Thursday, 9 April 2020

Jaya Bhaduri - Her Iconic and Unforgettable Films

Jaya Bhaduri born on 9 April 1948, who appeared in nearly 50 films remains the Guddi forever. The film Guddi directed by Hrishikesh Mukharjee was her debut film released in 1971. Since then with every film, Jaya Bhaduri broke the mould and stood her ground as one of the finest actresses of her time. 
With Guddi she created the girl-next-door image for her, which she was often associated with throughout the rest of her career. However, she did a glamorous role in Jawani Diwani in 1973 and a negative character of the heroine faking amnesia, in Anamika (1973). She was a favorite heroine of filmmakers like Hrishikesh Mukharjee, Gulzar and Basu Chatterjee.

Song of Guddi (1971)

Uphar (1971) was her next film. The film featured Jaya Bachchan as Mrinmayee (Minoo), who marries a lawyer Anoop (played by Swaroop Dutt). The film covered an innocent and immature love story of two people. The film adorned Jaya Bachchan with Filmfare Special Award.
Song of Uphar (1971)

Koshish (1972), It was a story based on the life of a deaf and mute couple, their conflicts, and their struggle to live in a normal society. She was nominated as the best actress at Filmfare awards.

Song of Koshish (1972)

Abhimaan (1973)  The film showcases Amitabh Bachchan as Subir, who is a struggling singer. He marries Uma (played by Jaya Bachchan), who is also a singer. The film concentrate on the ego clashes between the couple as Uma leads a way to success in her singing career, while Subir faces failure. 

Song of Abhimaan (1973) 

Kora Kagaz (1974) Jaya Bachchan featured in Kora Kagaz which depicts a sad love story of two people, who meet each other while traveling on a bus. She gets another Filmfare Award for this film.

Song of Kora Kagaz (1974)

Mili is a 1975  romantic drama film directed by Hrishikesh Mukherjee. It starred Amitabh BachchanJaya Bachchan and Ashok Kumar in lead roles. Jaya Bachchan received a Filmfare nomination as Best Actress, the only nomination for the film

Song of Milli 1975

Silsila (1981) Said to be the real-life portrayal of the then-scandalous Amitabh-Jaya-Rekha love triangle. It is considered as one of the iconic romantic movies of Bollywood

Song of Silsila (1981)

 She has appeared along with her actor husband Amitabh Bachchan in Zanjeer in 1973 and  AbhimaanChupke Chupke, Mili and Sholay in 1975 Following her marriage to actor Amitabh Bachchan she quit acting and gave birth to her children. It is believed that Amitabh Bachchan restricted to her continuing in the films and she returned to action in the 1981 film Silsila and later appeared in Govind Nihalani's Hazaar Chaurasi Ki Maa in 1998. Since then she appeared in a few more commercially successful films such as ‘ Fiza’ in 2000, Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham in 2001, Kal Ho Naa Ho in 2003 which were critically acclaimed films and she won several awards and nominations again.

Jaya Bhaduri has won eight Filmfare Awards including three for the Best Actress and the Best Supporting Actress. She was awarded the Filmfare Lifetime Achievement Award in the year 2007 In 1992 she was awarded the Padma Shri by the Government of India. Nominated five times for the Best Actress Award Won three International Film Academy Awards Has Won the Bengal Film Journalist Association Awards a special Award for her Debut film Guddi and Fiza. Has won the Anandalok Award for Special Editor’s Award Zee Cinema – Best Supporting Actress for the role in Fiza Sansui Viewer’s Choice Award for Best Supporting Actress for the film Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham.  

