The National Film Awards is the most prominent film award ceremony in India. In the latest, 66th National Film Awards, two actors were presented with Best Actor. They were, Ayushmann Khurrana for Andhadhun and Vicky Kaushal for Uri: The Surgical Strike. However, it was not the first time when two stars received National Award for Best Actor in the same year. Read to know about the other pairs.
The first time when actor pair received Best Actor National Award was in 1997. Balachandra Menon and Suresh Gopi earned the award for their performances in Samaantharangal and Kaliyattam, respectively. Both were Malayalam films. Balachandra plays Ismail in Samaantharangal which he also wrote and directed. Kaliyattam, starring Suresh as Kannan Perumalayan, is an adaptation of William Shakespeare's play Othello.
In the following year, 1998, Ajay Devgn and Mammotty earned National Award for Best Actor. Ajay got his first National Award for his performance as Ajay R. Desai in Hindi film Zakhm, while Mammotty earned his third for playing the titular role in English language film, Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar. It was the consecutive second ceremony when two stars earned Best Actor.
Both, Dhanush and Salim Kumar received National Film Awards for Best Actor in 2010. Dhanush for his act as K. P. Karuppu in Aadukalam and Salim as Abu in Adaminte Makan Abu. Tamil film Aadukalam received the most awards (six) at the ceremony including Best Director and Best Screenplay. However, the Best Feature Film award went to Malayalam film Adaminte Makan Abu. It was Dhanush and Salim’s first nomination and win.
At the 60th National Film Awards, Irrfan Khan and Vikram Gokhale were honoured with Best Actor award. Irrfan for his portrayal of the titular character in Paan Singh Tomar and Vikram as Ratnakar in Marathi movie, Anumati. It remains Irrfan’s only National Award with Paan Singh Tomar also winning the Best Feature Film.
Rajkummar Rao and Suraj Venjaramoodu were presented with Best Actor award in 2013 at the 61st National Film Awards. While Rajkummar was given the award for his performance as Shahid Azmi in Shahid, Suraj earned it for his act as Father in Perariyathavar. Shahid is a biographical Hindi film helmed by Hansal Mehta who won the Best Director Award at the ceremony. Perariyathavar is a Malayalam language film which also won Best Film on Environment Conservation/Preservation at the ceremony.