From downtown Tampa, it is only about 9 miles out to the Mid-Florida Credit Union Amphitheater. But I was going to an area more accurately described as suburban rather than downtown to attend the second of three major IIFA shows. This one was called The Magic of Movies. While it is true that not every film has magical moments in them = this show was filled with so many moments that I’ll never forget. From the great choreography, to the booming music, and most of all the action, the buzz, and the passion that filled this venue.
Getting to the location of the Amphitheater was easy enough. Getting in was another matter. Security was very tight. Police checked for bombs hidden beneath my car, and every one entering the amphitheater was searched as well. I carried only my ID’s, ticket, and a notepad and pen. My camera had elected to stay back at the hotel.
Security and everything involved is fine – it just created some lengthy delays, and the show, as expected, began late. I say expected because every event that I attended started late. I was told about Indian Standard Time, by a Gujarati doctor that I sat next to at the Anupam Kher event of a few days ago.
He said, Take the start time, then add 45 minutes to an hour more (at minimum). That’s Indian Standard Time.
Back to the show, and even before that – the Green Carpet The Magic of Movies was both an awards event and a magical stage show. The awards were the technical awards – you know what those are – and they were announced back in late February. But here, the winners received their mantle piece bound trophies as well as the public’s enthusiastic appreciation and applause.
Apparently this was pretty much of a one-film runaway. The bio-film Bhaag Milkha Bhaag (Run Milkha Run) fittingly ran off with nine technical awards. Take a look – Best Cinematography (Binod Pradhan), Best Screenplay (Prasoon Joshi), Best Dialogue (Prasoon Joshi), Best Editing (P.S. Bharti), Best Sound Design (Nakul Kamte), Best Sound Mixing (Pranav Shukla), Best Background Score (Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy), Best Make-up (Vikram Gaiwad) and Best Costume Designing (Dolly Ahluwalia).
I said ‘fittingly ran off ‘ because Milkha Singh was a track star who raced in three Olympics. In India he is considered a sporting legend. Now, in his mid 80’s Singh was on hand for the festivities.
Other winners were the Hrithik Roshan actioner Krrish 3 which took home awards for Best Action (Sham Kaushal and Tony Ching Siu Tung) and Best Special Effects-visuals (Keitan Yadav and Haresh Hingorani – Red Chillies VFX).
Chennai Express which starred Deepika Padukone and Shah Rukh Khan carried off awards for Best Song Recording (Vinod Verma) and Best Sound Mixing (Anup Dev).
Now this event was more than just ‘previously announced awards’. The MC’s were Saif Ali Khan and Vir Das and they were brimming with excitement. The big production numbers (music and dance) featured Sonakshi Sinha, Kareena Kapoor, and Bipasha Basu.
In many respects this was both and awards show as well as a concert, especially when you consider the production values. And let’s not forget the Green Carpet, which is an event in itself.
The event was billed as scheduled to go on come rain-or-shine. Even the ticket says so. You can do that if the venue is a covered amphitheater. There were at least 6,000 people in attendance. Plus all the technical crew, the media, the backstage crews for costumes and make-up are all in addition to the 6K figure. Plus security. Plus all the performers and musicians. In truth despite the late start – it was bold, brassy, and beautiful to see.
All images on this page are: courtesy – Wizcraft International/ IIFA