First time Bollywood director Gauri Shinde’s English Vinglish will release today but it has already seen packed theatres! When the film stepped on foreign ground, it saw jam-packed cinema halls at the Toronto International Film Festival. The drama-comedy - which was screened on September 14th 2012 at the Roy Thompson Hall received an overwhelming response from the global audiences present there. It turned out to be a proud moment not only for those associated with English Vinglish but also Bollywood.
There were two screenings of the film at the celebrated festival: the public screening and the premiere. Both of which were fully crowded with people anxious to know what the story was all about. After witnessing such a huge audience waiting to watch the film, it seemed like the dream had already been fulfilled for the English Vinglish team. But what followed next put the entire team present there in a trance.
At the end of the film, the entire audience stood up to give the film a standing ovation and how! For almost 10 minutes the applauding didn’t stop and everyone just stood there in order to express how deeply moved they were. Interestingly, when Amitabh Bachchan’s cameo took place on the silver screen, people just loved the whole visual experience. One and all were completely in awe of Big B.
While the team was still soaking in this unforgettable response, the Toronto International Film Festival still had a couple of pleasant surprises hidden for them. R Balki, Gauri Shinde and French actor Mehdi Nebbou featuring who attended the public screening were being questioned by people from all nationalities who had swamped the film screening. The event was also attended by those of Spanish, Iranian, French, Italian, and Mexican nationalities and the potpourri was rushing towards the trio to ask them questions.
The trio thought the session would last for 10-15 minutes and would be a generic question and answer-round related to the film. But the round turned into a conversation where everyone started sharing their personal anecdotes about their experience and struggle with the language. Almost everyone present there connected with Sridevi’s character Shashi as they all knew of someone who has faced similar lingual problems.
Simply put, the post-screening queries transformed into a venting session with the makers and actors of the film as everyone in discussion became very emotional. The film had touched their heart and struck a chord with their problems with language too. Some people were so touched that they even started crying while sharing their personal experiences with Balki, Gauri and Mehdi. It was a night to remember in Toronto.