History Legend Rewind Personalities

30 Apr : Birth of “Father of Indian Cinema”

Dada Saheb Phalke, the Father of Indian Cinema... was born today... His birth is a blessing for the Indian community as he gave us the cinema... the Bollywood... the entertainment...

Dada Saheb Phalke, the brain behind Indian Cinema was born today in 1870. 
Phalke made India’s first film Raja Harishchandra, in 1912. It was first shown publicly on 3 May 1913 at Mumbai’s Coronation Cinema. It is marked as the beginning of the Indian film industry.

“Raja Harishchandra. A performance with 57,000 photographs. A picture two miles long. All for only three annas.”
This is how Phalke, Indian cinema’s first marketing wizard promoted his creation.

Unfortunately we could not save the film. Here are 11 minutes and 19 seconds of what is left of the landmark film.
A tribute to him from all cinema lovers… 

Summary of the film : The film opens with a Ravi Varma like tableau showing King Harishchandra, his wife Taramati and his young son. The king is teaching his son archery. They go on a hunt. The king enters an area controlled by the Sage Vishwamitra. Three furies appear before the king caught in flames. The king tries to rescue them. These fairies try to seduce the king into renouncing his kingdom for his love of truth. The king endures much hardship including being banished from his kingdom before a god appears to reassure everyone that the whole narrative was merely a test of the king's integrity.

Indian Cinema was in its infancy those days. Since 1969, Government of India introduced Dada Saheb Phalke’s award to commemorate his contribution to Indian Cinema. It is India’s highest award in cinema.

सिनेमा को समाज का आईना कहते हैं… और समाज को इस आईने का तोहफा देने वाले थे – दादा साहेब फाल्के… आज उनका जन्मदिन है… ये मौका है भारतीय सिनेमा यानी बॉलीवुज की नींव को समझने की… 1912 में भारत की पहली फिल्म रिलीज़ हुई थी… इस फिल्म का नाम था राजा हरिशचन्द्र… इस फिल्म में आवाज़ नहीं थी… उस दौर में फिल्मों में इशारों से अपनी बात कही जाती थी… लड़कियों के किरदार भी लड़कों ने ही निभाए थे… क्योंकि उस दौर में लड़कियों का फिल्मों में काम करना अच्छा नहीं समझा जाता था… आज के वक्त में ऐसी एक भी फिल्म बनाने और दुनिया के सामने पेश करने का जोखिम कोई नहीं लेना चाहता है…

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