The tenth edition of the festival will be held from 8 - 17 August.
Shah Rukh Khan announced as chief guest at the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne
Mumbai - 13 Jun 2019 14:00 IST
Superstar Shah Rukh Khan will attend the tenth edition of the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne as the chief guest. The film festival, supported by Australia's Victorian government, will be held from 8 - 17 August.
This year's central theme is courage, which is "engraved in the inclusivity and diversity of the Indian film business" according to a press release from the festival.
Khan will open the festival on 8 August along with the Victorian premier, Daniel Andrews. The superstar said in a statement, "An industry of our magnitude and diversity deserves to be celebrated with great passion and fervour, which is what the festival embodies. I’m particularly pleased with the theme of the festival this year which is courage, an emotion that resonates with storytellers who really have the might to change the society and the world."
"I have had great memories of shooting for Chak De! India (2007) in Melbourne and look forward to being back again, this time to celebrate Indian cinema," Khan added.
The Indo-Australian festival has grown exponentially in the last decade. It has graduated from a grassroots festival to one being supported by the government. It is the largest Indian film festival in the southern hemisphere.
Martin Foley, minister for creative industries, announced an initiative to welcome more Indian productions to shoot their movies in the country. He said in a statement, "A celebration of film, community, and culture, the Indian Film Festival puts Melbourne in the spotlight and attracts more than 35,000 people each year. The Indian film industry is the biggest in the world and in addition to supporting this festival, we've announced a new Bollywood and Indian Cinema Attraction Fund to bring more film productions from India and the subcontinent to Victoria. Perhaps we'll even lure Shah Rukh back to our shores again!"
The director of the festival, Mitu Bhowmick Lange, was elated to have Khan as their chief guest and hosting him at the festival. She stated, "He’s truly an icon of Indian cinema internationally, a person millions follow and look up to. The Indian Film Festival of Melbourne has always strived to bring the best Indian cinema here and bridge a gap between the fans and the actors whom people love and admire."