Ultimate guide to Bollywood
Khaleej Times gives you a complete package on everything about the world of Indian movies. From its history, top movies, trivia, records and award shows, you'll find all your questions answered.
The History of Bollywood
Bollywood dates back over 100 years. The concept of storytelling was always present in ancient texts from the Ramayan and the Mahabharata, one of the most significant ancient epics or poems in world literature. Another way of storytelling included paintings and artwork.
When the word Bollywood is mentioned, it is usually associated with musicals, colorful attire, and melodious soundtracks. Bollywood leaves its mark within various cultures across the globe. It has been the forefront of many joyous occasions, including wedding receptions, henna parties, and themed events. While many look up to Amitabh Bachchan, Shah Rukh Khan, or Salman Khan, young females are often inspired by the adornments and attire that is showcased in Bollywood cinema.
Upon purchasing a cinema ticket or watching a Bollywood movie in the comfort of your home, you often see the final product, which can take over six months of filming and postproduction. Some scenes are recorded over 100 times to produce a three-minute segment.
Many western shows have also contributed to the widespread knowledge of Bollywood or Indian cinema. Shows such as "So you think you can dance," an American TV series, that has inspired many to learn various forms of Bollywood style dances and learn more about the music and movies in Indian cinema.
The Hindi film industry, often known as Bollywood and formerly known as Bombay cinema, is the Hindi-language film industry based in Mumbai. The term is made up of the words "Bombay" and "Hollywood". Indian cinema includes South Indian cinemas and has the highest amount of feature films produced.
Bollywood films are known for their comedy, singing, dancing, and heart-wrenching emotions, as well as the diversity of genres. Every movie shares a unique concept, and a new storyline, which usually sheds light on issues faced globally within Asian cultures or depicted storylines that assists with creating awareness for the masses on taboo subjects.
Indian film production has an annual estimated output of 1,985 films, Bollywood is its most significant film producer, producing over 350 Hindi movies annually. Bollywood is responsible for 43 percent of Indian net box-office revenue, while Tamil and Telugu cinema brings in 36 percent, and regional cinema constitutes the remainder 21 percent.
Bollywood is one of the most significant contributors to film production in the world. In 2001 Bollywood ticket sales were reported at an estimated 3.6 billion tickets worldwide, compared to Hollywood's 2.6 billion tickets sold.
The first hero and heroine concept were created in the Indian film industry, and even though in some films males played female roles, the idea of heroism set the tone for future films to come. Indian culture has always influenced Bollywood. Therefore, many people found it relatable as they understood the concept and could see themselves in a Bollywood movie. Indian cinema allowed viewers to use their imagination and live vicariously through the actors and actresses. For many, songs were associated with happy and sad life events and used to express emotions.
The rise of Bollywood cinema took place in 1895, after The Lumiere brothers, Auguste Marie Louis Nicolas and Louis Jean, were among the first filmmakers in history. The French cinematographers showcased a film in Paris, which featured scenes of a train. It is rumored that people were afraid of the graphics in the movie, and they ran out of the cinema as they did not understand the concept. The same film was showcased in Bombay, the idea was not foreign to Indian viewers and was received well.
Save Dada, formerly known as Harishchandra S. Bhatavdekar was so inspired by the Lumiere brothers, he sourced a camera and film equipment from England and went on to produce a short documentary about wrestling, which was titled "Wrestling Match and Monkey Dance in Hanging Gardens." The film was recorded in The Hanging Gardens, which is one of the most iconic gardens in Mumbai. This marked the first time that a movie was on projection in India, and it is the first Indian factual film. Save Dada was the first Indian to create a motion picture.
In 1897 Professor Stevenson produced a stage show at Calcutta's Star Theatre. Stevenson encouraged Hiralal Sen, an Indian photographer, to make a film of scenes from that show, "The Flower of Persia". Hiralal Sen is known as one of India's first filmmakers and photographers. He created India's first advertising film as well as India's first political film. In 1917 a tragic fire destroyed all his movies and work.
The Lumiere Brothers also inspired Dadasaheb Phalke, an Indian producer, director, and screenwriter. Hundiraj Govind Phalke, known as Dadasaheb Phalke and titled as Father of Indian Cinema, was born in the town of Trimbakeshwar in Nasik. During his childhood, people from his hometown had just one profession, which was being a religious scholar. His father was a Sanskrit scholar, and Phalke was destined to follow in his footsteps. However, Phalke opted for a different future and rebelled. He joined Mumbai's JJ College of Arts in Mumbai to pursue his creative passion in film.
Phalke made a feature film after watching The Life of Christ, which was released in 1906, at a theatre in Mumbai. He was curious and wanted to showcase Indian gods on screen. He was influenced by religion and produced the first Indian motion film. Phalke was overwhelmed by the technology of motion pictures that he traveled to Germany and London to learn filmmaking techniques and started Phalke Films.
He imported filmmaking equipment from England, France, Germany, and the United States. He shot a short film "Ankurachi Wadh" (Growth of a Pea Plant), to attract investors. He advertised roles for cast and crew in numerous newspapers. Phalke took on many responsibilities; he oversaw the script, direction, production, makeup, editing, as well as film processing. Phalke completed filming and producing a film in 6 months, and it consisted of four reels.
Phalke went on to produce the movie "Raja Harishchandra" (King Harishchandra), the movie was released in 1913, the film was silent and is the first full-length feature film in Indian cinema. The original film had explanations in English and Hindi. The storyline was based on a mythical story - a king who sacrificed his family and kingdom for the Gods; in return, he was given divine power. Males played the female roles in the film because they did not want to act in films as they did not feel it was appropriate.
To produce Raja Harishchandra, Phalke needed an estimate of Rs 30,000 (USD $400). He decided to take a loan from his life insurance policies, his wife Saraswatibai Phalke sold her jewelry to support his dream. The couple went on to sell their utensils and furniture to finance the movie. When the film Raja Harishchandra was released, it was well-received, the popularity of the film reached England and was exhibited in London in 1914. It is reported that the western filmmakers were so impressed by Phalke's work, they insisted that he stay back and make more movies. He declined offers so that he could be close to his wife.
Saraswatibai Phalke was also India's first film editor. Apart from being a supportive wife, she actively participated in editing and assisting on set. Saraswatibai assisted by mixing film-developing chemicals, perforating raw film sheets at night by the light of a candle, and holding white bedsheets for hours in the scorching sun as to create light reflectors. Additionally, she cooked for the film crew, which comprised approximately 70 people. Dadasaheb Phalke went on to make 95 feature-length films and 27 short films in his 19-year career.
His most noted works include:
Mohini Bhasmasur (Ash-demon) -1913
Satyavan Savitri - 1914
Lanka Dahan (Lanka Aflame) - 1917
Shri Krishna Janma - 1918
Kaliya Mardan (The Childhood of Krishna) -1919.
The Dadasaheb Phalke Award for his lifetime contribution to cinema was instituted in his honour by the Government of India in 1969. The Dada Saheb Phalke award is the most sought-after honor an actor or performer can receive.
Indian cinema is categorised in different eras which consist of the following:
The early history (1890s - 1940s)
The first film released in India was a Marathi film Shree Pundalik, by Dadasaheb Phalke on the 18th of May 1912 at Coronation Cinema, Bombay.
Phalke went on to make Raja Harishchandra, and it premiered at the Olympia Theatre, Mumbai, on the 21st of April 1913, and had its theatrical release on Saturday, the 3rd of May 1913, at Coronation Cinema. Only one print was made, and it is partially lost. The first and last reels of the film are preserved at the National Film Archive of India.
Parsi entrepreneur Jamshedji Framji Madan, who produced Phalke's 1917 remake of Raja Harishchandra, owned the first group of Indian cinemas, including the Madan Theatre. He oversaw the production of 10 films annually and distributed them throughout India, beginning in 1902. He founded Elphinstone Bioscope Company in Calcutta, which later merged into Madan Theatres Limited in 1919. The company was responsible for bringing many of Bengal's most famous literary works to the stage.
South Indian cinema made its debut in 1916 when R. Nataraja Mudaliar made the first silent film in Tamil, Keechaka Vadham (The Extermination of Keechaka). Unfortunately, there are no prints or reels of the film found to date. C. Rangavadivelu wrote the screenplay. The story was based on an episode from the Virata Parva segment of the Hindu epic Mahabharata, focusing on Keechaka's attempts to persuade and impress Draupadi. The film stared Raju Mudaliar and Jeevarathnam as the main characters.
Keechaka Vadham's success prompted Nataraja Mudaliar to make a series of historical films, which built the foundation for the South Indian cinema industry and led to his being recognized as Tamil cinema's father.
In 1927, the British government tried to promote the market in India for British films. The Indian Cinematograph Enquiry Committee was formed, and it was established to "investigate the adequacy of censorship and the supposedly immoral effect of cinematograph films,". T. Rangachari, a Madras lawyer, led the committee. This committee failed to support the recommendations of supporting British films, instead recommending support for the Indian film industry.
The 1930s and 1940s were difficult times as many people faced stress due to the Great Depression. Most Bollywood films allowed people to escape reality. Several filmmakers attempted to create films where severe social issues were discussed or they used the struggle for Indian independence as a setting for their movies. Many could relate to this and found a sense of comfort in Bollywood films.
In the 30s, 40s and 50s, most movies were filmed at night, due to directors not having access to studios. High noise levels during the day made it challenging to record and produce quality films. Many jobs were created as the film industry required technicians, playback singers, extras, dancers, and many more. People were eager to get involved not only as a viewer, but for roles behind the scenes as it provided them with a sense of purpose and an escape from reality.
Ardeshir Irani's Alam Ara, meaning light of the world, was the first film to feature talking and music. The film was released in 1931 and went on to start the era for color and animation. This also changed the dynamic of the class of people that viewed films. When films had no sound, the audience was from a middle class. However, when the movie introduced music, dancing, and sound, this attracted the working class and lower class
By the 1930s, over 200 films were made. This era had a lot of censorship. Filmmakers portrayed support of the war and wanted to expose social issues.
In March 2011, Google created a Google Doodle to celebrate the film Alam Ara's 80th anniversary. Once music and sound were introduced in films, the Film Indrasabha was made and featured seventy-one songs.
In 1933, the film Karma was the first Indian movie that showcased a kiss four minutes long. The onscreen couple was also a real-life couple. In the 90s and early 2000s, Bollywood cinema used symbolism to showcase topics or scenes that are taboo in Indian culture, such as kissing or any physical romance. Affection is often shown through facial expressions or song and dance. Censorship is still very prominent in Indian cinema and media.
In 1937, Irani made the first Hindi color film, Kisan Kanya. The following year, he made a color version of Mother India. However, color did not become a popular feature until the late 1950s.
Bollywood cinema has produced some moves that promote socialist reforms, movies such as:
Aadmi (Person) was released in 1939 and was noticed by Charlie Chaplin
Neecha Nagar (Lowly City) was released in 1946, it went on to achieve international acclaim. However, it did not receive much appreciation in India. The movie showcased social reform between rich and poor. Neecha Nagar won the best film at the Cannes Film Festival. Ravi Shankar was the music director and he influenced The Beetles in a big way.
Golden Age (late 1940s-1960s)
The late 1940s to the early 1960s is known as the Golden Age of Indian cinema. Some of the most critically acclaimed Hindi films of all time were produced during this era, such as:
Pyaasa (Thirsty) - 1957, directed by Guru Dutt and written by Abra Alvi
Kaagaz Ke Phool (Paper Flowers) -1959, directed by Guru Dutt and written by Abra Alvi
Awaara (A wanderer) - 1951, directed by Raj Kapoor and Khwaja Ahmad Abbas
Shree 420 (Mr 420) - 1955 which was directed by Raj Kapoor and Khwaja Ahmad Abbas
Aan (Pride) - 1952, directed by Mehboob Khan and featured Dilip Kumar
In the 1940s, the film industry started to gain popularity across India. Even though ticket prices varied, it was affordable, which allowed the masses to enjoy the cinematic experience. For those who wanted exclusivity and additional comforts, tickets were available at a higher price.
