Tamil film “Soorarai Pottru”, partially inspired by events in the life of Simplifly Deccan founder GR Gopinath, received 13 awards including Best Feature Film, Best Actor and Best Actress at the 68th National Film 2020 Awards announced Friday.
The second big winner of the day was ‘Tanhaji: The Unsung Warrior’, with Ajay Devgn sharing the Best Actor award with Suriya for ‘Soorarai Pottru’. This was Devgn’s third national award in the Best Actor category.
Congratulating the winners, Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur said, “Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the film fraternity has faced many challenges to shoot and release movies. But despite this, for the 68th National Film Awards 2020, some very good films have been released… I want to extend my heartfelt congratulations to the award winners.
Along with Suriya, who played Maara, a former Air Force officer who dreamed of starting a low-cost airline in India, Aparrna Balamurali won Best Actress for “Soorarai Pottru.” The film, directed by Sudha Kongara, also won Best Feature.
The award for Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment went to Bollywood film “Tanhaji: The Unsung Warrior” starring Devgn, Kajol and Saif Ali Khan.
Directed by Om Raut, “Tanhaji…” is based on the life of Tanaji Malusare, the military leader of Maratha King Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj’s army. Set in the 17th century, the film also won Best Costume Designer for Nachiket Barve and Mahesh Sherla.
The Bollywood actor, who previously won the National Film Award for Best Actor for his performances in ‘Zakhm’ (1998) and ‘The Legend of Bhagat Singh’ (2002), said he was delighted to receive the honor for the third time.
“I’m thrilled to win Best Actor for ‘Tanhaji—The Unsung Warrior’ at the 68th National Awards with Suriya winning for ‘Soorarai Pottru’. “I thank everyone, especially my creative team, the public and my fans. I also express my gratitude to my parents and to the Almighty for their blessings. Congratulations to all the other winners,” Devgn said in a statement.
Apart from this, Sachidanandan KR (Sachy) won Best Direction for his Malayalam film Ayyappanum Koshiyum and he received cash prize from ₹2,50,000 with the Swarna Kamal Medal.
Madhya Pradesh State won the Most Film-Friendly State Award and received Rajat Kamal and a certificate. Special mentions for the same award went to Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh.
The winners of the 68th National Film Awards were selected by the 10-member jury headed by Hindi filmmaker Vipul Shah. The awards were announced by jury member Dharam Gulati.