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By Sugandha Rawal
M. Night Shyamalan, the US-based Indian-origin filmmaker, feels the wave of tribalism is taking over the world with people getting scared about losing their distinct identity. But the filmmaker says it is time to join the “larger group” and embrace the power of diversity.
The filmmaker is looking forward to the release of his film “Glass” — a superhero movie with a psychological twist.
Asked to point out one superpower the world needs right now, Shyamalan told IANS in an exclusive interview over the phone: “What we are seeing right now is a strong dose of tribalism where we are seeing nationalism from different countries… kind of rear its head.”
“This is a moment of globalisation and every country is worried that its distinct identity is going to go away and everybody is fighting for the old ways at the moment.
“But the courage to be part of a larger group, I don’t know if it is a superpower, but it is obviously something that we need right now,” added the filmmaker.
Talking about real life superheroes, he said: “We (my wife and I) have a foundation. And the format of the foundation is that we look for grassroot leaders around the world. My wife actually goes and finds them wherever they are in the world.
“If they pass the vetting process, then we ask them what they want and give them whatever they need. If they need money for the school bus, they want to dig a water well or want to build a school, we support them.
“They are amazing and they are the real life superheroes. They are kind of doing things in the war-torn areas and in areas where nobody can achieve any kind of good. And we are super inspired to be around these people.”
The director is happy with diversity wave making strides in the entertainment industry in the West.
“There is definitely a powerful message when people see heroes that look like other people or minorities get to see themselves in the protagonist’s position. It does cause a big change in the culture. And shifting of what is normal for a white family who is watching a show that has a non-white lead.”
He thinks it is a “powerful thing”.
“I think that there are important strides that are being made. And point of view is important…When you have non-white filmmakers or female filmmakers, we are going to get different types of stories, different types of strengths and we need those,” he said, quipping “I am non-white so I am probably biased about it all”.
With his roots tracing back to India, Shyamalan moved to the US as a child, and developed a passion to capture life through a camera when he was given one at the age of 8 — the moment nudged him towards filmmaking and inspired him to make a career out of it.
He made his first film “Praying with Anger” when he was 21, but his life changed after his breakout hit “The Sixth Sense” in 1999. He is also credited for projects like “The Visit”, “Wayward Pines”, “The Last Airbender”, “The Happening”, “After Earth”, “Split” and “Unbreakable”.
Now, he has converged the world of “Split” (a story about a man with over 20 different personalities who kidnaps three teenage girls) and “Unbreakable” (about David Dunn who gets superhero abilities after surviving a train crash) in “Glass”.
The awaited sequel to “Unbreakable” and “Split” stars Samuel L. Jackson, Bruce Willis, James McAvoy and Sarah Paulson. Disney India is releasing the film in India. It will open on January 18.
Shyamalan points that “Unbreakable” (released in 2000) and “Split” (which opened in 2016) weren’t meant to be separate movies.
“It has always been one story. ‘Split’ was in the original outline of ‘Unbreakable’. But when I was outlining it, it felt way too complicated.
“When you put somebody in jeopardy like the girls in ‘Split’, there is a ticking clock and pressure that starts and you are unable to do character work once that clock starts. When you have two storylines — one is about a man who survives a train wreck and becomes a superhero and another is a bunch of girls getting abducted by person — the character study diminish. The audience doesn’t want to do anything and just save the girls.
“So, I pulled out ‘Split’ out of ‘Unbreakable’,” he said, adding that “Unbreakable” was perceived as a non-commercial thing to make a movie at the time of release. (IANS)
Cricket fans can now book the ultimate experience with the official accommodation booking partner for the ICC Men's T20 World Cup, Booking.com. The T20 Pavillion, a bespoke cricket-themed luxury stay that transforms the Presidential Suite at Grand Hyatt Mumbai Hotel and Residences into a classic cricket stadium.
The suite offers guests an all-inclusive once-in-a-lifetime experience during the India vs Pakistan ICC Men's T20 World Cup match on October 24, 2021, packed with quirks and luxuries that is sure to satisfy even the biggest cricket enthusiast. Additionally, as a part of the experience, guests will also have the exclusive opportunity to meet Bollywood actor Shraddha Kapoor at The T20 Pavilion.
The booking window that opens at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday and will be booked on a 'first come, first serve' basis with check-in date on October 24, 2021 and check-out on October 25, 2021. | Photo by Alessandro Bogliari on Unsplash
For one night only, guests can soak in the energy of a roaring stadium to enjoy the epic match on a life-sized screen while seated on comfortable sofas -- just like the luxury box seats at the stadium. They can also head to the locker room (dining room) next to the field (living room) to have some energy drinks, just like a cricketer would do or head to the bedroom, transformed into a net practice area. It's got the field, the pitch, the locker room, pitching nets and cricket memorabilia infused in every element of the room.
The booking window opens at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday and will be booked on a 'first come, first serve' basis with check-in date on October 24, 2021, and check-out on October 25, 2021. The T20 Pavilion is priced at Rs 6666 only in honour of all the great sixes smashed at the T20 World Cup. The T20 Pavilion can accommodate up to four guests. Cricket fans can visit the website or mobile app to book this cricket-inspired stay. (IANS/ MBI)
Amid the rush to find quick treatments for Covid-19 last year, the world saw a global race to find new stem cell-based treatments. Now, researchers report that such therapies were filled with violations of government regulations, inflated medical claims and distorted public communication. There are reports of patients suffering physical harm -- including blindness and death -- from unproven stem cell therapies.
