“I also dedicate this award to all my producers and directors, technicians, artists, distributors, media and all my fans, and more importantly the Tamil people...” the 70-year-old ‘Superstar’ stated.
Lauding Mr. Rajinikanth, a matinee idol, Mr. Naidu observed that the former was “one of the great sons of this great country”. “The iconic thespian’s unmatchable acting skills have given a new dimension to the Indian film industry... He has shown how to maintain a perfect balance between artistic expression and mass appeal.”
Mr. Naidu noted that a film should be a vehicle with a higher purpose, a carrier of social, moral and ethical message. “Moreover, they should refrain from highlighting violence and should voice society’s disapproval of social evils,” he pointed out. Mr. Naidu stressed the need for cinema to usher in positivity and happiness. “Experience tells us that a film with a message has lasting appeal. Apart from entertainment, cinema also has the power to provide enlightenment,” he added.
Actors Pallavi Joshi and Vijay Sethupathi were given the best supporting actress and best supporting actor awards for their performances in The Tashkent Files and Super Deluxe respectively. The Nargis Dutt Award for best feature film on national integration was received by the makers of Tajmahal (Marathi), while the best movie on social issues’ trophy went to Anandi Gopal (Marathi).
The Indira Gandhi Award for best debut film of a director was given to Mathukutty Xavier for Helen (Malayalam). Naga Vishal won the best child artist trophy for KD(A) Karuppu Durai (Tamil). In the non-feature film category, 22 titles were given the National Film Award.
( With inputs from PTI )