Celebration of birth of Manipuri cinema, ‘Mami Numit’ today

Imphal: The birth of Manipuri cinema will be celebrated as ‘Mami Numit’ on April 9 as part of the Golden Jubilee celebration of Manipuri cinema. It was 50 years ago on April 9, 1972 that the first Manipuri feature film ‘Matamgi Manipur’ appeared on the silver screen, thereby putting Manipur in the cinematic landscape.

The celebration will begin from 8:30 in the morning with the lighting of the inaugural lamp and offering of floral tributes at the ‘Ningsing Nungbi, Manipuri cinema’/memorial stone of Manipuri cinema, erected inside the Manipur State Film Development Society (MSFDS) complex in Imphal.

The 20-metre-tall monolith was unveiled at last year’s Mami Numit, coinciding with the inauguration of the Golden Jubilee celebration.

The function will be attended by Art and Culture commissioner, M Joy Singh; award winning critic, Meghachandra Kongbam and chairman of Film Forum Manipur, Samjetsabam Mangoljao as chief guest, guest of honour and president respectively.

In the evening, Governor of Manipur, La Ganesan will distribute the prestigious Manipur State Film Awards and Minister Awangbow Newmai presiding over the award ceremony. The awards distribution will be followed by the screening of the best non-feature, Ayekpa Singee Pukhei by DebendroThiyam and best feature awarding films, Eikhoigi Yum by Romi Meitei.

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Modelled after the prestigious National Film Awards, the Manipur State Film Award was instituted in 1984 to encourage the production of films of aesthetic and technical excellence and social relevance contributing to the understanding and appreciation of cultures of different communities living together in Manipur in cinematic form, thereby promoting unity and integrity of the state, MSFDS said.

According to MSFDS, the state awards also aim at encouraging the study and appreciation of cinema as an art form and dissemination of information and critical appreciation of this art form through publication of books, articles, reviews etc.

The award carries a Maibi Memento, cash prize and a citation.

The 14th edition of the Manipur State Film Awards 2022 accepted entries of films censored in the 2020 and 2021 as Covid-19 pandemic also had its toll in the film practice in Manipur and the awards could not be organized.

Alongside, as the golden jubilee celebration is coming to a close, Palace Auditorium of MSFDS will come to life with the Festival of Cinemas of Manipur from April 14 to 29. Besides screening most landmark Manipuri films, the first bilingual festival would also screen films made in indigenous dialects spoken in the state and as a special attraction and to showcase the importance of preserving the state’s cinematic heritage, the restored 4K format of the first film by a Manipuri filmmaker, SN Chand, ‘BrojendrogiLuhongba’ will also be screened, MSFDS added.

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