"Efforts to rapidly develop therapeutic interventions should never occur at the expense of the ethical and scientific standards that are at the heart of responsible clinical research and innovation," said lead study author Laertis Ikonomou, associate professor of oral biology at University at Buffalo, New York. There are clinics offering unproven and unsafe "stem cell" therapies that promise to prevent Covid-19 by strengthening the immune system or improving overall health, the researchers noted in the paper published in the journal Stem Cell Reports.
There are reports of patients suffering physical harm -- including blindness and death -- from unproven stem cell therapies. | Photo by Viktor Forgacs on Unsplash
The findings from preliminary studies on possible stem cell-based Covid-19 treatments are frequently being exaggerated through press releases, social media and uncritical news media reports. Clinics selling supposed stem cell treatments on a direct-to-consumer basis sometimes use these findings and news reports to exploit the fears of vulnerable patients by unethically advertising the unproven benefits of stem cell treatments to boost the immune system, regenerate lung tissue and prevent transmission of Covid-19, said co-author Leigh Turner from the University of California, Irvine.
"Patients suffer financially as well, as the products range in price from a few thousand to tens of thousands of dollars, and people are often encouraged to receive the expensive treatments every few months," added Ikonomou. Patients led to believe they are protected against Covid-19 may decide against vaccination, stop wearing masks, cease engaging in physical distancing, or otherwise avoid behaviours intended to promote personal safety and public health.
They may also become less likely to take part in carefully-developed clinical trials conducted by companies that follow ethical standards. "Scientists, regulators and policymakers must guard against the proliferation of poorly designed, underpowered and duplicative studies that are launched with undue haste because of the pandemic, but are unlikely to provide convincing, clinically meaningful safety and efficacy data," Turner stressed. (IANS/ MBI)
Keywords: findings,studies,therapies,unproven,reports,treatments, pandemic, covid, world
By N. Lothungbeni Humtsoe
Travelling calories don't count but it's important to keep yourself in shape. Working out has become more of a lifestyle than any leisure activity. It indeed gets difficult to maintain timely eating habits. But there are always some ways out if you are willing to choose healthily. Dietician and Nutritionist Sakina Mustansir shares few ways to keep a balanced diet:
- Try to eat homemade food/cook your own meal: There is an old saying, "your mood changes when you eat according to the person's mood who made it." Even when you cook unhealthy food it becomes healthy when it's made at home. It's always convenient to carry food from home rather than eating at roadside vendors or unhygienic food. So, try to cook your own meal wherever possible. Also carry munching snacks like nuts, dried fruits, peanut butter sandwiches or whole wheat/multigrain bread sandwiches, protein bars etc.
There is an old saying, "your mood changes when you eat according to the person's mood who made it." | Photo by Gayatri Malhotra on Unsplash
- Stay hydrated: No amount of soft drinks or hard drinks will subside the need for water in our body. It's always recommended to be hydrated. Research shows when you are dehydrated it results in forced hunger cravings. You confuse hunger with thirst and get sugary food cravings or indulge in binge eating. Do you know? Drinking water before every meal cuts the portion size and you end up intaking fewer calories.* Don't skip or avoid breakfast: Most of the people skip breakfasts on the trip which makes them more lethargic which enables them to follow healthy eating patterns. If you eat a healthy breakfast your body fills up the nutrients and proteins it requires for the day and starves the carvings off. Buffet breakfast is a trap, don't indulge in overeating either. Cater to the energy your body needs at the moment. While travelling, never skip breakfast. Always aim for a good healthy breakfast so as to avoid hunger pangs and binging on unhealthy snacks later during the day. Also carry some uncut fruits or boiled eggs or chickpeas from the breakfast table for later, to keep you energetic for the exploration.
Research shows when you are dehydrated it results in forced hunger cravings. | Photo by Brendan Church on Unsplash
- Avoid alcohol or sugary beverages: The calories in beverages are more reactive as compared to the calories in solid food. Being on a vacation doesn't mean your liver is on a vacation as well. Cutting on calories or alcohol fat is more difficult than cutting down the vacation fat. Avoid sodas if that's convenient.
Being on a vacation doesn't mean your liver is on a vacation as well. | Photo by Marjan Blan | @marjanblan on Unsplash
- Local cuisine: Usually the most authentic local cuisine also happens to be the healthiest. So while traveling, always try the country's authentic cuisine rather than fast food joints and processed foods. This will not only keep you healthy and give you more energy to explore but you will have an opportunity to taste different cuisines and experience their culture.
While traveling, always try the country's authentic cuisine rather than fast food joints and processed foods. | Photo by Brooke Lark on Unsplash
- Don't stress about treats: Give yourself a break, don't keep a count on everything you eat. You always end up eating more if you stress about what you eat all the time. Having a healthy relationship with what you eat is important. Plenty of vegetables are healthier than you are aware of.
Give yourself a break, don't keep a count on everything you eat. | Photo by JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash
Any weight you gain while you travel is most likely to be water retention or constipation. You are most likely to reduce this in a span of one week when you're back to your lifestyle. Be diligent with your exercise or walks while travelling. (IANS/MBI)
Keywords: Food, Balanced Diet, Travel, Home-made, Taste, Eatables, Vegetables, Healthy, Nutrition