrill as Kapoor's character, Jai Singh Rathod, is set to prevent a probable tragedy.

Kapoor said they have added more action sequences in the new season that have been directed by Allan Amin.

The new season will also feature Sakshi Tanwar, Surveen Chawla, Ashish Vidyarthi, Sikandar Kher and Ritu Shivpuri. -- IANS

Deadpool scores record-breaking $12.7M on opening day

Deadpool got off to a blazing start, with a stunning $12.7 million (Dh46.6m) in weekend previews.

The movie was the biggest Thursday preview for an R-rated movie, ahead of Fifty Shades of Grey ($8.6m on this very weekend last year) and The Hangover part II ($10.4m back in 2011), reports Forbes.

The 20th Century Fox production, which is, of course, a spin-off of X-Men Origins: Wolverine, is something of a test case in terms of selling a hard-R superhero comic book movie, something we haven't seen that much of since Wesley Snipes's Blade franchise came-and-went over a six-year period. — The National Staff

Apple and Dr Dre are said to be planning an original TV show

Apple is working on an original television show with Dr Dre, the co-founder of Beats Music and an Apple executive, according to a person with knowledge of the project.

The show, currently titled Vital Signs, will be an Apple Music project offered through Apple TV, the company's streaming video device, said the person, who asked to remain anonymous, reports The Telegraph.

The show, which was first reported by the Hollywood Reporter, could be Apple's first big television venture. The person said it was not clear when the show would be available.

Creating a show with Dr Dre, whose real name is Andre Young, would help Apple overcome some of its content difficulties. Dr Dre joined Apple after it acquired his Beats Music for $3 billion in 2014. In addition to working with Apple Music, he produced the 2015 film Straight Outta Compton, which is based on his musical career.

The television show is Dr Dre’s project and Apple is backing it, one person said.

An Apple spokeswoman declined to comment on the project, but noted that the last quarter of 2015 was the best for Apple TV sales. Apple Music recently signed its own content agreements, including a deal to stream a concert film from Taylor Swift’s world tour. — The National Staff

The Old Slave and the Mastiff

Patrick Chamoiseau

Translated from the French and Creole by Linda Coverdale

Our legal columnist

Name: Yousef Al Bahar

Advocate at Al Bahar & Associate Advocates and Legal Consultants, established in 1994

Education: Mr Al Bahar was born in 1979 and graduated in 2008 from the Judicial Institute. He took after his father, who was one of the first Emirati lawyers

COMPANY PROFILE

Name: Xpanceo

Started: 2018

Founders: Roman Axelrod, Valentyn Volkov

Based: Dubai, UAE

Industry: Smart contact lenses, augmented/virtual reality

Funding: $40 million

Investor: Opportunity Venture (Asia)

Where to donate in the UAE

The Emirates Charity Portal

You can donate to several registered charities through a “donation catalogue”. The use of the donation is quite specific, such as buying a fan for a poor family in Niger for Dh130.

The General Authority of Islamic Affairs & Endowments

The site has an e-donation service accepting debit card, credit card or e-Dirham, an electronic payment tool developed by the Ministry of Finance and First Abu Dhabi Bank.

Al Noor Special Needs Centre

You can donate online or order Smiles n’ Stuff products handcrafted by Al Noor students. The centre publishes a wish list of extras needed, starting at Dh500.

Beit Al Khair Society

Beit Al Khair Society has the motto “From – and to – the UAE,” with donations going towards the neediest in the country. Its website has a list of physical donation sites, but people can also contribute money by SMS, bank transfer and through the hotline 800-22554.

Dar Al Ber Society

Dar Al Ber Society, which has charity projects in 39 countries, accept cash payments, money transfers or SMS donations. Its donation hotline is 800-79.

Dubai Cares

Dubai Cares provides several options for individuals and companies to donate, including online, through banks, at retail outlets, via phone and by purchasing Dubai Cares branded merchandise. It is currently running a campaign called Bookings 2030, which allows people to help change the future of six underprivileged children and young people.

Emirates Airline Foundation

Those who travel on Emirates have undoubtedly seen the little donation envelopes in the seat pockets. But the foundation also accepts donations online and in the form of Skywards Miles. Donated miles are used to sponsor travel for doctors, surgeons, engineers and other professionals volunteering on humanitarian missions around the world.

Emirates Red Crescent

On the Emirates Red Crescent website you can choose between 35 different purposes for your donation, such as providing food for fasters, supporting debtors and contributing to a refugee women fund. It also has a list of bank accounts for each donation type.

Gulf for Good

Gulf for Good raises funds for partner charity projects through challenges, like climbing Kilimanjaro and cycling through Thailand. This year’s projects are in partnership with Street Child Nepal, Larchfield Kids, the Foundation for African Empowerment and SOS Children's Villages. Since 2001, the organisation has raised more than $3.5 million (Dh12.8m) in support of over 50 children’s charities.

Noor Dubai Foundation

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum launched the Noor Dubai Foundation a decade ago with the aim of eliminating all forms of preventable blindness globally. You can donate Dh50 to support mobile eye camps by texting the word “Noor” to 4565 (Etisalat) or 4849 (du).

The Witcher - season three

Director: Various

Stars:
Henry Cavill, Freya Allan, Anya Chalotra

Rating:
3/5

The five pillars of Islam

1. Fasting

2. Prayer

3. Hajj

4. Shahada

5. Zakat 

Ain Dubai in numbers

126: The length in metres of the legs supporting the structure

1 football pitch: The length of each permanent spoke is longer than a professional soccer pitch

16 A380 Airbuses: The equivalent weight of the wheel rim.

9,000 tonnes: The amount of steel used to construct the project.

