Azmi to lead Asia Pacific nods jury


SYDNEY -- Indian actress Shabana Azmi will serve as jury president for the inaugural Asia Pacific Screen Awards in Australia in November, organizers said Monday.

Azmi, winner of India's national film prize for best actress five times since 1975, has starred in 140 Indian films including Deepa Mehta's "Fire" and Shekhar Kapur's "Masoom." She's also had roles in such international productions as John Schlesinger's "Madame Sousatzka," Nicholas Klotz's "Bengali Night," Roland Joffe's "City of Joy" and Ismail Merchant's "In Custody."

A noted social activist, Azmi has focused on work to prevent AIDS and protect the rights of women. In 2006, she won the Gandhi Foundation International Peace Award for her work with the slum dwellers of Mumbai.