Alia Bhatt-starrer Darlings, Vasan Bala’s Monica O My Darling, Mani Ratnam’s two-part epic Ponniyin Selvan and Kannada blockbuster Kantara have emerged as the top nominees for the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne (IFFM) Awards 2023, the organisers said Friday.
The 14th edition of IFFM will take place from August 11 to 20. The awards gala will be held on the opening day at the Australian city’s iconic Hamer Hall.
The four films are among the ten contenders for the best film honour. The rest of the nominees include Bhediya, Brahmastra, Jogi, Pathaan and Sita Ramam.
Bala and Ratnam are set to fight it out for the best director trophy along with Anant Mahadevan (The Storyteller), Anurag Kashyap (Kennedy), Ashish Avinash Bende (Autobio-Pamphlet), Devashish Makhija (Joram), Don Palathara (Family), Kanu Behl (Agra), Nandita Das (Zwigato), Prthivi Konanur (Hadinelentu), Rima Das (Tora’s Husband) and Siddharth Anand (Pathaan).
Manoj Bajpayee has received two nods in the best actor category for his performances in Joram and Gulmohar.
The nominees also include Bollywood Shah Rukh Khan for Pathaan, Dulquer Salmaan for Sita Ramam, Kapil Sharma for Zwigato, Mohit Agarwal for Agra, Paresh Rawal for The Storyteller, Rajkummar Rao for Monica, O My Darling, Rishab Shetty for Kantara, Vijay Varma forqwand Vikram for “Ponnyin Selvan”.
In the best actress segment, Darlings star Bhatt will compete against Aishwarya Rai Bachchan (Ponniyin Selvan), Kajol (Salaam Venky), Rani Mukerji (Mrs Chatterjee Vs Norway) and Sai Pallavi (Gargi).
Actors Akshatha Pandavapura of Koli Esru, Bhumi Pednekar of Bheed, Mrunal Thakur of Sita Ramam, Neena Gupta of Vadh and Sanya Malhotra of Kathal have also received nominations.
The nominees for best indie film category are Aatma Pamphlet, Agra, All India Rank, Family, Gulmohar, Hadinelentu, Joram, Pine Cone, The Storyteller, Tora’s Husband and Zwigato.
In the web series segment, Netflix’s Trial By Fire, Delhi Crime and Prime Video show Jubilee lead the nominations list.
The three shows will compete for the best series honour alongside Dahaad, Farzi, SHE, Suzhal: The Vortex and The Broken News.
Trial By Fire star Abhay Deol as Jubilee leads — Aparshakti Khurana, Prosenjit Chatterjee and Sidhant Gupta — are nominated in the best actor category.
Farzi duo Shahid Kapoor and Vijay Sethupathi will also vie for the trophy along with Abhishek Bachchan of Breathe – Into The Shadows and Vijay Varma of Dahaad. Shefali Shah, Rasika Dugal and Tillotama Shome of Delhi Crime fame have received nods in the best actress category along with Rajshri Deshpande (Trial By Fire), Shriya Pilgaonkar (The Broken News), Sriya Reddy (Suzhal: The Vortex) and Wamiqa Gabbi (Jubilee).
The nominees for best documentary include Against The Tide, Dharti Latar Re Horo, Fatima, Kucheye Khoshbakht, To Kill A Tiger and While We Watched.
The organisers also announced that Oscar-winning filmmaker Bruce Beresford, known for movies Driving Miss Daisy and The Contract, has joined the jury panel.