Dhananjayan got National Film Award for Pride of Tamil Cinema
Dhananjayan, author of the book PRIDE OF TAMIL CINEMA received the National Film Award for Best Writing on Cinema (Special Mention) for the year 2014 in the hands of President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee today at New Delhi.
Dhananjayan brought out a book on Tamil cinema, that can become a proud possession of film makers, researchers, historians and people interested in films by presenting the films, that have won the National and International recognition since the advent of talkies. Through his research, he arrived at the entire list of films, which won the National Film Awards from Government of India, the films that were selected to be screened at the Indian Panorama of the International Film Festival of India (IFFI). He collected the DVDs of those films and watched them for this book. As these films were selected by an eminent jury over the years for both National Film Awards and Indian Panorama, Dhananjayan did not exclude any of the films from the list, based on his personal view on them. He included every Tamil film which won a National Film Award under any category since the commencement of these awards and recognition in 1953 and the Tamil films which were screened at Indian Panorama of IFFI from 1978. Along with these, he has also included the films which were submitted by Film Federation of India (FFI) to represent the country at the Academy (Oscars) Awards over the years from Tamil cinema.
During the period 1954 to 2013, one hundred and sixty three (163) Tamil films have won the National recognition under various categories (including screening at Indian Panorama), and each of them was written in detail in this book. The author has also read hundreds of books to collect interesting trivia around the films shortlisted. He also interviewed many film makers of these films to get first-hand information on their making.
As the National Film Awards had begun only from 1953 (Tamil cinema did not win any award that year), for the period 1931 to 1953 (pre-National award recognition years), the author has carefully selected 39 films which are certainly the Pride of Tamil Cinema, with the help of Tamil cinema historian and chronicler, ‘Film News’ Anandan, to represent that period adequately. Thus, this book has detailed information on 39 films for the period 1931 to 1953 and 163 films for the period 1954 to 2013 (total 202 films) to represent the entire period of Tamil cinema since the first talkie Kalidas released on 31st October 1931. Extensive research was done to ensure that not a single film, which won a National or International recognition, is left out in this book.
Along with Feature films, Dhananjayan has also researched on the Non-Feature films in 22 categories under which National Awards were given every year and the Best Writing on Cinema, which was given for the Best Book and for the Best Critic. He has included the non-feature films that won National Film Awards and written about them in a separate section. Details of non-feature films, which were screened at the Indian Panorama of IFFI, were also included in the same section. In the same manner, the Best Writing on Cinema winners was also detailed out. Thus, this book is an exhaustive compilation of Tamil films (feature and non-feature) that won National and International recognition in all categories.
This is the first book written covering 83 years of Tamil Cinema and is a tribute to the National Film Award, Indian Panorama and Film Federation juries, for their stupendous effort to select the Pride of Tamil Cinema and a recognition to the producers, film makers, artistes and technicians of these films for bringing out such gems, which won the national recognition so far.
The jury while announcing the national film award mentioned that, “we decided to give special mention award to Mr. G. Dhananjayan for his book Pride of Tamil Cinema. We feel that Dhananjayan’s work ‘Pride of Tamil Cinema’ deserves careful consideration for the sheer expanse of work. The book is pain taking efforts which will have relevance many years down the line.”
A delighted G. Dhananjayan, after receiving the National Award mentioned that, ‘It is a proud moment today to receive the prestigious National Film Award in the hands of the Honorable President, before an august gathering and also before my wife and father-in-law. I feel this honor is for bringing to limelight the glories of Tamil cinema to the world. By writing on Tamil cinema’s glories, I also received the recognition. This award encourages me to research and write more and contribute my best to Tamil cinema. Wish to thank the President and the juries for bestowing his honor to me.”