The films explored social themes and working-class life in India. Awaara is based on the character Raj, who murders the man responsible for the separation of his parents. While on trial, he realises the judge is none other than his estranged father. Pyaasa is based on a struggling poet, Vijay, who tries to get his work published but faces constant rejection. However, he gets unexpected assistance from Gulabo, a lady of ill repute who falls in love with him and his work.
Prior to the 1947 Partition which divided the country into India and Pakistan, Bollywood, formerly known as the Bombay film industry, was intricately linked to the Lahore film industry (currently the Lollywood industry of Pakistani cinema).
Hindustani film production was also linked to the Bengali film industry in Calcutta. Bengal Presidency (now Kolkata, West Bengal) produced Hindustani films and local Bengali language films.
Many actors, filmmakers, and musicians from the Lahore industry migrated to the Bombay industry during the 1940s, including KL Saigal, Prithviraj Kapoor, Dilip Kumar and Dev Anand as well as playback singers such as Mohammed Rafi, Noorjahan, and Shamshad Begum.
In 1957, the film Mother India, produced by Mehboob Khan, which was a remake of his earlier film Aurat (woman), was released in 1940 and was the first Indian film nominated for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. Unfortunately, it lost by one single vote.
Mother India defined conservative Hindi cinema for decades. In 1961, Dilip Kumar wrote and produced Gunga Jumna, which was a crime drama about two brothers on opposite sides of the law. Some of the best-known heroic films of Hindi cinema were also produced at this time, such as Mughal-e-Azam (The Great Moughal), which was produced by K. Asif.
The three most popular male Indian actors of the 1950s and 1960s were:
Each had a unique style of acting and technique. Raj Kapoor took on Charlie Chaplin's persona and referenced the manner of his acting. At the same time, Dev Anand modeled himself on the glitz and glamour of Hollywood and wanted to follow in the footsteps on Gregory Peck and Cary Grant.
Dilip Kumar started a form of method acting that predated Hollywood actors such as Marlon Brando. He was described as "the ultimate method actor" by Satyajit Ray. Kumar also inspired future generations of Indian actors that took over the limelight, the likes of Amitabh Bachchan, Naseeruddin Shah, Shah Rukh Khan and Nawazuddin Siddiqui.
Even though male actors dominated the screen during this era, many actresses left their mark and influence on Hindi cinema. Some of them are:
The 1950s emphasized social realism. Filmmakers drew attention to the real socio-political conditions of the working class to critique the power structures behind these conditions. This was led by Bengali cinema, and it also began gaining prominence in the Hindi cinema.
Some examples of parallel cinema include:
Dharti Ke Lal (Children of the Earth) - 1946, directed by Khwaja Ahmad Abbas and based on the Bengal famine of 1943.
Neecha Nagar (Lowly City) - 1946, directed by Chetan Anand and written by Khwaja Ahmad Abbas.
Do Bigha Zamin (Two bighas of land. A bigha is a traditional unit of measurement of land) - 1953, directed by Bimal Roy
The films' critical acclaim and success paved the way for Indian neorealism, promoting the working class's stories.
The 1950s and 1960s formed part of the golden era. Music from the '50s and '60s has been popular throughout the years. Even though new music has been released, the films that were made in the '50s had popular social themes which took a long time to prepare. Many people who like Bollywood music prefer older music and hold sentimental value to it.
Classic Bollywood (1970s-1980s)
During the 1970s, Hindi cinema was dominated by musical romance films. The arrival of screenwriting duo Salim Khan and Javed Akhtar, also known as Salim-Javed, shifted the pattern and revitalised it. They began the genre of action and violent films, including Bombay underworld crime films, namely Zanjeer and Deewaar.
Salim-Javed reinterpreted Mehboob Khan's Mother India, and Dilip Kumar's Gunga Jumna in a contemporary urban context, reflecting the socio-economic and socio-political climate of 1970s India. They wanted to channel the feeling of discontent and cynicism. They also focused on shedding light on the rapid growth of slums and those living in poverty, corruption, and crime.
Their "angry young man", personified by Amitabh Bachchan, reinterpreted Dilip Kumar's performance in Gunga Jumna in a contemporary urban context and anguished urban poor.
Actresses from the classic era include:
Masala films in the 1970s
Masala films fall under the musical film genre and Indian cinema has been the largest producer since the 1960s. Masala films includes romance, comedy, action, drama, songs, dances and melodrama.
Amitabh Bachchan was the most successful Indian actor in the 1970s and 1980s, and he is considered one of India's greatest and most influential movie stars known for starring in masala films.
Alongside commercial masala films, a distinctive genre of art films known as parallel cinema has also existed, presenting realistic content and avoiding musical numbers.
The masala film was pioneered early in the decade by filmmaker Nasir Hussain, and the screenwriting duo, Salim-Javed, assisted in pioneering the Bollywood blockbuster format. Yaadon Ki Baarat (Procession of Memories), which was released in 1973, directed by Hussain and written by Salim-Javed, has been identified as the first masala film and the first ideal Bollywood film.
By 1983, the Bombay film industry was generating an estimated annual revenue of $693.14 million. The most internationally acclaimed Hindi film of the 1980s was Mira Nair's Salaam Bombay (1988), which won the Camera d'Or at the 1988 Cannes Film Festival and was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film.
In 2010, Rajesh Khanna was the first Indian actor to be recognised as a "superstar". He starred in 15 consecutive hit films from 1969 to 1971. After the social-realist film Neecha Nagar (Lowly City) received the Palme d'Or at the inaugural 1946 Cannes Film Festival, Hindi films were frequently in competition for Cannes' top prize during the 1950s, and early 1960s and some won significant awards at the festival. Unfortunately, director Guru Dutt was overlooked during his lifetime. However, he received international recognition during the 1980s.
New Bollywood (1990s-present)
Hindi cinema experienced some stagnation during the late 1980s, and there was a box-office decline due to increasing violence, lack of musical quality, and a rise in video piracy. The movie Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak (End of days, or From Doom till Doom) was released in 1988 and presented a mix of youthfulness, family entertainment, emotional intelligence, and strong melodies, which encouraged people to watch Hindi film cinema and lured audiences back to the screen. This set the tone for Bollywood musical romance films, which defined the 1990s Hindi cinema.
"New Bollywood" was also known as contemporary Bollywood, and is linked to India's economic liberalisation during the early 1990s. Early in the decade, the pendulum swung back toward family-centered romantic musicals.
Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak was followed by blockbusters such as:
Maine Pyar Kiya (I have loved) - 1989
Hum Aapke Hain Kaun (Who am I to you) - 1994
Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (The brave hearted will take the bride) - 1995
Raja Hindustani (Raja, the Indian) - 1996
Dil To Pagal Hai (The heart is crazy) - 1997
Kuch Kuch Hota Hai (Something..something happens) - 1998
The era also introduced a new generation of actors who have grown to be the biggest stars in Bollywood. The three Khans entered the Bollywood scene, Aamir Khan, Shah Rukh Khan, and Salman Khan. The Khans have dominated the Indian box office for three decades and have starred in most of the top 10 highest-grossing Bollywood films.
Shah Rukh Khan was the most successful Indian actor for most of the 1990s and 2000s, and Aamir Khan has been the most successful Indian actor since the mid-2000s. Akshay Kumar and Govinda were known for their comedy roles in Hindi cinema.
This decade marked the beginning for many new performers in art and independent films, some of which were commercially successful. The most famous example was Satya (truth), which was released in 1998. The film was directed by Ram Gopal Varma and written by Anurag Kashyap.
After receiving critical and commercial success, it initiated a new genre known as Mumbai noir. Mumbai noir is urban films reflecting the city's social problems. This led to a rebirth of parallel cinema by the end of the decade. The movie featured actors whose performances were often praised by critics.
The 2000s saw increased Bollywood recognition worldwide due to the growing of Non- Resident Indian (NRI) and Indian communities overseas. The growth of the Indian economy and a demand for quality entertainment in this era led the country's film industry to new heights in production, cinematography, screenwriting and technical advances in special effects and animation.
The largest production houses, namely Yash Raj Films and Dharma Productions, were the producers of new modern films.
Some of the most popular films of the decade were:
Kaho Naa Pyaar Hai (Tell me that you love me) - 2000
Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham (Sometimes Happiness, Sometimes Sadness) - 2001
Gadar: Ek Prem Katha (Mutiny: The Love Story) - 2001
Lagaan (Land Tax) - 2001
Koi Mil Gaya (Found someone)- 2003
Kal Ho Naa Ho (There May Or May Not Be A Tomorrow) - 2003
Rang De Basanti (Paint me with the colours of spring) - 2006
Lage Raho Munna Bhai (Carry On Munna Bhai) -2006
Dhoom 2 (Bang 2) - 2006
Jab We Met (When we met) - 2007
These films featured fresh faces, and many new movie stars made their debut into Bollywood cinema. In 2010, Bollywood stars began to feature in big-budget masala films like:
Dabangg (Fearless) - 2010
Singham (Lion) - 2011)
Ek Tha Tiger (Once There was a Tiger) - 2012
Son of Sardaar - 2012
Rowdy Rathore - 2012
Chennai Express - 2013
Kick - 2014
Happy New Year - 2014
Most stars from the 2000s continued successful careers into the next decade and the 2010s saw a new generation of popular actors in different films.
Among new conventions, female-centered films started gaining financial success, movies include:
The Dirty Picture - 2011
Kahaani (Story) - 2012
Queen - 2014
Parched - 2015
Pink - 2016
Six significant influences which have shaped Indian cinema:
Indian films often have plots that branch off into sub-plots.
Ancient Sanskrit, with its general nature, created an emphasis on music, dance, and gesture or the emotions felt by the audience.
Traditional folk theatre became popular around the 10th century with the decline of Sanskrit theatre. Its regional traditions include the Jatra of Bengal, the Ramlila of Uttar Pradesh, and the Terukkuttu of Tamil Nadu.
Parsi theatre combined realism and fantasy, music and dance, narrative and stage presentation, blending them into a dramatic discourse of melodrama.
Hollywood musicals were popular from the 1920s to the 1950s.
Western musical television has had an increasing influence since the 1990s. Focusing on its pace, camera angles, dance sequences, and music may be seen in the 2000s Indian films.
Bollywood films tend to use the Hindustani vernacular and modern Bollywood incorporates elements of "Hinglish". Sharmistha Gooptu identifies Indo-Persian-Islamic culture as a significant influence. During the early 20th century, Urdu was the bridge language across northern India. It was established in popular performance art traditions such as nautch (court dance performed by girls) dancing, Urdu poetry, and Parsi theatre. Urdu poetry and the ghazal tradition strongly influenced filmi music (music produced for Bollywood).
Influence of Bollywood
Bollywood's most significant impact has been on India's national identity; it has become part of the "Indian story". According to economist and Bollywood biographer Meghnad Desai, "cinema has been the most vibrant medium for telling India its own story, the story of its struggle for independence, its constant struggle to achieve national integration, and emerge as a global presence".
Mehboob Khan's Mother India (1957) played a crucial role in shaping the Republic of India's national identity in the early years after independence from the British Raj. The film conveyed a sense of Indian nationalism to urban and rural citizens alike.
Bollywood has also had a socio-political impact on Indian society, reflecting Indian politics. In classic 1970s Bollywood films, Bombay underworld crime films written by Salim-Javed and starring Amitabh Bachchan, such as Zanjeer (Chain) -1973 and Deewaar (Wall) - 1975, reflected the socio-economic and socio-political realities of contemporary India.
The films channeled growing discontent and disillusionment and state failure to ensure welfare at a time of inflation, loss of confidence in public institutions, increased crime and the growth of slums. Salim-Javed and Bachchan's films dealt with urban poverty, corruption and organised crime. Audiences perceived them as anti-establishment, often with an "angry young man" protagonist presented as a vigilante whose suppressed rage voiced the anguish of the urban poor.
How is Bollywood perceived internationally?
Bollywood stems from Indian cinema and has created a significant Indian influence globally. This has helped to increase awareness about India and break stereotypes and generalisations.
