News Buzz

February 2022

New Portraits of Kate Middleton

As the Duchess of Cambridge (aka Kate Middleton), Catherine turned 40, the Kensington Palace released three new stunning photographs of the future queen to mark her milestone birthday. The portraits, taken by fashion photographer Paolo Roversi, show her wearing different Alexander McQueen dresses.

The dresses will be displayed in Berkshire, St Andrews and Anglesey where Kate has lived and will then be housed in the permanent collection of the National Portrait Gallery.

In the black and white photograph, Kate wears an ethereal white gown along with pearl drop earrings that once belonged to Princess Diana and an off-the-shoulder red Alexander McQueen has been paired with earrings from the collection of Queen Elizabeth.

Atif Aslam Debuts Acting

Atif Aslam is a famous name in the music industry and just like he amazes everyone with his singing, he is winning the hearts of millions once again, but this time with his acting. The star recently ventured into TV with a new serial ‘Sang-e-Mah’.

Fans soon started gushing over the singer praising his role and brilliant performance as Hilmand. The character seems to be a deep and intriguing one and is more like a hermit living in a graveyard with a bunch of his friends. Hilmand’s younger brother is Hikmat (Zaviyar Ijaz) while their father is Haji Marjan played by Nauman Ijaz.

The initial episodes have left us wondering what the story of this character is and why he is living the way he is.

Careem Has New Country Head

Pareem, a ride-hailing service provider serving the Middle East region and Pakistan, has appointed Feroz Jaleel as Country Head for Pakistan.

Feroz Jaleel started his Careem journey in Pakistan over four years ago as part of the core team launching ride-hailing. Since then he has played a key role in leading operational efficiencies across Careem’s markets as Vice President of Strategic Finance. Before joining Careem, Feroz held financial management positions in different organisations operating across telecoms, e-commerce, tech and mobility.

BTS Breaking Records

BTS’ Jungkook’s first post of 2022 has broken the Guinness World Record, which was earlier held by Brazil’s Juilette Freire. The post on Instagram crossed one million likes in just two minutes.

Further Jungkook became the fastest Asian whose Instagram post crossed 1M, 2M, 3M, 4M, 5M, 6M, and 7M likes. The picture that garnered so many views shows the pop star with his dogs in which the singer can be seen lying on the floor.

Back to Music

Hadiqa Kiani, the recipient of Tamgha-e-Imtiaz and Pakistan’s most versatile woman in music, embarks on a new musical journey with the launch of her latest music album ‘VASL’.

With VASL, Kiani explores the roots of her music, reproducing her original compositions from the start of her career for the next generation of Pakistani listeners. The organic Eastern structure of the album aims to create an atmosphere of ease, comfort and peace.

Showcasing her brilliant versatility and melodious voice, Kiani has released the first single from VASL titled ‘Humsafar’ composed and produced by Kiani herself. The poetry for ‘Humsafar’ is penned by Khawar Kiani with a musical arrangement by Hassan Badshah. Visually captured by ace director Abdullah Haris in the scenic hill station, Murree, the music video explores the stunning environment of the region.

‘Maula Vey’ Honours Covid Crusaders

Shehzad Roy has just released ‘Maula Vey,’ a single that pays tribute to the frontline workers, doctors specifically, who risk their lives and often tragically lose their lives while helping others on duty. Featuring Shehzad Roy and Syra Yousuf as a couple bound in isolation, the song has been composed by Shany Haider and renders it as a ballad that tugs at the heart. The feeling of desperation and despondency prevails throughout and plays upon emotions of love and loss.

‘Maula Vey’ is a ballad that is part romantic, part melancholic and one part motivation; the qawwali side-notes serve an uplifting feel and leave one with the confidence that dark times will end. The song paints a very real and yet artistic picture of reality in today’s time.

National Foods Turns 50

To celebrate the completion of 50 years of National Foods Limited, the company organized events across the country and a grand ceremony was held at the National Foods Head Office.

