Bollywood Hungama
Last Updated 20.10.2018 | 10:33 AM IST
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Mira Nair’s International Bhenji Brigade

Long before the term crossover film was ever coined, Mira Nair came up with films like Salaam Bombay and Mississippi Masala for both the local and Diaspora audience. Her Oscar nominated film Salaam Bombay! became the first Indian film to be secure worldwide commercial distribution. Her subsequent films like Kamasutra have garnered international acclaim, with Monsoon Wedding emerging as her biggest commercial success in 2002. Mira Nair has won several prestigious international awards including the Camera d’Or for Salaam Bombay! and the Golden Lion for Monsoon Wedding. And now Mira Nair’s ‘Mirabai Films’ is teaming up with Balaji Rao’s (of the Venky poultry group) Bala Entertainment Pvt. Ltd to establish a film production company that will create independent Asian cinema for the global market place. And like the unconventional theme of her films, their production too is unusually named as International Bhenji Brigade. Bhenji, meaning not-so-hip sister, refers to the resourceful women on Nair’s film crew whom she teasingly calls her International Bhenji Brigade. IBB plans to develop, finance and produce a slate of 3 or more feature films from Asia and the respective diaspora communities. IBB offers a younger generation of Asian filmmakers the opportunity to continue Nair’s filmmaking tradition by making films, which, as Nair puts it, gets bums on seats. The formal launch of IBB was declared on April 5 at J.W.Marriott, Juhu and almost the whole of Bollywood turned out at the party to celebrate the event with Nair. Renowned French pianist Richard Clayderman flew all the way down to Mumbai and created a symphonic feel with his divine music. Renowned Bollywood personalities like Sanjay Dutt, Suniel Shetty with wife Mana, Aftab Shidasani, Feroz Khan, Govind Nihalani, Manmohan Shetty, Vidhu Vinod Chopra, Rajiv Rai, Irrfan Khan, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, Anu Malik, Sonu Nigam, Javed Akthar, Shabana Azmi, Moon Moon Sen with daughters Riya and Riama, Netanya Singh, Isha Koppikar and Suchitra Krishnamurthy were present at the event. Moreover the occasion also celebrated a kind of Monsoon Wedding reunion with almost its entire cast coming together.

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