“I was in a meeting for Adipurush and the phone was ringing incessantly. Some of the callers were friends in the media. I wondered what was going on. Then, another person at the meeting got a call and he told me, ‘Omi, you won the National Award!” — that was how Om Raut, came to know of his recognition in the Wholesome Entertainment category of the National Film Awards announced yesterday, for his debut Hindi feature film Tanhaji: The Unsung Warrior.
Incidentally, Om is the third person in his family to win a National Award. His documentary filmmaker grandfather JS Bandekar was a five-time winner, and his mother Neena Raut won it twice for her non-fiction work.
“I am happy that I have added to the family tally,” says Om. He says his Adipurush hero Prabhas was very happy about the honour.
“It is a great satisfaction to work with a great team. The box office was very satisfactory and to realise that you have won the Golden Lotus is a great feeling,” shares Om.
Admitting that the recognition comes with responsibilities, Om says, “I can’t lie, it is a lot of responsibility now. But what excites me more is the energy that comes with it and that is a great boost. If you are in the film business, be it behind the camera or in front of it, you want to win a National Award at least once and climb on the stage and receive it from the President of India. My grandfather got his first one from Dr S Radhakrishnan. My friends have also won it and they talk about the creative responsibility of winning the highest honour for films in the country. It does help to take your next project to the next level,” says Om, who is now planning the release of Adipurush.
“The Adipurush shoot is done and we are in the post production stage. We will release it next January. The film is looking very promising. I hold it close to my heart,” he signs off....