Treat yourself to a piece of Bollywood
The history of 100 year old Indian cinema can be traced back through exquisite costumes of Sanjeev Kumar and Amjad Khan in Shatranj ke Khiladi, Shammi Kapoor’s scarf from Junglee, last unreleased song by Kishore Kumar completed days before his demise, a rare album of 45 black-and-white photographs signed by Dev Anand, and many other exclusive memorabilia which are on display at the ongoing 12th Osians Cinefan Film Festival (OCFF) at Siri Fort.
Scheduled for auction at the Imperial Hotel today, the collection is studded with vintage and extraordinary items from Bollywood’s film history and are no less precious than a king’s treasure. A preview of this exhibition at the opening left the visitors spellbound.
Rare stills from Aan, Mother India, Dil Diya Dard Liya, Leader, Humraaz, Zanjeer, Aan Milo Sajna and other classics have been reprinted on lobby cards. Adding to these, is original calendar art featuring stars like Jayalalitha, Waheeda Rehman, Hema Malini, Mumtaz and Sridevi.
From Madhubala and Ashok Kumar’s Mahal to Nargis and Sunil Dutt’s Mother India, there are posters of almost every known and unknown film that forms a part of the Indian cinema history.
Major attractions include: a poster of Dilip Kumar and Dev Anand’s Insaniyat (printed in the shape of a fan with wooden handle); a photograph of Raj Kapoor in Jaagte Raho, offset lithography on paper of Satyajit Ray’s Pather Panchali.
Apart from these, this treasure also includes a collage of press clippings on canvas in the memory of Guru Dutt; a photographic print on paper of Jaya and Amitabh Bachchan’s marriage; the Silver Jubilee trophy of Tridev; a number 43 paint brush made especially for M F Husain; a cricket bat autographed by Aamir Khan and team from Lagaan; the turquoise ring in silver worn by Farooque Sheikh in Umrao Jaan; Shammi Kapoor’s sweater from Andaz (1971); the shehnai from Rockstar and one of Shammi’s favourite Mont Blanc fountain pens.
There are also few calendar works such as a paint and collage on board showing Hema Malini advertising for Lakshmi Matches. Imagine if she would be painted promoting water purifiers?
Neville Tuli, chairman, OCFF says, “It is sad that in a country which is so passionate about cinema, vintage Indian cinema publicity material and memorabilia is in its infancy, as compared to the market for Hollywood memorabilia. This reflects the lack of, not just a cinematic culture, but a lack of financial clout in the global context. It must change. The Indian film fraternity must start respecting its history, the work of its peers and the art of its publicity material.”
The exhibits on display pulled the maximum crowds on the opening day of the festival. But before it gets sold out, do take time out to savour this unusual art work that encapsulates the journey of Indian cinema of the last 100 years.