Bollywood meets Tampa. The house was packed and from the throngs of people howling and screaming in near ecstasy at the sight of the favorite stars as they exited from their limousines, in the Tampa Convention Center’s looped driveway, it seemed as big an event that I had ever been close to. Friday night’s star-studded event was called IIFA Rocks! The concept was easy to understand. Take many of India’s best performers, most adored musicians, and brightest fashion designers and movie stars, then bring them all to one place, and put on a show. Well, they certainly did.
The idea was to bring the biggest and the brightest and the best of Indian culture right to America. The Tampa city planners, administrators, and government certainly agreed. An event of this scope had big business written all over it. Tampa last hosted a Superbowl in 2009, and a Major League Baseball World Series in 2008. So you know the city fathers would go for this., and the hotels, ditto.
IIFA Rocks! was the first of the three major events of the International Indian Film Awards Weekend. IIFA Rocks! for Thursday night, the 24th, a super show called Magic of Movies would be the big event on Friday the 25th, and the weekend’s monster show, the International Indian Film Awards, would be the climax. Yes, you can think of the Oscars – only this is the India version.
Three huge events, over three nights; think of the Oscars on steroids.
The media was given access only to the Green Carpet, otherwise known as the March of the Celebrities, for IIFA Rocks! If you are wondering, the Green Carpet is really the same as Hollywood’s Red Carpets – the difference being that Green represents a more environmentally friendly kind of color, whose point is to make sure we all care about environment and health and climate changes, as in protect our planet. The IIFA used to do red carpets, but about 7 years ago, they changed over to green.
So the show was closed to the media. But we have some photos for you. All photographs on this page are: courtesy – Wizcraft International/ IIFA .