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India's movie industry handed out its version of the Oscars on Saturday, 30 April 2005, at the 7th International Bollywood Movie Awards, which saw the veteran director Yash Chopra take top honours.
Dancers in shimmering costumes, Indian beauties in saris and sultry heartthrobs sporting long black coats crowded the Taj Mahal casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey, for the occasion. The event was held in the U.S. East Coast gambling resort as part of Bollywood's bid to be a global force in cinema.
It was a fitting backdrop for a show that mixed the glitz of a major movie industry with the retro feel of variety-show dance numbers, the likes of which were long ago excised from the Oscars.
An audience composed largely of Americans of Indian origin cheered as veteran Yash Chopra was named Best Director for his film "Veer-Zaara," which also picked up the award for Best Film and Best Actor for its star Shahrukh Khan. The classic music of Veer-Zaara was also recognised and was awarded the Best Music for 2004. These timeless melodies were originally composed by one of Indian Cinema’s most revered music composers - the late Madan Mohan, who expired around 30 years ago, and were recreated by his son Sanjeev Kohli, especially for this film. The Best Lyrics award was won by Javed Akhtar for the song “Tere Liye...”. The other awards Veer-Zaara was felicitated with were Best Story (Aditya Chopra), Best Art Direction (Sharmishta Roy) & Best Costume Design (Manish Malhotra).
"The winner is the "Spielberg" of India... Yash Chopra," said former Baywatch star David Hasselhoff as he presented the award for Best Film, referring to star U.S. director Steven Spielberg.
"Whether it's comedy or romance or action, films should touch your heart," Chopra said, explaining the appeal of his films and the genre.
Rani Mukerji won the Best Actress award for her role in Yash Raj Films' "Hum Tum", which was also selected for Best Screenplay (Kunal Kohli & Siddharth Anand). Sunidhi Chauhan was also awarded the Best Playback Singer – Female, for the song “Dhoom Machale...” from Yash Raj Films’ “Dhoom”.
Yash Raj Films almost swept the 7th International Bollywood Movie Awards, winning a total of 11 awards across various categories for their 3 releases of 2004 – Veer-Zaara, Hum Tum & Dhoom.
7th BOLLYWOOD MOVIE AWARDS 2004
(30 April 2005 – New Jersey, USA) VEER-ZAARA:
BEST FILM: Veer-Zaara
BEST DIRECTOR: Yash Chopra
BEST ACTOR: Shahrukh Khan
BEST MUSIC: Late Madan Mohan
BEST LYRICS: Javed Akhtar - Tere Liye...
BEST STORY: Aditya Chopra
BEST ART DIRECTION: Sharmishta Roy
BEST COSTUME DESIGN: Manish Malhotra
BEST ACTRESS: Rani Mukerji
BEST SCREENPLAY: Kunal Kohli & Siddharth Anand
BEST PLAYBACK SINGER - FEMALE: Sunidhi Chauhan - Dhoom Machale...