The Big B, who opened the Cannes Film Festival with his ‘The Great Gatsby’ co-star Leonardo DiCaprio, described the honour to given to him as “emotional.’’
For a first for Bollywood, Amitabh Bachchan addressed the Cannes Film Festival. The Big B, who plays Meyer Wolfsheim in The Great Gatsby – a 3D film made at a cost of $125 million, said in a blog post, “Truly a historic moment for me, but immensely historic and honourable for the Indian film industry, a fraternity that I am and shall always be most proud of.
“The Festival authorities at Cannes have been extremely welcoming and kind to me. The respect and the dignity offered was exceptional. To have invited Leonardo DiCaprio and me on stage to open the Festival, was the moment for me. Such an honor and a privilege for the celebration of 100 years of Indian Cinema to be given the importance it so richly deserves.’’
On Twitter, he shared his experience, saying, “The honour and respect meted out by Cannes, incredible. Announcing suddenly for Leonardo DiCaprio and myself to open the festival. With the entire world film fraternity at Cannes, applauding and welcoming our presence, treating us like royalty … it’s emotional.
“For a complete alien in the midst of Cannes to be acknowledged, is the proudest moment for me as an Indian. Acknowledging Cannes in recognizing 100 years of Indian cinema, it was absolutely imperative for me to address, in my mother tongue.’’
The Big said described how the “director of Cannes was delighted to hear the ‘music of the Hindi language’ spoken” as “it brought in the universality of the occasion”.
He said, “I loved ‘The Great Gatsby’ better the second time … understood the nuances, the words, the pathos and energy.’’