Countdown begins for IIFA Awards 2005

MUMBAI: The IIFA awardees can look forward to picking tulips in Holland this time. The International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) awards 2005 is all set to rock Amsterdam. At a Press conference held in Mumbai today, IIFA announced its plans for this year's event.

The IIFA Weekend 2005 will be held in Amsterdam from 9-11 June. The awards ceremony will be held on 11 June. One of the highlights of this year's IIFA Weekend will be the FICCI-IIFA global business forum, which is scheduled for 10 June. The forum will cover topics including cinema and broadcasting, civil aviation and tourism industry.

IIFA is also looking at incorporating India's regional film industry in the event. To begin with, it will have a Bengali film along with the Marathi Oscar entry Shwaas featured in the film festival. An IIFA official said the organisation was seriously looking at instituting awards for regional films as well.

IIFA brand ambassador Amitabh Bachchan unveiled the list of nominees for the awards, on the occasion.

IIFA Awards will also feature a celebrity cricket match, a film festival and a world film premiere. The film festival will feature popular movies including Swadesh, Veer Zaara, Dhoom and Mein Hoon Na, apart from critically acclaimed films The Little Terrorist and Shwaas.

As reported earlier on, Star Network will broadcast the awards exclusively across the globe. This is the first time Star is associating with IIFA.

Bachchan riding the bike presented to him by IIFA. Cycling is the favourite pastime in Amsterdam.

'I am Amsterdam' will be the key message promoted around the global campaign of IIFA this year. The organisers think the event will build a long standing relationship between Indian cinema and the people of Amsterdam and open up immense opportunities for the Indian film industry as well as the Amsterdam film industry.

MSN, in conjunction with the IIFA Academy have launched an online contest, which will bring winners from among the Web community to the IIFA Weekend to participate in the action with the stars and discover the sights and joys of the Netherlands. Voting for the IIFA Awards - Popular Categories will commence on and from 1 May and will continue till 31 May.

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