Tuesday, February 16, 2010
VK acted in over 300 films & with his winsome smile & compelling good looks was the undisputed romantic hero & heartthrob of the local silver screen.!
Vijaya Kumaratunga’s 22nd death anniversary today:
Vijaya, the romantic icon
Today marks the 22nd Death Anniversary of actor-politician Vijaya Kumaratunga who etched his name in the Sinhala cinema and the hearts of millions of film-goers in the country for ever.
Several programs have been arranged to commemorate the event by the Vijaya Kumaratunga Foundation and his loyal fans throughout the country.
The void left by his demise is still felt in the local cinema which today is bereft of such charm and screen presence.
Vijaya burst into the celluloid world in the ‘mountain moving’ film Hantane Kathawa and took the local cinema by storm.
Since then he acted in over 300 films and with his winsome smile and compelling good looks was the undisputed romantic hero and heartthrob of the local silver screen.
He blew a breath of fresh air into the lacklustre scene and emerged as the knight in shining armour to conquer the local film world.
Born on October 9,1945 in the coastal hamlet of Seeduwa, Vijaya was marked out as a budding artiste even while a student at Benedict’s College, Kotahena where he acted in school plays and was a livewire in the school’s drama society.
Incidentally the College was known to have produced many an artiste and cinematic personalities with names such as Premnath Moraes, Robin Fernando and Ravindra Randeniya standing out. Vijaya was also a member of the College debating team which stood him in good stead in his subsequent foray into the world of politics.
His unchallenged popularity of his era helped him in no small measure to ascend the political stage where he made a big impact with his lyrical oratory and captivating presence.
His first venture into national politics came when he contested the Katana constituency albeit unsuccessfully. Subsequently at the 1982 Presidential election he was the chief lieutenant of SLFP candidate Hector Kobbekaduwa whose campaign he single handedly steered amidst attempts from within to undermine his chances.
He later founded the Sri Lanka Mahajana Party with wife Chandrika which brought under one umbrella all the left and progressive forces. He was gunned down at his Polhengoda home on February 16, 1988 silencing the voice of one of the most phenomenal stars off the local silver screen and political stage.