Dubai: Indian acting legend Naseeruddin Shah offered a heartfelt tribute to the UAE’s land, people and rulers, addressing fans at the Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF).
The 12th edition of the Dubai International Film Festival opened in Dubai on Wednesday with a gala Red Carpet ceremony that was followed by the presentation of Lifetime Achievement awards to India’s legendary Naseeruddin Shah and the great French actor, Catherine Deneuve.
Shah, who can rightfully claim his place as one of the first actors of the Indian New Wave that began in 1969, regaled the audience with a humorous quip. “I first came to Dubai in 1980, when there was more sand there than buildings, for a shoot. We stayed in the only decent hotel then in Sharjah (close to Dubai) for 45 days. And in those 45 days, Indian cinema being Indian cinema, we managed to complete one scene!”
As the audience broke into loud laughter, Naseer said that although a lifetime achievement award usually signalled the end of one’s career (”Well, it is time for goodbye, you may take this award and go), he was in no mood to call it quits. “I shall return to Dubai after 20 years for one more lifetime award,” he added in a wonderful spirit that conveyed never say die.