New Delhi: Bollywood stars Kangana Ranaut and Manoj Bajpayee along with their South colleague Dhanush on Monday won top acting honours at the 67th National Film Awards, which walked the tightrope between mainstream and indie cinema.
Director Priyadarshan’s Malayalam film ”Marakkar: Arabikadalinte Simham” was declared best film and Sanjay Puran Singh Chauhan named best director for the Hindi film ”Bahattar Hoorain” by the jury headed by filmmaker N Chandra, who said they judged the movies ”not as gods but as parents”. Late actor Sushant Singh Rajput’s ”Chhichhore”, directed by Nitesh Tiwari, was adjudged the best Hindi film in the awards for 2019.
The National Awards, given by Directorate of Film Festivals which comes under the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, were delayed by a year due to the pandemic.
This is the fourth National Award for Ranaut, who is known for her combative comments and hit the headlines when she locked horns with the Maharashtra government after her office was demolished by the BMC. She won the best actress award this time for her performance in the Hindi films ”Panga” and ”Manikarnika”.
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The other three National Award wins were best actress for ”Tanu Weds Manu Returns” and ”Queen” and the best supporting actress trophy for ”Fashion”.
Bajpayee, considered one of Hindi cinema’s finest performers, won the best actor award for his role in the Marathi film “Bhonsle”. He shared the prize with South star Dhanush who won it for his role in the Tamil hit ”Asuran”.
Bajpayee previously won the National Award for best supporting actor for ”Satya”, whereas this is Dhanush’s second National Award.
”I’m really happy and thankful who believed in this film,” Bajpayee said thanking directors, cast and producers.
In a video posted on Twitter, Ranaut thanked the teams of both the films and said the award is shared by them all.
‘Best director’ Chauhan said he is ”overwhelmed” at his second National Award after the 2010 film ”Lahore”, for which he won the Indira Gandhi Award for Best Debut Film of a Director.
”There were so many wonderful films. I’m so overwhelmed. To get it now in the best director category is humbling. I am quite speechless, I am on cloud nine,” Singh told PTI.
The award for the best film on social issues went to Marathi film ”Anandi Gopal”, the Nargis Dutt award for National Integration was given to ”Tajmal” and the popular film providing wholesome entertainment was given to the Telugu movie ”Maharshi”, starring Mahesh Babu.
The Indira Gandhi award for best debut film of a director went to ”Helen” by Mathukutty Xavier. The Malayalam film also bagged award in the best makeup category.
Director Vivek Ranjan Agnihotri was named the best dialogue writer in the screenplay category for his film ”Tashkent Files”, which also helped Agnihotri’s actor-wife Pallavi Joshi land the best supporting actress win.
Agnihotri said winning the honour is a dream come true.
The film revolves around the mysterious death of then prime minister Lal Bahadur Shastri in 1966. Agnihotri dedicated the award to Shastri and ”the common people of India, who supported the film when everyone else had abandoned the project.” Actor Vijay Sethupathi was declared the best supporting actor for his critically-acclaimed role of trans woman Shilpa/Manickam in Tamil film ”Super Deluxe”. After the announcement, Sethupathi thanked director Thiagarajan Kumararaja on Twitter.
The award for best original screenplay went to filmmaker Kaushik Ganguly for the Bengali film ”Jyeshthoputro” and best adapted screenplay to Srijit Mukherjee for ”Gumnami” (Bengali).
Hindi film ”Kastoori” was declared the best children’s film and Monpa language film ”Water Burial” was named the best film on environment.
Singer B Praak was named the best male singer for ”Teri Mitti”, a patriotic song from Hindi film ”Kesari”, while Savani Ravindra was declared best female singer for Marathi film ”Bardo”.
The National Award for best music direction award was given to D Imman for the Tamil film ”Viswasam” and Prabha Varma won the best lyrics award for Malayalam film ”Kolaambi”.
Naga Vishal was named the best child artist for the Tamil film ”KD”.
In the language film categories, best Telugu film went to ”Jersey”, Malayalam film to ”Kalla Nottam”, Tamil film to ”Asuran”, Kannada film to ”Akshi”, Bengali film to ”Gumnaami”, Marathi film to ”Bardo”, Paniya film to ”Kenjira”, Mishing film to ”Anu Ruwad”, Khasi film to ”Iewduh”, Chhattisgarhi film to ”Bhulan the Maze”.
The other winners in this category were ”Chhoriyan Chhoron Se Kam Nahi Hoti” (Haryanvi), ”Pingara” (Tulu), ”Rab Da Radio 2” (Punjabi) ”Kalira Atita” and ”Sala Budhar Badla” (Odia), ”Eigi Kona” (Manipuri), ”Kaajro” (Konkani) and ”Ronuwa – Who Never Surrender” (Assamese).
Best action direction went to Kannada film ”Avane Srimannarayana”, choreography to ”Maharishi”, best editing to ”Jersey”, special effects to best film winner ”Marakkar”, the special jury award to Tamil film ”Oththa Seruppu”, best costumes to Sujith and Sai for ”Marakkar” and best production design to ”Anandi Gopal”.
Prabuddha Banerjee was named for background music in ”Jyeshthoputro”, Khasi film ”Iewduh” for best audiography, sound designer Resul Pukootty won the best audiography (re-recordist of final mixed track) along with Bibin Dev for Tamil film ”Oththa Seruppu Size 7”.
Special mentions were given to ”Jonaki Porua” (Assamese), ”Lata Bhagwan Kare” (Marathi) and ”Picasso” (Marathi).
Sikkim was declared the most film friendly state for 2019. The National Award for best writing on cinema went to Sanjay Suri’s book ”A Gandhian Affair: India’s Curious Portrayal of Love in Cinema”. Sohini Chattopadhyay was named best film critic.
The awards in the non-feature film categories included: audiography (musical) ”Radha”, on location sound recordist ”Rahas”, best cinematography ”Sonsi”, best direction ”Knock Knock Knock”, best film on family values ”Oruu Pathira”, best short fiction- ”Custody”, special jury award ”Small Scale Values”.
”Radha” also won the award for best animation. The best investigative film award went to ”Jakkal”. ”Wild Karnataka” was named for best exploration and best narration (David Attenborough, best education film was ”Apples and Oranges”, film on social issues ”Holy Rites” and ”Ladli”.
The best debut non-feature film director went to ”Khisa” and non-feature film ”An Engineered Dream”.
”The Stork Saviours” was named best environment film, best promotional film went to ”The Shower”; best arts and culture film – ”Shrikshetra-Ru-Sahijata”; best biographical film -”Elephants do Remember” and best ethnographic film – ”Charan-Atva”.