44th National Film Awards

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44th National Film Awards
Awarded for Best of Indian cinema in 1996
Presented by Directorate of Film Festivals
Presented on July 1997 (1997-07)
Official website dff.nic.in
Highlights
Best Feature Film Lal Darja
Best Non-Feature Film Sham's Vision
Most awards Minsara Kanavu (4)
 < 43rd National Film Awards 45th > 

The 44th National Film Awards, presented by Directorate of Film Festivals, the organization set up by Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, India to felicitate the best of Indian Cinema released in the year 1996.[1][2] Ceremony took place in July 1997.

Awards[edit]

Awards were divided into feature films, non-feature films and books written on Indian cinema.

Lifetime Achievement Award[edit]

Introduced in 1969, the Dadasaheb Phalke Award is the highest award given to recognise the contributions of film personalities towards the development of Indian cinema and for distinguished contributions to the medium, its growth and promotion.[3] A committee consisting of seven personalities from the Indian film industry was appointed to evaluate the Dadasaheb Phalke award nominations for 2012. The jury members include K. Balachander and Akkineni Nageswara Rao.[4]

Name of Award Awardee(s) Awarded As Awards
Dadasaheb Phalke Award Sivaji Ganesan[5] Actor Swarna Kamal, INR 1,00,000 and a Shawl

Feature Films[edit]

Feature films were awarded at All India as well as regional level. For 44th National Film Awards, a Bengali film, Lal Darja won the National Film Award for Best Feature Film, whereas a Tamil film, Minsara Kanavu won the maximum number of awards (4). Following were the awards given in each category:[1][2]

Juries[edit]

A committee headed by T. Subbarami Reddy was appointed to evaluate the feature films awards. Following were the jury members:[1][2]

All India Award[edit]

Following were the awards given:[1][2]

Golden Lotus Award[edit]

Official Name: Swarna Kamal[1][2]

All the awardees are awarded with 'Golden Lotus Award (Swarna Kamal)', a certificate and cash prize.

Name of Award Name of Film Language Awardee(s) Cash Prize
Best Feature Film Lal Darja Bengali Producer: Chitrani Lahiri
Director: Buddhadeb Dasgupta
INR 50,000/- Each
Citation: For its poetic presentation and exploration of complexities of human relationship in a contemporary urban milieu.
Best Debut Film of A Director Rag Birag Assamese Producer: Bhabhen Baruah and Khanin Baruah
Director: Bidyut Chakraborty
INR 25,000/- Each
Citation: For director's sensitivity in portraying complex human psyche of individual character's in the film.
Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment Maachis Hindi Producer: R. V. Pandit
Director: Gulzar
INR 40,000/- Each
Citation: For powerful depiction of Punjab situation, exploring the trauma, conflict and tragedy of the youth in Punjab.
Best Children's Film Damu Bengali Producer: Art Films
Director: Raja Sen
INR 30,000/- Each
Citation: For charming story of a simpleton who keeps his word given to a child.
Best Direction Kadhal Kottai Tamil Agathiyan INR 50,000/-
Citation: For a brilliantly knit plot, maintaining the tempo and rhythms of an unusual love story till end.
Silver Lotus Award[edit]

Official Name: Rajat Kamal[1][2]

All the awardees are awarded with 'Silver Lotus Award (Rajat Kamal)', a certificate and cash prize.

