The 54th edition of the acclaimed International Film Festival of India (IFFI) honored groundbreaking performances from the world of cinema and OTT during the closing ceremony on Tuesday (November 28). Abbas Amini’s Endless Borders bagged the Best Film honor, while Rishabh Shetty, who has swept the majority of awards this year for Kantara, took home the Special Jury Award for his film, which has now become a cultural phenomenon. Panchayat Season 2 was at the forefront of scripting history by winning the first-ever Best Web Series (OTT) Award. Hollywood legend Michael Douglas, meanwhile, received the Satyajit Ray Lifetime Achievement Award.
Endless Borders Wins Best Film
The Persian film Endless Borders, directed by Abbas Amini, took home the award for Best Film at IFFI 2023. The film, follows an exiled Iranian teacher, Ahmad, living in a poor village in Iran near the Afghan border and chronicles his journey through the turmoil fueled by the rise of the Taliban regiment in Afghanistan. Praising the film’s ability to transcend physical and emotional borders, the jury lauded Amini’s bravery, which is evidently visible in his compelling storytelling.
Rishab Shetty Wins Special Jury Honor
Rishab Shetty received the Special Jury Honor for Kantara at the 54th edition of IFFI. The film, which won pan-India fame when it was released in 2022, pays homage to traditional folklore while exploring the rich and vibrant culture of Tulunadu.
Panchayat Season 2 Script History
The highlight of the evening was Panchayat Season 2, starring Jitendra Kumar, Raghubir Yadav, and Neena Gupta, winning the inaugural Best Web Series (OTT) Award. Established to recognize and encourage India’s growing streaming culture, a total of 32 entries from as many as 15 OTTs across 10 languages were taken into consideration for the category. The award was judged by a five-member jury consisting of notable film personalities, including Rajkumar Hirani, Utpal Borpujari, Krishna DK, Divya Dutta, and Prosenjit Chatterjee.
Taking to X (formerly known as Twitter), the official handle of Prime Video India shared the big development and wrote, “Dekh raha hai binod kaise award aur dil jeeta ja raha hai,” making a reference to the hilarious dialogue from the web series, which went on to become a huge part of meme culture.
— prime video IN (@PrimeVideoIN) November 28, 2023
Michael Douglas Honored Satyajit Ray Lifetime Achievement Award
Hollywood legend Michael Douglas was honored with the Satyajit Ray Lifetime Achievement Award 2023 by Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant and Bollywood actor Ayushmann Khurrana for his commendable contribution to cinema. The seasoned actor said, “Ray personified what it means to be a world-class filmmaker,” adding he would like to share the award with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Minister of Information and Broadcasting, Anurag Thakur.
Actor Pouria Rahimi Sam was chosen as the Best Actor (Male) for his role in Endless Borders, while French actress Melanie Thierry was honored with the Silver Peacock for Best Actor (Female) for Party of Fools. Stephan Komandarev won the Best Director honor for Blaga’s Lessons, and Reger Azad Kaya clinched the Award for Best Debut Feature Film of a Director for When the Seedlings Grow. Drift, directed by Anthony Chen, won the Golden Peacock for IFFI ICFT UNESCO Gandhi Medal.
Check Out the Winners List Below:
Best Film: Endless Borders
Special Jury Award: Rishab Shetty for the film Kantara.
Best Web Series (OTT): Panchayat Season 2
Best Actor (Male): Pouria Rahimi for the film Endless Border
Best Actor (Female): Melanie Thierry for the film Party of Fools
Best Director: Stephan Komandarev for the film Blaga’s Lessons
Best Debut Feature Film of a Director: Reger Azad Kaya for the film When the Seedlings Grow
FFI ICFT UNESCO Gandhi Medal: Drift
Satyajit Ray Lifetime Achievement Award: Michael Douglas.
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