Azadi @75 Entertainment : Cinema
When India was fully independent in 1947, at the same time, the then star singer and actress of Hindi cinema left for Pakistan. Many others migrated from Lahore to Bombay after partition and many stayed in Bombay. Among them was Yusuf Khan aka Dilip Kumar, who starred as Noor Jahan in the film Jugnu (1947), becoming one of India’s finest actors.
At the time of independence, the age of the Indian film industry was three decades, but with the formation of independent India, the feeling of patriotism prevailed among the filmmakers. This fact can be seen in films like Shaheed (1948), Naya Daur (1957) and Insan Jag Utha (1958).
A balance was struck between happy tales and stories that reveal bitter socio-economic realities in a nation trying to stay afloat. Indian cinema hit the world map through Satyajit Ray’s first feature film, Pather Panchali (1955).
In the 1960s, cinema had made a technological leap, producers had begun to make films in color and our heroes began to dance, to romance. Later in the 1970s and 1980s, the work of filmmakers like Shyam Benegal, Govind Nihalani and Saeed Mirza depicted the angst and pain of marginalized Indians. In the 1980s, the film industry also faced a tough challenge from television.
It was said that before television ruined films, three Khan actors (Aamir, Salman and Shah Rukh) entered the period of economic liberalization. Representing Indians who can celebrate their aspirations, Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge focuses on a character like Simran who urges her family to travel to Europe just before her wedding.
Satellite television came in the 1990s and ended Doordarshan’s monopoly and created many opportunities for a new generation of filmmakers, technicians and actors. This “MTV Generation” began to look to Hollywood movies, even American TV shows, in search of entertainment. This created pressure on the film industry to improve the audiovisual experience.
With the advent of multiplexes, more changes were seen. Along with mainstream entertainment formula films, “indie” films, which spoke in a completely different way without formula frills, were also successful in attracting audiences. Indian films also began to make an impact at international film festivals. The arrival of YouTube in India in 2008 brought another change and Indians started enjoying free entertainment content.
This was followed by video-on-demand platforms in less than a decade. Of these, Hotstar, Sony Liv and Netflix offer movie content from around the world on mobile. All this has given rise to an audience willing to watch dubbed or subtitled content. That’s why KGF’s ‘Rocky’ is not from any Kannada film, but an Indian hero.
films and screens
1947: 283 films were made, which were shown in about 7,000 theaters across the country
1947: Char Aana (2 paise) – The ticket price for the front stall of a single screen cinema hall
1947: Yehi Koi was one of the highest grossing films of Dilip Kumar and Noorjahan starrer Jugnu with 50 lakh rupees.
2022: Indian cinema produces over 1,500 films annually and has a total of 9,423 screens across the country
2022: Rs.250-300: The average price of a ticket in a multiplex is
2022: KGF: Chapter 2 collects about Rs 992 crore nationwide in all languages
1951: The first international film festival held in Bombay gives Indian audiences and filmmakers the opportunity to savor the work of great directors such as Akira Kurosawa and Sergei Eisenstein, as well as Italian neorealist cinema. Later his influence was seen in the works of Bimal Roy, Raj Kapoor and Guru Dutt.
1984: The Malayalam film My Dear Kuttichattan was the country’s first 3D film. In Hindi it was called Chhota Chetan. The film was a huge success in both the languages. 1998 remake with additional scenes, songs
2003: Subhash Ghai’s Mankh begins digital screening in Indian cinemas in collaboration with Adlabs Entertainment and Mukta Arts. This technique was first used in two small towns of Solapur district of Maharashtra-Trimurti Theater in Sangola and Bharat Cinema in Mangalwedha.
A look at our film history
the season of colors has arrived
In 1952, Mehboob shot on 16mm Kodachrome and made the first color film Aan. By the mid-1950s, V. Shantaram was making full use of color (Jhanak Jhanak Payal Baje, Navrang, etc.). Shammi Kapoor’s Junglee Eastman was the first film to be made in colour.
And then the “Angry Young Man” era.
The writing duo of Salim Khan and Javed Akhtar did a great job of expressing the frustration and anger of the average Indian in the days following the Emergency in India. In films like Deewar, Amitabh Bachchan voiced that angry young man
Ajay Bijli, the legacy of Delhi’s Priya Cinema, partnered with Village Roadshow of Australia in 1997 to launch Priya Village Roadshow (PVR) with a four-screen campus in Delhi’s Saket area. After that, multiplexes became the norm and single screen theaters became the exception.
Telugu filmmaker SS Rajamouli’s Baahubali film series (2015, 2017) broke language boundaries and became a pan-Indian sensation. The success of this multilateral partnership effort encouraged others to dub Hindi films to reach a wider audience.
on a world tour
Although Naaz (1954) offered a glimpse of the world outside India with scenes in London and Cairo, its actors Ashok Kumar and Nalini Jaywant did not get a chance to visit these places. This tag went to Raj Kapoor, whose production Sangam (1964) started the trend of shooting songs and scenes abroad in a flash.
golden age of television
Due to epic serials and various programs made for Doordarshan by filmmakers like Shyam Benegal, Basu Chatterjee and Kundan Shah, its audience grew from about 1.5 million in 1982 to about 75 million by the end of the decade.
The film sector was granted industry status in 2000, making it easier for filmmakers to take out bank loans without relying on black market forces, including the underworld, to raise funds. It also ushered in the era of corporatization of the film industry, which led to the arrival of foreign studios.
As the shutters came down on cinemas in India during the Covid pandemic in 2020, Indians turned to streaming platforms with a plethora of options. Freed from box office pressures, filmmakers turned to longer-form stories, and most studios created separate digital content units to meet growing demand.