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  • Writer's pictureThe Communiqué



25th May 2023, Abu Dhabi: The 23rd International Indian Film Academy and Awards (IIFA) kicked off today with a bang. Following the incredible success of IIFA 2022, the 2023 Sobha IIFA Weekend and NEXA IIFA Awards, presented by the Department of Culture and Tourism - Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi) and Miral, are returning by popular demand to Yas Island, Abu Dhabi. For the seventh consecutive year, the iconic brand NEXA is the title sponsor of the NEXA IIFA AWARDS. Sobha Realty is the headline sponsor of the SOBHA IIFA Weekend for the first time. The KUBER Group is a partner in the stunning IIFA celebrations on Yas Island. The largest festival of Indian cinema is scheduled to surprise audiences with its 23rd edition on May 26th and 27th, 2023 in Yas Island, Abu Dhabi.

Swati Bhat

The event will be held in Etihad Arena, the Middle East's largest state-of-the-art indoor entertainment arena, which is part of the Yas Bay Waterfront on Yas Island. The Island, located on the beautiful sands of Abu Dhabi, is one of the world's fastest-growing leisure and entertainment attractions. Abu Dhabi's Yas Island is a destination like no other, offering spectacular adventures and awe-inspiring entertainment, as well as three globally famous amusement parks, superb motorsports, an award-winning golf location, and world-class luxury services. Visitors to Yas Island will be able to enjoy a variety of experiences in addition to the arena and Yas Bay. From award-winning theme parks to the world's largest mall, the CLYMBTM Abu Dhabi, 160 dining options, a gorgeous beach and mangroves, premium hospitality stays, and so much more.

This year's hosts Abhishek Bachchan, Vicky Kaushal, Farah Khan, and Rajkummar Rao addressed the media at a press conference held at the W Hotel - Yas Island in Abu Dhabi, as did performers Salman Khan, Rakul Preet Singh, Nora Fatehi, Jacqueline Fernandez, Amit Trivedi, Badshah, Nucleya, Sunidhi Chauhan, and Iulia Vantur.

PNC Menon, Taghrid Al Saeed, Executive Director of Group Communications and Destination Marketing at Miral, Hans Fraikin - Film and Television Commissioner, and Sandeep Walia were among the dignitaries who joined them for the highly anticipated event, which promises to be a glitzy and glamorous mix.

As Title Sponsor of the SOBHA IIFA Weekend, SOBHA IIFA Rocks 2023, and Co-Presenter of the NEXA IIFA Awards, Sobha Realty would be presenting the star-studded IIFA Weekend. The festivities have begun.

Commenting on the IIFA collaboration, Ravi Menon, Co-chairman of Sobha Realty, said, “We are delighted to be the title sponsors of the 23rd edition of IIFA Weekend. The event will witness the presence of the who’s who of the Indian film industry with the glitz and glamour that makes Indian cinema widely popular. With a rich culture of performing arts in our nation itself, we are honoured to recognize and celebrate the long-standing allure of Indian cinema and its outstanding contributors. Indian films are watched across the world, and we are pleased to welcome the numerous actors, artists, and talents of our nation, further bringing Indian cinema to a global audience. IIFA Awards recognizes the highest quality and artistic expressions in the Indian film sector, just like we at Sobha Realty recognize the value of quality, art, and design in our work.”

NEXA from Maruti Suzuki India Limited stands committed to IIFA continuing their partnership for the seventh consecutive edition as the Title Sponsor of the NEXA IIFA Awards. As the world looks forward to this year's celebration of Hindi cinema with music and fashion at yet another exotic destination, the content promises to be aspirational and entertaining. With its growing popularity across the world, IIFA today is recognized as a global institution in its own right, and a platform that is recognized as the most engaging celebration of Indian cinema.

Mr Shashank Srivastava, Senior Executive Officer, Marketing and Sales, Maruti Suzuki India said, “NEXA has always been at the forefront of innovations and Curating Impeccable Experiences that not only Impress but Inspire. By foraying into the fields of Fashion, Music and Journeys, NEXA has successfully created and inspired multiple unique experiences for its customers. It is for this very reason that NEXA has collaborated with IIFA, which is a platform to recognize India’s top creative talent in the world of cinema and celebrate the best in cinema arts. The association is in its 7th year and both NEXA and IIFA are challenging the status quo to create experiences that are unique and inspiring. With IIFA, we have a perfect association as we share a common vision of creating global experiences, which has established the premium imagery of both brands. We look forward to IIFA 2023 which will be held at Yas Island in Abu Dhabi to inspire our new-age consumers who seek global experiences in their everyday lives.

Vinit Mallu, Managing Director, Kuber Group said “'Celebrate the Fusion of Cultural Excellence and Authentic Flavours' is our inspiring mission, which we are promoting through cooperation between Kuber Group and IIFA. This mission emphasises the original flavours provided by the wide range of products offered by the Kuber Group while focusing on the core values of both companies. By showcasing the harmonic fusion of art, culture, and gastronomic pleasures, this cooperation hopes to inspire and engage audiences everywhere with really unique experiences. We are pleased to have worked with IIFA 2023 to align these two pillars of excellence in order to advance the mission's goals of promoting worldwide cultural awareness, gastronomic diversity, and the beauty of Indian cinema.”