During the 2000s, Bollywood began influencing musical films in the Western world and played an instrumental role in reviving the American musical film. Baz Luhrmann said that his musical film, Moulin Rouge (2001), was inspired by Bollywood musicals; the film incorporated a Bollywood-style dance scene with a song from the movie China Gate. The critical and financial success of Moulin Rouge began a renaissance of Western musical films such as Chicago, Rent, and Dreamgirls. Indian film composer A. R. Rahman wrote the music for Andrew Lloyd Webber's Bombay Dreams, and a musical version of Hum Aapke Hain Koun (Who am I to you) was staged in London's West End. The Bollywood film Lagaan (Land Tax) - 2001 was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. Two other Bollywood films, Devdas and Rang De Basanti, were nominated for the BAFTA Award for Best Film Not in the English Language. Danny Boyle's Slumdog Millionaire, which was produced in 2008, won four Golden Globes and eight Academy Awards, was inspired by Bollywood films and Mumbai-underworld crime films, such as:
Deewaar (Wall) - 1975
Satya (True) - 1998
Company - 2002
Black Friday - 2007
Deewaar had a Hong Kong remake, The Brothers (1979), which inspired John Woo's internationally acclaimed breakthrough called A Better Tomorrow (1986). The latter was a template for the Hong Kong action cinema's heroic bloodshed genre.
Melodrama and romance are common ingredients in Bollywood films. Bollywood films are primarily musicals and are expected to have catchy song-and-dance numbers intertwined into the script. A film's success often depends on the quality of music. A sample of genres are listed below:
Films based on actual events
Hindu mythological films
Western (genre) films
Bollywood plots have tended to be melodramatic, with topics such as star-crossed lovers, angry parents, love triangles, family ties, sacrifice, political corruption, kidnapping, villains, long-lost relatives and fortune.
Some Bollywood plots features many Western customs and lifestyles including dating openly, dancing in clubs rather than pre-arranged marriages, traditional Indian culture continues to exist outside the industry.
The influence of Bollywood music and Indian cinema:
Technopop pioneers Haruomi, Hosono, and Ryuichi Sakamoto of the Yellow Magic Orchestra produced a 1978 electronic album.
Cochin Moon based on a fusion of electronic music and Bollywood-inspired Indian music.
Truth Hurts' 2002 song "Addictive," produced by DJ Quik
Dr. Dre was lifted from Lata Mangeshkar's "Thoda Resham Lagta Hai" (It takes a little silk) in Jyoti (1981).
The Black Eyed Peas, a Grammy Award-winning American Musical group, won an award for the song "Don't Phunk with My Heart" which was inspired by two 1970s Bollywood songs: "Ye Mera Dil Yaar Ka Diwana" (My heart is crazy for my lover) from Don (1978) and "Ae Nujawan Hai Sub" (Hey young man) from Apradh (1972). Both songs were composed by Kalyanji Anandji, sung by Asha Bhosle, and featured the dancer Helen.
The Kronos Quartet re-recorded several of R. D. Burman compositions sung by Asha Bhosle for their 2005 album You've Stolen My Heart: Songs from R.D. Burman's Bollywood, which was nominated for Best Contemporary World Music Album at the 2006 Grammy Awards.
Filmi music composed by A. R. Rahman (who received two Academy Awards for the Slumdog Millionaire soundtrack) has frequently been sampled by other musicians, including the Singaporean artist Kelly Poon, the French rap group La Caution the American artist Ciara.
The cast and crew of Bollywood cinema:
Madhuri Dixit is considered one of the greatest actresses of Indian cinema for her critical and commercial success during the 1980s and 1990s. Models and beauty contestants, television actors and stage actors come to Mumbai to become stars. Like in Hollywood, very few succeed and go onto making it as an acting sensation. Since many Bollywood films are shot abroad, many foreign extras are employed.
Industry connections are no guarantee of a long career. Film stars such as Dilip Kumar, Dharmendra, Amitabh Bachchan, Rajesh Khanna, Sridevi, Madhuri Dixit and Shah Rukh Khan did not have connections in show business before they started.
Bollywood dialogues and lyrics:
Scripts are usually written in basic Hindi, so that it is understood by the masses and is relatable. Bollywood films tend to use a local register of Hindustani, mutually intelligible by Hindi- and Urdu-speakers.
Some of the classic scriptwriters in Hindi cinema includes:
Rajinder Singh Bedi
Inder Raj Anand
Rahi Masoom Raza
Salim-Javed wrote in Urdu script, which was then transcribed by an assistant into the Devanagari script so Hindi readers could read the Urdu dialogues. During the 1970s, the Urdu writers and screenwriters Krishan Chander and Ismat Chughtai said that "more than seventy-five percent of films are made in Urdu" but were categorised as Hindi films by the government. Urdu poetry has strongly influenced Bollywood songs. Some films have used regional dialects or archaic Urdu in old historical films. Cinematic language is often exaggerated, invoking God, family, duty, and self-sacrifice. Song lyrics are often about love and frequently use the poetic vocabulary of court Urdu. Music directors often prefer working with certain lyricists, and the lyricist and composer may be a team. This phenomenon has been compared to the pairs of American composers and songwriters who created classic Broadway musicals. Sound in early Bollywood films was usually not recorded on location. It was traditionally created in the studio, with the actors speaking their lines in the studio and sound effects added later. This created synchronisation problems. Commercial Indian films are known for their lack of ambient sound, and the Arriflex 3 camera assisted with dubbing. In 2001, Lagaan was filmed with sync sound, and several Bollywood films have recorded on-location music since then.
Song and dance in Bollywood
Bollywood film music is referred to as "filmi" music.
Songs were introduced with Ardeshir Irani's music in the film Alam Ara (The Ornament of the World). The song "De De Khuda Ke Naam Pe Pyaare" (Please give me in the name of God) set the tone for music in Indian cinema. Professional playback singers generally pre-record Bollywood songs, with the actors then lip-syncing the words to the song onscreen, usually dancing accompanied by backup dancers. Most actors are excellent dancers, and some are good singers too. For example, Kishore Kumar, who starred in several notable films during the 1950s, had a rewarding career as a playback singer. K.L. Saigal, Suraiyya and Noor Jehan were also known for both singing and acting. Music can make or break a film. Films that have entertaining dance scenes and a good range of music often succeed and dominate the box office for much longer than films without any music or dance performances. Globalisation has changed Bollywood music, and there is an increase in mixing Hindi and English lyrics. Global trends such as salsa, pop, and hip hop have influenced the music heard in Bollywood films. Playback singers are featured in the opening credits.
Popular Bollywood singers include:
Kishore Kumar and Mohammed Rafi have been considered the best singers of Bollywood songs, followed by Lata Mangeshkar, who has recorded thousands of songs for Indian films in her six-decade career. Composers of film music, known as music directors, are also well-known. Remixing of film songs with modern rhythms is common, and producers may release remixed versions of some of their films' songs with the films' soundtrack albums.
Bollywood dance routines
Bollywood cinema is known for the unmatched dance routines. There are various forms of Indian dance, with classical dance and folk dance being among the popular ones.
In more recent films or modern films, Indian dance blends with Western dance styles, as seen on western TV channels such as MTV or in Broadway musicals. Western pop and classical-dance routines are commonly seen side-by-side in the same film. The main actors often perform with a group of supporting dancers. Many song-and-dance routines in Indian movies contain unrealistically quick moves of location or costume changes between verses of a song. If the hero and heroine dance and sing a duet, it is often staged in natural surroundings or architecturally grand settings. It may externalise a character's thoughts and the songs are often referred to as a "dream sequence". Song and dance scenes were often filmed in Kashmir. These days, they are shot in western Europe, notably Switzerland and Austria.
Contemporary Bollywood actors who are good dancers include:
Malaika Arora Khan
Helen (Cabaret style)
Bollywood producers are known to release a film's soundtrack before the film's release. The aim is to create awareness about the film and attract audiences, and a soundtrack is often more popular than its movie. Some producers also release music videos with a song from the film. Bollywood films are multi-million-dollar productions, with the most expensive productions costing up to $20 million. The science-fiction film Ra.One was made on a budget of $27 million, making it the most expensive Bollywood film of all time.
Sets, costumes, special effects, and cinematography were mediocre, with some notable exceptions, until the mid-to-late 1990s. As Western films and television are more widely distributed in India, there is increased pressure for Bollywood films to reach the same production levels. Recent Bollywood films like Krrish, which was released in 2006, had employed international technicians such as Hong Kong-based action choreographer Tony Ching to assist in the production. The increasing accessibility of professional action production and special effects has seen a rise in action and science-fiction films since 2006.
Due to the popularity of international film scenes, Mumbai film crews are filming in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Europe. Indian producers have also obtained funding for big-budget films shot in India, such as Lagaan and Devdas. Funding for Bollywood films comes from private distributors and large studios. Indian banks and financial institutions were forbidden from lending to film studios. The ban has since lifted.
According to Rediff.com, Mumbai organized crime hitmen shot Rakesh Roshan (father of star Hrithik Roshan) in January 2000. In 2001, the Central Bureau of Investigation seized all prints of Chori Chori Chupke Chupke (quietly and stealthily) after illegitimate sources were found to have funded the film.
Copyright Infringement in Indian cinema:
One of the significant problems facing Bollywood is widespread copyright infringement of its films. Pirated DVD copies of movies are available before they are released in cinemas. Manufacturing of illegal DVDs, VCD, and VHS copies of the latest movie titles is an established small-scale industry in parts of south and southeast Asia. The Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) estimates that the Bollywood industry loses $100 million annually from unlicensed home videos and DVDs.
Films are broadcast without compensation by small cable TV companies in India and other parts of South Asia.
The availability of illegal copies of movies on the internet also contributes to industry losses. Satellite TV, television, and imported foreign films make their way into the local Indian entertainment market.
Bollywood ticket sales from theatres in Western countries continue to increase as more Indians migrate to these countries.
Advertising in Bollywood
Many Indian artists hand-painted movie billboards and posters. M. F. Husain painted film posters early in his career as this form of labour was found to be affordable. Most of the billboards in India's major cities are now created with computer-printed vinyl.
Releasing film music, or music videos before a film's release is a form of advertising. Bigger-budget films have websites where viewers can view trailers and information on the story, cast and crew. Bollywood is also used for advertising other products such as energy drinks, cosmetic lines and hotel chains.
Bollywood movie awards? and annual events
There are many award ceremonies and events hosted in Bollywood to honor actors, actresses, and those working behind the scenes. This also includes playback singers, music production and supporting roles. These award shows are equivalent to the likes of Hollywood red carpet events such as The Grammy Awards, Academy Awards, Golden Globe Awards and many more.
The Filmfare Awards ceremony takes place annually, and the awards are meant to honor artistic and technical excellence in Bollywood. The Times Group first introduced the awards in 1954, the same year as the National Film Awards. They were initially referred to as the "Clare Awards" or "The Clares" after Clare Mendonca, the editor of The Times of India.
A dual voting system was developed in 1956, whereby winners are voted on by both the public and a committee of experts.
The Filmfare Awards have been often referred to as the Hindi film industry's equivalent to the Academy Awards in the United States. Until the mid-1990s, Filmfare Awards were the most recognized awards in Bollywood until several other awards sprouted up in Mumbai. This has resulted in poor viewership since the 2000s.
In addition to the flagship event, Filmfare also has other variants for Indian film industries such as Filmfare Awards South for South Indian cinema, Filmfare Marathi Awards for Marathi cinema and Filmfare Awards East for eastern Indian cinema.
In the first awards function, held on the 21st of March 1954 at the Metro Theatre of Mumbai, only five awards were presented:
Best Music Director
Do Bigha Zameen was the first movie to win the Best Film award. (Bigha is a South Asian term used to measure an area of land varying locally from 1/3 to 1 acre or 1/8 to 2/5 hectare.)
Postponement in 1986 and 1987
In 1986 the 'Bombay film Industry' went on strike in due to many contentious issues with the Maharashtra government. Due to security reasons, Filmfare awards were not given in 1986 and 1987. The winners of 1985 were awarded on the 28th of January 1987.
The Red Carpet
The Red Carpet is a segment that takes place before the awards ceremony. The red-carpet ceremony allows for actors, actresses, producers, directors, singers, composers and others that have contributed to Indian cinema to be introduced.
