New Delhi: Celebrated filmmaker Mira Nair has joined actors, Kate Winslet and Anthony Hopkins in receiving the Toronto film festival’s TIFF Tribute Awards for 2020.
Actor Tabu, who played one of the central characters in Nair’s small screen adaptation of Vikram Seth’s ‘A Suitable Boy’, presented the award to the Indian-American director. Nair was bestowed with the Jeff Skoll Award in Impact Media.
In its second year, TIFF Tribute Awards honour the film industry’s outstanding contributors and their achievements, recognizing leading industry members, acting talent, directorial expertise, new talent, and a below-the-line artist or creator.
“This award has been rightfully chosen for Mira this year,” said Tabu at the virtual awards ceremony last night. “Mira set up the Salaam Baalak Trust from the proceeds of her film Salaam Bombay! The Salaam Baalak Trust continues to serve 5,000 (underprivileged) children every day,” she added.
“She did all this while setting the highest standards in cinema, with movies like ‘Salaam Bombay!’, ‘Monsoon Wedding’, ‘The Namesake’, ‘Queen of Katwe’ and the most recent ‘A Suitable Boy’,” Tabu said.
Other winners of the TIFF Tribute Awards this year are actors Kate Winslet and Anthony Hopkins, Chinese filmmaker Chloe Zhao, Mohawk filmmaker Tracey Deer and American musician Terence Blanchard.
“When I work, it feels like fun. So I really thank the Toronto International Film Festival for giving me an award to have my fun and to be a part of this extraordinary privilege of being able to make cinema,” said Nair while accepting the award.
“I have often said that if we don’t tell our stories, no one else will. But it doesn’t stop at that. Telling these stories, I have discovered the great power of listening. Of the possibility of making bridges. So I accept this award really in honour of those stories that herald the idiosyncratic, the unseen, the unspoken, the unsaid, the baffling. Here’s to them, and they happen everywhere in the world,” she added from her home in New York.
‘A Suitable Boy’, the six-episode TV series based on Vikram Seth’s 1993 novel of the same name, and directed by Nair is part of the Primetime programme of the Toronto festival this year. The series, which was broadcast in the United Kingdom during July-August, will be available in India soon on Netflix.
Winslet and Hopkins received the TIFF Tribute Actor Awards while Chloe was honoured with the TIFF Ebert Director Award. Deer, known for telling stories of the indigenous community, received the TIFF Emerging Talent Award.
A highlight of the ceremony was a performance by Canadian musician, Shawn Mendes. Among the award presenters, were African-American directors Regina King and Ava DuVernay, and actors Colin Farrell and Jodie Foster.
The 45th Toronto film festival, which began on September 10, will conclude with a screening of Nair’s ‘A Suitable Boy’.