NEW YORK: Five days of sold-out features, shorts and documentary screenings, a Smita Patil retrospective in partnership with the Film Society at Lincoln Center, nightly red-carpet events, film industry panels, and celebrity-packed after parties all came to a close with a prestigious awards ceremony of the Mahindra Indo-American Arts Council (MIAAC) film festival at the SVA Theater in Manhattan, on Nov 14.
Following the closing night film “Cooking with Stella”, the longest-running and prestigious Indian film festival in the country, the MIAAC Film Festival, recognized noteworthy directing, writing, and acting at the awards ceremony.
Umesh Kulkarni’s Vihir (The Well) won Best Picture; Ajay Naidu won Best Actor for his role in Ashes while Seema Biswas won Best Actress for Cooking with Stella. Raj Nidimoru and Krishna DK as the director-duo won Best Director for Shor while Rituparno Ghosh won Best Screenplay for Memories in March. ‘Ganesh, Boy Wonder’ directed by Srinivas Krishna won Best Documentary and ‘Charulata…A Sequel’ directed by Sangeeta Padmanabhan won the Best Short Film award. A Special Achievement Award for Significant Contribution to the Globalization of Indian music was given to A.R. Rahman, which was accepted at the ceremony by director Mani Ratnam.
Among the many celebrities who attended the festival were Mani Ratnam and wife Suhasini, Mira Nair, Seema Biswas, Ekta Kapoor, Tusshar Kapoor, Salman Rushdie, Aasif Mandvi, Manu Narayan, Tannishtha Chatterjeee, and Ajay Naidu.
India Post News Service