The Filmfare award segments now include:
Best Supporting Actor
Best Supporting Actress
Best Performance in a Negative Role
Best Performance in a Comic Role
Best Male Debut
Best Female Debut
Best Debut Director
Best Music Direction
Best Male Playback Singer
Best Female Playback Singer
Critics Award Best Film
Critics Award for Best Actor
Critics Award for Best Actress
Best ScreenplayBest Dialogue
Best Art DirectioN
Best Background Score
Best Sound Design
Best Special Effects
Best Costume Design
Lifetime AchievementRD Burman Award for New Music Talent
Special Performance Award
Best Scene of the Year (1998-2012)
Power Award (2003-2007)
People's choice award for Best Short Film
Best Short Film in Fiction
Best Short Film in Non-Fiction
Best Actor Male Short Film
Best Actor Female Short Film
The Global Indian Music Academy Awards (GiMA Awards) are presented annually by the Global Indian Music Academy to honor and recognise Indian music. GiMA's jury votes the nominees, some of the most respected artists in the country. GiMA provides a platform to celebrate and acknowledge the immense contribution of those who push the boundaries in Indian music. The awards ceremony was first televised in 2010 and has been presented annually. The 4th GiMA Awards ceremony was held on the 20th of January 2014 at the National Sports Club of India Stadium. The 1st edition of the Global Indian Music Academy Awards was held on the 10th of November 2010 at Yash Raj Studios in Andheri and Asha Bhosle presented the Lifetime Achievement Award to her sister Lata Mangeshkar. The show was hosted by Sajid Khan, Shreyas Talpade and Dia Mirza. A total of 29 awards under film and non-film categories were presented. The 2nd Chevrolet Global Indian Music Academy Awards was held on the 30th of October 2011 in Gurgaon, hosted by Ranveer Singh and Neha Dhupia. The 3rd edition of the award ceremony was held on the 1st of October 2012 and was hosted by Parineeti Chopra and Saif Ali Khan at Yash Raj Studios, Mumbai. The 4th GiMA Awards was hosted by actor Ranveer Singh. The show was held at the National Sports Club of India Stadium on the 20th of January 2014.
Film Music Awards categories include:
Best Music Arranger and Program
Best Engineer - Film Album
Best Engineer - Theatre Mix
Best Background Score
Best Music Director
Best Music Debut
Best Female Playback Singer
Best Male Playback Singer
Best Duo/Group Song
Best Film Song
Best Film Album
Best Music Debut
Best Non-Film Song
Best Fusion Album
Best Devotional Album
Best Hindustani Classical Album - Vocal
Best Hindustani Classical Album - Instrumental
Best Pop Album
Best Rock Album
Best Ghazal Album
Best Folk Album
Best Carnatic Classical Album - Vocal
Best Carnatic Classical Album - Instrumental
Best Semi-Classical Album Best Popular Music Album
Most composing awards
Best playback singer - female
Best playback singer - male
Global Indian Film Awards
Global Indian Film Awards (GIFA) was an awards ceremony held between 2005 and 2007. It was conceptualised to acknowledge excellence in the Indian film industry and honour artists in 28 categories across various genres, from acting to film making. The awards show was held in Dubai in 2005 and Kuala Lumpur in 2006. The jury members for the first awards were Aziz Mirza, Om Puri, Firoz Nadiadwala, Kabir Bedi, Bharti Pradhan, Umesh Mehra, and Priti Hiranandani. The ceremony was organized at Dubai's Al-Wasl Stadium from the 25th to the 27th of January 2005. A football match also took place between the Bollywood actors' team and the UAE football team. The ceremony was produced by Dubai based event company Global Events and is backed by Suniel Shetty, Chairman of Popcorn Entertainment. The jury members included Jackie Shroff, Rati Agnihotri, Sajid Nadiadwala, Sandeep Chowta, Shyam Benegal and Smita Thackeray. Mathew Abel, Managing Director and Sameer Khan, Vice President of Global Events, Dubai, Suniel Shetty, Chairman and Jordy Patel Director of Popcorn Entertainment, Mumbai, were present for the media briefings. The GIFA trophy is made from 24ct gold and based on the five elements of the universe: earth, water, fire, air and space. The award presented to each winner is produced by Citigold Corporation, Australia and certified by a leading global certification house for its purity.
Some of the categories include:
Best Supporting Actor
Best Supporting Actress
Most Searched Actor on the internet
Most Searched Actress on the internet
Best Music Director
Best Playback Singer Female
Best Playback Singer Male
Best Debut Actor
The event has been held in London, Toronto, and Singapore, and most recently, Bangkok. Revenues from the sale of digital rights grew nearly 60% in 2018. According to the EY-FICCI report Amazon Prime and Netflix were among the major buyers. The streaming giants have also started producing original Indian content. For example, Netflix recruited the superstars Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Saif Ali Khan for its acclaimed series Sacred Games.
The Producers Guild Film Awards (previously known as the Apsara Film & Television Producers Guild Award) was an accolade given by the Apsara Producers Guild to recognize excellence in Indian film and television. Originated by filmmaker and scholar Amit Khanna, the Star Guild Awards have been one of the major award events since 2004 till 2016 when the last awards ceremony took place. The 22ct gold statuette was sculpted and designed by the jewellery brand Tanishq. Nominations for the awards come from selected members of the association. The membership has 160 associates and all are eligible to vote for the winners. The ballots cast by the guild members are then taken to a familiar venue for the final counting.
The Guild Awards ceremony was held on the 28th of May 2004 in Mumbai, India, to honor the outstanding film and television achievements of the 2003-04 film and television season. The fourth edition of the award ceremony (2008-09) was postponed to the end of the year as a sign of respect to the victims of the 2008 Mumbai attacks.
Film Awards categories include:
Best Actor in a Leading Role
Best Actress in a Leading Role
Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Best Actress in a Supporting Role
Best Actor in a Negative Role
Best Actor in a Comic Role
Best Male Debut
Best Female Debut
Best Debut Director
Best Male Playback Singer
Best Female Playback Singer
The Screen Awards are held annually in India. The award ceremony honors professional excellence in Bollywood. The nomination and award selection is made by a panel of distinguished professionals from the industry. The name of the annual ceremonies is prefixed by the presenting network. The first Star Screen Awards were telecasted on Star Plus in 2000 and ran until 2011, after which the Screen Awards were previewed on Colours TV. The Screen Awards, initiated by the chairman of The Express Group, Viveck Goenka, in 1994, is focused on excellence in India's films. The awards attempt to position themselves as India's first awards given by the film fraternity to the film fraternity by way of a jury, as opposed to the other "popular" awards. The awards are also the first to be conducted every year.
Several editions of the awards include:
Screen Weekly Awards
Screen Videocon Awards
Star Screen Awards
Colours Screen Awards
Life OK Screen Awards
These awards have been presented until 2001. The awards were sponsored by Videocon International and hence known as the Screen Videocon Awards. For the regional cinema of South India, Screen has held three editions of the "Screen Awards for excellence in South Indian Cinema." The awards were presented for Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam and Kannada cinema. The 23rd Star Screen Awards was held on the 4th of December 2016 and broadcast on Star Plus on the 31st of December 2016. The event was created and designed by Anil Jha and produced and executed by Mohamed Morani and the Cineyug Group of Companies.
Jury Awards include:
Best Supporting Actor
Best Supporting Actress
Best Music Director
Best Male Playback
Best Female Playback
Most Promising Newcomer - Male
Most Promising Newcomer - Female
Best Actor (Critics)
Best Actress (Critics)
Popular Choice Awards
Best Background Music
Best Art Direction
Best Sound Design
Jodi No. 1
Best Child Artist
Special Jury Award
Entertainer of the Year
Best Animation Film
Best Film in English
Best Fresh Talent
Screen Award Best Jodi of Decade
Screen Award for Showman of the Millennium
Screen Award for Best Performer of The Year
Screen Legend of Indian Cinema Award
The Stardust Awards is an award ceremony for Hindi movies sponsored by the Stardust magazine. The first ceremony was held in 2004 for films released in 2003. The last awards ceremony happened in 2016, with several discontinued, intermittent and individual awards.
Film of the Year
Filmmaker of the Year
Performer of the Year - Male
Performer of the Year - Female
Best Film of the Year
Best Supporting Actor
Best Supporting Actress
Best Playback Female
Best Film - Comedy or Romance
Best Film - Drama
Best Film - Thriller or Action
Hottest Film of The Year
Best Director - Comedy or Romance
Best Director - Thriller or Action
Best Director - Drama
Hottest New Director
Best Actor in a Comedy or Romance
Best Actress in a Comedy or Romance
Best Actor in a Drama
Best Actress in a Drama
Best Actor in a Thriller or Action
Best Actress in a Thriller or Action
Superstar of Tomorrow - Male
Superstar of Tomorrow - Female
Best Breakthrough Performance - Male
Best Breakthrough Performance - Female
Standout Performance by a Music Director
Standout Performance by a Lyricist
New Musical Sensation - Male
New Musical Sensation - Female
Best Director of the Millennium
Best Artists of the Millennium
Pride of Film Industry Award
Best Singer of the Millennium
Voice of the Millennium
Exciting New Face
Style Icon of The Year
Star of the Century
Zee Cine Awards
The Zee Cine Award, known as ZCA, is an awards ceremony for the Bollywood industry. They were instituted in November 1997 to award "Excellence in cinema - the democratic way". The Zee Cine Awards differs from other award shows as all the award recipients are selected by the viewers. When the ZCA went international, the awards ceremony took place in Dubai and the following years in London, Mauritius, Malaysia, and London again in 2008. It was not held in 2009 and 2010, but resumed in 2011, being held in Singapore, and in 2012 it was held at the Cotai Arena in Macau. The 2018 edition was held at MMRDA Grounds, Mumbai.
Some of the award categories include:
Song of the Year
Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Best Actress in a Supporting Role
Most Promising Director
Best Male Debut
Best Female Debut
Best Male Playback Singer
Best Female Playback Singer
Best Music Director
Screen Award Best Jodi of Decade
Screen Award for Showman of the Millennium
Screen Award for Best Performer of The Year
Screen Legend of Indian Cinema Award
The International Indian Film Academy Awards, also known as the IIFA Awards, is a set of awards presented annually by the International Indian Film Academy to honor actors and actresses and many professionals in Bollywood cinema. IIFA is one of the most well-recognized awards shows in Bollywood cinema. The awards ceremony was first hosted in 2000 and is held in different countries around the world, with the most recent one being held in Mumbai on the 18th of September 2019. Many Bollywood fans worldwide travel abroad to watch the IIFA awards and hopes of possibly meeting their favorite Bollywood celebrity.
Best Supporting Actor
Best Supporting Actress
Best Performance in a Negative Role (2000-2017)
Best Performance in a Comic Role (2000-2017)
Star Debut of the Year - Male
Star Debut of the Year - Female
Best Music Director
Best Playback Singer Male
Best Playback Singer Female
IIFA Lifetime Achievement Award
Most Glamorous Star of the Year
Best On-Screen Beauty
Contribution to a Greener Earth
Face of the Year
Entertainer of the Year
Special Award for Global Impact
Outstanding Contribution to Indian cinema
Outstanding Achievement in Indian cinema
Outstanding Achievement by an Indian in International Cinema
Artists of the Decade
Best Art Direction
Best Background Score
Best Costume Design
Best Song Recording
Best Sound Recording
Best Sound Re-Recording
Best Special Effects
Bollywood's biggest movies
The highest-grossing film in India is Baahubali 2: The Conclusion (2017), with a total domestic gross of $218 million. The film broke several local records, grossing over Rs 415 crores, which is $54,827,102 in its opening weekend.
Other films include:
Bajrangi Bhaijaan - Director: Kabir Khan
Secret Superstar - Director: Advait Chandan
P.K. - Director: Rajkumar Hirani
Sanju - Director: Rajkumar Hirani
Sultan - Director: Ali Abbas Zafar
Padmavat - Director: Sanjay Leela Bhansali
Dhoom 3 - Director: Vijay Krishna Acharya
Tiger Zinda Hai - Director: Ali Abbas Zafar
Bollywood's biggest stars
According to a media publication in the UAE, Shah Rukh Khan is said to be the biggest star in Bollywood cinema and the biggest movie star in the world, because his fame has remained relevant throughout decades. Most Bollywood stars have a massive fan following in some foreign countries. However, Shah Rukh is famous globally.
