Come June, and Melbourne will be all eyes to watch the sizzling Indian beauty stepping down to inaugurate one of the prestigious cine event - the Indian Film Festival 2012... This year B-town's most feted star Vidya Balan has been chosen as the ambassador for the Indian Film Festival, to be held in Melbourne from June 11 - 22, 2012.
The National Award winning actress is reported to be in the beautiful Australian city on the 11th and 12th of May to promote the festival. Said Balan, "I am very honoured to be an ambassador for the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne which has done so much to spread the word about the vibrancy of Indian cinema in Australia. I love the format of the festival and the wide range of films screened. It not only showcases the best of Indian cinema but also provides a platform for young upcoming film makers through its short film competition. When I was in Melbourne I was smitten by the city, its love for films from all parts of the world and its multicultural spirit, and I am sure the Indian Film Festival will contribute greatly to add to that spirit".
Balan will launch the festival program on Friday 11 May at The Investment Centre, Collins St at 10.00am. On Saturday 12 May, she will soak up the atmosphere at the historic Melbourne Cricket Ground, presenting the match ball to umpires in the middle of the MCG prior to the Richmond v Sydney match. Interestingly, she will be the first Indian to have the honour of doing this.
Indian Film Festival of Melbourne Director Mitu Bhowmick Lange said "I am delighted that Vidya Balan is coming to Melbourne to launch the festival program. It is an honour for us, as she is inarguably India's biggest actor right now. Vidya is the true embodiment of a festival that endeavours to showcase the sheer breadth and evolution of Indian cinema."
Once a director of TV shows and documentaries for a whole range of channels, Bhowmick-Lange set up the Indian Film Festival in 2010, delivered by her production house - Mind Blowing Films. Every year since then the festival has grown in scale, and even found a place in the Guinness Book of World Records by assembling the largest Bollywood dance class ever led by Malaika Arora Khan. Impressed with the achievements of the festival, this year, the Victorian Government granted the festival its official imprimatur by tying up with it for three years.