'Chandramukhi' to kick off IIFA's southern bouquetJun 9, 2006 Papri Sri Raman
Chennai, June 8 (IANS) This year as many as 14 films from India's southern states will be screened at the 7th International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) awards in Dubai starting June 14.
"The southern film festival will open with the Tamil movie "Chandramukhi" - a Rajnikanth starrer that grossed $2.5 million in overseas markets," Sabbas Joseph, director Wizcraft International Entertainment Pvt. Ltd said here today.
Apart from "Chandramukhi", six more Tamil films will be screened at the festival - "Autograph", "Anniyan" (Vikram), "Ayutha Ezhuthu" (Surya), "Ghajini" (Surya), "Kannathil Muttamital" (R. Madhavan, Simran) and "Nayakan" (Kamala Haasan).
Telugu and Malayalam films will also be showcased at the festivals. They are - "Rasathantram", "Thanmatra", "Tagore", "Pokiri", "Kazhcha" and "Rajamanickyam".
"This time, we could not include any Kannada film in the festival but next time we promise to", said the organisers.
The festival is touted as the Indian Oscars.
Commenting upon it Ramesh Sippy, member of the IIFA and festivals advisory board, said: "IIFA is already a brand name and has become a wonderful platform for Indian cinema for all cinema lovers".
"With the IIFA festival 2006, this year we are expanding the scope and truly becoming representatives of the Indian cinema and the global Indian viewers. Once films from south India are screened, IIFA will become a bigger event, making us proud of being Indians," he added.
In 2005, first time a film festival was organised as a part of IIFA awards ceremony, however, it included only Hindi films and represented Bollywood only.
"We realised then that if southern films are not included Indian cinema could not be fully represented," said Joseph.
"Chandramukhi"'s producer Ramkumar, who is the son of late thespian Sivaji Ganesan, thanked the organisers for creating space for southern films at IFFA platform.
He said: "While we thank IIFA for providing cinema from the south such a big platform to showcase itself for the first time, we promise, next year southern films will also be competing for the IIFA awards."
In 2005 "Chandramukhi" was shown in various countries including Singapore, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Australia, South Africa Mauritius, Middle East, UK, France and the US.
It is going to Japan in August, where Rajnikanth has a huge fan following. It is also being dubbed in German and Turkish for screenings in Germany Switzerland, Austria and Turkey.
Mammootty, Mohanlal, Vikram, Jyothika, Simran and Madhavan will be among the many south Indian film stars, directors, producers and musicians who will grace the Dubai event next week.
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