Director Sudha Kongara’s ‘Soorarai Pottru’, which was partly inspired by events from the life of Captain G.R. Gopinath, founder of India’s first budget airline, swept five National Awards, including those for Best Feature Film, Best Actor and Best Actress at the 68th National Film Awards. The awards were announced in New Delhi on Friday.
Malayalam actress and playback singer Aparna Balamurali, who played the female lead in the film, was named Best Actress, and Suriya, who played the male lead, share the Best Actor honour with Ajay Devgn for Om Raut’s ‘Tanhaji: The Unsung Warrior’.
‘Tanhaji’ also took home the award for Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment.
But it was the day of ‘Soorarai Pottru’. It fetched music director and actor G.V. Prakash the Best Background Music award. The award for Best Music Direction (Songs) went to Thaman for the Allu Arjun superhit Telugu film ‘Ala Vaikunthapurramlo’.
‘Soorarai Pottru’, which is now being remade in Hindi, also won the award for Best Screenplay for Shalini Usha Nair and Sudha Kongara.
Critically acclaimed Malayalam superhit film ‘Ayyappanum Koshiyum’ also scored handsomely at the awards, fetching the late Sachidanandan K.R. the Best Director Award.
The film also won awards for Best Action Direction and Best Female Playback Singer. Rajasekhar, Mafia Sasi and Supreme Sundar, who did the stunt direction for the film, will collect the action award. The Best Female Playback Singer award went to Nanchamma.
Biju Menon, who came up with a sterling performance in ‘Ayyappanum Koshiyum’, got the Best Supporting Actor award. The Best Supporting Actress went to Lakshmi Priya Chandramouli for her fine performance in Vasanth’s Tamil film ‘Sivaranjaniyum Innum Sila Pengallum’.
‘Sivaranjaniyum Innum Sila Pengallum’ put up a stellar show as well, winning Best Editing, which went to Sreekar Prasad. The film also won the award for the Best Feature Film in Tamil.
Sandhya Raju won the Award for Best Choreography for the Telugu film ‘Natyam’, which also took home the award for the Best Makeup Artist.
Director Sagar Puranik’s ‘Dollu’, produced by Wadeeyar Movies, got the Best Kannada Feature Film award. Jobin Jayan won the award for Best Location Sound Recordist under the Best Audiography Award for the same film.
The Indira Gandhi Award for Best Debut Film of a Director went to Madonne Ashwin for the Tamil film ‘Mandela’.