A first of its kind event the South Africa India Film and Television Awards (SAIFTA) organized by Celebrity Locker had an exclusive curtain raiser ceremony at a suburban Mumbai hotel to unveil its brand campaign in the presence of Bollywood stars, filmmakers, and the media. SAIFTA is an annual event with the aim of creating a never before seen cultural exchange of the Indian and South African entertainment industry while rewarding outstanding performers and will take place in Durban on September 6, 2013 with a host of South African and Indian dignitaries attending it. Saif Ali Khan will host the event.
John Abraham, Waheeda Rehman, Manoj Bajpai, Sanjay Gupta, Suniel Shetty, Apoorva Lakhia, Apurva and Shilpa Agnihotri, Mukesh Bhatt, Sadha Naidoo, Board Chairperson, Tourism KwaZulu-Natal, Neliswe Dlamini, Project Manager DEDT, and Kedhar Gawde, Director Celebrity Locker, attended the curtain raiser press conference.
The names of the distinguished personalities from both the nations who will act as the jury for the Awards were announced. They include Waheeda Rehman, Mukesh Bhatt, Boman Irani, Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra and Farah Khan. The South African panel comprises of the renowned actor and writer Welcome Msomi, theatre and television personality Saira Essa, film industry veteran Peter Rorvik, performing artist Linda Bukhosini, theatre personality Caroline Smart as well as actress Leleti Khumalo.
Celebrity Locker, the Mumbai-based events company will join hands with the Province of KwaZulu-Natal Department of Economic Development and Tourism of Durban to make the award ceremony possible.
The curtain raiser showcased the coveted Wall of Fame near Durban beachfront that will have hand prints of eminent personalities from the Indian and South African film and television industry in plaster of Paris.
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Waheeda Rehman unveiled the SAIFTA Trophy with John Abraham. The trophy has been tastefully designed keeping in mind the cross culture association between South Africa and India. The trophy has been designed by The Award Gallery.
Director-Producer Sanjay Gupta of SHOOTOUT AT LOKHANDWALA and SHOOTOUT AT WADALA announced the screening of his films in Durban. This is a SAIFTA skills transfer initiative in conjunction with the Department of Economic Development and Tourism. Through this initiative 500 tickets of each movie will be distributed via social media for free. Cinema enthusiasts can avail of these tickets and watch these movies that will be screened in one of the legendary theatres in Durban. After each screening the cast and crew will be have a dialogue with the audience present to discuss the art and business of movie making.
The curtain raiser launched the first look of the brand identity. The design language (designed by the creative agency TWO) is a result of the merging of traditional South African and Indian motifs that represent entertainment themes but with a contemporary twist.
(Rajesh Kumar Singh is Editorial Consultant for Festivals and Markets for BollywoodTrade.com. He is a filmmaker, critic and market analyst)