Contributor Iris Chan reports on the International Indian Film Academy Awards.
On Saturday June 25, the International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) Awards were held in Toronto, Canada – the first ever North American country to host! Bollywood (with a bit of Hollywood) descended upon the green carpet with glitz and glamour.
For such a historic affair, it’s no wonder the South Asian Canadian community excitedly came to the occasion. I strolled through the crowd and met some of the fans.
As Nav Gill said, “I feel that [the people of] Toronto are such ambassadors for Bollywood. We have such a huge community and it’s not just the Asian community that follows it. It’s such an honor for it to be in Toronto!”
Check out some of the beautiful South Asian Canadian fans that attended the show.
Almost every presenter and winner remarked on how welcomed they felt by Toronto. Many added that this was the best IIFA audience in the event’s history. And the audience responded with an amazing roar of applause. There was a lot of love going on!
Though the show went an extra 20 minutes, it didn’t sway the crowd from cheering for the full 5 hours. And there was a lot to cheer for!
Some highlights from the lavish extravaganza:
Toronto-born Lisa Ray presenting the award for the Hottest Pair. She took a moment to express her gratitude to be back home with IIFA. The star recently won her battle against cancer and we hope to see her on screen soon.
Charismatic megastar, Shah Rukh Khan, won Best Actor for his portrayal of a Muslim man after the September 11th attacks in My Name is Khan. He also co-hosted the first portion, was accosted by a fan on stage, presented a Lifetime Achievement Award and closed out the night’s dance number (despite his bad knee). Khan is an extraordinary entertainer!
Ranveer Singh and Sonakshi Sinha, winners respectively of Best Male and Best Female Debut, performing on stage together. These two actors are talented and gracious. Hope to see much more from them!
Stunning Priyanka Chopra dazzled the audience with her flawless dance number which had quite a few costume changes. Amazingly, she had just landed in Toronto just a few hours before the event.
Even though it was 2:30am, many of the night’s stars came on stage to close out the event with an energetic dance number. And of course there were fireworks. A stunning way to end the evening!
– Iris Chan
Photos courtesy of IIFA/Wizcraft International and by Iris Chan.