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Kumaraswamy happy with resurgent Kannada cinema

Staff Reporter

Asks the industry to stay united and nurture emerging talent

— Photo: V. Sreenivasa Murthy

CROWNING GLORY: Best actress Tara (Cyanide) and best actor Vijay (Duniya) at the presentation ceremony of State film awards for 2006-07 in Bangalore on Thursday.

BANGALORE: Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy has called upon the Kannada cinema industry to maintain unity among themselves in protecting and nurturing the emerging trend of Kannada cinema in terms of quality and commercial success.

He was presenting the annual cinema awards for 2006-07 at a glittering function organised by the Department of Information here on Thursday. The event was underlined by cultural fetes such as music and dance.

The Kannada cinema had been showing signs of regaining its past glory after passing through hardship and ignominy that prolonged for over a decade. It should strive hard to prove its mettle to compete with the challenges before it from other language cinema industry. It was time to re-establish itself firmly and consistently at the national level, Mr. Kumaraswamy said.

Mr. Kumaraswmy had earned a distinction for himself being the only Chief Minister to present three annual awards within 18 months.

Explaining the government schemes, including Rs. 10 lakh annual subsidy for 20 selected Kannada films each and a 10 per cent entertainment tax rebate, Deputy Chief Minster B.S. Yediyurappa said Kannada cinema should reflect the cultural grandeur and the essence of Kannada literature that had a history of over 2,000 years.

The chairman of the awards selection committee and noted filmmaker Nagathihalli Chandrashekhar said that it was heartening to note that all the 37 films in fray had reflected various aspects of the fast changing trend of Kannada cinema. Fresh themes and new methods of film-making had shown that Kannada cinema had a bright future. Besides popularity and commercial success, artistic qualities, aesthetic appeal and technical excellence were the yardsticks of selection, he said.

Speaking on behalf of award-winners, poet and lyricist Jayanth Kaikini commented that the “prevailing sadist” attitude among a section of Kannada cinema over the success or failure would not augur well for the industry. He emphasised that unity would hold the key for the success of the industry.

I.M. Vittalamurthy, Secretary to the Government, Department of Information and Tourism, urged Kannada film makers to shoot their films in the hitherto unexploited landscapes across the State such as the world heritage sites at Hampi, hilly areas of Kodagu and Chikmagalur and historical sites at Bijapur, Badami, Aihole and Pattdakal.

Minister for Health and Family Welfare R. Ashok and Minister for Industries Katta Subramanaya Naidu were present.

Veteran artiste M.N. Lakshmi Devi, veteran Director Singeetham Srinivasa Rao (in absentia) and the veteran producer and artiste B.S. Dwarakish were conferred with the prestigious Rajkumar, Puttanna Kanagal and the lifetime contribution to Kannada cinema awards respectively. The awards carry a purse of Rs. 2 lakh, a citation and a gold medal each.

“Kaada Beladingalu” directed by B.S. Lingadevaru bagged the honour in the category of best social film for its social impact.

Yogaraj Bhat of “Mungaru Male”, Soori of “Duniya” and A.M.R. Ramesh of “Cyanide” received the best three directors awards respectively.

Vijay (“Duniya”) and Tara (“Cyanide”) walked away with the best actor and actress awards.

Artiste Jayamala’s “Tutturi” directed by P. Sheshadri and artiste Pramila Joshai’s “Thyaayi” directed by Baragur Ramachandrappa, which have won the national honours, were given a cash prize of Rs. 3 lakh each.

The best film (“Mungaru Male”), best male artiste and best female artiste awards each carry a cash prize of Rs. 2 lakh, a citation and a memento.

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