The 67th National Film Awards were announced on Monday. Manoj Bajpayee and Dhanush were adjudged the best actor for their roles in “Bhonsle" and "Asuran", respectively while Kangana Ranaut was named best actress for her roles in "Manikarnika" and "Panga".
In a video posted on Twitter, Ranaut thanked the crew of both the films and said the award belongs to all of them.
Bajpayee, who is currently recovering from Covid-19, dedicated his award to his co-stars and producers, who backed director Devashish Makhija's vision for “Bhonsle".
Bajpayee features in the Mumbai-set film as a retired policeman who tries to help migrants fight local politicians.
"I am happy and thankful to everyone who believed in this film, who believed in me. This award is not only for me but for all these people (who backed the film). With 'Bhonsle' completing its journey with this National Award, I am only feeling thankful and nothing else," Bajpayee said.
Sushant Singh Raput-starrer "Chhichhore" bagged the ‘best Hindi film’ award. Director Nitesh Tiwari, said the news of the movie ( "Chhichhore") winning the National Award "came out of the blue".
"I was not even thinking about it. I am still surprised," Tiwari told PTI.
Produced by Sajid Nadiadwala, "Chhichhore" is a coming-of-age comedy-drama.
Tiwari said his feelings are a "mixed bag" in Rajput's absence.
"On one hand, I am really happy for the team, on the other hand, there's this sense of loss because he isn't with us," he said.
Nadiadwala also dedicated the win to Rajput.
"On behalf of NGE, I dedicate this extremely prestigious award to Sushant Singh Rajput. We can't get over his loss ever but I sincerely pray that this award gives a little bit of happiness to his family and fans which includes me," he said.
On behalf of NGE, I dedicate this prestigious award to #SushantSinghRajput. We can’t get over his loss but I pray that this award gives a bit of happiness to his family & fans including me. And I’m grateful to @niteshtiwari22 for giving us this special movie.— Nadiadwala Grandson (@NGEMovies) March 22, 2021
- #SajidNadiadwala pic.twitter.com/GiIlfhzWtt
Malayalam film "Marakkar: Arabikadalinte Simham", directed by Priyadarshan was adjudged the best feature film.
Praak, the winner of best male playback singer for the song "Teri Mitti" from the period patriotic drama "Kesari", took to social media to express gratitude to fans and the makers of the Akshay Kumar-starrer.
"Most grateful in this time, cannot express my feelings in words. Would like to thank almighty for this. Thank you so much for always giving me love. Grateful and blessed", he wrote in a tweet.
Most grateful in this time, cannot express my feelings in words. Would like to thank almighty for this. Thank you so much for always giving me love. Grateful and blessed. âÂÂ¤ï¸ÂÂ https://t.co/cEE6qnEZg1— B Praak (@BPraak) March 22, 2021
Kumar also congratulated Praak for the song, which marked the Punjabi singer's Bollywood debut.
"#TeriMitti still gives me goosebumps every time I hear it and one song I'm most proud of being part of... Couldn't be happier! @BPraak #NationalFilmAwards2019," the star tweeted.
#TeriMitti still gives me goosebumps every time I hear it and one song I’m most proud of being part of...Couldn’t be happier! @BPraak #NationalFilmAwards2019 @ParineetiChopra @SinghAnurag79 @karanjohar @apoorvamehta18 @SunirKheterpal @arkopravo19 @manojmuntashir @AzeemRdayani pic.twitter.com/exdEADFdYn— Akshay Kumar (@akshaykumar) March 22, 2021
Sanjay Puran Singh Chauhan was named best director for Hindi film "Bahattar Hoorain" by the National Film Award jury, headed by filmmaker N Chandra, who said they judged the movies "not as gods but as parents".
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 "Taj Mahal".
Telugu film “Maharshi” was adjudged as the best popular film providing wholesome entertainment.
The Indira Gandhi award for first film went to Malayalam film "Helen" by Mathukutty Xavier.
South star Nani, whose sports drama "Jersey" was named the best Telugu film, shared a picture of himself on Twitter celebrating the win for the Gowtam Tinnanuri directorial.
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 told PTI winning the award is a dream come true. Agnihotri's actor wife Pallavi Joshi was named the best-supporting actress for the film.
The director dedicated the award to Shastri and "the common people of India, who supported the film when everyone else had abandoned the project."
Sanjay Puran Singh Chauhan, who won the best director honour in the feature film category for "Bahattar Hoorain", said he is "overwhelmed" to receive his second National Award after his debut film "Lahore".
"There were so many wonderful films. I'm so overwhelmed. To get it now in the best director category is humbling," Chauhan told PTI.
Tamil film "Oththa Seruppu Size 7" bagged the award for re-recording mixer, which was shared by ace sound designer Resul Pookutty and Bibin Dev.
In a lengthy Facebook post, Oscar winner Pookutty thanked his whole team for their work and support.
D Imman, who won the award in the best music director category for his work in "Viswasam", said it is "pure joy" to receive national recognition for Tamil music.
Nila Madhab Panda bagged the best Odia film award for his movie "Kalira Atita".
"This is my first Odia film and getting a National Award for it is a huge achievement. I never make films with any ambition, let alone to win awards. My aim is always to make good films," Panda told PTI.
Rashmi Somvanshi, who led the Satish Kaushik-produced "Chhoriyan Chhoron Se Kam Nahi Hoti", said she was thrilled with the win.
"I am glad that my first Haryanvi film won the National Award. It was Satish sir's vision that helped shape the film," Somvanshi told PTI.
Debutant director Vinod Kamble, whose "Kastoori" was named the best children's film, said it is a "surreal" feeling.
Through the film's 14-year-old Dalit character, who engages in manual scavenging and assists his father in conducting post mortem while struggling for education, Kamble questions caste discrimination.
The director, who hails from a Dalit family of sanitation workers, told PTI, "It's satisfying because where we come from, not many are able to make it this far. So the national award is a matter of pride for the entire team. With the win, I hope the issue travels far and wide."
For producer Shiladitya Bora and director Abhijeet Mohan Warang it was a moment of pride to see their Marathi film "Picasso", currently streaming on Amazon Prime Video, receive a special mention.
(With PTI inputs)
For in-depth, objective and more importantly balanced journalism, Click here to subscribe to Outlook Magazine