Other famous Bollywood stars include:
Saif Ali Khan
Bollywood tourist attractions:
Mumbai Film City Tours conducts a live show tour that focuses on the shooting of T.V. serials. Mumbai Film City is not open for public admission unless special prior approval is obtained. However, it is possible to take a guided tour there. The official visit of Film City is a two-hour guided bus tour, operated by Mumbai Film City Tours in conjunction with the Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation. Should there be a film shooting in progress, you may only see this once in a lifetime experience from the bus.
Tour timings are as follows:
From 10.30 a.m. to 12.30 p.m.
From 12.30 p.m. to 2.30 p.m.
From 2.30 p.m. to 4.30 p.m.
From 4.30 p.m. to 6.30 p.m.
Bookings can be made via http://www.mumbaifilmcitytours.com.
The cost is Rs599 per person for Indians and $49 per person for foreigners.
Film City tours was established in 2003. The full-day tour consists of a drive past Bollywood stars' homes and a visit to a shooting studio. The Bollywood Tours can be combined with Dharavi slum or city sightseeing. Some tours also offer Bollywood dance workshops as well as a short screening of a Bollywood movie, a visit to a film studio to see a live shoot, and a visit to a sound recording studio.
Film cities in other locations
Film cities can also be found in Noida, not far from Delhi, Hyderabad, and Chennai. Noida Film City has over 25 acres of indoor set and is used mostly for making T.V. serials, news, and current affairs programs.
How can you become a Bollywood extra?
Many people dream of being featured in a Bollywood movie. Foreigners are always in demand to be extras in Bollywood movies. You may have some luck hanging around Colaba Causeway in Mumbai, particularly in the area around Leopold's Café. Other options include auditions and having a good network of people who can make necessary introductions to assist you in pursuing your dream. As an extra, you are required to work long hours and wait on the A-list cast.
13 famous locations in India include:
Fort Aguada of Goa
Fort Aguada is a seventeenth-century Portuguese fort situated along with a lighthouse in Sinquerim beach Goa, India. The fort overlooks the Arabian Sea and was constructed in 1612 to protect against the Dutch and the Marathas. The fort is named Aguada because the freshwater spring within the fort provided water to the ships that passed by. Aguada translates as watery in Portuguese. Apart from its rich culture and heritage, the fort has played an essential role in Bollywood movies. Scenes from Rangeela (Beaus), Dil Chahta Hai (The heart desires), Golmaal (deceptive situation), Dhoom (Bang), and Honeymoon Travels have been filmed at Fort Aguada.
Hadimba Mandir of Manal
The temple is surrounded by a cedar forest called Dhungiri Van Vihar at the foot of the Himalayas. The sanctuary is built over a huge rock projecting out of the ground, which was worshiped as an image of the deity. The structure was built in 1553 by Maharaja Bahadur Singh. Indian mountain ranges have always been a popular spot for filming scenes from Bollywood movies because of their mystic peaks, oak trees, and gushing rivers. Rajesh Khanna was one of the first Bollywood stars to bask in Manali's beauty on the set of the film Aap Ki Kasam (I swear by you). The scenes from the movie 'Henna' was filmed in Manali. Years after Rishi Kapoor, Ranbir Kapoor starred in Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani (The youth is crazy), which was also shot in Manali, reminding us of its unmatched beauty.
Rohtang Pass of Himachal Pradesh
Rohtang Pass is a high mountain pass which elevates to 13,058 ft on the eastern Pir Panjal Range of the Himalayas around 51km from Manali. It connects the Kullu Valley with the Lahaul and Spiti Valleys of Himachal Pradesh, India. Rohtang's name comes from Persian/ Farsi words Ruh+ Tang, which translates as a "pile of dead bodies". Movies like Jab We Met (When we met), 'Dev D,' and 'Highway' have celebrated the raw and sleet-clad stretches of Rohtang Pass, making it the perfect location for bikers.
Udaipur palace of Rajasthan
City Palace, Udaipur, is a palace complex situated in the city of Udaipur in the Indian state of Rajasthan. It was built over 400 years ago, with contributions from several rulers of the Mewar dynasty. The palace is located on Lake Pichola's east bank and has several palaces built within its complex. The City Palace in Udaipur was built in a colourful style and is considered the largest of its type in the state of Rajasthan. Udaipur exudes royalty and is the dream destination for many filmmakers. Many movies have been filmed in the iconic heritage sites of Udaipur. Movies such as Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani, and Ram Leela have left many in awe of the beauty and charm of Udaipur. Bollywood is not the only film industry that has taken advantage of Udaipur's beauty. These landmarks are also associated in Hollywood with the filming of the 1983 James Bond movie Octopussy.
Tea plantations of Munnar
Tea or chai is among the most widely drunk beverage in the world, the other being coffee. The tea plant, Camellia Sansis, is a cultivated variety of trees that have origins in an area between India and China. The tea plantations in Kerala's Munnar is a popular destination for Bollywood filmmakers. Showcased beautifully in Chennai Express, Nishabd (No words), and even in Life of Pi, Munnar is fast rising as the new romantic destination of South India. With more and more Bollywood films turning south for inspiration, Munnar tea plantations have become the torchbearer.
Pangong Lake of Ladakh
The Pangong Lake is said to be one of the most beautiful sights, situated near the famous huge monasteries of Thiksey village, covering an entire mountain range, and just about 160km from Leh. In Ladakh (land of high passes), one of the most stunning places in India, two streams feed the lake from the Indian side, forming marshes and wetlands at the edges. Two lines above the current lake level reveal a 16 ft thick layer of mud and laminated sand, suggesting the theory that the lake has shrunken recently in geological scale. Scenes from the movie 3 Idiots and Jab Tak Hai Jaan (Until there is life in me) were shot here. Call it the renaissance of travel as a genre in Bollywood or the sheer beauty of the place, Pangong Lake has become the darling of Indian filmmakers and one of the most sought-after travel destinations despite its hostile climatic and travel conditions.
Nahargarh Fort of Jaipur
Nahargarh Fort is built on the Aravalli Hills, which overlooks the city of Jaipur in the Indian state of Rajasthan. Along with Amer Fort and Jaigarh Fort, Nahargarh once formed a sturdy defense ring of the town. The fort was initially named Sudarshangarh, but it became known as Nahargarh, which means 'abode of tigers.' According to tourism websites in Rajastan, Nahar stands for Nahar Singh Bhomia, who was a Rathore prince and the land on which the fort was built on belonged to him. As per the stories, his spirit haunted the place and obstructed the construction of the fort. Some scenes from the movies Rang De Basanti, Shuddh Desi Romance (Pure Indian Romance), and Sonar Kella (The Fortress) were shot at Nahargarh Fort.
Jaipur wax museum
The Jaipur wax museum is an attraction that was built on the left side at the entrance of Nahargarh fort. The place earlier was known as Vishram Ghar (rest house) for the soldiers and Shastragar-Artillery. Jaipur wax museum was the brainchild of Mr. Anoop Srivastava, the founder director, and it was inaugurated on the 17th of December 2016, by Bollywood star Govinda. The wax museum has more than 35 wax and silicon statues from the field of sports, Bollywood, and freedom fighters. The museum also has statues of Sawai Ram Singh, Maharaja Jai Singh, Madho Singhi and Rajmata Maharani Gayatri Devi of Jaipur as well as the first look-alike robotic tiger.
The ticket for the historical fort of Nahargarh costs Rs50 for Indian nationals. For foreign tourists, the cost goes up to Rs200. Students enjoy discounted prices. For international students, the ticket costs Rs25, and Rs5 for Indian students.
Gulmarg of Kashmir
Originally called Gauri Marg, which means the path of Devi Gauri, it was renamed Gulmarg "Meadow of Flowers" by Sultan Yusuf Shah of the Chak Dynasty who frequented the place with his queen Habba khatoon in the 16th century. There are 21 different varieties of wildflowers collected by the Mughal emperor Jahangir for his gardens in Gulmarg. In the 19th century, British civil servants used Gulmarg as a retreat to escape summers in North Indian plains. Not only is Gulmarg known for skiing and site seeing, but it is also a popular destination for filming romantic scenes in Bollywood movies. Shammi Kapoor was one of the first Bollywood stars to film a movie scene in the Kashmir valley, the green meadows and snow-capped mountains of Kashmir have been home to several song and dance routines. Gulmarg is known as the most preferred spot in the valley, with many blockbuster movies being filmed in this snow-capped region. Movies like Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani, Highway, Rockstar, and Haider have showcased the beauty of Kashmir time and again.
Doraha Fort of Ludhiana
Doraha is a popular tourist destination that is not just a place for sightseeing. It also enables you to indulge in peace and serenity and catch a moment for yourself. A perfect hidden getaway, Doraha Fort, or popularly known as the R.D.B. fort, got its moment of fame after a scene from Rang De Basanti was shot here.
Howrah Bridge of Kolkata
Howrah Bridge is a bridge with a suspended over the Hooghly River in West Bengal, India. Custom-built in 1943, the bridge was initially named the New Howrah Bridge, because it replaced a pontoon bridge at the same location linking the two cities of Howrah and Kolkata. Kolkata's beauty is showcased in the Durga Puja (annual Hindu festival which pays tribute to the Hindu goddess, Durga) celebrations in Vicky Donor and Kahani (story), tram rides in Barfi (Indian sweet made from milk and sugar), coal business in Gunday (thugs) and Detective Byomkesh Bakshy.
Mall Road, Shimla
Mall Road is the main street in Shimla, the capital city of Himachal Pradesh, India. It was constructed during British colonial rule. Shimla, a hill station, has been featured in numerous Bollywood movies, including Bang Bang, Black, Jab We Met and 3 Idiots.
India Gate, Delhi
India Gate has been featured numerous times on the big screen, from Jannat 2 (Paradise 2) and Dilli 6 to 3 Idiots and Rockstar. Delhi's India Gate plays a considerable role in Bollywood cinema as it is one India's most famous monuments and attracts tourists from around the world.
Marine Drive, Mumbai
Marine Drive is a 3.6-kilometer-long promenade along the Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Road in South Mumbai, India. The names Marine Drive and Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Road are often used interchangeably to refer to this stretch. Movies like Munnabhai MBBS and Dhoom have showcased the celebrated Marine Drive.
There are many sights across the globe which pay tribute to Bollywood cinema, namely:
Bollywood Parks Dubai
The vibrant display of cafés and live entertainment at the Bollywood theme park in Dubai makes you feel as if you are in a Bollywood movie. Many sites and locations in India become a popular tourist destination after being featured in iconic Bollywood scenes. Some sites attracted tourists before being well-known as a film set location.
International movie production
Bollywood's use of global settings such as Switzerland, London, Paris, New York, Mexico, Brazil, and Singapore has contributed to the increase in tourism. However, these destinations do not represent the people and cultures of people on screen. Bollywood actors and Hindi speaking extras often travel with the cast and crew to film a production or Bollywood song.
International locations include:
Switzerland - Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge
The song Zara Sa Jhoom Lu Main (I will stagger a little) from the movie Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge was filmed in the stunning village of Gstaad in Switzerland. Switzerland has become a popular destination for Bollywood film sets because of its snow-capped mountains and scenery.
London, UK - Cocktail
Cocktail is a modern film that left a mark in terms of travel inspiration. Some of the scenes were shot at various locations in London, United Kingdom. The scenes depicted stunning visuals of Portobello Road, Borough Market, Clapham Junction, Leicester Square, Piccadilly Circus, Borough High Street, and Mayfair.
New York, US - Kal Ho Na Ho
The romantic and entertaining love story of all Kal Ho Na Ho (There May Or May Not Be A Tomorrow) was shot in New York. The movie featured almost every popular spot in New York City, including Times Square, Wall Street, Central Park, Brooklyn Bridge Park, and many more.
Prague, Czech Republic - Rockstar
Rockstar which was produced by Imtiaz Ali in the pristine countryside of Prague.
The movie also included locations such as Prague Castle, Charles Bridge, and the magnificent Sychrov Castle in its song Hawa Hawa (The wind)
Paris, France - Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani
A dream destination for many, Paris is the city of Love. The song Ilahi (Oh Allah) from the movie Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani (The youth is crazy) showcases mesmerizing views of Notre Dame, Café Bellucci and Rue Mouffetard, a busy street market in Paris.