Founded by Waqar Hassan and Abdul Majeed in 1970, the company has now transformed into one of the largest food companies in Pakistan with presence in 40 countries across five continents.

On the occasion, CEO Abrar Hasan said that NFL has been quite successful in staying ahead of others in the industry and has positioned itself in the most competitive way possible. The golden jubilee recognizes the company’s legacy and acknowledges the incredible achievements that are the building blocks for the future.

It is pertinent to mention that besides the production of quality food products, NFL is also actively contributing to sustainability initiatives. With projects like plantation drives and reduction of carbon footprint by 25% through eco-friendly packaging, NFL is setting new standards and trends for other companies.

Anushka Returns

After a long hiatus, Indian actress Anushka Sharma is all set to return to the screen with a biopic titled ‘Chakda Express’ about the career of former Indian cricket captain Jhulan Goswami. The actress was away from the industry for some time after the birth of her daughter.

The actor shared a teaser of the film saying, ‘As a cricketing nation, we have to pay our due to our women cricketers.’ The film will be released on the OTT platform Netflix.

Dubai Chalo!

The couple Sana Javed and Umair Jaswal recently received a Golden Visa from the UAE government which was previously handed over to actor Humayun Saeed. Sana took to Instagram to share the news with a snippet from a Khaleej Times article announcing the same. Umair too described the honour as an amazing feeling.

With a golden visa, foreigners can live, work and study in the UAE without the need of a national sponsor and with 100 per cent ownership of their business on the UAE’s mainland.

Other stars who have received the prestigious golden visa include Cristiano Ronaldo, Shah Rukh Khan, Sanjay Dutt, Suniel Shetty and many others.

Trailblazing Actor No More

Sidney Poitier, the first Black man to win Best Actor Oscar, dies aged 94. The Hollywood star was best known for films like ‘Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner’, ‘In the Heat of the Night Lilies of the Field’, ‘A Raisin in the Sun’ and ‘Uptown Saturday Night’.

Paying tribute to the late actor, Halle Berry shared a picture with Sidney Poitier and wrote a long heartfelt note in his memory calling him an iconic trailblazer.

Known for his remarkable contribution to the world of cinema, the late actor has been an inspiration to many around the globe.

Heritage Collectibles on a Budget

Designer Fahad Hussayn has a penchant for elaborate, intricate design. He creates murals on fabric, art nouveau arches with florals intertwined across them, little scenes etched out of threadwork. His signature is very distinctive, replete with details that seem to be right off an artist’s canvas, translated onto fabric with thread and print. It is luxurious, timeless and very high-end.

A simmered down version of the same aesthetic has been trickled down to relatively affordable price-points in a collection that Fahad has titled ‘Heritage Collectibles’. The eight-piece collection released in collaboration with Rang Rasiya, is very festive, traversing a range of organza and jamawar fabrics with Fahad’s opulent aesthetic being an easily recognizable part of the design.

A violet and mulberry design comes with a heavy neckline and a hem featuring the quintessential Fahad Hussayn arched pattern. A design called Zameen features silk and organza, fashioned into an elaborate kalidar with multiple floral borders. There are hot pink dupattas set off by heavy jacquard borders, wispy ice blues and classic whites. It’s all quite covetable if you’ve got a wedding coming up and have a penchant for couture details, on a budget.

The brand is available even beyond Pakistan as there is a desi clientele from around the world, especially the U.S. that invariably places online orders.

Humayun Saeed Shines in Netflix’s ‘The Crown’

Pakistani actor Humayun Saeed has spent over two decades in the entertainment industry. He has greatly contributed as an actor as well as a producer. The superstar has now hit another major milestone by becoming the first Pakistani actor to have been cast in a Netflix original. He will be seen as Princess Diana’s companion Dr. Hasnat Khan in the upcoming season of ‘The Crown’.

