The opening day of the 20th Kolkata International Film Festival (KIFF) witnessed several dignitaries, including celebs from the film industry and politicians who made the event a grand one with their presence.
On Monday, 10 November, KIFF - India's second oldest film fest, was inaugurated by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee along with Bollywood megastar Amitabh Bachchan, wife Jaya, Abhishek and Aishwarya Rai. Along with the dignitaries, superstar Shah Rukh Khan, the state's brand ambassador, also graced the event.
Aishwarya who launched the official brochure, looked stunning in gold and black attire while her mother-in-law Jaya kept it elegant in white and golden saree.
"Amader poribarer proti apnader ashirvad bhlaobashar jonyo onek onek dhonyobaad (thank you for showering so much love and gratitude on our family)," Aishwarya spoke in Bengali at the Netaji Indoor Stadium, reported IANS.
Other Bollywood celebs, including veteran actress Tanuja, who released a Bengali music CD along with Jaya, Irrfan Khan, Indian filmmakers Amol Palekar and Shoojit Sircar too graced the event with celebs from Tollywood industry as well.
Australian filmmaker Paul Cox, who is also part of the KIFF jury graced the event and was stunned by the huge gathering for the ceremony.
"I thought I was in a soccer field," observed Cox. "When you see a film on the big screen you realise the true power of the cinema," he added.
The fest will continue for eight days and will screen 137 films from 60 countries. Out of these, 31 will be Indian, including 13 Bengali movies. KIFF will conclude on 17 November.
Interestingly, the event saw both Big B and SRK hugging each other, thereby hinting that all is well between the two families.
Last week, in a literature festival in Mumbai, veteran actress Jaya mentioned that SRK's latest release "Happy New Year" is the most 'nonsensical' film, she has watched lately. Her remark went viral on the Internet and had apparently offended the Badshah of Bollywood.
There were also reports that Big B, Abhishek and Aishwarya even apologised to Shah Rukh on Jaya's behalf. However, SRK slammed such rumours and mentioned that her statement was taken out of context.