PM Hasina urges film makers to make life-oriented quality movies

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina speaks as chief guest at a ceremony to handover the National Film Award-2021 at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre, Dhaka, organised by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting on 9 March 2023

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Thursday urged the filmmakers to make life-oriented quality movies, saying that a good movie can change a person’s life or a society.

“Movies should be life-oriented as these attract people... a movie can change a person’s life or a society,” she said, addressing ceremony to handover the National Film Award-2021 as chief guest in city’s Bangabandhu International Conference Centre (BICC), organised by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.

Mentioning that people get the image of their life in movies, she said cinema and drama can develop human thinking and consciousness and can keep the people away from crimes.

“If our writers write life-oriented literature, and movies and dramas are made based on that, it would create opportunities for us as we want to pull (the society) forward, improve quality of people’s life and create opportunities for flourishing talents,” she said.

Referring to the popularity of good movies, she said that many movies have been produced in the past few years which were truly of the international standards. “People have also accepted those and that’s how we all need to work.”

The prime minister said, once upon a time, movies used to be made with vulgar scenes or imitations following others, but instead of that, all should learn from good things and avoid the bad ones.

“(All should) consider what is good for the society and it should be contemplated whenever you make a film,” she said, adding that “film is a media which can improve mentality of the countrymen.”

Sheikh Hasina opined that there is a need for movies that parents, brothers and sisters can watch together.

Highlighting the government’s initiative to stop obscenity and piracy, she said that a task-force is being formed to stop production of films with vulgarity and piracy. “If so, those would be stopped,” she said.

Directing to increase the grant for cinema, the prime minister said, “If the grant is good, I think there will be better movies”.

Calling for production of good children’s movies, she said, “We are lagging behind in children’s films. Good films need to be made for children. Those who make children’s cinema need to be well funded”.

She also put emphasis on raising the amount of government funds from Taka 2.5 million (for a full length film) and Taka 2 million (for a short film) to get quality movies.

Referring to construction of the Film Archive Building, Sheikh Hasina said that there is a scope to convert the old movies into new digital versions using modern technologies.

“Appeal of these old movies, especially related to the War of Liberation, is still there, because it highlights the history of our independence before the new generation,” she said.

She added: “Everyone should be needed to know the history and that is why these movies should be kept in archive alongside making arrangements for their showcase”.

To this end, she said this archive building has to be utilised.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and the award winners pose for photographs

Besides, she said, her government has emphasised training and that’s why they have set up separate training institute as it is needed to compete with the cinema and others in the global arena.

About welfare of the artistes, the prime minister said that her government has passed a law for film’s artistes and technicians welfare trust and formed trust along with providing seed money.

She urged the artistes and others related to the film industry alongside the wealthy persons to contribute to the trust.

“I will do from myself whatever is needed,” said Sheikh Hasina, mentioning that her younger sister Sheikh Rehana keeps the reports of all over Bangladesh and insists her to do different kind of works.

“During the Covid-19 pandemic, she (Sheikh Rehana) asked me to help instrumental artistes and others as they had no jobs at that time. I assisted all of them financially.”

About the people who say they can’t talk even after talking a lot, the prime minister said that sometimes many people talk much; there are talk shows and many people talk all day.

“After a lot of talking, some people will say we can’t talk, while there are now 2,455 newspapers in Bangladesh, 170 online news portals, and 14 IP TVs. Everyone is talking there with full of heart. Where can’t they talk? I don’t know who shut their mouths,” she added.

Sheikh Hasina further said she saw that one talked for hours and criticised the government in various ways and after finishing everything he said that he can’t speak.

Earlier, the prime minister distributed National Film Award-2021 among the winners in 27 categories.

With Information and Broadcasting Minister Hasan Mahmud, MP, in the chair, Information and Broadcasting Secretary Md. Humayun Kabir Khandaker delivered welcome address.

Chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Ministry of Information and Broadcasting Hasanul Haq Inu also spoke as special guest, while Doly Jahur spoke on behalf of the award recipients.

Eminent artistes Doly Jahur and Ilias Kanchan have been honoured with the ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’ for their contributions to the film industry.

‘Lal Moroger Jhuti’ and ‘Nona Joler Kabbo’ movies jointly won the award in the best film category.

‘Lal Moroger Jhuti’ was produced by Matia Banu Shuku while Rezwan Shahriar Sumit was the producer of ‘Nona Joler Kabbo’.

‘Dhor’ won the award in the best short film category, while ‘Bodhobhumite Ekdin’ got the award for the best documentary category.

Rezwan Shahriar Sumit has been selected for the best director award for his film ‘Nona Joler Kabbo’.

Siam Ahmed was named as the best actor for leading role in film ‘Mridha Bonam Mridha’, while Mir Sabbir Mahmud in film ‘Raatjaga Fool’.

The best actress in leading role award 2021 went to Ajmeri Haque Badhan for film ‘Rehana Mariam Nur’ and Tasnova Tamanna for ‘Nona Joler Kabbo’.

The best actor in supporting role award went to Fazlur Rahman Babu for film ‘Nona Joler Kabbo’ while Shampa Reza won the best supporting actress award for film ‘Padma Puran’.

Md. Abdul Mannan (Joyraj) was awarded best actor in a negative role for film ‘Lal Moroger Jhuti’. Probhash Kumar Bhattacharya (Milon) got the award for comedy in the film of ‘Mridha Bonam Mridha’.

Afia Jahin Jayma won the best child artiste award for film ‘Rehana Mariam Nur’, while special award on children division went to Jannatul Mawa Jhilik for the film of ‘Ja Harie Jai’.

Sujeyo Sham bagged the best music director’s award for the ‘Joiboti Kannyar Mon’ film. KM Abdullah Al Murtaza Muhin won the award in the best singer category for film ‘Padma Puran’, while the best singer female award went to Chandana Majumder (film ‘Padma Puran’).

The best lyricist award went to late Gazi Mazharul Anwar for the song of ‘Joiboti Kannyar Mon’ film.

Sujeyo Sham won the best composer award for the film of ‘Joiboti Kannyar Mon’. The best story writer award went to Rezwana Shahriar Sumit for the film of ‘Nona Joler Kabbo’.

The other award winners are: Nurul Alam Atik (screenwriter), Towqir Ahmed (dialogue), Samir Ahmed (best editing), Shihab Nurun Nabi (best art direction), Syed Kashef Shahbazi, Sumon Kumar Sarkar and Mazharul Islam Razu (jointly for best cinematographer), Shaiba Talukder (sound designer), Idila Kasrin Farid (costume and design), and Md Farukh and Md Farhad Reza (makeup).

In addition, ‘Tungi Parar Mia Bhai’ was given ‘Mujib Borsha’ and ‘Golden Jubilee of the Country’s Independence’ Special National Film Award-2021.