Mumbai: The Embassy of Switzerland felicitated Bollywood dream merchant, Yash Chopra with the “Swiss Ambassador’s Award 2010”for his contribution in promoting ‘Brand Switzerland’ through his movies. The award was presented at a scintillating evening hosted at the lawns of the Swiss Ambassador’s residence on Monday, October 25, 2010.
Popular actor Deepika Padukone was present on the occasion and congratulated Yashji on being presented this prestigious award. The highlight of the evening’s cultural performances was the Swiss Ambassador’s opening of the ceremony with music from Waqt (1965) that he brilliantly played on a Flügelhorn. This was followed by colourful dance performances by troupes to songs from Yash Chopra’s films.
While presenting the award to Mr. Chopra, the Swiss Ambassador H.E Mr. Philippe Welti said “We are pleased to honour Mr. Yash Chopra with the first of its kind award. Mr. Chopra’s association with Switzerland dates back to 1965 when he was present at the very same lawns while shooting for his golden jubilee hit, Waqt. Our association has come a long way since then with numerous of his movies showing the splendid serenity of Switzerland. To many Indians, a Yash Chopra movie has been their window to a scenic dreamland… a window to Switzerland.”
“I am honoured by the gesture shown by the Swiss Ambassador H.E Philippe Welti by giving me this award. Switzerland has always been my first choice of destination for shooting outside India. Be it for its picture perfect snow capped mountains or lush green fields, it is truly a heaven on earth that has made every angle, every shot and every frame of my movies breathtaking with the scenes vividly etched in peoples’ minds” said Yash Chopra on receiving the Swiss Ambassador’s Award.
Mr. Chopra’s romance with Switzerland began during his honeymoon and has continued ever since. On many instances in the past, the Swiss Government has honored Yash Chopra for helping rediscover Switzerland - he was presented a special Award by screen goddess Ursula Andress, on behalf of the Swiss Government. The entire unit of Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, the 1995 Bollywood blockbuster shot extensively in Switzerland, was given a rare Swiss recognition in Mumbai for its successful running for over 500 weeks. In fact, a lake in Switzerland has been unofficially named 'The Chopra Lake' because of the way Mr. Chopra has used it in films.
Hence it was only apt when Mr. Chopra, who has shot a portion of all his films in Switzerland, felt the need to share his romance with the country with his fans and decided to partner with the reputed Brandinvest AG, in bringing the “YRF Enchanted Journey” to life - a tour which gives consumers a firsthand opportunity to live the authentic YRF experience by visiting original sites and locations in Switzerland used by Yash Raj Films.
Swiss Ambassador’s Award is presented to personalities, who have played an outstanding role in promoting relations between India and Switzerland. This award is being presented for the first time in 2010.
Some of the Yash Raj Films that have been shot in Switzerland are:
Chandni (1989) | Darr (1993) | Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (1995) | Mohabbatein (2000) | Mere Yaar Ki Shaadi Hai (2002) | Mujhse Dosti Karoge (2002) | Veer-Zaara (2004) | Laaga Chunari Mein Daag (2007) | Bachna Ae Haseeno (2008)