Despite the rainy afternoon that resulted in impenetrable traffic, the National Film Awards 2015 held on Monday was a monumental success. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina personally conferred the awards to the winners. A few awardees shared their feelings following the event with The Daily Star. Excerpts:
Ferdousi Rahman, lifetime achievement award
Having won a National Award before, this is the first time I have been given recognition for all that I have been achieved in my lifetime. This is a matter of immense pride to me, and I am deeply indebted - to my countrymen who have been my ardent listeners - and all others that have made this journey possible for me. I love what I do, and I want to keep on singing.
Shakib Khan, best actor, “Aro Bhalobashbo Tomaye”
I have been the recipient of the National Film Award before, but I feel that this time will stand out in my memory. Being an actor is my only identity, and everything I do is for the love and approval of the audience. I hope to win more awards in the future, and for that I hope to do more work worthy of such recognition.
Mahfuz Ahmed, best actor, “Zero Degree”
This is the highest form of achievement for any Bangladeshi actor. We wouldn't be actors if work was not our passion, and the joy we feel when recognised for doing what we love to do is boundless. “Zero Degree” was a dream project as it was produced by me, and so this award has more significance to me than just as an actor.
Jaya Ahsan, best actress, “Zero Degree”
This is my third National Film Award, and the third time the Prime Minister has kindly handed it to me. The one thing that gave me most joy was when she remarked that I had not won any international awards yet because I am putting my heart and soul into winning the approval of my motherland. I would like to dedicate this honour to the audience, and my team members at “Zero Degree”.
Masum Reza, best screenplay, “Bapjaner Bioscope”
When the Prime Minister handed the award to me, she said, “As a writer, you have the most difficult job.” This moment was indeed the highlight of my evening, as scriptwriters tend to be forgotten in the limelight. My work has garnered awards and accolades before, but the National Film Award is my most valuable achievement.
Toma Mirza, best supporting actress, “Nodijon”
The evening was a star-studded affair, but it is clear that the Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina was the biggest celebrity who held us all in awe. I cannot describe in apt words the joy and pride I felt at receiving the awards from her hands. This gives any actor the courage to strive more in the future, and do even better in our fields. To celebrate, I am taking my family on a vacation soon.
Swani Zubayeer, best music director, “Anil Bagchi'r Ekdin”
Such recognition is extremely joyful, though I don't want to express my elation. My family is immensely pleased with my achievement. This has only increased my responsibility and dedication towards music, and I hope to do justice to this award by producing quality work in the days ahead.
Priyanka Gope, best female singer, “Anil Bagchi'r Ekdin”
My feelings after receiving this award know no bounds. I am extremely lucky to have received the award from the Prime Minister. I seek blessings from everyone to continue in this strain.
Iresh Zaker, best actor in negative role, “Chhuye Dile Mon”
I don't think I have felt such pride in my work before this. As an actor, this is undoubtedly the highest acclaim one can receive, as well as the most inspiring. Recognition towards one's contribution is the highest motivator, and this shall remain the highest source of motivation for me.