Tuesday, May 12, 2009
Robin Tampoe 'Last of the big ones'......!!!
Robin Tampoe 'Last of the big ones'
'Last of the big ones'
Though he was one of the pioneering filmmakers of the island, many are not aware of facts about the life and times of Robin Tampoe. Thus his daughter Vilasnee had taken up the much needed task of scripting a volume on his yeoman service to the reel as well as some interesting escapades from his personal life.
The book titled 'Robin Tampoe: 'Last of the big one' along with another book Gewee Giya Yugayaka Antima Tharuwa was launched at the Sri Lankan Foundation Institute some months back. The event which was put together by RT Films coincided with the 78th birth anniversary of the veteran filmmaker. Dr. Tissa Abeysekara, Sumitra Peries and Dr. D.B. Nihalsinghe graced the occasion.
The son of W.M.S Tampoe, another filmmaker, who made a few Tamil films in India and gained a named as Ceylon Thambu before breaking into the Sri Lankan cinema industry with Sepali.
Growing up in a background filled with cameras and cinema equipment molded the character of young Robin and formed a part of the success he gained through his work.
Penned with sensitivity, the book is scripted to pay homage to a father, who also happened to be an iconic figure in the cinema industry. With 22 films such as Sudu Snade Kaluwa, Sulalitha Sobani Sathutai Kandulai, Sudo Sudu, Landaka Mahima, Sanasili Suvaya, Ruhunu Kumari and Manushatwaya to his name he made his mark in the entertainment film category.
He entered the scene when the movie industry was in its twilight days and made Sinhala films at a time when the flames of ethnic conflict were threatening to shadow the land. He did not hesitate to experiment and mix techniques borrowed from Indian films thus resulting in a number of sentimental melodramatic creations. Though some of his productions were not recognized for their artistry, one cannot help noting that they continued to bring in money which is much needed for the survival of the industry.
Another special feature of the artiste is that he was an all rounder in the industry. He was not only a director but also a producer, studio owner, exhibitor and importer. He had come into contact with many of the pioneers as well as iconic figures in the industry and some like Dr. Lester James Peries, Tissa Abeysekara and Dr. D.B. Nihalsinghe had even taken pains to pen a few paragraphs in the book as a dedication to a filmmaker who had been a friend, ally and colleague to them during the prosperous age of Sri Lankan cinema.
- Ruwini Jayawardana