When Dev Patel came to Dubai
Chivas held its Icons dinner last night at Play in Dubai’s H Hotel. The guest star was Dev Patel and the event featured a Q&A with Esquire’s Jeremy Lawrence.
The Icons initiative was launched in 2016 to celebrate individuals in The Gulf, who not only make a difference themselves, but also inspire others to live up to the Chivas motto: #WinTheRightWay. And Dev Patel, though only 27, is a perfect choice for the accolade.
The London-born actor was catapulted to success in 2009 when he starred in the Academy Award winning Slumdog Millionaire. He went on to star in a string of successful movies, including The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Chappie and The Man Who Knew Infinity. His portrayal of Neal Sampat on HBO’s The Newsroom garnered more awards.
Most recently, he took his career to another new level. Starring opposite Nicole Kidman and Sunny Parwar in the powerful drama, Lion, he won a BAFTA and was nominated for a Golden Globe and an Academy Award. Lion tells the true story of Saroo Brierley, an Indian child lost many miles from his home, and his decade-long struggle to return to his family. Each year a staggering 80,000 children go missing in India, with a further 11 million living on the streets.
The #Lionheart campaign was inspired, in part, by the 2016 movie, and Patel is an active participant. Lionheart supports three Indian charities that work to protect children in India and around the world. Introducing Patel to the stage, Jeremy Lawrence said to the audience, “He is the embodiment of this powerful message - the ambition to succeed should be shared by a passion to make a positive impact on the lives of others.”
Patel shared the story of his rapid rise to fame, how he’s managed to stay grounded since then, his ambitions for the future, and what life is like in his new adopted home of LA. Afterwards, there were questions from the audience, who were keen to learn more about his inspirations.
The Chivas Icons series has deep roots in the history of the brand. It was launched in 1909 by two brothers – John and James – who, from humble beginnings in rural Scotland, founded Chivas and enjoyed great success. More importantly, they shared the fruits of that success. Their family motto, long before they started in business, was: “By Virtue. Not By Force". And so, with that in mind, they made sizeable donations to charity and were active in their local community.
And hence the stylish event last night, with its very 21st century hashtag, “Win The Right Way”, was based on values that the Chivas brothers lived by over a century before. And we say cheers to that.
Dev Patel will feature on the June cover of Esquire. Exclusive video footage shot throughout the day will be available soon on esquireme.com.