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‘Worthy of Thee.’ Directed by Dulith Anthony

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ශ්‍රී LankaNZ is a free distributed Sri Lankan Community Newspaper that aims to reach a Sri Lankan population of over 18,000 all over New Zealand. The demand for entertainment in literacy media itself gave birth to ශ්‍රී LankaNZ

Dulith Anthony, a young Sri Lankan,  also a Production tutor at Yoobee South Seas Film and Screen Production  College, Auckland ‘ is the director of the ‘Worthy of Thee’,  a short film. It won Best cinematography, Paris International film awards, France 2022, Best Short Film, and Best Wardrobe – Clapper board Golden International Film Festival, Brazil 2022 (amongst 2000 film submissions), Best Set Design, Misty Flicks Film Festival, New Zealand 2022. They are awards highly acclaimed in the industry.

The film is based on the wartime saga by Sasha Morgan, an Otago-born young creative writer. It was produced in 2021 by Lance Loughlin of the ‘Coffee Bean Production,’ New Zealand, mainly video graphed in scenic rich, people-friendly Pukemoremore and at Lake  Arapuni in Waikato. 

The Walker family, the centre of the story, receives a letter from their son, Peter, who is at war in the New Zealand army. The letter says that one of his best friends was seriously injured at the Battle of Crete.

‘The Battle for Crete was one of the most dramatic wars of the Second World War. Over 12 days in May 1941, a mixed force of New Zealanders, British, Australian, and Greek troops desperately tried to fight off a huge German airborne assault.’ A government website of New Zealand History says. ‘More than 1700 British, Commonwealth, and Greek soldiers were killed and 15,000 captured during the Battle for Crete. 

There were 671 New Zealanders among the dead and 2180 Kiwi prisoners of war. More than 6000 Germans were killed or wounded. The Luftwaffe lost more than 350 aircraft.’ It summarises the disaster.

It was a shock to the mother who wanted to bring back the injured boy. Mr Walker, the father, had different ideals and expectations of manhood. This leads to the conflicts in the story and a setting for Sasha to make a good page-turner. But it is a difficult task for the movie director to drag the audience to the edge of the seats with suspense while exposing human qualities like the mother’s love, father’s firmness, and the eventualities in a war-hit mentality within sixteen minutes with a budget less than nine thousand Kiwi dollars. Dulith  made it a reality successfully. 

“Worthy of Thee’ allows our audience a chance to develop empathy for the characters and leaves them with a lasting emotional connection.’ Dulith mentions.

While involved in the NZ film industry, he has participated in Netflix productions like The Triangle Pilot, Sweet Tooth, Shadow in the Cloud & Cowboy Bebop. He has also directed a 48-hour film challenge project that won the People’s Choice Award for its Heat for Auckland in 2019. ‘Worthy of Thee’ is the fifth NZ short film he’s directed

As the paper was going to the press we received the following message from  Dulith.

I won the “Best Director- Drama film” at the London Director Awards international film festival 2022. It was the only winning film that represented New Zealand. This year there were 1300 film submissions and the jury selected 93 for official selection. There were award winning film submissions from Festival de Cannes, the Sundance Film Festival, Toronto International Film Festival or have been awarded and nominated for ACADEMY AWARDS, GOLDEN GLOBES, and BAFTA-winning actors and directors.

I am grateful to receive this award. This is the 5th international award that we received worthy of thee.’

We congratulate and wish him all the success in his voyage.

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