Name of Award Name of Film Language Awardee(s) Cash Prize
Best Feature Film on National Integration Kanakkinavu Malayalam Producer: P. V. Gangadharan
Director: Sibi Malayil
INR 30,000/- Each
Citation: For its brilliant and bold approach to National Integration and the futility of division in the name of religion.
Best Film on Family Welfare Latthi Bengali Producer: Robin Agarwal
Director: Prabhat Roy
INR 30,000/- Each
Citation: For focusing on the plight of the seniors in the society and how a determined group of pensioners transform the power relations in a family, in a wholesome manner.
Best Film on Other Social Issues Tamanna Hindi Producer: Pooja Bhatt
Director: Mahesh Bhatt
INR 30,000/- Each
Citation: For depicting the selfless dedication and love of eunuchs for an abandoned child.
Best Actor Indian Tamil Kamal Haasan INR 10,000/-
Citation: For his double role in the film. His remarkable range in the entire diverse roles shows his excellent caliber as an actor.
Best Actress Maachis Hindi Tabu INR 10,000/-
Citation: For sensitive portrayal of a woman trapped in the vortex of conflicts.
Best Supporting Actor Agni Sakshi Hindi Nana Patekar INR 10,000/-
Citation: For his brilliant performance as an obsessed husband.
Best Supporting Actress Sardari Begum Urdu Rajeshwari Sachdev INR 10,000/-
Citation: For her role in the film, in which she depicts the aspirations and agony of a lonely teenage girl.
Best Child Artist Little Soldiers Telugu Kavya INR 5,000/- Each
Citation: For her excellent performance.
Desadanam Malayalam Kumar
Citation: For his excellent performance.
Best Male Playback Singer Minsara Kanavu
("Thanga Thamarai")
Tamil S. P. Balasubrahmanyam INR 10,000/-
Citation: For his brilliant rendering of the song.
Best Female Playback Singer Minsara Kanavu
("Mana Madurai")
Tamil K. S. Chithra INR 10,000/-
Citation: For her soulful rendering of the song.
Best Cinematography Adajya
Rag Birag
Assamese Cameraman: Mrinal Kanti Das
Laboratory Processing: Prasad Film Laboratories
INR 10,000/- Each
Citation: For his versatile, imaginative and superb combinations and mood lighting.
Best Screenplay Kadhal Kottai Tamil Agathiyan INR 10,000/-
Citation: For tightly knit and smooth flowing plot with excellent dialogues and razor-sharp tuning.
Best Audiography Desadanam Malayalam Krishnan Unni INR 10,000/-
Citation: For excellent use and blending of ambient sound with superb effects, appropriate to the spirit depicted in the film.
Best Editing Rag Birag Assamese A. Sreekar Prasad INR 10,000/-
Citation: For slickly editing with imagination, setting the pace and flow of the story.
Best Art Direction Indian Tamil Thotta Tharani INR 10,000/-
Citation: For erection of sets and selection of locations perfectly retaining the period depicted in the story and enhancing the huge canvas of the film.
Best Costume Design Kulam Malayalam M. Dandapani INR 10,000/-
Citation: For creating beautiful costumes that are authentic to the period depicted in the film.
Best Music Direction Minsara Kanavu Tamil A. R. Rahman INR 10,000/-
Citation: For innovative compositions breaking all traditions, entering into new era.
Best Lyrics Saaz Hindi Javed Akhtar INR 10,000/-
Citation: For its poetic and traditional expression.
Best Special Effects Indian Tamil S. T. Venki INR 10,000/-
Citation: For recreation of the period images and also for combining new footage with stock footage.
Best Choreography Minsara Kanavu
("Vennilavae Vennilavae" and "Strawberry Kannae")
Tamil Prabhu Deva INR 10,000/-
Citation: For sensual body language is par excellence and appropriate to unique choreographic patterns.
Special Jury Award Daayraa Hindi Amol Palekar (Director) INR 12,500/- Each
Citation: For the sensitive handling of a challenging theme laying bare the agony and courage of a neglected and marginalized section of our society.
Sardari Begum Urdu Kirron Kher (Actress)
Citation: For superb depiction of a dynamic person who breaks shackles of society and achieves excellence in her chosen profession.
Sanghat Bengali Dolon Roy (Actress) Certificate Only
Citation: For her performance in the film.
Adajya Assamese Bhagirathee (Actress)
Citation: For her performance in Durga's role in the film.

