Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara cleans up at 'Bollywood Oscars'

Stars out in Shanghai to collect their honours at the International Indian Film Academy Awards.

Ranbir Kapoor, left and his father Rishi Kapoor. Punit Paranjpe / AFP
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The director Zoya Akhtar's road trip drama Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara swept the top honours, including best picture and best director, at the "Bollywood Oscars" held late on Saturday in Singapore.

The movie, whose title loosely translates as You Won't Get a Second Life, scooped up nine awards including best supporting actor for the director's brother Farhan Akhtar and best story at the annual ceremony.

"This evening is turning out to be more fabulous than expected. I thank my crew and I beg them to do my next film," a jubilant Zoya Akhtar said in her acceptance speech.

The movie traces a soul-searching bachelor trip to Spain by three inseparable friends played by the actors Hrithik Roshan, Abhay Deol and Farhan Akhtar.

It was seen as a strong contender at the 13th International Indian Film Academy Awards, which was taking place for the second time in Singapore, and did not disappoint.

Elsewhere, Vidya Balan won the best actress gong for her role in The Dirty Picture, a biopic loosely based on the tumultuous life of the 1980s South Indian siren Silk Smitha.

Ranbir Kapoor, the latest member of the Kapoor clan to enter the Bollywood fold, won best actor for his role as an aspiring professional musician in the pulsating romantic drama Rockstar. He beat the more popular actors Amitabh Bachchan, Salman Khan, Shah Rukh Khan and Hrithik Roshan to walk away with the trophy.

The Indian music maestro and Oscar-winner AR Rahman won the nod for best music direction in the same movie.

Parineeti Chopra was in for a surprise and couldn't control her tears when she won two awards, for best female debut and best actress in a supporting role for Ladies vs Ricky Bahl.

The actor Vidyut Jamwal won the trophy for best male debut for his performance in Force.

The award for best performance in a comic role went to Riteish Deshmukh for the film Double Dhamaal.

The filmmaker Ramesh Sippy and the veteran actress Zohra Segal were honoured at the gala for their outstanding contribution to Indian cinema, though Segal couldn't make it to the event.

Some 10,000 fans were at the Singapore Indoor Stadium to watch the four-hour ceremony which included high-octane song and dance performances, organisers said. Another 800 million were estimated to have watched the TV broadcast of the awards ceremony, they added.

A three-day festival leading up to the night saw the world premiere of the political thriller Shanghai, a glitzy fashion show and film workshops for Bollywood fans in Singapore.

The city-state last played host to the event in 2004.

First launched at the Millennium Dome in London, the awards have been held in 12 cities around the world including Colombo, Macau, Bangkok, Dubai, Amsterdam and Johannesburg.

It is held outside India every year in an effort to increase the international profile of the popular Indian film industry and win new audiences abroad.

  • Shanghai is currently showing in UAE cinemas


Hosted by Shahid Kapoor and Farhan Akhtar, the IIFA awards ceremony featured performances by Sonakshi Sinha, Bipasha Basu, Prabhu Deva and Priyanka Chopra.

Chopra paid a heartwarming tribute to the 57-year-old veteran actress Rekha by dancing to some of her most popular songs.

Rekha, who was being honoured at the IIFA for her outstanding achievement in Indian cinema, surprised the audience by joining Chopra on stage to perform the popular track Rafta Rafta.

Receiving her special award, Rekha said: "I would like to dedicate this award to the young actors of our industry like Priyanka who are super talented. I am proud that I continue to be a part of the film fraternity."

The father-and-son actors Rishi and Ranbir Kapoor also took the stage to perform together for the first time, in a duel-themed act that saw them rendering remixed versions of memorable Bollywood songs.

While the IIFA overflowed with A-listers, some of the stars who didn't make it to the event included Shah Rukh Khan, Hrithik Roshan, Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif. - IANS