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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2961

Chandana Silva – An Image of Decency

By T.K.Premadasa - Katubedda

It was exactly one year ago Chandana Silva the great scholar, screenplay writer, film director, and a professional critic on cinema passed away leaving his family and friends in unbearable sorrow. This is a tribute of my admiration of this decent personality – Sonduru Minisa on his first death anniversary falls on December 29, 2008.

Chandana made a demanding contribution towards the expansion of Sri Lankan cinema with his vast knowledge of cinematic technology not for public reputation but for the progression of cinema industry.

He who knows doesn’t speak. He who speaks doesn't know. It was a quiet dedication of remarkable share of his spirited involvement towards development of the industry. His competence of responsibility as a juror in the Panel of Selection of Awards for OCI, Presidential Award, Critic Award etc for talents and skills displayed in the filmdom was commendable. He was a beaming example of humility and greatness par excellence. The exemplary lifestyle with a large-hearted generosity demonstrated a source of inspiration to those associates with whom he built up an intense friendship.

Born in 1947 Chandana started his primary education at Alethiya School in Dehiwala and continued higher studies at Dehiwala Central College. Later he opted to settle his career in the insurance field an independent profession recognized by the citizenry.

Being a talented photographer Chandana mastered photography under Mr Wilson Hegoda the famous Photographer at the Sri Lankan Photographic Society. At the outset he was more engaged in the technical side of a short film "Nihanda Kathawak" produced by students of Kala Pela. Enthused by courage and determination he became an independent producer by his own production of a short 16 mm film "Sath Asath" in 1974. Accredited with abundance of innate talents the portrayal of his competence debuted as a cameraman for "Sanathana Gethumak" a short 35 mm film directed by Bermin Fernando brought him invincible fame.

Significantly many short films such as "Balaporotthuwa Santhapaya", "Me Rekhawe Wedanawa", "Anthayen Anthayata", "Olu Male Geethaya", "Branthiya", "Charlige Dawasa", "Amma" and "Saala Ru"were his own creations. In addition he was the Assistant Director of the film "Peter of the Elephant".

Blessed with congenital brilliancy in the art of film making this dynamic power directed the 35 mm film "Kawulu Dora" ( Window) the theme song of his own lyrics sung by versatile artiste Malini Bulathsinhala who later passed away while she was on a tour in the United States. Despite a huge contribution of assistance received from various leading personalities in cinema, hapless Chandana could not reach the fully completion of his own production marred by unfortunate circumstances.

On his involvement in film magazines he quite effectively shared his duty as the editor of the magazines Cenerio and Vikasitha etc. He made his creative cover designs for CDs of famous artist Nihal Nelson and a few others and organized the Film Poster Exhibition in early 1970s.

Chandana was so thoughtful to deliver his gargantuan expertise of cinematic atmosphere with highly advanced analytical coverage in a few books authored by him. Cinama Viyrana , Golu Hadavatha and Cinemographic, Cinema Critics, Cenema Myths and Reality, Cinema Rhythm are few books written by Chandana. He wrote a patent analysis of new technology, editing and presentation et al concerning the cinema industry.

In appreciation of his unique commitment to the cinema The National Catholic Society made the presentation of Cyril Mathew Memorial Award to him a prestigious award of recognition in 2002.

Chandana’s admirable efforts made in silence for development of Film Industry not only demands absolute dedication but also involves a tremendous amount of sacrifice. Men of this remarkable character are rarely seen in the society. The vacuum left by his untimely demise is never replaceable. The pleasant moments of his cordial attachment will remain etched in our lasting memories.

Encouraged by the exemplified lifestyle with spectacular human qualities I am privileged to salute in high esteem this humble man of impressive character.

May he attain the Supreme Bliss of Nibbana

- Asian Tribune -

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