Cinematic revival of Buddhist revivalist

The Sunday Times

MG_5018‘Anagarika Dharmapala Srimathano’

‘Anagarika Dharmapala Srimathano’, a film based on the life story of Sri Lankan Buddhist revivalist and writer Anagarika Dharmapala is now being screened at MPI circuit cinemas. Produced by Ven. Kirama Wimalajothi Thera and Sunil T. Fernando, the film stars Palitha Silva (playing Anagarika Dharmapala), Sriyantha Mendis, Gayan Wickremathilaka, Hyacinth Wijeratne, Lucky Dias, Sandun Wijesiri, Kamal Deshapriya, G. R. Perera, Austin Samarawickrema, Chris Harris, Madhawa Wijesinghe, Dayasiri Hettiarachchi, Prasad Samarathunga, Ruwangi Ratnayake and Sanjaya Amarasinghe in the stellar cast.

One of the founding contributors of non-violent Sinhalese Buddhist nationalism and Buddhism, the movie showcases how Anagarika Dharmapala pioneered in reviving Buddhism in India after it had been virtually extinct there for several centuries. Depicted as the first Buddhist in modern times to preach the Dharma in three continents: Asia, North America, and Europe, the film shows his crucial role as a major reformer and revivalist of Sri Lanka’s Buddhism and how he carried out the mission of Western transmission of Buddhism together with Henry Steel Olcott and Helena Blavatsky, the creators of the Theosophical Society.

Cinematographed by Sujith Nishantha, art direction by Suneth Nandalal, make up by Sameera Madu Kindelpitiya and Manoj Laksiri, the costume designing handled by Heenatigala Premadasa. Rohana Weerasinghe wrote the musical score, ‘Anagarika Dharmapala’ is directed by Sanath Abeysekara.

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