Lights out at Strand

With the temporary closure of Dubais Strand Cinema, movie goers are already missing the all-too familiar sight of the brightly lit theatre dotted with its colourful Bollywood posters.

By Prerna Suri

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Published: Wed 7 Jul 2004, 11:46 AM

Last updated: Thu 24 Nov 2022, 2:10 PM

Conspicuously located near one of the busiest junctions in Dubai, many readers commented on the darkened halls of the theatre which they noticed since the past few days.

"I was travelling by Karama yesterday and noticed immediately that something was amiss near the Bur Dubai-Karama junction. I was quite surprised to find out that for the first time in many years, Strand Cinema was in darkness. Imagine my shock when I learnt that it had temporarily closed down," said Kishan Kumar, an avid Bollywood fan.

One of the first movie theatres to screen Hindi movies in the city, Strand quickly become a popular hot spot for thousands of Indian expatriates, who flocked to it every weekend, eager to catch the latest Bollywood offering.

Rohini Shah, a Business Development Manager, fondly remembers the theatre as the place where she watched her first Hindi movie as a child. "My parents decided to take us all out for a movie to Strand as our final exams had finished. I still vividly recall that we watched Amitabh Bacchan's Shehanshah' and I instantly fell in love with the magic that is the movies. From that point on, nearly every weekend my father used to take me to the theatre which become a weekly ritual for years on end."

Constructed in the shape of a paper stapler from the outside, Strand soon became one of the best known places in Bur Dubai to watch an Indian movie in style at an affordable rate.

Said Roshni Kalra, a self-confessed movie buff and a resident of Dubai since the past 20 years: "I remember a time when the price of a movie ticket used to be either Dh10 or Dh15, depending on whether you would be seated in the orchestra or the balcony, which is quite affordable according to today's standards. The children would excitedly pick out their snacks during the interval while ladies would be busy discussing which heroine looked the best and which song was the most catchy."

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