Turkey, Cuba & Ireland - Ek Tha Tiger
The movie Ek Tha Tiger (There was a tiger) featured scenes that showcase the beauty of The Blue Mosque and Bosporus river of Istanbul, scenes from Dublin, Ireland, include Grafton Street, Gaiety Theatre, and Trinity College. Cuba is featured as well, with scenes showcasing the beauty of Old Havana Street, Plaza Vieja, Cathedral of Havana, El Castilo de Cojimar, El Malecon, and El Morro Fortress.
Bruges, Belgium - P.K.
The movie P.K. was shot in the medieval city of Bruges, in Belgium. The film features some appealing city locations, including Minnewater Lake, Provinciaal Hof, Market Square and Belfry.
Switzerland, Australia, and Italy - Bachna Ae Haseeno
The song 'Ahista Ahista' (Slowly Slowly) was shot in Gstaad, Switzerland. However, the scenes with Deepika Padukone were shot majorly in Sydney, Australia, at locations such as Hyde Park and Opera House. Apart from this, some scenes with actress Bipasha and the song 'Khuda Jane' (Lord knows) was entirely filmed in Italy.
Spain - Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara
The film featured scenes that showcased breath-taking scenery that Spain has to offer. Some scenes were recorded in the mountains in Catalonia, Lloret de Mar Beach in Costa Brava, Bu Ol, where La Tomatina festival was celebrated, Ronda in Malaga, Seville, where the trio enjoyed Flamenco and The Bull Race of Pamplona.
Turkey - Ajab Prem Ki Gajab Kahani:
The song 'Tu Jane Na' (You do not know) from the movie 'Ajab Prem Ki Gajab Kahani' (Unique love's amazing story) was filmed in Turkey. From the Pamukkale in Denizli, the ruins of the ancient temple of Apollo, or the massive Aspendos Theatre in Antalya, the three-minute song left an impact on many.
Corsica Island, France - Tamasha:
The film did not fare well at the box office. However, its unique setting inspired many to add Corsica Island onto their bucket list
Greece, UAE & Thailand - Bang Bang:
The movie is said to be a remake of the Hollywood hit Knight and Day starring Tom Cruz and Cameron Diaz. Scenes from the film have been shot in multiple cities across the globe, including Abu Dhabi in UAE, Phuket, and Similan Islands in Thailand, Santorini, and Mykonos in Greece and Prague in the Czech Republic.
Turkey, Tunisia & Italy - Dil Dhadakne Do:
The movie 'Dil Dhadakne Do' (Let the heart beat) featured scenes of the Hagia Sophia in Turkey. The museum staff members and visitors partook as extras in some scenes and filmed for over six hours. The movie also features Arno's views at Ponte Vecchio in Florence, La Spezzia in Italy, and Cappadocia, Fairy Chimneys, and Galata Tower in Turkey.
USA & Maldives - Kites:
Barbara Mori made her film debut in the sensational Bollywood movie 'Kites'. The movie was shot in Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and New Mexico, the popular song 'Dil Kyun Yeh Mera' (Why does my heart make this noise) was shot in the Maldives.
Netherlands & France - Queen:
Shot in Amsterdam and Paris, Queen filmed the beauty, nightlife, and simple pleasures of the European lifestyle. The song 'Hungama Ho Gaya' (There was an uproar) is the first Hindi song to be played in a club in Amsterdam.
Iceland, Romania & Bulgaria - Dilwale:
The first half of the movie featured scenes shot in Romania and Bulgaria. The romantic 'Gerua' song left many mesmerized with its stunning visuals showing a beach, and the beach is in South Iceland, called Sólheimasandur.
Langkawi Island & Malaysia - Roy:
The movie 'Roy' was shot mainly in Malaysia, and it was one of the only Bollywood films to choose this charming Asian location. Shot extensively on Langkawi Island of Malaysia, the beaches, resort, racecourse, and much more shown in the movie are scintillating.
Miami, USA - Dostana:
Shot entirely in Miami, which is known as the cruise capital of the World, the movie features some very enticing scenes of the city, including Miami Beach and the famous South Ocean Beach.
Austria, UK & France - Ae Dil Hai Mushkil:
The movie 'Ae Dil Hai Mushkil' (O my heart, it's tough to live in this place) features the iconic Trafalgar Square of London and its various districts, bars, and Austria's scenic cities, including the culturally and architecturally rich capital of Vienna as well as Innsbruck.
Is Bollywood a real place?
Hollywood is an actual place in Los Angeles, California. Bollywood does not exist as a physical place. However, it is more significant than Hollywood as the Indian film industry produces more movies yearly. Indians buy 2.7 billion movie tickets annually, the highest in the world, but ticket prices are among the lowest. Therefore, revenues are a fraction compared to Hollywood.
Why is Bollywood so popular?
Bollywood has become increasingly popular over the years. Both the movie and music industries in India are connected and almost impossible to separate. There are several reasons why Bollywood is so popular and continues to grow fans continuously. Bollywood is so colourful that many singers and dancers who are part of the production require costume changes, making for great entertainment. Bollywood films are known for various genres. They have a significant difference in the storyline, the concept, and the production compared to other films worldwide. Bollywood is famous for its music. They incorporate performances of acting, singing, and dancing.
Bollywood films appeal to all crowds and generations. From kids to elders, to boys to girls, everyone can relate. These themes usually include singing, dancing, romance, comedy, action, and may even contain current social issues that allow viewers to learn from.
Additionally, one of the main reasons why Bollywood has been known in the entertainment industry throughout the world is because many Indian immigrants are living across the globe. Bollywood movies are popular with audiences that are not related to Indian families. Viewers from around the world are attracted to Bollywood's charm, love stories, actions, and comedic musicals. Bollywood's global achievement acts as an example that the people outside India's culture have a desire and interest to learn, observe, and understand those who are different from them. This only proves that entertainment brings cultures together.
Who is the highest-paid actor and actress in Bollywood?
The highest-paid actor and actress in Bollywood differs from year to year, even month to month, as it is dependent on his or her roles. Some recent statistics depict the following:
Highest earning male Bollywood:
Salman Khan - Rs 60 crore ($8 million estimate)
Aamir Khan - Rs 45 crore ($6 million estimate)
Akshay Kumar - Rs 40 - 45 crore ($5-6 million estimate)
Shah Rukh Khan - Rs 40 crore ($5 million estimate)
Hrithik Roshan - Rs 30 - 40 crore ($4-5 million estimate)
Ranbir Kapoor - Rs 30 crore ($4 million estimate)
Ajay Devgan - Rs 25 crore ($3.5 million estimate)
Amitabh Bachchan - Rs 20 crore ($2.6 million estimate)
Highest earning females Bollywood:
Deepika Padukone Singh - Rs 26 crore ($3.5 million estimate)
Kangana Ranaut - Rs 25 crores ($3.3 million estimate)
Priyanka Chopra Jonas - Rs 22 crore ($3 million estimate)
Kareena Kapoor Khan - Rs 21 crore ($2.8 million estimate)
How are women viewed in Bollywood?
Men in most societies were breadwinners, while the woman's role was restricted to being an excellent homemaker and a good mother. As organisations entered the world of modernisation, the role of women changed dramatically. Over the past decades, Indian cinema has witnessed a significant transformation in the way women are portrayed through films. Contemporary films portray women as more independent, confident, and career-oriented.
Reality shows inspired by Bollywood
Apart from all the glitz and glamour, Indian television has created many platforms to give back to the Indian community. Many youths can enter shows such as
Indian Idol, a popular and prestigious show which is aired on Sony Entertainment. The show started in 2004 and went on for nine seasons with an enormous participation of singers from around India. The winners of the show were decided by public voting.
Sa Re Ga Ma Pa is an Indian singing reality show which is aired on Zee TV. The show was first telecasted in 1995, hosted by Sonu Nigam. There have been multiple variations on the theme of the show.
Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Lil Champs was created for children who wanted to become future singers. Winners were selected by public votes as well as the hosts of the show.
Star Voice of India is the first Indian singing show produced by Star Plus. The show aired in 2007 and was directed by the creator of Sa Re Ga Ma Pa. The show has been hosted by the judges of Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Series.
Star Voice of India launched "Chote Ustaad" which was appealed to children between the ages of 5-8 with Shreya Goshal and Pritam as the hosts.
Padutha Theeyaga is a South Indian reality singing competition broadcasted on channel ETV. The theme of the show is to create a platform for upcoming talents of singers of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. It was first held in 2010, and has been hosted by one of the legendary singers, S.P. Bala Subramanyam.
Dil Hai Hindustani (Heart is truly Indian) is a reality show aired on Star Plus. It is produced by Frames Productions of Ranjeet Thakur and Hemant Ruprell. This show encourages the talent of singers from every part of the world. It completed its first season in 2016. The show has been judged by Badshah and Shekar Ravjiani.
Airtel Super Singer is a reality singing show broadcasted on Vijay TV. The show has completed six seasons successfully until 2016. The programme, which appeared in 2006, finds the best playback recording voice and singing artist in Tamil Nadu through auditions throughout the state.
India's Raw Star is a singing competition which is aired on Star Plus. The show first aired in 2014 and mentored by rap singer Yo Yo Honey Singh.
India's Got Talent is a reality show on Colours T.V. which provides an excellent platform for Indians to showcase their abilities like singing, dancing, and puppetry. The preliminary season was telecasted in 2009. It has completed seven seasons in a row until the year 2016. India's Got Talent goes behind the Global Got Talent design, where candidates try out before three judges and a studio gathering.
The Rising Star is a reality singing show telecasted on Colours TV hosted by and Raghav Julay. The programme gives the viewers a chance to vote in favour of candidates through the channel's mobile application. This show is the first show in India, which includes live audience voting.
Bol Baby Bol is a singing competition launched in 2012. This programme was meant for encouraging singers under the age of 14. The show is judged by singers Mano, Koti, and Sunitha. The show has completed seven seasons and is continuing its 8th now.
Many Bollywood actresses created an international name for themselves before partaking in Bollywood movies. Like many countries across the globe, Indian beauty pageants are extremely popular and prizes often included memberships with elite model agencies globally and a movie debut.
Bollywood actresses who partook in beauty pageants before acting include:
Zeenat Aman was one of the first Indian and South Asian women crowned Miss Asia Pacific. Before partaking in the pageant, she was a model, actress and a performer, as well as second runner-up at a Miss India pageant.
Juhi Chawla participated in the Miss Universe pageant in 1984 and represented India after being crowned Miss India. Despite not winning the crown, she was acknowledged for Best Costume. Juhi went on to become one of the most successful Bollywood actresses in the 90s.
Sushmita Sen is known as the first Indian woman to have won the Miss Universe crown at the age of 19. After winning Miss Universe, she went on to explore Bollywood and became a successful actress and producer. Sushmita Sen is also known for her work in Bengali and Tamil films.
Aishwarya Rai Bachchan won the Miss World pageant and became one of the most popular actresses in the Bollywood film industry. After winning the Miss World pageant in 1994, Aishwarya was considered the most beautiful woman alive. According to a poll done in 2014 by Hollywood buzz, Deepika Padukone made it onto the list and ranked in the top 30 with the likes of Hollywood celebrity Angelina Jolie.
Lara Dutta Bhupathi was the second Indian woman to be crowned Miss Universe, and she won the Miss Intercontinental crown in 1997. She went on to being a successful Bollywood actress.
Priyanka Chopra was crowned Miss World in 2000 at the age of 18. Priyanka went on to achieve great success in the Bollywood film industry. She is now married to Hollywood celebrity Nick Jonas and has made her way onto the Hollywood screens acting in popular series as well as blockbuster movies.
Dia Mirza won the Miss Asia Pacific title in 2000. She made her Bollywood debut after that and went on to start her own production house.
Neha Dhupia won the well-known Femina Miss India pageant in 2002 and after that made her debut in Bollywood.
Jacqueline Fernandez won the Miss Universe Sri Lanka pageant in 2006 and went on to land roles in Bollywood movies. She has achieved great success as a model and actress.
Meenakshi Seshadri was one of the first Indian woman to be crowned Miss World at the age of 17. Meenakshi won the title in 1981.
Another winner of the Femina Miss India pageant is Pooja Batra. She was crowned Femina Miss India international in 1993. Pooja made her debut in Bollywood shortly after.
