The movie has come out to mixed reviews, with some praising it as a gripping thriller, and others questioning the ethics of dramatising such tragic, real-life events.
The film is directed by Anthony Maras (The Palace, Azadi) and co-written by Maras and John Collee (Happy Feet, Master and Commander), and stars Dev Patel (Slumdog Millionaire) and Armie Hammer (Call Me By Your Name).
Here’s the true story of the attack that the film is based on, and a look at the characters used in the movie – some of which are based on real people:
What really happened in the 2008 hotel attack in Mumbai?
The Taj Mahal Palace Hotel in Mumbai, which was built at the turn of the century as one of India’s first luxury hotels, was attacked by members of the Pakistani-based Lashkar-e-Taiba terror group on 26 November 2008.
The terrorists entered the building and used assault rifles to open fire on guests and staff, and threw grenades – at least six explosions were counted – before taking the building under siege for 60 hours.
Armie Hammer, Tilda Cobham-Hervey and Nazanin Boniadi in the movie (Photo: Kerry Monteen/Bleecker Street via AP)
The events at the hotel were part of a series of co-ordinated attacks made by the terror group throughout the financial and tourist districts of Mumbai that left at least 170 people dead. Other targets in the city included a luxury restaurant, another landmark luxury hotel, the Oberoi Trident, a train station, a Jewish community centre and a hospital.
The hotel had hundreds of guests checked in when the attack took place – but many people from the streets ran inside the building to take cover during the attacks in the city. There was little information known about what was happening and who was in the hotel at the time, with mixed reports being released.
At least 31 people at the hotel were killed in the onslaught, including guests and staff.
Firefighters were reported at the time to have rescued around 200 hostages. On the first night of the seige people were freed through windows, but it later emerged that more people were being held inside by the gunmen, while some staff had chosen to stay behind to help.
The seige finally ended on 29 November when India’s counter-terrorism operatives stormed the building.
Nine of the 10 terrorists involved in the city’s attacks were killed during the events. The final terrorist was later found and executed.
Are the personal stories and characters in the film real?
Much of the Hotel Mumbai has been inspired by true events during the attack – especially the storyline of Chef Hemant Oberoi, who went out of his way to try and protect the guests at the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel.
In an interview with Time magazine, Maras said the characters in the film take inspiration from real stories and reports from the attack at the hotel, but their depiction has been fictionalised to respect the privacy of the survivors of the attack.
Hotel Mumbai stars Dev Patel as Arjun. (Picture: Sky Cinema)
“It’s something that we tried to approach with as much sensitivity as we could,” Maras told Time. “Obviously blood is spilled on the floor — people have died and there are very pronounced memories of these attacks.”
The director used the example of a waiter played by Patel, who tries to protect guests during the siege by taking actions such as keeping the lights off. Maras said Patel’s character is an amalgamation of two real members of the hotel’s staff – a waiter and an unarmed security guard – who helped guests in the three days they were trapped inside the hotel.
Other characters in the movie, including a wealthy Russian businessman and a couple played by Nazanin Boniadi and Hammer, who have a baby and are forced to make difficult decisions, are fictionalised, but are inspired by fragments of numerous real people’s stories.
What about Chef Oberoi?
Chef Oberoi, the former grand executive chef of the Taj Mahal Palace hotel who was among those who chose to stay on at the hotel and help the guests to escape the attackers, is based on a real person.
Played in the film by Anupam Kher, he is among the survivors of the attack, and the real-life chief has become well known in India for his bravery since the events.
Despite being minutes away from an exit door when the attack happened, the chef stayed and assembled his staff to do what they could to help the guests. “I stayed and it was the right thing to do. It wasn’t a question of bravery”, he told Sky News. He was eventually able to help a number of guests escape the building, despite a number of his team being killed.
After the attacks Oberoi was instrumental in reopening the hotel’s restaurants and has since opened his own eateries.
Hotel Mumbai premiered on Sky Cinema and UK and Ireland cinemas on 27 September.
Watch trailer here;
Actor Umar Krupp nominated for NELAS Awards 2019.
Ghanaian Actor / Movie Producer Umar Krupp has been nominated as best African producer for Nollywood Entertainment and Leadership Awards (NELAS) 2019 in London, United Kingdom (UK).
The youngest movie legend was nominated for producing the movie titled ‘Accra hustlers’.
The nomination which was released early October Saw some media personalities and movie producers like Eddie Nartey, Judith Audu, Kwame Damptey, and others competing with Umar Krupp.
Umar Krupp is one of the best actors in Ghana, very talented in acting, starring and producing great movies like John 3:16, Babani, 18 and more.
The Actor who is hoping to win his category in (NELAS) has gained so many nominations both local and international awards for his unique style of acting and productivity in the movie industry.
NELAS promotes, recognizes and rewards individuals and groups who are working hard in the movie industry in the United Kingdom.
PRINCESS TYRA: “Kofi Adjorlolo Asked The Producer To Replace Me. – Yvonne Nelson.
In the stage of needing much effort or skill to accomplish, deal with the flamboyant stage of her acting career, Ghanaian actress, model, film producer and entrepreneur, Yvonne Nelson has revealed that, veteran Ghanaian actor, Kofi Adjorlolo petitioned the director and producer to get a new cast that will be of perfect quality for Ghanaian Nigerian drama film; Princess Tyra.
