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IIFA Dubai kicks of today

Posted By: Staff
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Wednesday, June 14, 2006 

Mumbai (UNI): Apart from the film awards function and the world premiere of Jagmohan Mundhra's Provoked starring Aishwarya Rai, the International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) will host the music launch of Karan Johar's much awaited Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna and a sneak preview of ace actor Naseeruddin Shah's directorial debut Yun Hota to Kya Hota in Dubai between tomorrow and June 17.

Besides, a three-day film festival of top films in various Indian languages will be held. Some of the films to be screened include Tamil films Chandramukhi, Kannathil Muthamittal, Nayakan, Anniyan and Autograph and Malayalam films Rasathantram and Kazhcha. South Indian superstars Mammooty, Mohanlal, Kamal Haasan, Madhavan, Meera Jasmine and Simran are expected to attend the festival. The other films to be screened are Marathi film Dombivali Fast and Hindi movies Yahaan, No Entry, Iqbal, Hazaaron Khwahishen Aisi, Parineeta, Bluffmaster, Veer Zara, Let's Talk and Mixed Doubles.

Dubaiites will miss 'King Khan' Shah Rukh Khan in action as he has decided to take a holiday in London after completing the shooting of 'Don' in Malaysia. He had compered the last show at Amsterdam arriving at the venue in a horse-driven carriage and speaking in Surinamese, the language spoken by many Surinamese of Indian descent. Aishwarya who was honoured by the Dutch last year naming the national flower 'Tulip' after her, will be in Dubai only for a day during the premiere of her film as she is in the midst of shooting for Mani Ratnam's Guru in Chennai. Last year at Amsterdam, she had performed the 'Kajra Re' number from Bunty Aur Babli along with the Bachchans on stage after the song became a rage. A two-day FICCI-IIFA business forum will have captains of industry and media from both India and the Gulf deliberating on opportunities in their fields.

IIFA spokesman Sabbas Joseph said the institution has grown from 'One Amazing Night' to a glorious three-day weekend, which celebrates and hosts various events and activities. While committed to its objectives, IIFA also strives to reach out to various audiences and create platforms unique in nature, he added. It has been a long journey for IIFA since it began at the Millennium Dome, United Kingdom. Recalling the highlights of the journey so far, Mr Joseph said, ''The Times of London reported the first IIFA awards as 'Move over LA - here comes Mumbai', the sales of tickets of Hindi Cinema grew by 35 per cent in the UK six months post the IIFA Awards and IIFA brand ambassador Amitabh Bachchan became the first Indian film star to be waxed at Madame Tussauds the announcement of which was made at the IIFA Awards itself. At the Sun City, South Africa, IIFA extended its scope of activities whereby Sun City witnessed the world premiere of Lagaan, a day prior to the Awards ceremony.

IIFA introduced Hindi Film distribution and exhibition, through Ster Kinekor who is the largest distributor and exhibitor in SA owning 360 screens and the largest circuit of 1.6 million viewers for Hindi Cinema. Hindi films hence moved from matinee shows on weekends to mainline theatres and multiplexes. Today, Ster Kinekor has the distribution rights of more than 200 Hindi film titles, Mr Joseph informed.

After the event at Genting Highlands, Malaysia, there was an increase in the value of rights for the Indian Cinema and the collection from exhibition and sale of non-pirated DVDs increased by more than 50 per cent. The IIFA Awards was recorded as the first International Awards held in Malaysia in the Malaysia Book of Records. A 190 per cent increase in tourism was recorded from Indian tourists in Malaysia's Genting Highland resort, the venue for the 3rd IIFA Awards Celebration. IIFA introduced a second distributor and exhibitor - Nu Metro in South Africa which has 250 screens for Hindi films in Johannesburg, during the event in 2003. Today, Nu Metros owns the distribution and exhibition rights of more than 25 Hindi films. The tourism influx doubled in Johannesburg compared to the previous year because of the IIFA Weekend and Awards, Mr Joseph added.

During the 2004 IIFA in Singapore, Tourism Board in Singapore along with the Media Development Authority (MDA) announced the sanction of 100 million Singaporean dollars to be spent by that government on co - production of films shot there for the next seven years 10 million Singaporean dollars were granted to Indian Films for shooting in Singapore. Singapore saw an increase of 31 per cent in their tourism in the week of IIFA and saw 16,000 visitors during the week of IIFA. The event generated tourism receipts of 17 million Singaporean dollars including airfares.

At last year's IIFA at Amsterdam, The Netherlands, the number of overseas visitors at IIFA Awards weekend was 15,000. Yield of overseas visitation and impact of the IIFA Weekend in Amsterdam was Euros 18.64 million. Amsterdam saw an increase in tourism by 34 per cent. Mr Joseph said the signing of a declaration of intention for collaboration in the tourism sector between the General Dutch Association of Travel Agencies (ANVR) and the Indian Tour Operators Association (ITOA) was the highlight.

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