National awards for Munnabhai MBBS, Shwas, Pinjar
Rib-tickling satire "Munnabhai MBBS" and brooding 1947 partition saga "Pinjar" are among the films that have bagged 51st national film awards for 2003 announced here Saturday.
Marathi film "Shwas" by Sandeep Sawant has won the national award for the Best Film of 2003 for its moving portrayal of the relationship between a man and his grandson who is about to lose his vision.
The award carries a Swarna Kamal (or Golden Lotus) and cash prize of Rs.50,000.
The film's young star Ashwin Chitale shares the Best Child Artiste award with Kalidasan, who has portrayed a complex role in the Malayalam "Ente Veedu Appoontem".
"Munnabhai MBBS", a satire on the medical profession centred on a lovable vagabond and his quirky sidekick, won the award for best popular film providing wholesome entertainment.
The film has not only enjoyed commercial success but also earned plaudits at home and abroad for its theme that patients can be cured with love and humour.
"Pinjar", a realistic portrayal of the trauma of communities and families ripped apart during the partition of the subcontinent in 1947, bagged the Nargis Dutt Award for Best Film on National Integration.
Its director, Chandra Prakash Dwivedi, will receive the Rajat Kamal (Silver Lotus) and Rs.30,000 cash.
Rakesh Roshan's alien fantasy extravaganza "Koi Mil Gaya" bagged the award for Best Film on Other Social Issues Such as Prohibition, Women and Child Welfare, Anti-Dowry, Drug Abuse, Welfare of Handicapped.
The film tells the tale of a mentally challenged young man who develops a unique bond with a visitor from outer space with magical powers. It was also chosen for best special effects and best choreography.
Malayalam film "Maargam" won the Indira Gandhi Award for Best First Film.
Manoj Bajpai has won the special jury award for Best Actor for his performance in "Pinjar".
Bajpai, known to bring a unique intensity to his screen characters, played the complex role of a Muslim man who kidnaps and marries a Hindu girl to spite her family.
Critically acclaimed actor Gautam Ghose won a Swarna Kamal and Rs.50,000 as Best Director for his Bengali film "Aabar Aranye", which explores human relationships.
He also won the award for best screenplay.
The top acting awards in the popular category eluded the Hindi film industry this time and regional stars walked away with more honours. Hindi actors, however, won in the supporting categories.
Kerala actress Meera Jasmin was named Best Actress for her role in "Padam Onnu Oru Vilapam", where she plays a young woman trapped in a polyandrous marriage. She wins a Rajat Kamal and Rs.10,000.
Tamil star Vikram was named best actor of the year 2003 for his powerhouse performance in "Pithamagan". He, too, will receive a Rajat Kamal and Rs.10,000.
Actress Sharmila Tagore was chosen best supporting actress for her graceful portrayal in Ghose' film "Aabar Aranye." She wins a Rajat Kamal and Rs.10,000.
The award for best supporting actor goes to Pankaj Kapoor for his riveting yet understated performance as a mafia don in "Maqbool", loosely based on Macbeth. He will receive the same prize as Tagore.
The national awards acknowledged some 50 films in various languages.
Singer Sonu Nigam was adjudged best male playback artiste for his splendid rendition of the title song in "Kal Ho Na Ho" that beautifully captures the spirit of the film. He wins a Rajat Kamal and Rs.10,000.
The film's music also earned plaudits for Best Music Direction, which went to the popular trio Shankar Mahadevan, Aloysis Mendonsa and Ehsaan Noorani.
Tarali Sarma was named the best female singer for a song in "Akashitorar Kothale" that she renders sans any instrumental accompaniment.
Rituparno Ghosh's "Chokher Baali" starring Aishwarya Rai missed out on the main categories but won awards for Best Feature Film in Bengali, best art direction and costume.
"Raghu Romeo", a humorous yet sensitive take on an ordinary man nursing dreams of becoming a hero, was named the Best Feature Film in Hindi.
Celebrated Assamese director Jahnu Baruah's "Tora" was named for Best Children's Film for its moving depiction of a child bringing down walls and barriers created by grown-ups.