Dr. Hasnat, a British-Pakistani heart and lung surgeon, is widely known for his romantic, two-year relationship with Diana that ended in the early summer of 1997. She is said to have considered him the love of her life.

In 2013, Diana’s close friend Jemima Khan, who was with her on her 1996 Pakistan trip, said the Princess was so madly in love with him that she considered moving to Pakistan to be with him but due to the limelight Diana had, the relationship didn’t go any further.

The fifth season would be coming to Netflix in November 2022. ‘The Crown’ premiered on Netflix in November 2016 and would conclude with a sixth and final season.

Wedding Bells

Saboor Aly and Ali Ansari recently tied the knot in a Nikkah ceremony, which was attended by family, close relatives and celebrity friends. Saboor’s sister Sajal Aly and Ali’s sister Mariam Ansari were spotted handling the couple’s affairs.

The videos and images from the celebrity wedding made rounds on social media showing Saboor made a pretty bride wearing a golden dress while groom Ali opted for a traditional white sherwani and a turban. On the work front, the couple has worked in the drama serial ‘Naqab Zan’.

Armani Cancels Fashion Shows

Amid the coronavirus surge, the Italian fashion house Giorgio Armani cancelled its men’s and haute couture shows scheduled in January due to the surge in COVID-19 infections in Europe.

The designer decided to cancel both the Emporio Armani and Giorgio Armani men’s fall 2022 shows, which was slated to take place in Milan on Jan. 15 and 17, respectively.

It must be noted that the fashion designer was the first in February 2020 to decide to close its runway shows to the public, holding the event without an audience.

The brand also announced that there are no plans for a digital version of the shows.

Basic But Not Basic

In a world cluttered with bling and repetitive design, comes designer Hussain Rehar with his uniqueness deciding to walk a path less trodden and introduce his collection ‘Basic Not Basic’.

A capsule line of 10 designs features clean palettes in raw silk and organza, accentuated by well-placed hand embroideries. Naqshi and crystals are bordering a hem and streaming down from a collar, rectangular borders forming glittering necklines, bunches of florals placed on a single shoulder. Long column shirts lead to long jackets, simmered lehngas and shirts paired with culottes, organza dupattas scattered with beads or sequins. It is fuss-free, elegant and basic.

Hussain’s latest line of luxury-prêt was launched without much fanfare. There was no overt advertising all across social media or a theatrical video announcing its release. It wasn’t placed out on a catwalk and hasn’t even been seen on the red carpet yet, worn by a celebrity. In fact, it isn’t a theatric collection at all, relying on simplicity, cuts, pure fabrics and uniquely placed embellishments. It is also a relatively affordable line compared to heavy-duty designer wear.

It exemplifies that while most design houses are happily creating ubiquitous wedding wear, profits can also be earned with designs that try to push the envelope. Creative, vivacious design that simultaneously has an eye for commerce can be lucrative as well as haul in awards, as is the case with Hussain.

Cricket and Crime Together

Ushna Shah will soon be seen in director Zaheeruddin Ahmed’s crime-thriller that is anticipated to be a fine piece of art and is wrapped in an essence of realism. Ushna will be playing the role of a cricketer. The film also stars Usman Mukhtar who will depict as a police officer.

The film has been on the floors for a while and has recently wrapped up its last schedule. This will be Mukhtar’s fourth feature film after ‘Janaan’, ‘Parchi’ and the unreleased ‘Umro Ayyar’ opposite Sanam Saeed.

American Actor Dies

Famous actor, comedian and director Bob Saget passed away at the age of 65 in his hotel room in Orlando. The actor was on tour and had done a show a day earlier.

Saget was a prominent presence on American television screens throughout the 1990s as the father Danny Tanner on ‘Full House’ and the host of ‘America’s Funniest Home Videos’. He was the narrator on the show ‘How I Met Your Mother’ and often played himself or parodies of himself in one-time or recurring roles in TV shows and films. He also had credits as a director, with his most notable being the cult favourite film ‘Dirty Work’ with Norm MacDonald.