Another Indian actress who was awarded the Femina Miss India title in 1993 was Namrata Shirodkar, and she went on to appear in Bollywood movies after that.
Tanushree Dutta was crowned Femina Miss India universe in 2014 at the age of 20. She also placed in the top 10 at the Miss Universe beauty pageant. She entered the Bollywood film industry in 2005 and went on to play roles in various Bollywood movies.
The most expensive outfits worn in Bollywood cinema
Shah Rukh Khan: Ra.One - Shah Rukh Khan has worn the most expensive outfit in the movie Ra.One. Directed by Anubhav Sinha in 2011 with a budget of Rs 130 crore or $17.2 million, Shah Rukh's robotic suit was a centerpiece in the film and is worth nearly Rs 4.5 crores or nearly $600,000. The designers behind creating the masterpiece were Robert Lever, Manish Malhotra, Naresh Rohira and Anaita Shroff.
Deepika Padukone: Padmavat -- A Sanjay Leela Bhansali film, which had a budget of Rs 160 crore or $21,131,456.00 sparred no expenses on the costume and jewellery. Deepika Padukone wore an outfit that weighed 30kg and cost Rs. 30 lakh or nearly $40,000. Reports say 200 craftsmen used 400kg of gold in 600 days to create the jewellery for her character.
Kareena Kapoor: Kambakkht Ishq --In the movie Kambakkht Ishq (Incredible love), Kareena shows off a black dress which cost approximately Rs 8 lakh or $10,563 designed by Aki Narula and Shabina Khan.
Madhuri Dixit: Devdas - The iconic song 'Mardala' (Killed me) in the film Devdas directed in 2000 by Sanjay Leela Bhansali created a significant impact on the standards of big-budget films. Each outfit in this film cost about Rs. 15 lakh or $19,806.81. Designers Neeta Lulla, Sandeep Khosla, and Reza Sharifi won the IIFA Award for Best Costume Design for Devdas when the film released.
Rajinikanth: Enthiran (Robot) - Rajnikanth in the Tamil movie Enthiran was dressed in an outfit that cost over Rs 3 crores or $396,120.60. This outfit was classified as one of the most expensive costumes which brought art and machinery together. A lot of precision was put into designing the robotic suit by Manish Malhotra.
Aishwarya Rai: Jodhaa Akbar - Director Ashutosh Gowarikar had a budget of Rs 40 crores or $5,279,832.00 and the theme of the Mughal era. Aishwarya Rai's outfits cost Rs 2 lakhs or $2,641.14 each and were designed by Neeta Lulla. They were heavily embroidered and studded with beadwork and other precious stones.
Akshay Kumar: Singh is Bling - The golden turban that Akshay Kumar wore for the poster of the movie is worth Rs 65 lakhs or $85,836.92, probably one of the most expensive turbans made for any Bollywood film.
Kangana Ranaut: Krrish 3 - In the movie Krrish 3, Kangana Ranaut is seen wearing 10 different latex suits, and the material for these suits were imported from Paris. The total cost was Rs 1 crore or $132,056.80
Salman Khan: Veer - Salman played the role of a warrior in Veer (Hero) and wore six costumes. Each costume cost Rs 20 lakhs or $26,413.10. 'Veer' was Salman Khan's project, and the first draft was written by him 20 years prior.
Deepika Padukone: Bajirao Mastani - Sanjay Leela Bhansali spent more than Rs. 50 lakhs or $66,039.30 on Deepika Padukone's costume in her role as Mastani in the movie Bajirao Mastani. Designer Anju Modi had crafted and studied history to understand the color tone that the outfits required. Also, a huge amount of money was spent on jewellry.
Sonakshi Sinha: Tevar - It was directed by Amit Sharma and starred Sonakshi Sinha in the female lead. Sonakshi wore a lehenga (lehenga is a full ankle-length skirt worn by women, usually embroidered and pleated) that is valued at Rs. 75 lakhs or $99,058.95 designed by Subarna Rai Chaudhari.
Vivek Oberoi: Prince - The movie 'Prince' directed by Kookie V Gulati had a Rs 35 crore budget. Vivek Oberoi, the lead star in the movie, wore six leather suites and each of them cost an estimate of Rs. 30 lakhs or $39,619.38
Hrithik Roshan: Jodhaa Akbar - In the movie Jodha Akbar (Mughal emperor Akbar and a Rajput princess Jodha) directed by Ashutosh Gowariker, copious amounts of money was spent on the set and costumes for Hrithik to depict the great emperor Akbar. Hrithik wore a costume costing approximately Rs. 12 lakh or $15,847.75. Neeta Lulla designed the costumes not only for the main cast but also for every cast member involved in the film.
Kareena Kapoor: Heroine - Kareena wore over 130 different dresses from international designers in the movie Heroine. Kareena's wardrobe was one of the most expensive in all the Bollywood movies ever created.
Global and nationwide Bollywood celebrity tours
When Bollywood stars are not performing on screen or producing multimillion-dollar movies, many partake in nationwide and international shows/tours. This has been popular globally due to the large number of Indian immigrants who reside in various countries internationally. Shows have been said to sell out within days as die-hard Bollywood fans are eager to see their favorite star visit their hometown. Some fans even travel to another city or country to watch the performances. The Now or Never concert, which took place in Durban, South Africa over 10 years ago, was hosted by Amitabh Bachchan and featured superstars Shah Rukh Khan and Preity Zinta as well as many more celebrities. Another popular tour is Dabangg Reloaded, which recently took place in Dubai, UAE. This tour is headlined by Salman Khan and features Katrina Kaif, Jacqueline Fernandez, and many more. This tour makes its way around the globe giving viewers a full Bollywood cinematic experience.
In many parts of the world, tickets for Dabangg Reloaded are sold out instantly.During these tours, Bollywood stars usually perform to popular songs that have contributed to their fan following. They also perform to songs that are associated with other Bollywood superstars. The show typically lasts between 3 to 4 hours and is packed with entertainment, glitz, and glamour as well as many outfit changes. This is enjoyed by people from all walks of life and various age groups. Fans may get an opportunity to interact with their favorite stars on the red carpet before the show commences or meet their favorite Bollywood idol in a local mall or restaurant. Most Bollywood celebrities are happy to meet their loyal fans and engage with them, whether it be a handshake, or a picture opportunity. Some Bollywood stars have often visited countries and hosted a meet-and-greet. Loyal fans are given an opportunity to meet them for a photo opportunity and interact with them for a brief period. This increases their fan base, but it also allows them to market an upcoming film.
Fun facts about Bollywood:
The first motion picture in India was 'The Wrestlers' screened in 1899.
Ashok Kumar was a lab assistant in Bombay Talkies before he became an actor in 1936.
Director Subhash Ghai made an appearance in 'Aradhana' (Worship) (1969).
Sunil Dutt played the role of a gangster in 20 movies in his career.
Waheeda Rahman played both mother and lover to Amitabh Bachchan. She played his lover in 'Adalat' (Court) - 1976 and mother in 'Trishul' (a trident, commonly used as one of the principal symbols in Hinduism) - 1978.
Dimple Kapadia was only sixteen years old when Raj Kapoor introduced her in the movie 'Bobby' (1973).
Dimple married Bollywood superstar Rajesh Khanna at the age of 16.
Mughal-e-Azam (The emperor of the Mughals) - 1960 was a trilingual film, all the scenes were shot thrice in Hindi, Tamil, and English.
Raj Kapoor was superstitious. Therefore, he chose to stop drinking as well as eating non-vegetarian food before the release of 'Satyam Shivam Sundaram' (Truth-Godliness-Beauty) - 1978.
Dilip Kumar was offered a lead role in the international project 'Lawrence of Arabia' (1962) by director David Lean.
Rekha only wears crimson or brown colored lipstick when making public appearances.
Actor Amjad Khan was almost dropped from 'Sholay' (embers) -1975 because scriptwriter Javed Akhtar found his voice weak for Gabbar Singh's role.
Amitabh Bachchan was so punctual that he often used to open the gates of the film studio as he was the first to arrive.
Silsila (chain, or chain of events, or lineage) - 1981, is the only movie in which Shashi played an elder brother to Amitabh.
Dharmendra was such a big fan of actress Suraiya that he walked miles to watch her film 'Dillagi' (cheerfulness) over 40 times.
Naushad was introduced by his parents to his wife as a tailor because being in the film industry was seen as a lowly profession. Ironically, the music played in his 'baraat' was composed by him.
Music director Madan Mohan, who was a good cook, bribed Manna Dey with a curry to make him sing one of his compositions, 'Kaun Aaya Mere Mann Dware' (Who just entered the doors of my heart) in 'Dekh Kabir Roya' (See Kabir cried) (1957).
Mohammad Rafi, who loved watching boxing, requested the organisers on his tour to Chicago to get him an appointment with Mohammad Ali.
Joy Mukherji learned the dance to 'Duniya Pagal Hai Ya Phir Main Deewana' (The world is crazy or am I) in 'Shagird' (Disciple) - 1967 from a dancer in a Hong Kong nightclub. While shooting 'Love in Tokyo,' he visited the club and was very inspired by the female dancer and asked her to teach him the steps.
Dharmendra was paid Rs 51 (less than $1) when he debuted in the movie 'Dil Bhi Tera Hum Bhi Tere' (I am yours and so is my heart) - 1960
Sunil Dutt worked for Radio Ceylon and was meant to interview his favorite actress Nargis. The interview was canceled as he could not say a word to her. Later, when he worked with her in 'Mother India' - 1957, they fell in love and got married.
Jeetendra's first film was 'Navrang' (Nine colors) - 1959, where he played Sandhya's body double.
Devika Rani was the first actress with a degree in filmmaking.
Saif Ali Khan was the original choice for Shah Rukh Khan's role in 'Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge' (The brave-hearted will take the bride). Even Tom Cruise was considered for the role.
The movie Rockstar was shot in reverse order, with the climax being shot first because producers did not want to change Ranbir Kapoor's hairstyle.
Anil Kapoor's family lived in Raj Kapoor's garage when they first moved to Mumbai. Later they shifted to a room in a middle-class suburb.
Raj Kapoor's 'Mera Naam Joker' (My name is joker) was the first Hindi movie to have two intervals.
Dev Anand picked up his movie titles and storylines from newspaper headlines and stories.
Hrithik Roshan once ordered 50 books online on how to stop smoking and distributed it amongst his friends.
The longest film in the world is also a Bollywood film. 'L.O.C.: Kargil' the war saga is 4 hours and 25 minutes long.
Shah Rukh Khan's least favorite subject was Hindi. To encourage him with his learning, his mother offered to treat him to a Hindi film if he improved.
The film Lagaan by Aamir Khan has the highest number of British actors playing a significant role in Bollywood cinema history.
Shekhar Kapur was initially engaged to be married to Shabana Azmi, but later called it off.
Salman Khan likes to collect soaps. His favorites are soaps made from natural fruit and vegetable extracts.
India has less than 13,000 cinema screens compared with nearly 40,000 screens in the US.
Kaho Naa Pyar Hai (tell me that you love me) was added to the Guinness Book of World Records 2002 edition for winning the highest number of awards for a movie. The movie won a total of 92 awards.
During the making of Sholay, Dharmendra paid the light boys to make mistakes during shots to continuously embrace Hema Malini.
Dilip Kumar has won the most awards as the Best Actor with eight awards spanning over three decades
The song 'Ab tumhare hawale watan saathiyon' (Friends the country is in your hands) in the film by the same name is the longest Hindi film song. The length of this iconic song is 20 minutes, and the song is featured in three installments in the film.
Anurag Basu wanted Katrina Kaif originally to narrate the story in 'Barfi!' instead of Ileana D'Cruz. The director had to go with the latter when Katrina refused due to unknown reasons.
Bollywood movies require months of filming and long workdays, which means that actors and actresses spend a lot of time together. This has led to many love affairs and relationships being formed on set.
Some famous Bollywood celebrity couples are:
Shahid Kapoor and Mira Rajput: Mira is 13 years Shahid's junior, and the pair met through their religion as they both follow Radha Soami Satsang Beas. Their marriage was arranged by their families, which is rare in Bollywood. They have two children together, and she comes from a top business family in New Delhi, while his parents and his stepparents are all well-respected actors. Mira is not yet an actress, but rumor has it that her Bollywood debut is just around the corner.
