IIFA 2007 in Yorkshire rocks
The 8th annual Iifa awards saw brand ambassador Amitabh Bachchan take a train ride with son Abhishek and daughter-in-law Aishwarya Rai to the grand IIFA 2007 event. Amitabh Bachchan and Shilpa Shetty opened the event inside Leeds Town Hall where brand ambassador Amitabh was given a special gift of a blue blazer with the words Yorkshire all over it. At the 8th annual Iifa opening Amitabh said “Iifa is really a celebration of Indian cinema beyond Indian shores and we are very happy to be here in Yorkshire.” The newly wed couple, Ash-Abhi took a train from London to the countryside for the event. Abhishek said “The train journey was good. We are looking forward to Iifa and to put up a good show.” Ash an Abhi had earlier gone to watch the French Open Tennis match as the official sponsor for the event was a watch brand that Ash endorses. The couple looked extremely happy and comfortable by each other’s side. They smiled, preened and posed for a few pictures too. Abhishek’s sister Shweta Nanda also accompanied the couple. Abhishek is all set to perform at the Iifa Awards ceremony this year; however Ash will only be cheering him on and not joining him on stage. Others who are all set to perform at the Iifa award ceremony are actors Akshay Kumar, Salman Khan, Govinda, Saif Ali Khan, Bipasha Basu, Emraan Hashmi etc.
A number of films were promoted at the Iifa this year like Salman Khan’s Partner and his international film Marigold, Dharmendra, Sunny Deol and Bobby Deol’s film Apne amongst others. The premiere of the film ‘The Train’ in Castleford in England was well attended by celebs like Salman Khan, Upen Patel, Emraan Hashmi, Geeta Basra, Sayali Bhaghat etc. Actress Shilpa Shetty who has carved a special place for herself in the UK after her victory in reality show Big Brother also brought in her birthday which coincided with the event. A party was held for her by the Iifa organizers.
Amitabh Bachchan also announced his world concert with son Abhi and daughter-in-law Ash titled ‘Unforgettable’. Amitabh, Ash, Abhi, Lara Dutta and Bipasha Basu were present to announce their plans for the world concert. At the event Ash said “I am looking forward to working with my father-in-law.” All three Bachchans looked like one big happy family. The highlight of the second day at the Iifa event was a charity cricket match played between bollywood celebs and a Yorkshire cricket team at Headingley cricket grounds in Leeds. Actors who participated in the cricket match included Saif Ali Khan, Upen Patel, Govinda, Arjun Rampal, Aftab Shivdasani, Dino Morea, Apoorva Lakhia, Kapil Dev, Mohammed Azharuddin etc while the Bachchan family including Amitabh, Ash, Abhi and Shweta cheered from the stands. Actor Salman Khan too was present but seemed keen to avoid the newly wed couple Ash-Abhi and hence was spotted making rounds of the grounds. Bipasha Basu also attended the event and cheered along. The event was won by the Indian team and there was a lot of fun, joy and cheer at the event. The award ceremony was the grand finale at the Iifa event. The awards night was compared by the witty Lara Dutta and funny man Boman Irani.
The Iifa award ceremony began with a descent of bollywood stars on a green carpet to show their support for environmental issues at Sheffield Hallam FM Arena. The event was spectacular and witnessed several dance performances by bollywood celebs. Shilpa Shetty’s dance number was cheered on by the crowds as she gyrated to ‘Crazy kiya re’ and other numbers. Akshay Kumar too jigged to some Punjabi numbers. Amitabh-Abhishek also performed on-stage. Hindi film ‘Rang De Basanti’ bagged the most awards such as Best Film, Best Screenplay, Best Editor etc. However Rajkumar Hirani’s ‘Lage Raho Munnabhai’ also bagged quite a few awards like Best Director, Best Story etc. Hrithik Roshan bagged the Best Actor Award for his superhero performance in Krrish; Rani Mukherjee won the Best Actress Award for her performance in Kabhie Alvida Na Kehna. Soha Ali Khan won Best Supporting actress for Rang De Basanti, Arshad Warsi won Best supporting actor for Lage Raho Munnabhai, Tusshar Kapoor won Best actor in a Comic role for Golmaal, Saif Ali Khan won Best Actor in a negative role for Omkara. Hrithik Roshan and Aishwarya Rai won Glamour Star of the Year awards and Deepa Mehta; NRI director won an award for her outstanding contribution to Indian cinema. Amitabh also presented veteran actor Dharmendra with an award for his outstanding contribution to Indian Cinema, it was an emotional moment for both Amitabh and Dharmendra who relived a few of their old memories. Yash Chopra, Amitabh Bachchan and Shabana Azmi were honoured with doctorates for their contribution to Indian Cinema. On the whole the awards night was a star studded event that saw a lot razzle and dazzle.