Mumbai, Nov 18: The 54th edition of the International Film Festival of India (IFFI) will be hosted in Goa from November 20 to 28, and it is promising to be a full on star-studded affair as actors Shahid Kapoor, Madhuri Dixit, Pankaj Tripathi, Nushratt Bharucha along with singers Shreya Ghoshal and Sukhwinder Singh re set to headline the opening ceremony of the coveted film festival.
Over 250 films are set to be showcased across the various sections of the festival, which will be held at Shamaprasad Indoor stadium, Panaji, Goa. After its opening, the ceremony will be hosted by Aparshakti Khurrana and Karishma Tanna.
Several dignitaries are expected to be present at this massive juncture along with eminent personalities from Indian cinema, including Sunny Deol, Vijay Sethupathi, Sara Ali Khan, Karan Johar, among others.
The 54th IFFI has invited Indian actors and filmmakers to promote their upcoming films at the opening gala with Karan Johar and actress Sara Ali Khan along with the team of ‘Ae Watan Mere Watan’ set to unveil the first look of the drama-thriller.
Sukhwinder Singh will sing the film’s inspiring title track during the showcase. The film chronicles the journey of Usha Mehta who during the 1942 Quit India Movement started an underground radio station, Congress Radio, which for a few months broadcast uncensored and even banned news.
Pankaj Tripathi, Shantanu Moitra, Shreya Ghoshal and Taba Chake will then introduce the crime-thriller ‘Kadak Singh’ directed by National Award-winning director Aniruddha Roy Choudhary.
The film captures the story of AK Shrivastav, an officer in the Department of Financial Crimes who while battling retrograde amnesia exposes the truth behind a Chit Fund Scam.
Tamil superstar Vijay Sethupathi will also unveil the trailer of his black comedy ‘Gandhi Talks’, a silent film in a present-day setting revolving around four characters, played by Vijay Sethupathi, Arvind Swami, Siddharth Jadhav and Aditi Rao Hydari.
The song and dance routine will continue with actress Nushrratt Bharuccha and IFFI celebrating ‘The India Story’. While the Oscar-winning track ‘Naatu Naatu’ from ‘RRR’ will bring to memory the feeling of glory, the ‘Pushpa’ track ‘Sami Sami’ will represent the growing popularity of South Indian cinema.
The celebrations are set to continue over a week. Prithul Kumar, Festival Director- IFFI (Jt. Secretary (Films) & MD/NFDC), said in a statement, “This IFFI will have 13 World Premieres, 18 International Premieres, 62 Asia Premieres and 89 India Premieres. These films, which transcend all borders and cultures, represent the best of Indian and world cinema."
“This carries forward the compelling obligation to continue the legacy of showcasing cinematic excellence at the 54th IFFI. The Festival Team is working tirelessly to make sure that the participants enjoy the outstanding films, engage in thought provoking discussions and leave with memories that will last a lifetime,” he added.
The prestigious festival would be further graced by other dignitaries such as Michael Douglas, Catherine Zeta Jones, Salman Khan, Vidya Balan, Ayushmann Khurrana, Anupam Kher, Vicky Kaushal, Siddharth Malhotra, Aditi Rao Hydari, AR Rahman, Shreya Ghoshal, Shantanu Moitra, Sukhwinder Singh, Amit Trivedi, among celebrated filmmakers.
The closing ceremony will be headlined by Ayushmann Khurrana and music composer Amit Trivedi.
At the closing ceremony, several awards and special honours will be presented for Best Film, Best Director, Best Actor (Male) and (Female), ‘Special Jury Award’, ‘Best Web Series on an OTT Platform’, ‘Indian Film Personality of the Year’, ICFT UNESCO Gandhi Medal.