Classifieds powered by Gulf News

Clash of the boy toys: Casper vs Brahim

The 24-year-old dancers have much more in common than their celebrity cougar girlfriends

  • Jennifer Lopez
    Recording artist Jennifer Lopez with choreographer Casper SmartImage Credit: Supplied picture
  • Jennifer Lopez
    MadonnaImage Credit: AP

Madonna’s been to the UAE and JLo’s on her way but that’s not the only thing these ladies have in common.

Both dating their 24-year-old backup dancers, Madge and JLo are fast becoming the most talked about “big cats” of tinsel town — and so too are their respective boys Brahim Zaibat and Casper Smart.

But who are they and which Hollywood jungle were they captured from? tabloid! introduces you to the boys, their older women and investigates the world of big cat terminology.

Who: Brahim Zaibat

Age: 24

Height: 172cm

Religion: Muslim

Born in: Lyon, France.

Job: Dancer.

Jaguar: Madonna (54), mother of four, twice married and reigning Queen of Pop.

Early beginnings: First introduced to hip-hop he began breakdancing in 2000 with the Baby Boom Crew. In 2001 he joined the Pockemon Crew and was successful in a number of competitions around the world. He participated in several competitions as well as the creation of choreographic work for the group.

What makes him unique: His outstanding flexibility as a dancers allows him to achieve signature moves others cannot.

They met: At the launch of Madonna’s new ready-to-wear clothing range, Material Girl, on September 22, 2010, in NYC.

He said: “My mate Norman, who danced for her and who became her personal trainer, asked me to dance at the evening. I performed a solo to Material Girl. Then I met Madonna on the sidelines, and she just thanked me for my show. It wasn’t like meeting a monster. She’s just a woman like all the others. She’s an extraordinary artist and world famous, of course, but a woman above all.”

She said: “I didn’t choose to, you know, I didn’t, like, write down on a piece of paper I’m now going to have a relationship with a younger man,” she told ABC. “That’s just what happened. You see, that’s the romantic in me. I just met someone that I cared for, and this happened to be his age.”



Who: Casper Smart

Age: 24

Height: 172cm

Born in: Anaheim, California

Job: Dancer.

Jaguar: Jennifer Lopez (42), mother of twins, married three times, busy actress and singer.

Early beginnings: He has been a backup dancer for Mike Posner, Nicki Minaj, Beyonce, Pink, Eminem, Sean Paul, Alexandra Burke, Toni Braxton, Alexis Jordan, Jordin Sparks, Natasha Bedingfield and most recently for his beau JLo. You also may have spotted him on shows and flicks including Step Up 3, Honey 2, Alvin and the Chipmunks, Leave It On The Floor, Dance Flick, Glee and How I Met your Mother.

Education: Western High School in Anaheim, California where he graduated in the class of 2005, well after JLo was well-known and married for the third time.

Oops: Smart has had numerous run-ins with the law over the past seven years for motoring misdemeanours, the majority for speeding or driving without a valid licence and failing to show up in court. The young dancer was caught drag racing in 2010 driving a motorbike at over 100mph.

They met: Smart was a dancer on JLo’s tour. He’s now the choreographer. Go figure.

He said: “It was just very natural, you know, natural how it happened. There was nothing before, no flirting. No nothing.”

She said: “For me, the biggest dream is the fairy tale. I will never give up on that dream. It can be difficult for anybody who has to stand by my side, but at the end of the day, I know that I deserve that.”



Big cat lingo explained

Puma: A woman between the age of 30-39 who prefers to date younger men.

Cougar: The same but aged 40-49

Jaguar or sometimes panther: The same for a female aged 50 plus

Cub: The young men being preyed upon.


Other big cats


Mariah Carey, 42: Happily married and two beautiful twins, Carey shocked the world in April 2008 with a quickie marriage to the Up All Night actor Nick Cannon. While media speculated the unlikely duo would soon split, Carey and Cannon, who is 11 years her junior at 31, have so far managed to keep the romance alive welcoming twins Moroccan and Monroe last year.

Mira Sorvino, 44: The Academy Award-winning actress and her husband of eight years, Christopher Backus, are still going strong. Despite a 14-year age difference, the pair welcomed their third child, son Holden, in July 2009. Sorvino met Backus at a friend’s charades party in August 2003 and less than 12 months later they married on June 11, 2004, in a private civil ceremony at the Santa Barbara, California courthouse.


Kathy Griffin, 51: This comedien plans to have the last laugh. Just last month she was snapped on a Miami beach with her 33-year-old man believed to be called Randy.

Sharon Stone, 54: The actress is surely the queen of the Hollywood jungle. Currently dating 27-year-old male model Martin Mica, Stone has done well on the prowl.

Linda Bollea, 51: After divorcing The Hulk she opted for someone younger. Much younger. The Jag pounced on daughter Brooke’s friend, 21-year-old Charlie Hill who is 30 years her junior. They recently called off their engagement.

Famous cubs

Buff actor Hugh Jackman, 42, met Deborra-Lee Furness, 56, in 1995 while co-starring on an Australian TV series. Despite their 14-year age difference, the two married a year later and have remained one of Hollywood’s strongest couples. She and Jackman adopted two children; son, Oscar Maximillian and daughter, Ava Eliot.

After 72-year-old Tina Turner’s marriage to Ike Turner ended in 1978, the singer didn’t seriously get involved with anyone until seven years later, when she met German record exec Erwin Bach, 16 years her junior. The two officially started dating in 1986 and have lived together in unmarried bliss ever since.

Jonathan Bricklin, a 34-year-old ping pong entrepreneur and Susan Sarandon haven’t acknowledged they’re an item, but Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart played that game for a long time, and we all know what happened there. Sarandon, 65, is no stranger to cubs — she was with former partner Tim Robbins, 53, for more than two decades before their recent split.