Joining as the official travel partner is Ease My Trip – one of India’s leading online travel aggregators, Yas Island, Abu Dhabi – Country of Host, W Abu Dhabi – Official Host Hotel, LuLu – UAE Promotions Partner, Nabila – Official Hair and Makeup Partner, Izhaar – Official Invitation Partner and High Note – Official Hospitality partner – where you can savour the best of Views and Vibes from Dubai's coolest rooftop lounge, panoramic views, infinity pool, speciality sundowners, vogue shishas, live music and more.

H.E. Saleh Mohamed Saleh Al Geziry, Director General of Tourism, DCT Abu Dhabi said, “We are pleased to host the IIFA Awards once again in Abu Dhabi since it marks a significant turning point for our dynamic entertainment calendar. Our relationship with India, which is based on shared cultural and economic interests, has been boosted even further by the fact that Abu Dhabi has served as the setting for a number of Bollywood blockbusters, allowing people all over the world to learn about our stunning country. The biggest celebration of Indian cinema will take place in Abu Dhabi, and we are excited to welcome the illustrious actors, directors, and members of the Indian film community, as well as their supporters.”

Taghrid Alsaeed, Executive Director of Group Communication and Destination Marketing said, “We are honoured to once again be hosting the esteemed IIFA Awards 2023 on Yas Island. This exceptional event, set to unite remarkable movie stars on the island, further reinforces our commitment to positioning Yas Island as a global destination for leisure and entertainment. We have a relentless pursuit of excellence and are committed to ensuring all that who visit us create memories that last a lifetime. I can't wait to witness the fans' finally getting to meet their idols and have a memorable weekend on Yas Island. Through events like these, we continue to support Abu Dhabi’s vision to becoming a leading global tourism hub, as well as contributing to the Capital’s growth and economic diversification.”

IIFA 2023 will kickstart the mega celebrations tomorrow – 26th May 2023 with Sobha IIFA Rocks hosted by Farah Khan Kunder and Rajkummar Rao and will feature performances by Amit Trivedi, along with several popular singers, Badshah, Sunidhi Chauhan, Nucleya and Sukhbir Singh.

The most highly awaited special addition this year to the Sobha IIFA Rocks is the premiere of an exclusive showcase by leading celebrity designer, Manish Malhotra, who is celebrating 25 years in the fashion industry.

Host of Sobha Realty IIFA Rocks 2023, Farah Khan says, “IIFA is a real example of a worldwide phenomenon that not only recognises and honours the excellence of Indian cinema on a global scale but also offers the entire film industry a terrific opportunity. Personally, I am overjoyed to host IIFA Rocks once again.”

Sobha Realty IIFA Rocks 2023, Co-host Rajkummar Rao said “I think that I am IIFA's biggest fan. Together with Farah Khan, I am incredibly honoured and thrilled to co-host IIFA Rocks. The prospect of having fun and making memories excites me. It's going to be a blast.”

The grand finale – Nexa IIFA Awards will take place on 27th May 2023 and will be hosted by Abhishek Bachchan and Vicky Kaushal along with electrifying performances by Bollywood superstars Salman Khan, Jacqueline Fernandez, Varun Dhawan, Kriti Sanon, Nora Fatehi and Rakul Preet Singh.

Speaking on the occasion, co-host of Nexa IIFA Awards - Abhishek Bachchan said, "I am thrilled to return to Yas Island, Abu Dhabi. It will be an absolute pleasure and honour to entertain and meet fans from all over the world. Looking forward to hosting the IIFA Awards."

Co-host of Nexa IIFA Awards - Vicky Kaushal shared,"My journey with IIFA has been tremendously exciting over the years and I can't wait to be on stage and co-host IIFA Awards 2023 with my buddy Abhishek Bachchan!”

A set of masterclasses geared for film aficionados, budding filmmakers, and enthusiasts is one of the highlights of the Sobha IIFA weekend. The masterclass series includes a 'Director's Cut' session with Kabir Khan and Omung Kumar, as well as a session with celebrity hair and makeup artist Nabila.

This year, Kamal Haasan, Hrithik Roshan, Anil Kapoor, Alia Bhatt, Riteish & Genelia D'Souza, Sunny Kaushal, Mouni Roy, Fardeen Khan, Esha Gupta, Mrunal Thakur, Dia Mirza, Rashii Khanna, Sheeba Chaddha, Neelam Kothari, Bhavna Pandey, Maheep Kapoor and Seema Sajdeh will all be walking the green carpet. Producer Ramesh Taurani is likely to attend the IIFA Weekend and Awards, as are fellow cinema moguls Boney Kapoor, Bhushan Kumar, Jayantilal Gada, Anees Bazmee, and R Madhavan.

IIFA will once again be broadcast exclusively on India's No.1 premium Hindi entertainment channel, COLOURS, with a spectacular lineup of star-studded programming.

Speaking about the partnership, Nina Elavia Jaipuria, Head – Hindi Mass Entertainment and Kids’ TV Network, Viacom18 said, "We, at COLORS, are delighted to partner with IIFA yet again to celebrate the excellence of Indian Cinema. Our long-standing partnership with this prestigious award showcases our commitment to recognising the cinematic brilliance and storytelling prowess of the Indian film industry on a global scale. We are thrilled to present to our viewers at COLORS and COLORS Cineplex an entertainment extravaganza filled with spectacular performances and glamour."


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