Author Archives: Rahul Sahgal

Mother India – 1938

Very few film-goers might know that there was a ‘Mother India’ made much earlier in 1938. The significance of this older film lies not merely in the fact that it was also made in color but that it was the second fully Indian attempt to shoot and process a color film locally, after ‘Kisan Kanya’, made a year earlier.

Biren Naug – Art’s Offspring

Mostly dealing in sham and counterfeit, the art director makes mountains out of mole- hills, palaces out of pasteboard, picturesque countryside out of painted canvas. He is ready and able to forge and fabricate into shape anything under and over the sun you want duplicated within the few hundred square feet of space in a film studio – be it a dense forest, a starry sky, a sea in storm, a snow covered mountain, a grimy slum, a fashionable city street or the architectural glory of a by-gone age.

Golden Era of Patriotic Serials

Guest Post by Syed Tauheed. The era of TV serial making in country began with Harish Khanna, the head of Doordarshan (DD). Khanna, categorically was in favour of entertainment,educational and patriotic content. DD ably carried ahead the responsibility of infotainment media. Patriotic TV serials consistently were shown on DD achieved phenomenal success towards meaningful and popular broadcasting.

Light of Asia – 1925

‘Light of Asia’ was jointly produced by the Emelka Film Company of Munich and the Great Eastern Corporation, Lahore in 1925. But the man who was originally obsessed with the idea and later realized it (both commercially and artistically) was Himanshu Rai, then an amateur actor in London. He not only co-directed it with Franz Osten but also played one of the two principal roles (that of Siddhartha), the other being Siddhartha’s wife played by Sita Devi.

George Cukor – Spit and Gloss Entertainer

On his death anniversary today. During a career of fifty years and more, George Cukor directed outstanding movies – a resplendent record, enough to earn him a permanent seat in the hall of fame of world cinema. As Gavin Lambert puts it, “There are artists whose work is basically a release from personal tension and there are others for whom their work is an extension rather than a tension, a mode of pleasure and a way of expressing curiosity about the world; Cukor is of the second kind!”

Federico Fellini – The Trailblazing Italian

On his birthday today. Federico Fellini was in the limelight of the world of lens and lights ever since he burst on the international film arena in the early years of the fantastic Fifties. He displayed a rare combination of technical brilliance, high sense of visual imagery, a feeling for places and people, an ability to peer and peek behind the facial masks the men and women of the pill-swallowing and Punch-and-Judy show world of our times wear.

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