Thursday, February 22, 2024

Shah Rukh Khan greets Saudi Arabia with ‘salam alaikum’ and ‘thank you.’

The actor started with a Muslim benediction at a award ceremony in Riyadh, ‘bismillah al-rahman al-rahim,’ which means to ‘in the name of God, the merciful, the compassionate.

Entertainment Desk :

One of the 15 actors from around the world who won a Joy Excellence Award at a ceremony in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on Monday night was Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan.

The actor started his acceptance speech with a Muslim benediction, “bismillah al-rahman al-rahim,” which means to “in the name of God, the merciful, the compassionate.”

Then he said “salam alaikum” to the throng. Khan, a Muslim who has been married to Hindu Gauri Khan for 28 years, is a promoter of religious tolerance in his native India.

The 53-year-old star went on to talk about the future for Saudi Arabia now that cinemas have opened there (after a ban was lifted last year as part of Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s modernisation efforts).

“We have been talking about the hospitality, the warmth, the goodness and the love that has been showered upon us … and for most of us, it’s our first trip to the Kingdom of Saudi,” Khan said.

The king of Bollywood, @iamsrk , was honored at #JoyForum19, Riyadh🇸🇦 for his contribution to the world’s film industry.
— TURKI ALALSHIKH (@Turki_alalshikh) October 15, 2019

“Inshallah, we all wait with bated breath because cinema has opened up here in the kingdom of Saudi Arabia. You have so many new stories to tell, and we as the world look forward to being of help in any which way we can be of help.”

Other honourees on the night included veteran Egyptian actress Ragaa El Gedawy, who was helped on to the stage by a chivalrous Shah Rukh Khan:

The way @iamsrk treats lady ragaa was really thoughtful and gentle .. it was really nice to have a nice person and a great actor @iamsrk in Saudi 🙏🏼💚
— roro ✨ (@reero1_) October 15, 2019

American Game of Thrones and Aquaman star Jason Momoa also received an award, telling the Saudi crowd that he “fell in love with the country” when he was in the kingdom in 2017.

He went on to talk about how he anticipates change in Saudi Arabia: “It’s beautiful to see in the next generation, the change that’s going to come. Because I fell in love with telling stories, and we all have a story, and I look forward to hearing yours. It’s exciting times.

The @GameOfThrones star, and the #Aquaman Jason Momoa was among the honorees at #JoyForum19, Riyadh🇸🇦

— TURKI ALALSHIKH (@Turki_alalshikh) October 15, 2019

Belgian movie star Jean-Claude Van Damme began his acceptance speech, holding the award in the shape of a gold falcon, saying “the falcon is one of my favourite animals, it’s noble and strong, like your country.”

He went on to say that he’s not just an action hero: “deep inside, I’m not such a tough guy. I love people, I love animals, and I love emotion, so I love you very much, thank you so much for your invitation.”

.@JCVD, a world renowned action film phenomena, and a first class martial artist was honored at #Joyforum19, Riyadh🇸🇦 for his impact on the action film industry.
— TURKI ALALSHIKH (@Turki_alalshikh) October 15, 2019

Hong Kong hero Jackie Chan said “salam alaikum” as soon as he got on stage, and then said he’d like to film in the kingdom soon.

“I know most of you watched my movies growing up. I’ve been making films for 59 years. It’s my first time in Saudi, and I know it’s a big country. After only a few hours here and looking at locations I know it’s a good place for car chasing, explosions, action; so, next time, I hope to come back with my crew”.

.@EyeOfJackieChan a legendary actor, director, and singer was among the honorees at #JoyForum19, Riyadh🇸🇦
— TURKI ALALSHIKH (@Turki_alalshikh) October 15, 2019

Famous Japanese chef Nobu Matsuhisa, who has a restaurant in Dubai, and has hosted a pop-up restaurant in Riyadh, was also given an award. A Nobu hotel is slated to open in Riyadh soon:

Nobu Matsuhisa “was born to be a chef”, and in #JoyForum19, Riyadh🇸🇦, We honor him for his great creativity and finesse.
— TURKI ALALSHIKH (@Turki_alalshikh) October 15, 2019

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