It was destiny that saw the great Amitabh Bachchan bag a miniscule role in The Great Gatsby. A role so small and yet so significant in the life of the legendary superstar. The role was a mark of debut for the Big B in Hollywood and the icing on the cake was the fact that it came during the time when Indian Cinema was celebrating its 100th year of existing. ‘Cause it brought the man into international limelight at the 66th Cannes Film Festival in France.
Yesterday the 66th Cannes Film Festival got to a resounding start albeit with heavy showers as Buz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby opened the festival on a wet France evening.
The lead actor of The Great Gatsby Leonardo Di Caprio along with Amitabh Bachchan earlier had taken the stage during the opening ceremony with the former making the traditional announcement, “I declare that the 66th Festival de Cannes is now open.”
This year, Cannes is celebrating Indian Cinema’s 100 years and for the first time in Cannes’ history, quite a handful of Indian films have been lined up to woo the international audience including the most recent Bombay Talkies that is Bollywood’s tribute to 100 years of Indian Cinema.
And it was but natural for Mr Bachchan to take to the mike yesterday at the opening ceremony of the 66th Cannes Film Festival and speak in India’s national language – Hindi amidst surprise and thundering applause.
He later tweeted, “Acknowledging Cannes in recognising 100 yrs of Indian Cinema, it was absolutely imperative for me to address, in my Mother tongue !”
Amitabh later added on his official twitter account, “With the entire world film fraternity at Cannes, applauding and welcoming our presence, treating us like Royalty .. its emotional !”
Vidya Balan who is a part of the jury was in her ensemble best as she regaled the crowd of film makers from across the globe.
French Actress Audrey Tautou was the Mistress of Ceremonies at the opening gala that had even her in an emotional appearance as she invited the jury president Steven Spielberg to join her on the stage to herald in the 66th Cannes Film Festival.
Indeed a good beginning to the next 100 years of Indian Cinema.