Bollywood films continued to rule the roost with 49-year-old Akshay Kumar being adjudged best actor for his portrayal of a patriotic naval officer in Rustom, while other Bollywood films like Pink, Neerja and Dangal bagged awards in key categories at the 64th National Film Awards 2016 announced on Friday. Marathi movie Kasaav about depression was declared the best feature film.
"Thank you is a very small word right now but I don't know how else to express how I am feeling right now… Rustom was a very special role to play. Being able to wear the uniform of Indian Navy itself is a huge honour, even if it's just for a role," Akshay said in a video message to his fans.
The actor said Sonam Kapoor, who received a special mention for her role in Neerja, was shooting with him and it was a double celebration for them on the sets of Padman.
Neerja, based on the 1986 hijacking of an airline in which flight attendant Neerja Bhanot was killed by terrorists directed by Ram Madhvani, was named the best Hindi film.
Amitabh Bachchan-starrer Pink, a female-centric court room drama, won the award for best film on social issues.
The jury, headed by Akshay's frequent collaborator, filmmaker Priyadarshan, named Surabhi CM as the best actress for her role in Malayalam film Minnaminungu-The Firefly.
Dhanak was named the best children's film.
Marathi cinema was a big winner at the awards with Kasaav winning the top award. Besides Kasaav, Rajesh Mapuskar won the best director award for his film Ventilator. The movie has been produced by actress Priyanka Chopra and her mother Madhu.
The best adapted screenplay went to Dashakriya, which was also chosen as the best Marathi film, while its actor Manoj Joshi was named as the best supporting actor. Kashmiri actress Zaira Wasim won the best supporting actress award for her performance as a young Geeta Phogat in the Aamir Khan-led wrestling drama Dangal. Ajay Devgn's Shivaay won the best special effects.
Nargis Dutt award for best feature film award on national integration went to Assamese film Dikchow Banat Palaax, while the best popular film providing wholesome entertainment went to Telugu film Sathmanam Bhavathi.
The Special Jury Award in the Feature category was given to Mohanlal for his mastery in dealing with characters of various shades with unparallel acting brilliance.
Jharkhand was given Special Mention Award for their Film Policy which provided growth opportunities to the local filmmaking talent from within the State.
The Awards were announced by the chairpersons of the juries on Feature Films, Non-Feature Films, Best Writing on Cinema and Most Film Friendly State Award.
The Feature Film Central panel was headed by Priyadarshan, an eminent filmmaker. The chairperson for Non–Feature Film Jury was Raju Mishra while the chairperson for Writing Jury was Bhawana Somaaya.
The Most Film Friendly State award which was introduced as a new category was given to Uttar Pradesh for implementing a unique film policy. The awards will be presented by the President on 3 May.