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  • The National Film Award for Best Actor, officially known as the Rajat Kamal Award for the Best Actor, is an honour presented annually at the National Film Awards of India since 1968 to actors who have delivered the best performance in a leading role within the Indian film industry. Called the "State Awards for Films" when established in 1954, the National Film Awards ceremony is older than the Directorate of Film Festivals. The State Awards instituted the individual award in 1968 as the "Bharat Award for the Best Actor"; in 1975, it was renamed as the "Rajat Kamal Award for the Best Actor". Throughout the past 45 years, accounting for ties and repeat winners, the Government of India has presented a total of 52 "Best Actor" awards to 40 different actors. Until 1974, winners of the National Film Award received a figurine and certificate; since 1975, they have been awarded with a "Rajat Kamal", certificate and a cash prize. Although the Indian film industry produces films in around 20 languages and dialects, the actors whose performances have won awards have worked in seven major languages: Hindi, Malayalam, Tamil, Bengali, Marathi, Kannada and English.

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