Women Tigers documentary producers win award for new film
[TamilNet, Monday, 26 May 2008, 12:22 GMT]
Sabiha Sumar's "Dinner with the President: A Nation's Journey," which she made with her husband, political columnist Sachithanandam Sathananthan, won the highest award in the international documentary competition in the United Arab Emirates on Friday. Sri Lanka born Dr Sathananthan, currently in self-exile in India, and his Pakistani wife Sabiha Sumar, produced a 1996 documentary "Suicide Warriors" based on the lives of women cadre amongst the LTTE's women's brigade, some of whom belong to the elite Black Tigers.
"Dinner with the President", a film produced by Sabiha Sumar, was conferred the Grand Award (Gold), carrying an amount of 500,000 dirhams (US$136,000), weekend edition of Dawn reported.
Sabiha Sumar speaking after receiving award from Journalist Riz Khan and Indian actress Madhuri Dixit (Photo: dawn.com)
"It is a big honour for me to receive the award. The documentary competition is a first step for the promotion of documentaries, but a major and wonderful step," Sabiha said, according to Dawn.
"Suicide Warriors" was broadcast on Channel Four (UK) current affairs program Black Bag in 1996.
The film was shot with the intimate participation of the women soldiers who allowed the couple to film them in their private moments – while eating, relaxing with friends and comrades and sleeping. The film looks beyond the de-humanized images of women warriors and invites the viewer to re-think clichéd images, Dr Sathananthan said.
In Sri Lanka, Dr Sathananthan was Secretary of the Action Group of Tamils in Colombo (AGOTIC) from 1993 to 1998. AGOTIC ceased operation after the assassination of a founder-member Kumar Ponnambalam in 2000.
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