News Brief

Barkhad Abdi Joins A-List Hollywood Stars for the ‘Blade Runner’ Sequel

The Somali-American actor, who first appeared in ‘Captain Phillips’ has scored his third feature film.

Remember Somali-American actor Barkhad Abdi from Captain Phillips, which scored him an Oscars nomination for Best Supporting Actor in 2013?


The Hollywood Reporter reports Abdi is the latest actor to sign onto Alcon Entertainment’s Blade Runner sequel, also starring Nice Guys Ryan Gosling, Star Wars Harrison Ford, House of Cards Robin Wright and WWE champ Dave Bautista.

Abdi will begin filming the Warner Bros. and Sony Pictures production, which is currently unnamed, in July.

The Denis Villeneuve-directed sequel, based on the novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep by Phillip K. Dick, takes place several decades after the 1982 Ridley Scott sci-fi noir classic.

This is Abdi’s third feature film, he also appeared in Eye In the Sky. He’s come a long way since his humble beginnings in Mogadishu and Minnesota, where he made a living as a limousine chauffeur, a DJ and sold mobile phones (gotta have your side hustle).

It’s clear the words Abdi said to Tom Hanks while portraying a Somali pirate ringleader, “I’m the captain now,” are ringing true.

Interview

Malian Rapper Ami Yerewolo Rises Against All Odds

Ami Yerewolo reflects on her hard-won rap career, new album AY and why she insists on creating support spaces for young female rappers in Mali and beyond.

"No one is a prophet in his or her own land!" This is an accurate way to describe Ami Yerewolo's career to a tee. The Malian rapper's music has not always been popular in her home country, where female rappers are generally frowned upon. Instead, it has taken off abroad. Yerewolo's upbeat sound mixes traditional Malian elements with fast drums, contemporary beats and significant lyrics that compel listeners to reflect on life — all of which makes her songs carry a universal appeal. Her new album, AY (titled after the rapper's initials) has just been released by the label Othentiq.

Yerewolo shares her frank thoughts below...

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