Regional Awards[edit]

The award is given to best film in the regional languages in India.[1][2]

Name of Award Name of Film Awardee(s) Cash Prize
Best Feature Film in Assamese Adajya Producer: Nayan Prasad
Director: Santwana Bardoloi
INR 20,000/- Each
Citation: For a subtle and sensitive exploration of loneliness trauma and coverage of 3 widows caught in the complex web of ritualistic beliefs.
Best Feature Film in Bengali Sanghat Producer: Pinaki Chaudhuri
Director: Pinaki Chaudhuri
INR 20,000/- Each
Citation: For effectively bringing out the trials and tribulations faced by working women in contemporary society.
Best Feature Film in Hindi Gudia Producer: Amit Khanna and Mahesh Bhatt
Director: Gautam Ghose
INR 20,000/- Each
Citation: For an unusual exploration into the lives of traditional entertainers and the entwined relationships between the animate and inanimate players that develop into an obsession.
Best Feature Film in Kannada America! America!! Producer: G. Nandakumar
Director: Nagathihalli Chandrashekhar
INR 20,000/- Each
Citation: For mature handling of a deftly written script set in USA and India holding up love for one's own country and cultural values.
Best Feature Film in Malayalam Desadanam Producer: Jayaraj
Director: Jayaraj
INR 20,000/- Each
Citation: For depicting in an excellent manner the conflicts between love, traditional bonds and duties, arising out of religious beliefs.
Best Feature Film in Marathi Rao Saheb Producer: K. B. Joshi and Ravindra Surve
Director: Sanjay Surkar
INR 20,000/- Each
Citation: For depicting the struggle for power of ambitious politicians in a most effective manner.
Best Feature Film in Oriya Shunya Swaroopa Producer: Alaya Kumar Mohanty
Director: Himanshu Sekhar Khatua
INR 20,000/- Each
Citation: For a beautifully photographed film depicting the conflicts of a layman floundering in the world of sanyasias.
Best Feature Film in Tamil Kadhal Kottai Producer: D. Pandian
Director: Agaththian
INR 20,000/- Each
Citation: For a charming love story with unusual twists and turns of fate told in an interesting manner with good production values.
Best Feature Film in Telugu Ninne Pelladutha Producer: Akkineni Nagarjuna
Director: Krishna Vamsi
INR 20,000/- Each
Citation: For the innovative way in which a family drama with the contemporary theme is handled.
Best Feature Film in Urdu Sardari Begum Producer: Amit Khanna and Mahesh Bhatt
Director: Shyam Benegal
INR 20,000/- Each
Citation: For excellent recreation of an era and showing dedication of an artist to music that defies all orthodox and conservative values.

Non-Feature Films[edit]

Short Films made in any Indian language and certified by the Central Board of Film Certification as a documentary/newsreel/fiction are eligible for non-feature film section.

Juries[edit]

A committee headed by N. S. Thapa was appointed to evaluate the non-feature films awards. Following were the jury members:[1][2]

Golden Lotus Award[edit]

Official Name: Swarna Kamal[1][2]

All the awardees are awarded with 'Golden Lotus Award (Swarna Kamal)', a certificate and cash prize.

Name of Award Name of Film Language Awardee(s) Cash Prize
Best Non-Feature Film Sham's Vision English Producer: Manu Grover
Director: Shaji N. Karun
INR 20,000/- Each
Citation: For its moving portrayal of an artist's rich inner vision which lights his outer world of darkness.

Silver Lotus Award[edit]

Official Name: Rajat Kamal[1][2]

All the awardees are awarded with 'Silver Lotus Award (Rajat Kamal)' and cash prize.

