National Film Awards are one of the oldest and prestigious awards for the Indian film fraternity or Bollywood. It is being conducted on behalf of the government. As a result it is an important achievement for the artistes.
Both the mainstream films and the parallel cinema are recognised through the National Film Awards. In fact it is one of the award ceremonies where the regional films play an important role. The National Film Awards provided opportunities to directors like Girish Kasaravalli, Budhdhadeb Dasgupta, Aparna Sen, Rituporno Ghosh, Govindan Aravindan and several others to introduce their art to the rest of the country.
The National Film Awards are classified into the Golden Lotus Award and the Silver Lotus Awards.
History of National Film Awards
The National Awards were first presented to the winners in the year 1954. This award was conceived by Government of India to honour the films from across the country on a national scale to support and also encourage the furthering of Indian art, craft and culture. Ever since 1973, the Indian Directorate of Film Festivals administers the event alongside other essential film events in India, every year. National Award is the highest award given for Films in the country.
Juries And Rules in National Film Awards
National film awards are actually presented in two main categories, namely: Feature Films and Non-Feature Films. For each of the category there is a set jury members who take care of all the aspects of selecting the deserving the best candidate for the awards. The juries are appointed by the Directorate of Film Festivals in India. Neither the Government nor the Directorate have influence over which films are selected for consideration and which films ultimately win awards. There are strict criteria as to whether a film is eligible for consideration by the jury panels. Over 100 films made across the country are entered in each category (Feature and Non-Feature) for the awards and deemed eligible each year.
The rules are carefully listed in a document known as the National Film Award Regulations. The criteria for eligibility actually contain many clauses. Among them there is a direct requirement for makers of film, and specially the directors, to be Indian nationals. The cinemas entering the competition must be made in India. And in case of any joint venture with the foreign company there are six conditions that it must also fulfil in order for the film to qualify. As per criterion, in order to be qualified for deliberation of the jury, a film should be certified by the Central Board of Film Certification between January 1 and December 31. Whether a film is considered a feature film or a non-feature film shall be decided by the Feature Film jury. The eligibility list includes a section of rules determining which films shall not by eligible for entry in the competition.