A legion of film fans are still coming to terms with the irreparable loss of the leading light of the Indian film industry – Yash Chopra, who passed away on 21st October 2012. Our most beloved director, the legendary Yash Chopra's invaluable legacy and extraordinary contribution to cinema was celebrated this year with a number of tributes & posthumous awards and honours.
Yash Chopra’s wife, Mrs. Pamela Chopra accepted all the tributes on his behalf and sincerely thanked the audiences for remembering him with such love. These include...
Colors Screen Lifetime Achievement Award (January 2013) – Pamela Chopra received the Colors Screen Lifetime Achievement Award for her husband posthumously from lyricist Gulzar and actress Rekha.
58th Idea Filmfare Awards Lifetime Achievement Award for contribution towardsHindi Cinema, (January 2013) – Pamela Chopra was presented the award by one of Yash Chopra’s famous leading ladies, Madhuri Dixit, after a wonderful audio video presentation dedicated to Yash Chopra was revealed by Karan Johar. Also Filmfare announced that hereafter a special award in Yash Chopra's name would be given to the Best Debut Director each year.
Yash Chopra's statue unveiled at UTV Stars' Walk of the Stars (February 2013) – The Yash Chopra Statue was unveiled at UTV Stars' Walk of the Stars at Bandra Bandstand. The unveiling was preceded with the revealing of the unique statue at YRF Studios by Pamela Chopra and Uday Chopra amongst special guests.
NDTV Indian of the Year (April 2013) – Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was the chief guest at the NDTV Indian of the Year Awards held in New Delhi where Yash Chopra was awarded posthumously. The Prime Minister personally handed over the award to Mrs. Pamela Chopra and in his speech he said Yash Chopra was a master artist who served our people through the medium of films and the films he created have entertained and educated generations of Indians.
Shahrukh Khan also paid a heartfelt tribute to Yashji by performing to Yashji’s everlasting hit film numbers along with his leading ladies at the Zee Cine Awards 2013 and the 58th Idea Filmfare Awards 2013.
Furthermore, on the occasion of Indian Cinema completing 100 years, India Post (Department of Post, India) released special commemorative stamps and devoted one iconic stamp to Yash Chopra this year (May 2013).
In a special poll conducted by Filmfare to commemorate 100 years of Hindi Cinema, Yash Chopra was declared the greatest director in Hindi Films, according to the nation-wide poll.
The following added to the honors internationally:
Yash Chopra’s “Jab Tak Hai Jaan” received a standing ovation at the Doha Tribeca Film Festival (November 2012) – Yash Chopra's last labour of love took Doha by storm when it was screened as a part of the DTFF to a house full crowd of Indian expats and the local Qatari community. The event started off with His Excellency and the Vice Chair for DTFF, Mr. Issa Al Mohannadi introducing a short 11 minute AV, paying a tribute to Yash Chopra. Mr. Mohannadi said, “Mr. Chopra's contribution was not to just Indian Cinema but to Cinema anywhere in the world, and DTFF pays Homage to a man that defined and redefined love countless times in a career spanning over half a century”.
Marrakech International Film Festival paid tribute to Yash Chopra(December 2012) – The prominent film festival paid tribute to Yashji alongside the screening of “Jab Tak Hai Jaan”. Shahrukh Khan was in attendance at this special screening. The film was presented in the Out of Competition program at the 2012 Marrakech International Film Festival. The Indian delegation was led by megastar Amitabh Bachchan.
“Yash Chopra Cinema” in La Trobe University, Australia (April 2013) – The prestigious Agora cinema in La Trobe University was renamed as the “Yash Chopra Cinema” and was launched by Mrs. Pamela Chopra in April. For the very first time in Australia, a cinema was named after an Indian personality and our dearly loved Yashji was recipient of this honour. Additionally, Yash Chopra was given the Lifetime Achievement Award as a part of the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne.
Additionally, in April this year, Mrs. Chopra was given the Saraswatibai Phalke Award which has been named after Dadasaheb Phalke's wife, who supported her husband all through his life.
Of course, his swan song “Jab Tak Hai Jaan” which released few weeks after his untimely demise went on to become one of the highest grossing films of the year.
Film lovers and audiences, the world over continue to adore and cherish Yash Chopra's films and memories.