‘Devdas’ wins seven IIFA awards

Bollywood uses gala to market pics

JOHANNESBURG — Helmer Sanjay Leela’s dark love story “Devdas” was the big winner at the fourth Intl. India Film Academy Awards held here on Saturday.

Pic won seven of the 13 awards including film, director, actor for Shah Rukh Khan and actress for Aishwarya Rai.

The IIFA awards are regarded as a marketing and showcase event for Bollywood, the Hindi-language film industry, abroad, and are not as prestigious as the Filmfare awards, held annually inside the country.

It’s the second time the IIFA awards, launched in 1999, were held in South Africa, confirming the growing popularity of Bollywood productions and their stars in the country, which has a population of about a million expat Indians.

A capacity crowd of 5,000 watched the awards ceremony, attended by most of Bollywood’s big names, including screen legend Amitabh Bachchan.

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