‘Slumdog Millionaire’ bags two more US film industry awards

January 26th, 2009 - 12:06 pm ICT by IANS  

Washington, Jan 26 (IANS) Danny Boyle’s acclaimed film “Slumdog Millionaire” has taken home two more major US film industry awards over the weekend, winning the top prizes from both the Screen Actors Guild and the Producers Guild of America.Bollywood stars Anil Kapoor and Irfaan Khan, British Indian Actor Dev Patel, and newcomer Freida Pinto received the overall cast prize for the Mumbai-set rags-to-riches saga at the Screen Actors Guild Awards in Los Angeles Sunday night from Anthony Hopkins.

Anil Kapoor, accepting on behalf of the “Slumdog Millionaire” cast, dedicated the award to the slum children shown in the movie.

“They deserve this award. They set our performances,” he said. “It’s the children who’ve done it, not us.”

The Oscar-nominated film tells the heart-warming story a young man from the slums of Mumbai who risks all for love and for a shot at instant wealth as a contestant on the Indian version of the TV game show “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire”.

Patel, who plays the protagonist, and Pinto, his ladylove, introduced the film clip at the event.

“Slumdog Millionaire” also won the top prize from the Producers Guild of America Saturday, giving it another boost in the race for the Oscars next month.

The top award from the Producers Guild of America or PGA goes to the movie’s producer, in this case Christian Colson, whose previous feature credits consist of three relatively obscure thrillers.

Meanwhile, following its 10 Oscar nominations and expansion into more theatres, “Slumdog Millionaire” has jumped into the North American Top Five for the first time in its 11-week run with its weekend gross soaring by 80 percent to $10.55 million.

Now running in 1,411 theatres across America, up 829 from last weekend, the film has to date grossed a total of $55.92 million, according to the movie website boxofficeguru.com.

The Producers Guild award is considered an important bellwether for Oscar success as its members make up an important constituency of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which votes on the Oscars.

In its first 19 years, 12 of the PGA’s top film picks went on to win the Academy Award for best picture, including last year’s champion “No Country for Old Men” although the producers missed the mark for three straight years starting in 2005.

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