Entertainment wRap: Bollywood rises, Korean stars' drug abuse
MANILA, Philippines - Here are Entertainment stories you might have missed from the week of March 11 to 16.
'Slumdog' star says she would have been a wedding planner
Indian actress Freida Pinto of Oscar-winning "Slumdog Millionaire" fame said she would have become a wedding planner if she had not succeeded in show business.
Pinto, a former model, said "my only passion was acting" but she had told her sister that if she hadn't become successful by the age of 25, she would switch professions.
"But fortunately when I was 23, ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ happened and so I didn't become a wedding planner," Pinto, now 28, told a conference organized by Indian media group India Today.
Watch Freida Pinto speak at the India Today Conclave in this video:
Since the actress shot to fame with the 2008 "Slumdog Millionaire," she has worked in other international movie projects like Woody Allen's "You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger," "Rise of the Planet of the Apes," and "Trishna."
Her biggest effort has been to avoid being stereotyped as the "token Indian girl" in Hollywood movies.
"I played the racial ambiguity card when I had to look for roles in the West," she said. "I didn't want to be the ethnic Indian girl, but I had no problem doing (other) ethnic roles," said Pinto, who has played Middle Eastern and Latin American parts.
S. Korean TV celebs charged with propofol abuse
South Korean prosecutors said on Thursday, March 14, they had charged 4 TV celebrities with illegal use of propofol, a short-acting sedative and anaesthetic blamed in the death of US pop legend Michael Jackson.
Park Si-Yeon, Lee Seung-Yeon, Jang Mi-In-Ae, and Hyun Young were charged with taking the prescription drug for "non-medical purposes," a spokesman for the Seoul Central District Prosecutors' Office told AFP. Two doctors who prescribed the drugs for them were also arrested.
"The doctors indiscriminately injected the drugs without consideration of the risks of addiction, to earn more cash," he said.
Propofol is a powerful sedative used as a general anaesthetic. It reduces anxiety and promotes relaxation but may cause a person to experience hallucinations. South Korea classified the drug as a psychotropic medicine two years ago, making it illegal to prescribe or consume other than for stipulated treatments that may need anaesthesia, such as a gastro-intestinal endoscopy.
The 4 South Korean celebrities insisted they received the injections for dermatological and plastic surgery treatments.
Iran to sue over Hollywood films like ‘Argo’
Tehran plans to sue Hollywood production companies over anti-Iranian films, including the Oscar-winning "Argo", a French lawyer hired by the Islamic republic to make the case said on Wednesday.
Isabelle Coutant-Peyre, who arrived in Tehran at the weekend at the invitation of Iran's culture ministry, told AFP she was seeking "legal ways to stop the production of anti-Iranian movies."
"Our case is one of defamation and attacks against honour and reputation" of Iran and its people, she said, referring to movies such as "Argo," "Not Without My Daughter," "300," "Wrestler" and "Unthinkable" for their anti-Iranian content.
Iran has criticised the drama "Argo" as a pro-CIA propaganda film while assailing the 85th Academy Awards as "the most political Oscars ever" for awarding its top honor to the movie.
Coutant-Peyre said “Argo” should be condemned for what she called its "falsification of history" as "it is supposedly based on a declassified story." She said she had watched the movie only "in part."
The lawyer added that Iran "does not want Argo to be banned but it wants a statement saying that the facts recounted in the movie do not correspond to reality."
"Argo" recounts the long-classified CIA plot to extract from revolutionary Iran 6 US hostages who had managed to evade Islamist students storming the US embassy in Tehran on November 4, 1979.
Tale of troubled teens takes SXSW film prize
"Short Term 12," a drama set in a center for troubled teenagers, took top honors for narrative feature film on Tuesday at the South by Southwest (SXSW) festival.
Directed by Destin Daniel Cretton and based on an eponymous short he made in 2008 that won a Sundance jury prize, the film stars Brie Larson as a 20-something foster home supervisor with a difficult past of her own.
Watch an interview of director Destin Cretton about the film here:
"Short Term 12" was among 8 narrative features in competition at SXSW, where interactive technology events concluded Tuesday leaving the indie film segment to continue unfolding as the new-music portion gets underway.
The prize for best documentary went to Brooklyn-based director Ben Nabors' "William and the Windmill," the tale of a young Malawian who builds a windmill from junk parts to lift his family out of poverty.
India's media, entertainment sector set to double by 2017
India's media and entertainment sector is set to double in size in the next 5 years to reach 1,661 billion rupees (US$30.6 billion) by 2017, a study said Tuesday.
Despite a slowdown in the Indian economy, the industry is being driven by growth in regional media, upcoming elections, a strong film industry and digitization, according to the report by global consultancy group KPMG.
The sector grew by 12.6% to 821 billion rupees in 2012 from 2011 and is expected to see a growth rate of 11.8% this year, it said.
Television remains the dominant segment, despite the huge popularity and turnover of the Bollywood film industry.
"In 2012, the economic slowdown hit the industry hard—especially advertising revenue," said the report.
"However, many seeds of positive change were sown this year," it said, pointing to the beginning of the industry's digital transformation, including the roll-out of cable digitisation. –with reports from Peter Imbong and Agence France-Presse/Rappler.com