Published on May 29 2013 // Filmmaking



  my-pic-vijay“HOLLYWOOD IN INDIA!”  Guest Article by   Vijay srinivasan from INDIA   , Senior lecturer  at Andhra Loyola College  , Visual Communication Department .

Seeing the title of my article many of you will think, why I have chosen this title “HOLLYWOOD IN INDIA!” for this article.

India is a land where people loves cinema and worships heroes as demy gods and feels pleasure from watching the films. So in olden days movies were made and released in vernacular languages later those movies were dubbed and released in other parts of India and become huge successes.

So the producers found it as profitable and the number of films made was increased year after year and also due to globalisation and the spread of English language in all parts of India and also the interest in audiences to watch English films in India made a shift and make Hollywood to throw an eye in producing and releasing English films in India.

English Films in India have gained massive popularity in last few years. These movies are mostly co-productions between Hollywood production houses and Indian producers. But the recent approvals of such films by the audiences in the urban areas have encouraged many Indian producers to make English Films in India. With the increasing demand of such films, more movies in English language are being produced in India. Moreover the recent groundbreaking success of Delhi Belly has tiled the way for the future of English Films in India.

In 1953, Merchant Ivory Productions, created the first English language film in India, The Householder, starring Shashi Kapoor in the lead. This film had a story instilled in the Indian culture and showed the way for several other such Indian themed movies in English.

So we will have a look at how the English films made their progress in India.

English films in India in 1980’s:

During the period of the New Cinema, Aparna Sen`s 36 Chowringhee Lane (1981) was accepted widely, proving that there was audience for English Films in India. Later Pradeep Krishen also made noteworthy contributions into this field with his Massey Sahib (1986) and Electric Moon (1991). Both films deal with the theme of the British supremacy in India. The 1982 film, Gandhi, directed by Richard Attenborough, also deserves special mention. Based on the life of Mahatma Gandhi, the film was critically acclaimed throughout the globe.

English films in India in 1990’s:

In 1994, this genre was again revitalized with Dev Benegal`s, English, majestic. Based on Upamanyu Chatterjee`s novel, the film stars Rahul Bose in the lead and was widely accepted by urban audience. More such films were made during the 1990s, such as the highly controversial Fire (1996), directed by Deepa Mehta; The Making of Mahatma (1996) by Shyam Benegal, Bombay Boys (1998), Hyderabad Blues (1998) and Rockford (1999), both by Nagesh Kukunoor; Split Wide open (1999) starring Rahul Bose.

English films in India in 2000’s:

Majorly Hollywood has shown its footprint in Indian films and gone through a transformation during this period many Hollywood film companies and productions has become conglomerates with Indian film companies and produced films in India and made profit.

In 2001, came Monsoon Wedding (2001), a film by Mira Nair was set in a Punjabi household where a big fat Punjabi wedding is taking place. During these same period, English films like Everybody Says I am Fine (2001), Mitr, My Friend (2002), Mr. And Mrs. Iyer (2003), Freaky Chakra (2003), White Noise (2004) and several others were released in India.

Mitr, My Friend (2002) deserves to be mentioned as it in a way reflects the cross-cultural currents. This was Actress Revathy`s directorial debut. The film won international praises and was recognised for its brilliance by the National Awards.

The highly acclaimed, Mr. and Mrs. Iyer (2002), directed by Aparna Sen, starred Rahul Bose and daughter Konkona Sen Sharma in the lead. The film received a number of national and international awards. Aparna Sen quickly followed with another film, 15, Park Avenue in 2005, again with Konkona Sen Sharma in the lead. This film was also critically acclaimed and received many national awards.

The films now represented multilingualism and multiculturalism that is prevalent in India. These films no more deal with the first generation settlers in the foreign countries. By now it is the second and third generation NRIs who undergo the cultural conflicts. This aspect is best represented in one of the popular movies, The Namesake (2006).

Mango Souffle (2002), Stumble (2003), Leela (2002), Hyderabad Blues 2 (2004), Morning Raga (2005), Bride and Prejudice (2004), Sins (2005), Water (2005), Mixed Doubles (2006), Provoked (2007), Parzania (2007), Via Darjeeling (2008) and others are some of the popular and most appreciated English films in India of that decade. Amongst these Being Cyrus (2006) starring Saif ali Khan, and The Last Lear (2008), starring Amitabh Bachchan, directed by Rituparno Ghosh deserve special mention
Recently Delhi Belly (2011) has raised the bar for English Films in India. The film produced by Aamir Khan Productions and starring Imran Khan, Kunaal Roy and Vir Das is shot basically shot in English and has become a smash hit amongst the urban crowd in India. The film has been highly appreciated by the critics as well and it shows the prospect track of English Films in India.

Even many big MNC’s like Reliance Big entertainments, UTV motion Pictures, Sony Pictures and many more are getting conglomerated with Hollywood film productions in India and making films in Indian vernacular languages and making profits here with low investments compared to production in Hollywood .

Along with this the release of Hollywood films are increasing day by day and making us to feel that Indian film production has become Hollywood production.

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