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Goodbye Doctor Zhivago: Actor Omar Sharif succumbs to cardiac arrest in Cairo

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London: Egyptian-born actor Omar Sharif, best known for his part in David Lean’s “Lawrence of Arabia” and the lead role in “Doctor Zhivago”, died of cardiac arrest on Friday, media reports said. He was 83.

“He suffered a heart attack this afternoon in a hospital in Cairo,” BBC quoted his agent Steve Kenis as saying.

Born Michel Demetri Chalhoub on April 10, 1932 in a Catholic family of Lebanese descent, Sharif started his career in Egyptian films in 1953 with “Sira Fi al-Wadi” (“The Blazing Sun”) opposite Faten Hamama, whom he later married (they were divorced in 1974).

He worked in over 20 films before being approached for the role of Sharif Ali in “Lawrence of Arabia” (1962) which was his first Hollywood movie.

As Sharif Ali, who silently glides from the dunes early in the movie and kills Lawrence’s guide for drinking from his well before taunting him “Have you no fear, English?”, Sharif more than held his own against a star-studded cast which included Peter O’Toole as Lawrence, Alec Guinness as Prince Feisal, Anthony Quinn as Auda and Claude Rains as Dryden.

He was nominated for the Oscars but didn’t win though. Later, he received two Golden Globe awards for his role.

His most famous work was as the title role of the tormented poet in Lean’s 1965 adapation of Boris Pasternak’s “Doctor Zhivago”, opposite Julie Christie as Larissa ‘Lara’ Antipova. He again did not win any of the five Oscars the film garnered for its epic cinematography and haunting music, especially “Lara’s Theme”, by Maurice Jarre but won a further Golden Globe three years later.

Among other major roles of the multi-lingual Sharif, who was comfortable in any cultural and historic setting, were as iconic revolutionary Che Guevara in “Che”, a German officer trying to trace a psychopathic murderer among the top brass in “The Night of the Generals”, in “The Fall of the Roman Empire”, as Genghis Khan in an eponymous film, the villain Colorado in Gregory Peck-starrer western treasure hunt “Mackenna’s Gold”, and a Soviet spy in Cold War drama “The Tamarind Seed”.

On TV, he essayed the role of doomed Czar Nicholas II in mini series “Anastasia” as well as of Khuda Daad in an adaption of M.M.Kaye’s “The Far Pavillions”.

Sharif, who was a devoted bridge player and authored several books on the card game, was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2012.

(IANS)

 

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Filmmaker Anurag Kashyap Expresses His Thoughts on Violence Staged in Hollywood

"My idea of creating violence is to put the viewer off it, where it disturbs them," Anurag added

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Anurag Kashyap
Anurag Kashyap, flickr

Known as a master of making violence-based movies in Hindi cinema, filmmaker Anurag Kashyap expressed his thoughts on violence staged in Hollywood, saying American movies dont really explore violence.

According to Anurag Kashyap, Hollywood movies focus more on commercialisation.

“America is always middle of the ground, they always borrow from everywhere and make it more palatable and commercial but they don’t really explore violence barring some of the exploitation movies. They know how to commercialize everything, they are the Mcdonalds version of action and violence,” he said in a conversation for Royal Stag Barrel Select Large Short Films Perfect Strokes with Anupama Chopra.

Be it movie “Gangs of Wasseypur” or web show “Sacred Games”, Anurag Kashyap never leave a chance to show violence, killings and other brutal scenes in his projects.

Anurag Kashyap delivered once again in the form of 'Mukkabaaz.'Wikimedia Commons
Hollywood doesn’t really explore violence: Anurag Kashyap.’Wikimedia Commons

Sharing his idea of violence, the 46-year-old director revealed that he does not like to see usage of violence in superhero movies as he believes mainstream films and superhero movies celebrate violence rather than showing its depth.

“I like the whole idea of taking people through that whole motion of what’s the worst fear that they might have. I get borthered by seeing celebratory violence that I see in mainstream movies or the superhero movie where the violence makes you feel like wanting to be a hero and getting into a fight.

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“My idea of creating violence is to put the viewer off it, where it disturbs them,” Anurag added.

The episode featuring Anurag will be out on Wednesday. (IANS)