The Indian Film Festival of Melbourne announced its winners on Friday and honoured Bollywood actor Pankaj Tripathi with the prestigious Diversity in Cinema Award. Tripathi has been shelling out one memorable role after the other, and it is safe to say he has become one of the recurring faces of content-driven films and series. Not just the OTT platforms, the actor has shown finesse on the big screen as well, proving himself worthy of the honour he has received. Presenting him with the award was none other than director Anurag Kashyap, with whom the actor has given one of the most popular films of his career, Gangs of Wasseypur.
The director was all praises for his actor as he humorously mentioned how Tripathi is one of the biggest actors in tinsel town currently. “Whenever we directors sit for deciding our cast, the mutual actor on everyone’s mind is Pankaj Tripathi. We always check for his availability (laughs) He is on the top list of every director and he is the busiest actor in the industry, in the business.” He later added that the most special characteristic about the actor is that he encourages filmmakers who sometimes don’t have enough resources.
Tripathi, too, humbly returned his compliments. “This award is special for me, I’m humbled – it’s really inspiring for me, my craft. Another special thing about this is the man who is here to give me the award, Mr Kashyap. He is the one who rediscovered my talent in Gangs of Wasseypur. He is the man who rediscovered me, so thanks to Anurag sir,” expressed the actor who joined the ceremony from his ongoing shoot in Leh and Ladakh.
However, the celebrations didn’t end there for him as the film festival awarded two more productions he was a part of- Mirzapur and Ludo. While the former won the award for the Best Series, Anurag Basu bagged the Best Director Award for the latter.
Meanwhile, Soorarai Pottru walked away with the Best Feature Film and Suriya won the Best Actor award from the same film. Vidya Balan won the Best Actress for her latest film Shern, and The Family Man Season 2 bagged two awards as Manoj Bajpayee and Samantha Akkineni were awarded the best actors for the series.
The prestigious jury members included Bollywood actress Richa Chadha, Guneet Monga, National Award-winning filmmaker Onir, Australian filmmaker Geoffrey Wright, Oscar-nominated editor Jill Bilcock among others.
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