South Asian Rising Star Film Awards Gala

Photo by Francis Latif

The 9th South Asian International Film Festival held its first-ever South Asian Rising Star Film Awards Gala Dinner on October 23rd, 2012 and it was co-hosted by Sunny Leone and Jay Chandrasekhar. The event, took place at New York City’s stunning GUASTAVINO’S (under the 59th Street Bridge) on the Upper East Side, celebrated the extraordinary achievements of rising and/or emerging South Asian and Indian Diaspora talent in film over the past year.

Hosts Sunny Leone and Jay Chandrasekhar

The South Asian International Film Festival (SAIFF) is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization dedicated to supporting South Asian/Indian filmmakers in the U.S seeking maximum visibility and absolute distribution.

The event’s inaugural award categories include Best Lead Actor, Lead Actress, Supporting Actor, Supporting Actress, Original Screenplay, Cinematography, Composer, Director, and Feature Film.

Co-host Sunny Leone rose to prominence in America’s adult film industry before breaking into Bollywood cinema with 2011’s erotic thriller Jism 2. Long-courted by top Indian film talent, she is now set to star in the sequel to Ragini MMS, one of last year’s most trailblazing horror films. Joining her as host is Jay Chandrasekhar, a familiar talent to Western audiences, having co-founded the comedy troupe Broken Lizard and directed such comedy hits as Super Troopers, The Dukes of Hazzard, and Beerfest.

The South Asian Rising Star Film Awards Gala Dinner is deeply honored to have a deeply-multifaceted awards jury, comprised of Indian film critic/TV host Rajeev Masand, author/film critic/TV host Anupama Chopra, musician Siddhartha Khosla (Goldspot), actress/musician Janina Gavankar (HBO’s True Blood), and actor Maulik Pancholy (NBC’s 30 Rock).

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