A galaxy of celebrities is in attendance as the Duke of York comes calling
Over the years Yash Raj Films has become synonymous with the film industry’s royalty, but true blue royalty graced the YRF Studios. Prince Andrew, The Duke of York, 4th in line to the British throne, dropped in at the state-of-the-art facilities of
for lunch and a tour of the premises. He is in India in his capacity as UK's Special Representative for International Trade and Investment. In this role, he is responsible for promoting the UK as an attractive business destination for investors, among others. The fact that Yash Raj Films is one of only three organizations that he visited while in the city underscores the importance of the Indian film industry to UK in particular, and the world at large.
Joining him on the occasion was a who’s who of the Indian film industry comprising the biggest, stars, directors and producers. The Duke (along with his contingent which included the British High Commissioner and Deputy High Commissioner) was welcomed by Yash Chopra himself along with his wife, Pamela Chopra. A traditional Indian aarti welcome was given by Kirron Kher. This done, the Duke and his contingent of 12 sat down for a very traditional Indian thali lunch. Joining him of course were the likes of superstars Abhishek Bachchan, Saif Ali Khan, Preity Zinta, Rani Mukerji, Bobby Deol and Lara Dutta. Also in attendance were the brigade of talented directors Shaad Ali and Siddharth Anand, led of course by the inimitable Karan Johar. Present also were Commissioner of Police Mr. and Mrs. A.N. Roy, Chairman of Jet Airways Mr. & Mrs. Naresh Goyal, Chairman of Forbes Mr. K.C. Mehra and the CEO of Yash Raj Films Sanjeev Kohli.
The lunch was a relaxed affair with the Duke himself taking the lead in the conversation, seeming quite conversant with the Hindi film industry. Post the lunch, he was taken on a guided tour of YRF Studios by Yash Chopra and Sanjeev Kohli. The Duke was highly impressed by the facilities at the swank new studios.
Soon, though it was time for the Duke to leave for his other engagements and Yash Chopra presented him with a memento to remember the occasion. But while he was there, he made a distinctly favourable impression on all present, and left behind the most pleasant memories of this truly royal visit. As Yash Chopra summed up, “It was a privilege for all of us to host His Royal Highness. His grace, dignity and sense of humour charmed us all and it was indeed a memorable day for all of us at Yash Raj Films”.