Ranbir Kapoor and Alia Bhatt: This is a new relationship and is the first high-profile relationship that Ranbir has openly admitted to, despite the fact he dated Deepika Padukone and Katrina Kaif. Deepika even had a tattoo of his initials on her neck (which she has since lasered off). Ranbir and Alia started dating on the set of fantasy film Brahmastra.
Kajol and Ajay Devgn began dating in 1994 and got married in 1999. They have acted alongside each other in many Bollywood hits, and they are one of the more well-established couples in Bollywood. Families of both Kajol and Ajay Devgn are in the Indian film industry. His father is a famous action director, and Kajol's grandmother is the incredibly famous Shobhna.
Aamir Khan and Kiran Rao: Aamir and Kiran met on the set of the Oscar-nominated Lagaan in 2001. Aamir divorced his first wife Reena in 2002, and Kiran and Aamir were married in 2005. Theirs is an inter-faith marriage (he is Muslim, and she is Hindu). They are both practicing vegans, and both are very politically aware and outspoken. They have one son together, Azad Rao Khan, who was born in 2011.
Abhishek Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai are one of the most well-known couples globally. They have walked the Cannes red carpet together, and driven around with Oprah Winfrey when she visited India. Abhishek's family is Bollywood royalty, with his father the legendary Amitabh Bachchan and his mother Jaya Bachchan.
Akshay Kumar and Twinkle Khanna: The pair have two kids together and are private about their family life. Twinkle has her roots in Bollywood royalty, and her father Rajesh Khanna is one of the most famous actors of all time, while her mother is the A-list actress Dimple Kapadia.
Ranveer Singh and Deepika Padukone: The couple married in 2018. They are both famous and when they star next to each other in Sanjay Leela Bhansali's historical epics, they truly shine together. Ram-Leela in 2013, Baijrao Mastani in 2015, and Padmavat are some of Bollywood's most significant recent hits.
Saif Ali Khan and Kareena Kapoor: Kareena's family is 'the first family of Bollywood', with her great-grandfather Prithvi Raj Kapoor, is a famous actor from the 1930s to the 1970s. Saif boasts royal lineage (his famous cricketer father Mansoor Ali Khan was the Nawab of Pataudi), and his mother is, of course, Sharmila Tagore.
All-time favorite Bollywood songs:
The B.B.C. Asian network recently surveyed the 100 greatest Bollywood songs of all time. Viewers voted for their all-time favorite Bollywood songs, and the results are as follows:
1: Baharon Phool Barsao (Seasons of spring) - Suraj
2: Awaara Hoon (I am carefree) - Awaara
3: Tujhe Dekha To (When I saw you) - Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge
4: Ajeeb Dastan Hai Yeh (This is a strange story) - Dil Apna Aur Preet Parai
5: Kabhi Kabhi Mere Dil Mein (Sometimes my heart) - Kabhi Kabhie
6: Tere Liye (For you) - Veer-Zaara
7: Yeh Dosti (This Friendship) - Sholay
8: Pyar Kiya To Darna Kya (When you have loved, why be afraid) - Mughal-e-Azam
9: Chaiyya Chaiyya (Let's walk in the shade) - Dil Se.
10: Chalte Chalte (Walking Walking) - Pakeezah
11: Kal Ho Naa Ho (There May Or May Not Be A Tomorrow) - Kal Ho Naa Ho
12: Aaj Phir Jeene Ki Tamanna (Today I feel like living) - Guide
13: Kuch Kuch Hota Hai (Something something is happening) - Kuch Kuch Hota Hai
14: Mauja Hi Mauja (Fun and joy) - Jab We Met
15: Ae Mere Humsafar (Oh my life partner) - Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak
16: Chaudhvin Ka Chand Ho (Full moon) - Chaudhvin Ka Chand
17: Aaja Sanam (Come my love) - Chori Chori
18: Pehla Nasha (First addict) - Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar
19: Dheere Dheere Se (Slowly slowly) - Aashiqui
20: Chura Liya Hai Tumne Jo Dil Ko (You have stolen my heart) - Yaadon Ki Baaraat
21: Maa (Mother) - Taare Zameen Par
22: In Ankhon Ki Masti (There is a naughtiness in your eyes) - Umrao Jaan
23: Saathi Re (O My Partner) - Muqaddar Ka Sikandar
24: Pyar Hua Iqrar Hua (Love and acceptance has come) - Shree 420
25: Munni Badnaam (Munnni was insulted) - Dabangg
26: Yeh Zindagi Usiki Hai (This life is hers) - Anarkali
27: Bole Chudiyan (My bangles are singing) - Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham
28: Kehna Hi Kya (What do i say) - Bombay
29: Chand Sifarish (Moon order) - Fanaa
30: Dil Deewana (Crazy heart) - Maine Pyar Kiya
31: Ek Ladki Ko Dekha To (A girl I saw)- 1942: A Love Story
32: Mere Dil Ke Chain (My heart's peace) - Mere Jeevan Saathi
33: Tere Bina (Without out) - Guru
34: Tumhi Mere Mandir (You are my Temple) - Khandan
35: Dekha Ek Khwab (I Saw a dream) - Silsila
36: Kate Nahin Kat Te (These nights and days don't seem to end) - Mr India
37: Aaja Tujhko Pukare Mera Pyar (Come my love is calling you) - Neel Kamal
38: Jane Woh Kaise Log The (I do not know how those people were) - Pyaasa
39: Yeh Zindagi Ke Mele (Carnivals of this life) - Mela
40: Yeh Galiyan Yeh Chaubara (These streets) - Prem Rog
41: Aap Jaisa Koi (Some one like you) - Qurbani
42: Dum Maro Dum (Smoke) - Hare Rama Hare Krishna
43: Yeh Sama Sama Hai Ye Pyar Ka (This weather is romantic) - Jab Jab Phool Khile
44: Khoya Khoya Chand (Lost moon) - Kala Bazar
45: Ayega Aanewala (Will come) - Mahal
46: Deewangi Deewangi (Craziness craziness) - Om Shanti Om
47: Didi Tera Devar Deewana (Sister your brother-in-law is crazy) - Hum Aapke Hain Koun
48: O Re Chhori (O girl) - Lagaan
49: Aaja Re Pardesi (Oh my foreigner come) - Madhumati
50: Choli Ke Peeche - Khalnayak
51: Roop Tera Mastana (Your face is beautiful) - Aradhana
52: Ude Jab Jab Zulfein Teri (When your hair moves in the air) - Naya Daur
53: Maar Dala (Kill me) - Devdas
54: Tu Ganga Ki Mauj (You are the river of fun) - Baiju Bawra
55: Tu Mera Jaanu Hai (You are my love) - Hero
56: Yahoo! Chahe Koi Mujhe Junglee Kahen (let anyone call me crazy) - Junglee
57: Dekha Hai Pehli Baar (Saw you for the first time) - Saajan
58: Guzarish (Request) - Ghajini
59: Kya Khoob Lagti Ho (You are looking great) - Dharmatma
60: O Haseena Zulfo Wali (Hey girl your hair is beautiful) - Teesri Manzil
61: Pardesi Pardesi (oh foreigner) - Raja Hindustani
62: Tip Tip Barsa Paani (Rain drops fall) - Mohra
63: Bahon Ke Darmiyan (When you are in my arms) - Khamoshi
64: Jaadu Teri Nazar (Your magic looks) - Darr
65: Afsana Likh Rahi Hoon (I am writing a novel) - Dard
66: Yeh Mera Dil Yaar Ka Diwana (My heart is crazy about you) - Don
67: Beedi (Cigarette) - Omkara
68: Babuji Dheere Chalna (Sir, go slow) - Aar Paar
69: Mujhe Neend Na Aaye (I am not able to sleep) - Dil
70: Main Na Bhoolunga (I won't forget) - Roti Kapada Aur Makaan
71: Mere Naseeb Mein (My destiny) - Naseeb
72: Yeh Hai Bombay Meri Jaan (This is Bombay my love) - C.I.D.
73: Hum Tum Ek Kamre Mein Band Ho (Me and you are locked in one room) - Bobby
74: Kajra Re (Kohl liner) - Bunty Aur Babli
75: Jumma Chumma De De (Friday is back again) - Hum
76: Chhor Do Anchal Zamana Kya Kahega (Leave my scarf, what will society say) -Paying Guest
77: Dhak Dhak Karne Laga (Heart is beating fast) - Beta
78: Ek Do Teen (One two three) - Tezaab
79: Hum Bane Tum Bane (We both are made for each other.) - Ek Duje Ke Liye
80: O Meri Mehbooba (Oh my love) - Dharam Veer
81: Sun Sahiba Sun (Listen beloved listen) - Ram Teri Ganga Maili
82: Tera Mera Pyar Amar (Mine and your immortal love) - Asli Naqli
83: Man Dole Mera Tan Dole (My mind and body feel like dancing) - Nagin
84: Sun Ja Dil Ki Dastan (Listen to my heart's story)- Jaal
85: Awaaz De Kahan Hai (Notify me about your whereabouts) - Anmol Ghazi
86: Humko Tumse Ho Gaya Hai Pyar (I have fallen in love with you) - Amar Akbar Anthony
87: Mera Naam Chin Chin Chu (My name is Chin Chin Chu) - Howrah Bridge
88: Om Shaanti Om - (Peace be with you) - Karz
89: Piya Tu Ab To Aaja - Caravan
90: Honton Mein Aisi Baat (Some words are on my lips) - Jewel Thief
91: Taarif Karoon Kya Uski (How do I praise you) - Kashmir Ki Kali
92: Eena Meena Deeka - Aasha
93: Jai Jai Shiv Shankar (Hail Shiva) - Aap Ki Kasam
94: Bol Radha Bol (Tell me, Radha) - Sangam
95: Hawa Mein Udta Jaaye (The wind keeps blowing) - Barsaat
96: Dum Dum Diga Diga - Chhalia
97: Raja Ki Aayegi Baraat (The king's wedding procession will arrive) - Aah
98: Tod Diya Dil Mera Tune (You have broken my heart) - Andaz
99: Ankhiyan Milake (Look into my eyes) - Rattan
100: Jawani Janeman (Youthful Lover) - Namak Halaal
Masala is the Hindi word for "spice". Masala films include romance, comedy, action, drama, songs, dances, thrills, and melodrama. They are commercially successful and aim to please a broad audience. They are often considered mainstream in relation to other Bollywood films.
Bhangra is a folk dance originating from the Indian state of Punjab. It is a high-impact, high-energy, aerobic style of dance, which involves a lot of jumps and high knees.
DDLJ is the acronym for the Bollywood film Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge. DDLJ holds the world record for the longest-running film in theaters - 1,009 weeks (almost 20 years) -- due to its widespread popularity.
Item numbers are a signature feature of Bollywood movies, and item numbers refer to dance numbers within a film that do not necessarily lend themselves to the plot.
Tumka is a fun, classic Bollywood dance move that involves moving your hips from side to side.
Filmi is music produced for India's motion picture industry and written and performed for Indian cinema.
Notable Indian personalities who passed away in 2020.
Sushant Singh Rajput - the 21st of January 1986 - the 14th of June 2020. It is said that the actor aged 34, killed himself at his residence in Bandra on the 14th of June.
Rishi Kapoor - the 4th of September 1952 - the 30th of April 2020. The Bollywood heartthrob and award-winning actor Rishi Kapoor passed away on the 30th of April 2020. the cause of death was leukemia.
Irrfan Khan - the 7th of January 1967 - the 29th of April 2020. Irrfan Khan passed away on the 29th of April. He was admitted to Mumbai's Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital's I.C.U. for a colon infection.
Wajid Khan - the 10th of July 1977 - the 1st of June 2020. Singer-composer Wajid Khan of music director duo Sajid-Wajid passed away on the 1st of June due to complications arising from a kidney infection. He also tested positive for coronavirus but died of a cardiac arrest
Basu Chatterjee - 4th of January 1930 - the 4th of June 2020. Veteran filmmaker Basu Chatterjee, known for his films such as 'Rajnigandha' and 'Chitchor', passed away following age-related health issues.