Jun 25, 2011

Cancer survivor Lisa Ray shines at IIFA Awards

Canadian actress Lisa Ray poses on the green carpet at the world premiere of the film "Double Dhamaal" in Brampton June 23, 2011. The International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) Awards will be held in Toronto on June 25. REUTERS/Mike CasseseTwo years after being diagnosed with cancer of the white blood cells, Lisa Ray was a picture of will power and survival when she made a remarkable green carpet comeback on the opening day of the International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) Awards 2011, being held at Toronto.

Thursday's appearance was Lisa's first carpet walk at a Bollywood event after being diagnosed with the illness two years ago - on June 23, 2009.

IIFA has substituted the usual red carpet for the green one as symbolic solidarity to the cause of the environment.

As paparazzi captured the moment on their lenses, Lisa walked the carpet for the world premiere of Double Dhamaal, held at the city's glittering Silver City complex.

She looked elegant in a shimmering black gown, hair neatly tied back and face tastefully done in nude shades.

As she stepped out of her limousine, the crowd went berserk. They cheered and sought her attention for autograph and photo-ops. "We want you back," they yelled. She giggled and interacted freely with the fans and also patiently stopped to speak to the media.

"My gown is designed by Pink Tartan. I love Canadian fashion designers," said Lisa, who was born and brought up in Toronto. "Am I looking good?" she anxiously asked the waiting press. "I don't really watch too many films these days, but I am looking forward to watching Double Dhamaal because I heard the first part was fun," she added.

Lisa, who had lost hair and gained weight during the treatment, has worked hard to get back into shape. At Thursday's do she looked dazzling, indeed. "Nothing can be as exciting as watching Bollywood-struck Canadians coming down from all over the city to catch a glimpse of Indian actors," said Lisa. "Although this is the first time I am attending the IIFA event, I must say Toronto is a city that loves Indian films and is totally crazy about the actors. I am not sure if this city has ever experienced anything quite like this before."

Asked if she has signed any new Hindi film, Lisa said: "I'm eagerly looking forward to appearing in a Bollywood film again. There are some projects in the pipeline, so just wait for a surprise soon. I don't want to spoil the fun," she said with a mischievous smile.

Lisa had made her Bollywood debut in 2001 with Vikram Bhatt's suspense hit, Kasoor. Before that, she made waves in the music video of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan's evergreen hit, Aafreen. Her roles in Deepa Mehta's Water and Bollywood/ Hollywood were also appreciated.

(Source: India Today / Priyanka Srivastava)

(Photo: Mike Cassese / Reuters)

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