The prestigious Rajasthan International Film Festival (RIFF) this year conferred their Best Author Award to noted film journalist and television producer Ram Kamal Mukherjee for his biography Hema Malini: Beyond The Dreamgirl. Festival director and founder of RIFF Anshu Harsh officially announced the award. Published by Harper Collins India, the authorised biography captures the life of legendary actress Hema Malini. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has penned the foreword of the book, and veteran filmmaker Ramesh Sippy has written the afterword. Fashion photographer Vickky Idnaani has shot the cover of the book.
Anshu Harsh, welcoming Ram Kamal before presenting him the award, said, “Ram Kamal is a magician when it comes to words! He’s carved his own identity in Bollywood that too in a city like Mumbai. He started working when he was barely 18 or 19.”
Internationally acclaimed film actor Adeel Hussain and National award winning filmmaker Ananth Narayan Mahadevan at Birla Auditorium conferred the award.
Hema Malini congratulated Ram Kamal on his second award. “I an extremely happy and honoured that Rajasthan International Film Festival decided to give Beyond The Dreamgirl this award. Ram Kamal is a very senior writer and he has worked hard on this book. I think he deserves all the awards.”
Adil Hussain, who created a major impact in Hollywood with films like Life of Pi, Parched and English Vinglish said, “I have heard a lot about Ram Kamal and his biography on Hemaji. I have just ordered the book online and waiting to read it. I wish Ram Kamal would also write about alternative cinema and actors who have made their mark in Indian cinema. ”
Internationally acclaimed filmmaker Ananth Narayan Mahadevan was visibly excited presenting the award to Ram Kamal. “I know Ram Kamal for many years. I have worked with Hemaji in Noopur. I have read the book and I think it’s one of the finest biographies released in recent times.”
Shantanu Roy Choudhuri Executive Editor at HarperCollins India was equally happy with this achievement. He said, “I have seen Ram Kamal working with lot of passion towards this book. These awards are definitely an indication that Bollywood biographies are in vogue and people want to read more about yesteryear stars and their journey.”
Ram Kamal, expressing his gratitude, said, “This was unexpected! I came here to conduct a chat session on regional cinema, and both Anshu and Somendra Harsh from RIFF insisted that I should stay back for the award night. Glad, I agreed to stay back for the special moment. I think the entire credit for this award goes to Harper Collins India and team for having faith in me. Of course Hemaji, without whom this book would have been just a dream.”
RIFF also honoured national and international filmmakers at the award ceremony for their outstanding contribution to Indian cinema.