‘Bollywood Oscars’ sail into Tampa with pirate-themed opening number and lots of star power (w/ gallery)

Published: April 27, 2014


Picture 1 of 33

Bollywood actress Priyanka Chopra and US actor John Travota (C) dance on stage at the Raymond James Stadium on the fourth and final day of the 15th International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) Awards in Tampa, Florida, April 26, 2014. JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images

TAMARA LUSH
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

TAMPA, Fla. — The Indian film industry’s top award show sailed into Tampa Saturday with a pirate-themed opening musical number and celebrities ranging from Slumdog Millionaire star Anil Kapoor to John Travolta and Kevin Spacey.

Before a crowd of some 20,000, the International Indian Film Academy awards started with the entrance of actors aboard a float built like a pirate ship — a nod to Tampa’s love of pirate-themed parties. The show informally known as the “Bollywood Oscars” were held in the United States for the first time.

The show was recorded and will be broadcast in June. IIFA says some 800 million people worldwide are expected to watch the event.

Co-hosts Shahid Kapoor and Farhan Akhtar, dressed in swashbuckling outfits, demanded the key to Tampa from Mayor Bob Buckhorn, who was sitting in the front row at the city’s NFL stadium.

“I will give you this key if and only if you entertain us,” said Mayor Buckhorn, after which Kapoor and Akhtar climbed onstage and proceeded to have a mock sword fight.

But it was Travolta that made the crowd come to life. Indian star Priyanka Chopra pulled him onstage and Travolta did some signature moves from his 1994 blockbuster film “Pulp Fiction.”

Later, actor Hrithik Roshan presented Travolta with an award for Outstanding Achievement in International Cinema, declaring the two-time Golden Globe winner “the coolest of them all.”

“I’m honoured. I’m humbled,” Travolta said.

Hollywood actor and two-time Academy Award winner Kevin Spacey also wowed the crowd. He presented actress Deepika Padukone with the award for Entertainer of the Year.

Padukone and the co-hosts persuaded Spacey to don a Lungi — a sarong — and dance to a wildly popular song called the “Lungi Dance”, which was written for the movie “Chennai Express.”

Before the show started, Travolta, Spacey and dozens of Indian film stars walked slowly past hordes of international media outside the stadium. Unlike the Academy Awards, IIFA uses a green carpet instead of a red one.

Like a Bollywood movie, the awards show was long, colorful and filled with spectacular song-and-dance numbers. The show started about an hour and a half late, and ended about 3 a.m. EDT.

The opening musical sequence combined elements of pirates, underwater creatures and football cheerleaders. Other songs were medleys of movie hits, with Cirque du Soleil-type acrobatics.

Some of India’s hottest movie stars received awards during the ceremony. While many were similar to Oscar-style accolades (best actor, best picture), others took a different twist (best villain, best performance in a comic role).

Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, a film about the life of Indian track and field Olympian Milkha Singh, was the big winner of the night. The 84-year-old Singh was in the audience Saturday.

The movie won the best story award, best director and best picture. It also won nine technical awards during a separate ceremony in Tampa on Friday.

Farhan Akhtar (the co-host) won best male lead actor for his starring role in Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, and Deepika Padukone won best female lead actor for her role in Chennai Express.

The awards ended four days of well-attended events, much to the delight of Tampa tourism authorities and lovers of Indian film and culture.

Launched in 2000 at the Millennium Dome in London, the annual IIFA awards have travelled around the world in the hopes of exposing the genre to various audiences and opening trade markets.

“Bollywood” is the term for the film industry based in Mumbai (Bombay). Although it is used mostly to refer to the lengthy song-and-dance movies in the Hindi language, it’s become somewhat of a catchall term for Indian films. IIFA organizers say the Indian industry sells 3.6 billion movie tickets a year, about a quarter of them in the U.S.

Related:

twitter.com/tamaralush

07:31ET 27-04-14

[+]

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,



Readers Comments (0)

Comments are closed.

Featured

cricket-terrorism-Belgium

Pakistani cricketer labeled terrorist for carrying bat on public transport, deported from Belgium

VANCOUVER DESI A young Pakistani cricketer and his family have been forced out of Belgium after he was labeled a terrorist for carrying his cricket…
Continue Reading »

Police tape-Abbotsford-crime

Abbotsford police look for suspect in Mill Lake sex assault

VANCOUVER DESI Abbotsford police are looking for a man who sexually assaulted a woman at Mill Lake last week. In a press release, police said…
Continue Reading »

terrorism

Dharm Makwana: Presumed guilty until you miss your flight

  DHARM MAKWANA VANCOUVER DESI By the end of the ordeal my wife was on the verge of tears. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection…
Continue Reading »

LOCAL NEWS

Police tape-Abbotsford-crime

Abbotsford police look for suspect in Mill Lake sex assault

VANCOUVER DESI Abbotsford police are looking for a man who sexually assaulted a woman at Mill Lake last week. In a press release, police said…
Continue Reading »

terrorism

Dharm Makwana: Presumed guilty until you miss your flight

  DHARM MAKWANA VANCOUVER DESI By the end of the ordeal my wife was on the verge of tears. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection…
Continue Reading »

patquinn2

Spice Sports: Pat Quinn passes away at age 71

GOPI AND THE GORA FOR VANCOUVER DESI The hockey world is deeply saddened by the passing of the legendary Pat Quinn, who spent nearly 50…
Continue Reading »

Don't Miss...

suffer in silence

Help for Victims of Sexual Abuse

NIRMALA RANIGA VANCOUVER DESI The reasons for not reporting incidents of sexual abuse or harassment are many and varied. Recently, we have addressed some of…
Continue Reading »

Sitara Devi

Kathak star Sitara Devi dies after prolonged illness

IANS Mumbai – Eminent danseuse Sitara Devi, who once impressed Rabindranath Tagore with a three-hour solo recital, died here Tuesday after prolonged illness, leaving behind…
Continue Reading »

monkey main

Killer monkeys invade India after government issues wildlife preservation to protect wild apes

CEN AGENCY A ban on capturing monkeys in India has led to an explosion of ape attacks – some which are deadly – across the…
Continue Reading »

Surrey RCMP were called to ..

Surrey husband charged with murder after wife found dead in Newton home

SURREY NOW and VANCOUVER DESI A Surrey man has been charged with murder after his 64-year-old wife was found dead at their Newton home on…
Continue Reading »

desi bride loaded in gold

Indian bride draws flak for wearing $700,000 jewellery at her wedding

CEN AGENCY An Indian sweet maker made sure his daughter was the golden girl at her upcoming wedding by covering her in gold jewellery worth…
Continue Reading »


Bollywood Latest

Hrithik Roshan and Sussanne Khan

Arjun Rampal still quiet on his proximity to Hrithik Roshan’s ex-wife Sussanne

HINDUSTAN TIMES In December 2013, Arjun Rampal’s name was dragged into the troubled Hrithik Roshan-Sussanne Khan marriage. Rumours claimed that the actor, a close friend…
Continue Reading »

Bollywood sex

Bipasha Basu: Pinkathon important platform encouraging women

IANS Mumbai – Actress Bipasha Basu Tuesday expressed support for Pinkathon, a run for breast cancer awareness, terming it an important platform that encourages women….
Continue Reading »

Kangana Ranaut

Bollywood’s female stars rise in stature and crank out hits, but ask: Where is the money? (w/gallery)

NIRMALA GEORGE THE ASSOCIATED PRESS NEW DELHI — This is Bollywood’s year of the woman. Some of the biggest hits in India’s prolific movie industry…
Continue Reading »