joining previous winners Rajkummar Rao & Manoj Bajpayee, Siddiqui reigns for India

Brisbane, November 30: Nawazuddin Siddiqui was named Best Actor for his outstanding performance in Manto at the Asia Pacfic Screen Awards  (APSA) in Brisbane last night.

Siddiqui’s win marks the third consecutive year Indian actors have won in this category following Rajkummar Rao for Newton (2017) and Manoj Bajpayee for Aligarh (2016).

Siddiqui and Nandita emerged winners for Manto at APSA

This was Siddiqui’s second APSA nomination after receiving a Special Mention in this category in 2016 for Anurag Kashyap’s Raman Raghav 2.0, only just missing out to Bajpayee. At that time APSA Jury President Lord David Puttnam said the competition was so close between the actors, the International Jury had to award a Special Mention to Siddiqui.

In a filmed acceptance speech, Siddiqui said it was an absolute honour to be prized as the Best Actor at the prestigious APSA. “This is priceless” he said.

Manto director Nandita Das accepted the award, a unique hand-crafted glass trophy by Brisbane glass artist Joanna Bone on his behalf.

Composer Sneha Khanwalker, who was also present on the night, as part of the inaugural APSA Music in Film International Jury, also cheered for Siddiqui.

Earlier in the ceremony Nandita Das was presented with the FIAPF Award for achievement in film in the Asia Pacific region.

Ms Das becomes the 12th Asia Pacific screen icon, and second Indian to receive the award, which was earlier awarded to Yash Chopra in 2008.

Special Mention for Achievement in Directing for Ivan Ayr for Soni

A Special Mention for Achievement in Directing went to Ivan Ayr for his direction of Soni (India), which premiered in Horizons competition at the Venice Film Festival.

In a spread of awards representing the geographical and cultural diversity of the Asia Pacific region, APSAs went to films from Australia, India, Indonesia, Japan and Singapore amongst many other countries.

President, APSA International Jury, Alexander Rodnyansky said that 2018 had witnessed a a unique line up of films from different “countries, cultures and talents of our region.

“It’s a huge and very rare opportunity to learn and understand so much about other people’s lives and I have discovered new worlds by watching them…”.

Sepcial mention was made for Khanjan Koshore Nath (India) for Asia Pacific Screen Lab.

The Awards, hosted by New Zealand movie star Cliff Curtis and popular Australian TV presenter Sofie Formica were held at Brisbane Exhibition and Convention Centre.

Vir Rajendra

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