Name of Award Name of Film Language Awardee(s) Cash Prize
Best First Non-Feature Film Yeh Woh Sahar To Nahin Hindi Producer: Film and Television Institute of India
Director: Sudhakar Rao
INR 10,000/- Each
Citation: For its imaginative use of sound and visuals to capture the undercurrents of human response to outer tensions.
Best Biographical Film Hastir Kanya Assamese Producer: Digbijay Medhi
Director: Prabin Hazarika
INR 10,000/- Each
Citation: For exploring the world of Goalpariya folk music through the life of singer Pratima Borooah Pandey of Gauripur, Assam.
Best Arts / Cultural Film Nauka Charitramu English Producer: Saroj Satyanarayan
Director: Saroj Satyanarayan
INR 10,000/- Each
Citation: For its innovative cinematic portrayal of three women musicians of Carnatic tradition.
Best Film on Social Issues Silent Screams: A Village Chronicle English Producer: Jose Sebastián
Director: O. K. Johnny
INR 10,000/- Each
Citation: For highlighting with sensitivity and sincerity, the agony of the tribal woman of Thrinelli, Kerala.
Best Educational / Motivational / Instructional Film Rabia Chalikkunnu Malayalam Producer: Abraham Benhur
Director: Ali Akbar
INR 10,000/- Each
Citation: For its credible and inspiring portrayal of a young girl who overcomes her physical and social disabilities and becomes a role model for society.
Best Investigative Film N. M. No. 309 Bhiwandi Tragedy English Producer: Yash Chowdhary
Director: V. Packiri Swamy
INR 10,000/- Each
Citation: For the exploration of the issue of health hazards faced by migrant industrial workers.
Best Animation Film The Lost Horizon Only music Producer: Arun Gongade
Director: Arun Gongade
Animator: Arun Gongade
INR 10,000/- Each
Citation: For its creative synthesis of animation with Warli folk art in conveying a vital environmental message.
Best Short Fiction Film Vidiyalai Nokki Tamil Producer: F and T, V. T. I. N. Chennai
Director: P. Venkatesh
INR 10,000/- Each
Citation: For making an eloquent statement on the gift of sight.
Athmeeyam Malayalam Producer: Film and Television Institute of India
Director: Nandakumar Kavil
Citation: For presenting a traditional artist's inner rebellion against the denial of his creative identity.
Best Film on Family Welfare Bhit Bengali Producer: Films Division and K. R. G. Films
Director: Glbahar Singh
INR 10,000/- Each
Citation: For its credible depiction of a rural health worker's efforts in transforming her community.
Best Cinematography Sham's Vision English Cameraman: Hari Nair
Laboratory Processing: Prasad Film Lab
INR 10,000/- Each
Citation: For his brilliant use of light and shade, to bring to life even inanimate objects in the film.
Best Audiography Tat Tvam Asi Hindi and English Nihar R. Samal INR 10,000/-
Citation: For his restrained, balanced and multi-layered soundtrack.
Best Editing Nauka Charitramu English A. Sreekar Prasad INR 10,000/-
Citation: For knitting together harmoniously into an unbroken visual flow in the film.
Special Jury Award Dhatu Jhar '96 Bengali Nilotpal Majumdar (Producer, Director and Cinematographer) INR 10,000/-
Citation: For his bold and experimental exploration of the dilemma between discovery and destruction.

Best Writing on Cinema[edit]

The awards aim at encouraging study and appreciation of cinema as an art form and dissemination of information and critical appreciation of this art-form through publication of books, articles, reviews etc.

Juries[edit]

A committee headed by Khalid Mohamed was appointed to evaluate the writing on Indian cinema. Following were the jury members:[1][2]

Golden Lotus Award[edit]

Official Name: Swarna Kamal[1][2]

All the awardees are awarded with 'Golden Lotus Award (Swarna Kamal)' and cash prize.

Name of Award Name of Book Language Awardee(s) Cash Prize
Best Book on Cinema The Eye of the Serpent English Author: S. Theodore Baskaran
Publisher: East West Books Pvt. Ltd.
INR 15,000/- Each
Citation: For the methodically researched books on Tamil films which informs and enlightens the reader about one of the most prolific cinemas of our country which has kept re-defining itself over the decades.
Best Film Critic M. K. Raghavendra INR 15,000/-
Citation: For his provocative and iconoclastic writing, which inspires debate and discussion, so rare in film criticism today.

Awards not given[edit]

Following were the awards not given as no film was found to be suitable for the award:[1][2]

References[edit]

External links[edit]