Indian-origin director Mira Nair was conferred with the Jeff Skoll Award in Impact Media, early Wednesday morning, by the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). Bollywood actor Tabu presented the award to Nair. The ceremony was held virtually this year due to COVID-19.

TIFF’s official Twitter handle tweeted the news, “Giving us films like MONSOON WEDDING, THE NAMESAKE, QUEEN OF KATWE, and most recently…A SUITABLE BOY, see Mira, art can change the world.”

What You Should Know: 

  • TIFF conferred director Mira Nair with the Jeff Skoll Award in Impact Media.
  •  Bollywood actor Tabu presented the award to Nair.
  • Mira Nair is known for directing films such as The Namesake, Salaam Bombay and Monsoon Wedding.
  • Nair’s BBC series A Suitable Boy will close the film festival on September 19.

Also Read: A Suitable Boy Trailer Promises To Bring Vikram Seth’s Epic Novel To Life

Tabu Praises Mira Nair

While presenting the award to Nair, Tabu said, “This award has been rightfully chosen for Mira this year.” Revealing how Nair had used the profits from her film Salaam Bombay to set up the Salaam Baalak Trust, Tabu said that “The Salaam Baalak Trust continues to serve 5000 (underprivileged) children every year.”

She further added that Nair has set the “highest standards in cinema,” with films such as The Namesake, Monsoon Wedding, and Queen Of Katwe. Tabu has a longstanding artistic association with the director. Most recently, she essayed a central character in Nair’s small screen adaptation of Vikram Seth’s 1993 novel, A Suitable Boy.

Nair’s Acceptance Speech

Speaking virtually from her New York residence, Nair said in her acceptance speech, “When I work, it feels like fun. So I thank the Toronto International Film Festival for giving me an award for having my fun and to be a part of this extraordinary privilege of being able to make cinema.”

Nair also said that she has discovered the “great power of listening” and the “possibility of making bridges” through direction. The filmmaker added that she was accepting the Tribute Award in honour of “stories that herald the idiosyncratic, the unseen, the unspoken, the unsaid, the baffling.”

Also Read: Mira Nair To Adapt Ellen Barry’s ‘Jungle Prince’ For Amazon

Twitter celebrates Mira Nair

After TIFF’s announcement, many personalities from the Indian film industry congratulated Nair for receiving the award. Film critic and journalist Anupama Chopra tweeted, “@MiraPagliNair being honoured with a Tribute Award at the on-going #TIFF20 Other recipients include Sir Anthony Hopkins, Kate Winslet and Chloe Zhao! #soproud.

Actress Richa Chadha reshared Anupama’s post and congratulated Mira on her stellar achievement:

Amidst the pandemic, other film festivals, like the Tribeca Film Festival, did away with all in-person screenings in 2020. In contrast, TIFF 2020 has gone on to offer both big-screen experience and virtual viewing. Notably, Nair’s series A Suitable Boy is all set to close the film festival on September 19. The show will also be available on Netflix India soon.

Also Read: The First Episode Of A Suitable Boy Is Out: Here’s What Critics Have To Say

The TIFF 2020 Tribute Awards also saw a special performance by Canadian singer Shawn Mendes. Besides Tabu, other presenters included Regina George, Ava DuVernay, Olivia Colman and Jodie Foster. Other recipients apart from Nair were actors Kate Winslet and Anthony Hopkins, and filmmaker Chloe Zhao.

Image Credit: Ytalkies

Tarini Gandhiok is an intern with SheThePeople.TV.

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