TV Times

‘Uththara’ unravels a secret past of a politician

By Susitha R. Fernando

Sandun Rajakaruna’s maiden film ‘Uththara’, a story in the backdrop of political violence will be released at the Savoy Wellawatte and other EAP circuit cinemas from February 4.

Starring Suraj Mapa opposite dancing star famed budding actress Hashini Gonagala in the lead roles, the film also has significant characters portrayed by Sanath Gunatileke, Upeksha Swarnamali, Janith Wickramage, Sahan Ranwala, Sarath Chandrasiri, Anton Jude, Shan Bandu Weerasinghe, Daya Alwis, Maureen Charuni, Vishaka Siriwardena, Rebecca Nirmalee and Kumara Thirimadura.

A touching love story in a political backdrop, the story revolves around Niwanthudawa a welknown politician who is ready to do anything to climb the political ladder. He is even makes use of his own wife or daughter Uththara for this purpose. It is because of this that he proposes his daughter to a son of an opposition politician so that he can make a political alliance with a family connection.

Yet Uththara falls in love with an ordinary youth, Shanilka who had devoted his heart and life to music. Uththara and Shanilka have to face many a trial, obstacles and heartache due to their choice. Not only the young lovers, but also stubborn Niwanthuduwa too has to undergo a testing moment in his endevour to separate them and fulfil his political dreams.

Uththara is produced by lawyer Vajira Rajapaksa for Sinelka Films while Mahesh Rathsara Maddumarachchi has handled the screenplay. Behind the screen Chandana Dharmapriya handled the camera, Chamikara Bokaragoda the art direction, Narada Dhananji Thotagamuwa does the make-up and Manjula Prasanga is the assistant director while Maduranga Jagoda is the production manager.

Rohana Weerasinghe is in charge of the music while Uresha Ravihari, Pradeep Rangana, Bathiya Jayakody and Kasun Kalhara contributed with the vocals.

The lyrics were penned by Bandula Nanayakkarawasam, Mahesh Rathsara Madummarachchi and Kalum Srimal. ‘Uththara’ was shot in a number of picturesque locations in the island including Colombo, Matale and Nuwara Eliya.

Rajakaruna enters cinema

Assistant director turned director Sandun Rajakaruna entered cinema through television and stage. In 1995 and 1996 he started studying under playwright Gamini Haththotuwagama and produced his own plays for State Drama Festival and Youth Drama Festivals. He also excelled as a script writer and technician on the stage.

Having joined the miniscreen he worked for teledramas like ‘Deepashika’, ‘Punaragamanaya’, ‘Diriya Dhoni’, ‘Rathriya Manaram’, ‘Uduwiyan’ and ‘Manawika’. He had worked under more than 20 teledrama directors and filmmakers including Thusitha de Silva, Dee Gee Somapala, Janaka Siriwardena and Jayalath Manoratne.

Sandun’s maiden teledrama direction was ‘Ithin Mata Avasarai and he directed ‘Adaraniya Chanchala’ and scripted the first 150 episodes of ‘Ithin Ita Passe’ which is now being telecast.

Rajakaruna who entered the cinema scene with Eranga Senaratne’s ‘Dipashika’ extended his gratitude to Vajira Rajapaksa who came forward to play the producer in his maiden film and many others who helped him on his journey.

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