Diamond era dawns for Sinhala cinema - NFC Chairman
A celebration marking the 42nd anniversary of the National Film
Corporation and the 67th anniversary of Sinhala cinema, was held at the
National Film Corporation (NFC) premises on a grand scale, with Mass
Media and Information Minister Dr. Keheliya Rambukwella as the chief
guest. Ministry Secretary Dr. Charitha Herath was also present.
Mass Media and Information Minister Kehe-liya Rambukwella greets
veteran actor Boniface Fernando
The participants of the ceremony were treated with three films at the
Film Corporation theatre directed by B.A.W. Jayamanna, the director of
Sri Lanka's first talking film 'Kadawuna Poronduwa,' as a tribute to the
artiste. The films screened were 'Kapati Arakshakaya', 'Sangawuna
Pilithura' and 'Hadisi Vivahaya' sponsored by Tissa Nagodawithana.
The book, authored by Ajith Galappatti 'Hathalis Hathe B.A.W. Cinema
Meheyuma,' was also launched as a National Film Corporation publication.
Veteran actor Boniface Fernando, who appeared in the silver screen
from the 1950s till the late 70s, was felicitated with a memento and a
cash prize sponsored by the NFC. Fifteen retired artistes of the bygone
era whose names were included into the artistes' pension scheme, in
recent past also received their pensions at the ceremony. Addressing the
gathering, Minister Rambukwella said he was positive that local cinema
would reach dizzy heights in the next six months.
Media Ministry Secretary Dr. Charitha Herath presents a memento
to the artiste.
"The era when the cinema was on the verge of collapse, is now over.
We could cruise a long way under the guidance of President Mahinda
Rajapaksa," he said adding, the digitalization system of cinema is in
He said the government targets to establish 300 theatres islandwide.
The Film Corporation Chairman Asoka Serasinghe said Sri Lankan cinema
is now in its 'Diamond era' as there is great progress in the Sri Lankan
cinema under the leadership of President Mahinda Rajapaksa.
"The development of cinema is gauged by the number of films made and
the investment. In the 70s, there had been little competition and films
were made with loans obtained from the Corporation," he said.
He pointed out that a lot of films have been produced with private
investments now, without loans from the Corporation. "There is great
revival compared to the 70s era. We are also at a historical
transitional period from the 35mm celluloid to a fully digital format.
This is why I say, now it is the cinema's diamond era," Serasinghe said.