Some popular Sinhala-language films include 2010's "Behind the Scenes," 2008's "Machan" and 2015's "Maharaja Gemunu," which are listed as the most popular with users and highest-grossing in the United States by IMDb.com as of 2016. The top three highest-rated Sinhala films by IMDb users are "The Singing Pond" from 2014, "Butterfly Symphony" from 2013 and "Thanha Rathi Ranga" from 2014.
IMDb's database includes a list of 285 Sinhala-language feature films released between 1947 and 2016. Information about the directors, actors and synopses of each film is available through IMDb. For example, "Maharaja Gemnunu," the third-most popular film with users and fourth-highest rated, was directed and written by Jayantha Chandrasiri and features actors Uddika Premarathna, Jackson Anthony and Kusum Renu.
The First Sinhala film was 1947's "Kadawunu Poronduwa." The first decade of Sinhala-language films was largely influenced by Indian cinema conventions due to being filmed in Southern India. Sinhala film was most popular in the 1970s, as the socialist government developed a state organization to promote domestically produced films and reduce the dominance of imported films in theaters. However, with the reinstatement of a capitalist government in 1977, restrictions on film making were removed, and the quality of films decreased. Modern Sinhala film has become significantly less popular, with yearly cinema attendance the lowest in Sri Lankan history in 2010.