IIFA 2013: Fusion of old, new talent on one stage

Mumbai, July 3 (IANS) Bringing Bollywood's old-gold stars and up-and-coming talents on one stage, the International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) weekend and awards, kickstarting in Macau Thursday, will be a "sweet and magical" celebration of Indian cinema's 100 years.

The 14th edition of the awards show, to be co-hosted by Bollywood badshah Shah Rukh Khan and Shahid Kapoor, will have a mix of performances by a range of stars like Sridevi, Abhishek Bachchan, Sushant Singh Rajput, Deepika Padukone, Ayushmann Khurrana and Parineeti Chopra. Dancing diva Madhuri Dixit, who made her fans go 'dhak dhak' with her "Ghagra" number recently, is making her debut on the IIFA stage this year.

The eclectic slate only goes to reflect the ongoing trend of co-existence in the Hindi film industry.

"As Indian cinema is evolving, you can't stay static with eight to nine names. You have to evolve, appreciate and showcase new talent, the talent which you, as cinema makers, want to showcase to the world. This is what makes cinema based on stories, and not just star power," Sabbas Joseph of Wizcraft International Entertainment, organisers of IIFA, told IANS.

For the three-day IIFA, considered one of Bollywood's grandest show abroad, the plans are in place to make it a "sweet and magical" experience for all.

"You have the big names of Indian cinema like Shah Rukh Khan, Abhishek Bachchan, Deepika Padukone, Madhuri Dixit, Sridevi and Prabhudheva all on the same stage. And also the younger talent like Ayushmann, Sushant Singh Rajput and Parineeti Chopra. All of them will hold fort at the same place. It will be an exciting, pulsating and magical show," he said.

Also, the popular Bachchan family makes a return to IIFA this year in Macau, where it is being held for the second time after 2009. It will be held at the famed Venetian Macao.

The main awards ceremony, to be held Saturday night, will also see unique films competing with each other. "Barfi!", about love between a deaf and mute boy and an autistic girl, leads the nomination pack with 13 gongs. It is followed by nine nominations for Shoojit Sircar's comedy film "Vicky Donor", about a sperm donor. Following closely is Anurag Kashyap's "Gangs of Wasseypur - Part I" and Karan Johar's action-packed production "Agneepath".

The survival of all kinds of cinema in the centenary year of cinema reflects in the nominations too.

The entertainment quotient at IIFA will get a fillip thanks to Grey Goose presents IIFA Rocks, a fashion and music event, which promises to attract Bollywood buffs with the 'magic of movies'. To be held on day two of the weekend, it will have performances by names like Jacqueline Fernandez, Sonu Sood, Sophie Choudry, Arjun Kapoor, Dia Mirza, Hussain Kuwajerwala and Gauhar Khan.

This event will be hosted by Boman Irani and Vir Das, who will also been seen promoting their upcoming film "Santa Banta".

IIFA 2013 will be a complete package, guaranteed Joseph.

"There will be star power which will be relevant for the next 100 years. At the same time, we will explore and capture the magic of the movies.

"There will be music, dance, heroes and heroines. We will do it in a fun way and relevant way which the audience will understand and comprehend," said Joseph.

There's also a social cause which IIFA is backing this time - it has added women's empowerment as a cause that it will pursue under the programme 'Power of 49'. The idea behind '49', as explained by veteran actress Shabana Azmi is - "Fortynine percent is the figure of the women we have in our country today and as a nation we can call ourselves civilised if this 49 percent gets empowered".

As an industry, Bollywood has been doing its bit by giving women and women-oriented scripts a prominent space.

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