The International Indian Film Academy [IIFA], which marks its debut in the Lion city of Singapore with the Singapore IIFA Weekend 2004, was formally unveiled at a star-studded press conference on May 20 at Grand Hyatt, Singapore. Amitabh Bachchan, the Brand Ambassador, IIFA, announced that the Singapore IIFA Weekend will be hosted at various venues within the city. This exciting weekend will culminate with the Samsung IIFA Awards 2004, which will be held on May 22 at the spectacular Singapore Indoor Stadium. The key events are * World premiere of YUVA on May 20. * IIFA Forum [Globalization of Indian Cinema] on May 21. * IIFA Foundation Celebrity Football Match on May 21. * Samsung IIFA Award presentation ceremony on May 22. Mani Ratnam will showcase his much-awaited YUVA [Hindi] and AAYITHA EZHUTHU [Tamil] as the IIFA World Premiere films this year. In IIFAs five years journey, this is the first time that a Tamil film is being showcased as the world premiere film. The IIFA Foundation Celebrity Football Match will witness the best of stars from Indian cinema and Team Samsung heroes from cricket world sweat it out on the football field. The match will help raise funds for the foundation, which aids bereaved families of people working behind the scenes who have suffered misfortune during the course of shooting. The IIFA Foundation Celebrity Football Match will see an array of Indian film stars including Sanjay Dutt, Suniel Shetty, Salman Khan, Rahul Khanna, Zayed Khan, Fardeen Khan, Abhishek Bachchan, Saif Ali Khan, Shahid Kapur, Arbaaz Khan, Ajay Devgan and Australian cricketers Brett Lee and Shane Lee. Besides stalwarts from Indian cinema, viewers will also get an opportunity to see eminent local sportsmen, Fandi Ahmad [who is called Pele of Singapore Football] and Sundaram Mooty, in action. The IIFA Foundation Celebrity Football Match will be held at the Jalan Besar Stadium in Singapore at 6 p.m. on May 21. The IIFA Forum will witness a gathering of esteemed Indian and International cinema experts. The IIFA Forum will be held on May 21 at 10 a.m. at Grand Hyatt, Singapore and will focus on Globalisation of Indian Cinema. The forum will be addressed by Dr. Lee Boon Yang Hon. Minister of Arts & Information, Government of Singapore. The distinguished panelists at the IIFA Forum include Shekhar Kapur, Karan Johar, Showbhik Kalra, Daniel Yun and Shravan Shroff. The moderator is Vir Sanghvi, Editor of Hindustan Times. The Singapore IIFA Weekend will conclude with the Samsung IIFA Awards ceremony at the spectacular Singapore Indoor Stadium. The award ceremony will also include electrifying performances from Shah Rukh Khan, Saif Ali Khan, Vivek Oberoi, Preity Zinta, Ishaa Koppikar, Amrita Arora, Yana Gupta and Shahid Kapur, besides Anil Kapoor, Sanjay Dutt and Sameera Reddy. The hosts to this spectacular evening would include Rahul Khanna, Amrita Rao, Mahima Chaudhury, Katrina Kaif and Sonali Bendre. The Samsung IIFA Awards 2004 will be broadcast across the globe via Sony Entertainment Television on May 23 and simulcast on Doordarshan National Network. Singaporeans can watch the event on Media Corp TV. Says Wiz Sabbas Joseph, Director, Wizcraft, The Singapore IIFA Weekend 2004 will instill yet another milestone in our endeavours to take Indian cinema to the global platform. With the Samsung IIFA Awards 2004, we will continue to provide the impetus for the crossover of Indian cinema to global audiences and delight the Indian diaspora with the grandest celebration of Indian cinema.
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