Anandi Gopal created history by taking home 10 Black Ladies. The pantheon of Marathi stars ascended in full force at our venue, St. Andrew’s Auditorium and applauded the winners and the nominees alike with gusto. Showbiz is always about expressing joy, happiness and harmony and the Marathi industry showed that they haven’t let the pandemic dampen their lust for life...
BEST ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE (FEMALE)
MOVIE: SMILE PLEASE
Mukta Barve plays a successful woman whose world falls apart when she starts suffering from memory loss. She’s distraught as she misses out on her memory of her loved ones and is helped by a total stranger to retain some semblance of normalcy. It was a role that withheld numerous possibilities and required to be handled with a light hand. Things could have easily gone over the top and resulted in a caricature but the actress got under the skin of the role and deftly executed all the nuances.
BEST ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE (MALE)
We've seen Sanjeev Kumar play the role of a deaf and mute person in Koshish, we've seen Ranbir Kapoor doing it in Barfi and now Deepak Dobriyal has done it in Baba. He makes sure he doesn't pick on their mannerisms and just goes with the flow. The actor is simply superb as a deaf and mute father who nevertheless lovingly brings up a normal child. The bitter-sweet film is full of heart-touching moments and the leading man’s performance makes you sit up and take notice of the proceedings.
MOVIE: ANANDI GOPAL
Anandi Gopal Joshi is said to be the first woman doctor from India. She and her husband faced several hardships and were even declared social outcasts because of their bold decision of learning medicine. Director Sameer Vidwans gets the details of the period right in this inspiring narrative. He humanises the two protagonists, making us one with their joys, their sorrows. It's a moving tribute to their struggles as well as their triumphs.
Based in an era when education for women was considered taboo, this film traces the journey of Anandibai Joshi who goes on to become a doctor, arguably the country’s first female doctor. The film also explores her relationship with her husband Gopalrao Joshi. The film is a period piece which offers the viewers a slice of history. Anandi and Gopal were way ahead of their times and paved the way for others to come. It wasn't easy for them to go against the societal norms but they persisted and prevailed.
CRITICS’ AWARD FOR BEST FILM
RAJ R GUPTA
Baba is an unusual story about the bond between a child and his parents. Unusual because the parents here are poor daily wage earners who also happen to be deaf and mute. Against all odds, they try to raise a normal child and give him the best life possible. But the child isn’t their own. He was born out of wedlock. Their lives turn upside down when the real mother comes calling. Baba teaches us much about parenting. It’s also progressive in the sense that the woman’s husband, who isn’t the biological father, supports her in her search of her lost son.
CRITICS’ AWARD FOR BEST ACTOR (MALE)
MOVIE: ANANDI GOPAL
Lalit Prabhakar plays the strict social reformer Gopalrao Joshi who is a forward thinking individual and encourages the education of women. He wants his wife to have a personality of her own and persuades her to study medicine in America. The role called for him to delve deep into the psyche of a man who despite being from the past is a modernist at heart. He had to essay someone who is willing to die for his convictions and needless to say the actor comes through on all counts.
CRITICS’ AWARD FOR BEST ACTOR (FEMALE)
MOVIE: ANANDI GOPAL
Bhagyashree Milind plays a woman hailing from a small-town in Maharashtra who gets married at an early age to a reformist husband. She is encouraged by her husband to study English and later studies medicine in America, becoming the first Indian woman to study Western medicine.
CRITICS’ AWARD FOR BEST ACTOR (FEMALE)
Sonalee Kulkarni plays a tough-as-nails mother who overcomes all odds to be with her toddler left alone at her house at the foot of Raigad Fort. The film sees her battling all kinds of physical hurdles but at the end of the day the braveheart reigns supreme.
EXCELLENCE IN CINEMA
Mahesh Kothare began his career as a child artiste with the Hindi film Raja Aur Runk (1968), where he played a double role. He made his Marathi acting debut with the film Gupchup Gupchup (1983) and never looked back. Along with Sachin Pilgaonkar, Ashok Saraf and Laxmikant Berde, he formed a formidable quartet and ruled the Marathi silver screen. He made his directorial debut with the Marathi film Dhoom Dhadaka (1985), which was a remake of the hit Hindi comedy Pyar Kiye Jaa (1966), starring Shashi Kapoor and Kishore Kumar. The film turned out to be a phenomenal hit. He’s credited with introducing creature horror in Marathi films through his version of the Chucky films called Zapatlela (1993). 20 years later, he again became a pioneer when he made a sequel to the film called Zapatlela 2 (2013) in 3D. It was the first Marathi film which was totally shot with a 3D camera. His son, Adinath Kothare too is an actor and a filmmaker and has taken his father’s legacy forward.
BEST ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE (MALE)
Shashank Shende plays a cold-blooded manipulator who acts as the power behind the throne. He’s a calculative genius who doesn’t take long to shift loyalties. He’s duplicitous to everyone around him, not caring about their feelings and using them as pawns. His own loyalty is towards his own survival. The actor essays the amoral character superbly. It's an engrossing performance and leaves a lasting impact on the audience.
BEST ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE (FEMALE)
MOVIE: MOGRA PHULAALAA
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