According to the then Level 100 student at the Central University College, the producer for the 2007 Ghanaian-Nigerian drama, Abdul Salam Mumuni and director, Frank Rajah Arase entrusted her with the lead cast role in the movie, but contrary, her experience on set as a budding actress wasn't encouraging, and was yielding no result. This she explained, got Kofi Adjorlolo angry and requested for her replacement.
Princess Tyra is a 2007 Ghanaian Nigerian drama film directed by Frank Rajah Arase, and starring Jackie Aygemang, Van Vicker & Yvonne Nelson. The film received 12 nominations and won 2 awards at the 2008 Africa Movie Academy Awards, including the awards for Best Costume & Best Makeup. Nollywood Reinvented gave it a 4 out of 5 rating concluding that "Say what you may against the movie, you can not deny, however, that it was an interesting story".
Narrating the difficulties encountered as a sensational character in an Instagram post sighted by www.georgebritton.com, former Miss Ghana contestant, revealed that, she was invited and handed the script to the movie, by the producer, Abdul Salam to commence shooting without any thorough coaching. According to her, she had no experience to help the crew achieve a successful shoot, a day she revealed was embarrassing, and humiliating.
She revealed that, the pressure encountered as at 2007 when she was just level 100 student interfered in her academics, explaining that, she lost concentration in class, making her assignment presentations unsatisfactory. However, she stated that, she didn't give up on her career despite the hostile or difficulties encountered. According to her, she was focused and determined, as knows success awaits her.
Yvonne Nelson urged Ghanaians to trust the process and protocols of life, because the toil will definitely pay off. She added if you are going through tough times, or under any kind of pressure, just know you’re going to look back and thank those days because most blessings come from (uncertainties,dark days, disappointments, closed doors, heartbreaks etc).
Yvonne Nelson (born November 12, 1985) is a Ghanaian actress, model, film producer and entrepreneur. She has starred in several movies, including House of Gold (2013), Any Other Monday, In April, and Swings. Nelson, a former Miss Ghana contestant, bust onto the movie scene with big-screen roles in Princess Tyra and Playboy.
She delved into movie production in 2011. Her first production was the movie, The Price, which was released that year. She also produced Single and Married in 2012 and House of Gold in 2013. The latter won Best Picture at the Ghana Movie Awards and Best Ghanaian Movie at the 2013 City People Entertainment Awards.
“Desperate Actresses Give Sex To Get The Lead Role. – Vicky Zugah
Actress Vicky Zugah has revealed that most up and coming actresses, who are very desperate to get to the top, easily give in to sexual advances from movie producers and directors.
The actress noted that the phenomenon of sex for roles is a growing canker in the movie industry and producers are using that to take advantage of young actresses.
Speaking in an interview with Naa Ashorkor on Showbiz A-Z on Joy FM Saturday, Vicky noted the issue is on the rise and it is absolutely strange if a director does not ask an actress for sex for a role.
“Sex for roles in the movie industry is very real. I won’t lie about. It’s happened, it’s happening and it will happen again tomorrow and it’s normal,” she said.
The ‘My Darling Princess’ actress explained that, “If you are a woman and you are in the industry and no one is asking you out like a producer, a director or someone who is in charge isn’t asking you for sex then there is something wrong with you, this is what I think because men are attracted to what they see. If you are a fine girl, they will definitely ask you for something.”
She revealed that “Some [up and coming actresses] who are very desperate, they like to get to the top in a minute so they give it out to get what they want so it’s very real.”
With over a decade’s experience in the movie industry, Vicky Zugah disclosed that several directors and producers have demanded sex from her before they give her a role.
Asked if she has ever given in to any of the advances, she responded in the negative and said in “most cases I lose the role.”
The mother of two, however, admitted that she has had sexual relation with a director but not for a role. “He did a lot of jobs without me” because they are some roles that did not fit her.
“You don’t have to necessarily put people in a movie just because you are sleeping with them or you are dating them it’s not right. This one of the reasons the industry is not progressing,” Vicky lamented.
She strongly noted that most big movies feature actresses who have slept with directors or producers and therefore do not deserve their roles.
“You see some people playing a certain kind of role that they don’t fit in,” she stated.
The actress, who also revealed that some directors and producers demand cash for roles, advised up and coming actress that, “if you want to get to the top, work hard.”
She was emphatic that sleeping with directors does not guarantee that they will be cast for a role.
LION KING; THE GIFT: “They Messed The Music Up. – Elton John Criticizes Movie Soundtracks.
In a new interview with British GQ, Elton John shared some choice words about this year’s remake of The Lion King, which starred Beyoncé, Donald Glover, and more. “The new version of The Lion King was a huge disappointment to me, because I believe they messed the music up,” he said. After providing songs for the 1994 film, John added, “Music was so much a part of the original and the music in the current film didn’t have the same impact. The magic and joy were lost.”
John continued, “The soundtrack hasn’t had nearly the same impact in the charts that it had 25 years ago, when it was the bestselling album of the year,” he said. “The new soundtrack fell out of the charts so quickly, despite the massive box-office success.”
In addition to the new film’s standard soundtrack—which featured John’s previous compositions like “Can You Feel the Love Tonight,” as well as his new original “Never Too Late”—a companion album, The Lion King: The Gift, was released. It was curated by Beyoncé and featured Kendrick Lamar, JAY-Z, Tierra Whack, Childish Gambino, and more.
Read the full interview via British GQ.
“I’m Not Ebony Reigns’ Replacement. – Nikki Banks
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“The Future Is Africa. – President Akufo-Addo
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