`IIFA weekend will open Canada doors for Indian filmmakers`

Mumbai: The three-day 12th IIFA Weekend in Toronto from June 23 will open the doors for filming, joint venture productions in Canada and create opportunities for young talent in Hollywood, organisers said.

"North America territory comprising USA and Canada constitute about 25 per cent of a Bollywood film`s international revenue. Indian diaspora is mainly settled around Vancouver and Greater Toronto areas. There are few theatres which show Indian films," Sabbas Joseph, director of Wizcraft, which organises the IIFA Weekend told reporters.

According to him, the three-day extravaganza will help Bollywood get a foothold in mainline multiplexes in Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto.

The highlight of this year`s edition will be screening of 35 films including Punjabi movies in theatres in Toronto, Brampton, Markham, and Mississauga.

`Chillar Party`, co-produced by Salman Khan and UTV, whose theatrical release is slated on July 8, will be the inaugural movie of the festival. Salman Khan will be in Toronto to promote his maiden production.

Sabbas said IIFA will open doors for film shootings, joint ventures and Hollywood opportunities for young Indian talent since several talent scouting agencies from Hollywood will be coming to Toronto to participate in the IIFA weekend.

He said a street in Brampton has been named Raj Kapoor Crescent.

The Raj Kapoor retrospective will begin on June 26 and will continue for 40 days. "Even after the IIFA weekend, the IIFA festival will continue," he said adding that the entire Kapoor clan is expected to attend the retrospective.

This will be the first year where the concept of `Brand Ambassador` has been abolished, Sabbas said.

"The idea is to embrace everybody and get the entire film industry as friends of IIFA," he added.


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