5 tonnes: The weight of each permanent spoke that is holding the wheel rim in place

192: The amount of cable wires used to create the wheel. They measure a distance of 2,4000km in total, the equivalent of the distance between Dubai and Cairo.

The five pillars of Islam
COMPANY PROFILE

Company name: Almouneer
Started: 2017
Founders: Dr Noha Khater and Rania Kadry
Based: Egypt
Number of staff: 120
Investment: Bootstrapped, with support from Insead and Egyptian government, seed round of
$3.6 million led by Global Ventures

Super Saturday results

4pm: Mahab Al Shimaal Group 3 | US$350,000 | (Dirt) | 1,200m
Winner: Drafted, Pat Dobbs (jockey), Doug Watson (trainer).

4.35pm: Al Bastakiya Listed | $300,000 | (D) | 1,900m
Winner: Divine Image, Brett Doyle, Charlie Appleby.

5.10pm: Nad Al Sheba Turf Group 3 | $350,000 | (Turf) | 1,200m
Winner: Blue Point, William Buick, Charlie Appleby.

5.45pm: Burj Nahaar Group 3 | $350,000 | (D) | 1,600m
Winner: Muntazah, Jim Crowley, Doug Watson.

6.20pm: Dubai City of Gold Group 2 | $300,000 | (T) | 2,410m
Winner: Old Persian, William Buick, Charlie Appleby.

6.55pm: Al Maktoum Challenge Round 3 Group 1 | $600,000 | (D) | 2,000m
Winner: Capezzano, Mickael Barzalona, Salem bin Ghadayer.

7.30pm: Jebel Hatta Group 1 | $400,000 | (T) | 1,800m
Winner: Dream Castle, Christophe Soumillon, Saeed bin Suroor.

The biog

Favourite book: You Are the Placebo – Making your mind matter, by Dr Joe Dispenza

Hobby: Running and watching Welsh rugby

Travel destination: Cyprus in the summer

Life goals: To be an aspirational and passionate University educator, enjoy life, be healthy and be the best dad possible.

The Specs

Engine: 1.6-litre 4-cylinder petrol
Power: 118hp
Torque: 149Nm
Transmission: Six-speed automatic
Price: From Dh61,500
On sale: Now

CABINET OF CURIOSITIES EPISODE 1: LOT 36

Director: Guillermo del Toro
Stars: Tim Blake Nelson, Sebastian Roche, Elpidia Carrillo
Rating: 4/5

Indian origin executives leading top technology firms

Sundar Pichai

Chief executive, Google and Alphabet

Satya Nadella

Chief executive, Microsoft

Ajaypal Singh Banga

President and chief executive, Mastercard

Shantanu Narayen

Chief executive, chairman, and president, Adobe

Indra Nooyi  

Board of directors, Amazon and former chief executive, PepsiCo

 

 

Living in...

This article is part of a guide on where to live in the UAE. Our reporters will profile some of the country’s most desirable districts, provide an estimate of rental prices and introduce you to some of the residents who call each area home. 

The Details

Article 15
Produced by: Carnival Cinemas, Zee Studios
Directed by: Anubhav Sinha
Starring: Ayushmann Khurrana, Kumud Mishra, Manoj Pahwa, Sayani Gupta, Zeeshan Ayyub
Our rating: 4/5 

Company Profile

Company name: Hoopla
Date started: March 2023
Founder: Jacqueline Perrottet
Based: Dubai
Number of staff: 10
Investment stage: Pre-seed
Investment required: $500,000

ANATOMY OF A FALL

Director: Justine Triet

Starring: Sandra Huller, Swann Arlaud, Milo Machado-Graner

Rating: 5/5

The Baghdad Clock

Shahad Al Rawi, Oneworld

WISH

Directors: Chris Buck, Fawn Veerasunthorn
Stars: Ariana DeBose, Chris Pine, Alan Tudyk
Rating: 3.5/5

Company Profile

Name: HyveGeo
Started: 2023
Founders: Abdulaziz bin Redha, Dr Samsurin Welch, Eva Morales and Dr Harjit Singh
Based: Cambridge and Dubai
Number of employees: 8
Industry: Sustainability & Environment
Funding: $200,000 plus undisclosed grant
Investors: Venture capital and government

GOLF’S RAHMBO

- 5 wins in 22 months as pro
- Three wins in past 10 starts
- 45 pro starts worldwide: 5 wins, 17 top 5s
- Ranked 551th in world on debut, now No 4 (was No 2 earlier this year)
- 5th player in last 30 years to win 3 European Tour and 2 PGA Tour titles before age 24 (Woods, Garcia, McIlroy, Spieth)

Match info

Premier League

Manchester United 2 (Martial 30', Lingard 69')
Arsenal 2 (Mustafi 26', Rojo 68' OG)

Company Profile

Name: Raha
Started: 2022
Based: Kuwait/Saudi
Industry: Tech Logistics
Funding: $14 million
Investors: Soor Capital, eWTP Arabia Capital, Aujan Enterprises, Nox Management, Cedar Mundi Ventures
Number of employees: 166

THE SPECS

Engine: 1.5-litre, four-cylinder turbo

Transmission: seven-speed dual clutch automatic

Power: 169bhp

Torque: 250Nm

Price: Dh54,500

On sale: now

Kill

Director: Nikhil Nagesh Bhat

Starring: Lakshya, Tanya Maniktala, Ashish Vidyarthi, Harsh Chhaya, Raghav Juyal

Rating: 4.5/5

All The Light We Cannot See

Creator: Steven Knight

Stars: Mark Ruffalo, Hugh Laurie, Aria Mia Loberti

Rating: 1/5 

Civil War

Director: Alex Garland 

Starring: Kirsten Dunst, Cailee Spaeny, Wagner Moura, Nick Offerman

Rating: 4/5