Washington [US], January 31 (ANI): In an effort to increase and improve disability representation on screen, American mass media and entertainment conglomerate NBCUniversal has announced that it will be auditioning actors with disabilities for each new studio production.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, this pledge by the company comes in response to a standing request by the disability advocacy organisation Ruderman Family Foundation, which secured a similar commitment from CBS Entertainment, back in 2019. Projects from the Universal Filmed Entertainment Group, the Universal Studio Group, NBC, and Peacock are included in the studio’s pledge.
Janine Jones-Clark, an executive vice president of inclusion for film, TV, and streaming at NBCUniversal, said in a statement that “NBCUniversal remains committed to creating content that authentically reflects the world we live in and increasing opportunities for those with disabilities is an integral part of that.”
He added, “We are proud to join the Ruderman Family Foundation pledge as calls to action like theirs are important and hold the industry accountable for the work we still need to do in order to see systemic change.”
Recent studies released by the foundation showed that only 22 per cent of characters with disabilities are authentically portrayed on television and that about 80 per cent of TV characters with disabilities are played by non-disabled actors.
As per People magazine, though NBC’s pledge does not include any hiring goals, Eileen Grubba, who is an actor and disability activist, said that even the mere chance at auditions represents a significant step. Grubba, who herself uses a leg brace due to childhood spinal cord damage, has appeared on NBC’s drama series ‘New Amsterdam’. (ANI)
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AKSHAY WRAPS DIU SCHEDULE OF ‘RAM SETU’
NEW DELHI: As Akshay Kumar wrapped the Diu schedule of ‘Ram Setu’, the actor took a moment to cherish the memories of the “incredible” place. Taking to his Instagram handle on Sunday, Akshay posted a picture of himself in his character, posing in front of a scenic landscape. He added the caption, “Taking back amazing memories of Diu as we end a schedule of #RamSetu. Natural beauty, lovely people, don’t miss the famous Pani Kotha fortress-jail at the back. The place is an incredible gem wrapped in history. Diu tujhe dil diya.” Fans flooded the post with likes and comments. “Handsome hunk,” a social media user wrote. “Can’t wait for this film,” another added. Apart from Akshay, ‘Ram Setu’ also stars Jacqueline Fernandez, Satyadev and Nushrratt Bharuccha in key roles. Helmed by Abhishek Sharma and produced by Aruna Bhatia and Vikram Malhotra, the film is slated to hit the silver screens on Diwali next year. It will be an action-adventure drama that will bring to light a story that is deeply rooted in Indian cultural and historical heritage. Following the film’s theatrical release, ‘Ram Setu’ will soon be also available for Amazon Prime members.
DEEPIKA HEADS TO HYDERABAD FOR NAG ASHWIN’S ‘PROJECT K’
Superstar Deepika Padukone has headed to Hyderabad for the shooting of Nag Ashwin’s upcoming film ‘Project K’, co-starring Amitabh Bachchan and Prabhas. Looking every bit like the superstar she is, Deepika sported a cropped lavender blazer-pant set and looked stunning as ever. She teamed up her outfit with silver high heels and a bun.
Tentatively titled ‘Project K’, the movie is a mega canvas, pan India project that’s been in the news ever since its announcement. Deepika joins the team of the multi-lingual on the massive set constructed at Ramoji Filmcity as she forays into the sci-fi genre with ‘Project K’, touted to be one of the most expensive Indian films of all time.
Ahan speaks on being directed by Milan Luthria
Actor Ahan Shetty is currently basking in the success of his debut film ‘Tadap’, which opened on Friday to an overwhelming response. Veteran actor Suniel Shetty’s son, Ahan said he feels “very thankful” that ace filmmaker Milan Luthria, widely known for movies like ‘The Dirty Picture’ and ‘Once Upon a Time in Mumbai’, was the director of his first film as he guided him throughout the whole process.
“He is such an experienced director. But the thing is he doesn’t let that get him. He is a very very chilled-out person on set,” Ahan said in a conversation with ANI.
“I thought he is such a big director. He will be very controlling, very demanding and would have that sort of ego but he didn’t have that at all. He was so open and friendly and even on the sets… throughout the whole process, he let Tara and I take control of our characters. Before certain scenes, he would give us brief .. just like see this is the scene, this is the mood of the scene. He would tell us to go and perform the way you want to perform, if I would want to make few changes I will but just go out there, give your best and do it the way you want to do,” Ahan shared.
DIANA SHOOTING IN ABU DHABI FOR HER UNTITLED-NEXT
MUMBAI: With the teaser of ‘Adbhut’ and the release of her first Malayalam film, Salute, on the horizon, Diana Penty has all our attention right now. After treating us with some scenic, Instagram-worthy content from Shimla recently, the actress has now jetted off to Abu Dhabi for her next project. Taking to her Instagram handle, Diana posted a stunning image of the city of Abu Dhabi. The caption wrote, “Woke up to this beautiful view of Abu Dhabi.” While there hasn’t been any official announcement yet, our sources have revealed that she is shooting her soon-to-be-announced film in Abu Dhabi.
A source revealed, “Diana Penty has a packed calendar with back-to-back shooting slates this year. Currently, the actress is working on an untitled project in which she plays an interesting character and audiences can expect a surprise in a never-seen-before avatar.” From the looks of it, cine lovers and Diana’s fans are in for a treat as she has a number of interesting, diverse projects in the pipeline. The actor makes her Malayalam debut in “Salute” starring alongside Dulquer Salmaan, but what has most people intrigued is the supernatural thriller, “Adbhut”.
TAAPSEE’S ‘SHABAASH MITHU’ TO HIT THEATRES IN FEBRUARY 2022
MUMBAI: Marking legendary India’s Test and ODI skipper Mithali Raj’s birthday, Viacom18 Studios on Friday announced the release date for ‘Shabaash Mithu’, a biopic on the star, featuring Taapsee Pannu in the lead role. The movie is all set to hit the screens worldwide on 4 February 2022. ‘Shabaash Mithu’ is the coming-of-age tale of women’s cricket in India as witnessed by the most successful woman cricketer the country has ever seen. The film chronicles the highs and lows, setbacks and moments of euphoria of Mithali’s life with Taapsee essaying the titular role. Also seen in the film will be the talented actor Vijay Raaz in a key role.
‘Shabaash Mithu’ has been shot across domestic and international locations to aptly bring alive Mithali’s iconic journey and her meteoric rise to the world stage. Directed by Srijit Mukherji with the script written by Priya Aven, the movie is produced by Viacom18 Studios.
ALI FAZAL BAGS NEW HOLLYWOOD FILM ‘KANDAHAR’
MUMBAI: After ‘Death on the Nile’, actor Ali Fazal has bagged a pivotal role in a new Hollywood film titled ‘Kandahar’.
The film is being directed by Ric Roman Waugh, who has previously helmed films including ‘Angel Has Fallen’, and ‘Felon’. Popular Scottish actor Gerard Butler leads the cast as an undercover CIA agent called Tom Harris.
‘Kandahar’ is based on the screenplay developed by Ric Roman Waugh with former military intelligence officer Mitchell LaFortune. The story is based on Mitchell’s experiences at the Defense Intelligence Agency in Afghanistan.
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