Tuesday, 7 April 2020

Jeetendra - Never Got his Due as a Huge Star

Awards may have eluded him but he is still a Living Legend of Bollywood. He came at the time when Rajesh Khanna was not a Star and continued to win the hearts of his fans. He continued to have his own audience irrespective of whether it was Rajesh Khanna or Amitabh Bachchan who was the ruling superstars of the 70s and 80s. The press made fun of his tight white trousers and white shoes and labeled him “Jumping Jack Jeetu” for his boisterous dance moves.
Rishi Kapoor in an interview once said that his fellow actors Jeetendra and Rakesh Roshan never got their due, even when they contributed so much to the Indian cinema.
Jeetendra (born Ravi Kapoor on 7 April 1942) got his break-in 1964 with V Shantaram's Geet Gaya Patharon Ne as a hero but got star status with the release of Farz in 1967. The film was a super-duper hit He became a star overnight. He had 3 hits before Rajesh Khanna became Superstar with Aradhana in 1969.
Even when Rajesh Khanna was giving one hit after another his films were also clicking on the Box Office. In those three years from 1970 to 1973, he appeared in more than 25 films and gave super hits like Jeene Ki RaahJigri DostWarisKhilonaHumjoliCaravanAnokhi Ada etc.
During the Sunami of Amitabh Bachchan he was among a few heroes who survived and gave many hits.during that period up to 1980, more than 40 films were release4d.In fact, in the 80s he was in demand.
In the 1980s, Jitendra was frequently paired up with Sridevi or Jayapradha for remakes of South Indian potboilers courtesy of Rama Rao Tatineni, K. Bapayya and K. Raghavendra Rao; some of these films were produced by Padmalaya Productions. Featuring elaborate sequences with colorful clay pots, dozens of extras, electronic music by Bappi Lahiri, and lyrics by Indeewar, movies like Justice Chaudhry (1982), Mawaali (1983), Himmatwala (1983), Jaani Dost, and Tohfa (1984) were huge hits despite low critical acclaim.
In the 1990s Jeetendra found it difficult to cope up in the rat race. His films ‘Santaan’ (1993) and ‘Udhaar Ka Zindagi’ (1995) failed at the box-office. Recognizing the change in tide, he turned into a character actor and was seen in films like ‘Dil Aashna Hai’, 'Zamana Deewana' and 'Dushman Duniya Ka'. Last, he was seen in ‘Kucch To Hai’ (2003) and did a special appearance for ‘Om Shanti Om’ (2007).

He has acted in nearly 200 films as the main lead, a feat matched by just a handful of his peers since the inception of Hindi cinema.Out of these 200 films 125 films were hit.
Song of Farz 1967

Song of Farz 1967

Song of Jeene Ki Raah (1969)

Song of Vishwas (1969)

Song of Dharti Kahe Pukar Ke (1969)

Song of Humjoli 1970

Song of Banphool(1971)

Song of Caravan 1971

Song of Parichay (1972)

Song of Ek Bechara 1972

Song of Roop Tera Mastana 1972

Song of Anokhi Ada  1973

Song of Nagin  1976

Song of Priyatama 1977

Song of Judaai 1980

Monday, 6 April 2020

Bollywood Films on Epidemics

Amid fears stoked by the coronavirus, I recall "Contagion" -- a 2011 movie about a pandemic with similarities to recent events. This compelled me to look back into the Bollywood films on this subject. Not many films were made in this subject but a few movies had epidemic references.
To consider just a handful, let us first take V. Shantaram’s Dr Kotnis Ki Amar Kahani (1946) about an Indian doctor who went to China to help the Communists against the Japanese army, to help the wounded when there was a scarcity of doctors. While in China Dr. Kotnis met and courted a Chinese girl, Ching Lan. In the film, Dr. Kotnis fights plague and, when he is unable to find a cure, he injects himself with the contents of a patient’s pustules in an effort to find antibodies, and eventually dies of plague after doing yeoman service to the Chinese.

The 1966 film Phool Aur Pathar is one such film where the epidemic was the central theme. In this film, it was shown how a criminal goes to a village to burgle a house when plague empties a town of its inhabitants, He finds nothing except Shanti, a widowed daughter-in-law who has been left to die by her cruel relatives.

In 2011 a film Azaan had a story of a deadly virus. The film tells the story of a RAW agent who is sent on a secret mission. He has to find a cure for a deadly virus. 

In 2013 Krrish 3 had a story in which the hero's father Rohit discovers that a virus, which is fast spreading through Mumbai   He knew about this virus which came from Namibia. He, thus, makes an antidote by using the blood from Krishna's bloodstream which he spreads with the help of explosions.

Saturday, 4 April 2020

Praveen Babi - The Ionic Bollywood Actress with Western Looks

Parveen Babi (4 April 1949 – 20 January 2005), like Zeenat Aman, redefined the image of the Indian film heroine. She started her career as a model and entered into the films with the 1973 film "Charitra" Her first major hit was Majboor (1974), opposite Amitabh Bachchan. Her pairing with Amitabh Bachchan was very successful, she did 8 films with him. Her more memorable roles include "Anita" in Deewaar (1975), "Jenny" in Amar Akbar Anthony (1977), and "Sunita" in Shaan (1980).
One point of time she was the highest-paid actress. Because of her western looks, she was given roles which were glamorous and represented standards of a film star quality and established her status as one of the "Top Heroines of Bollywood" or the "Commercially successful Heroine"
In her acting career, which spanned almost ten years, she has acted in more than fifty films, of which ten were considered to be best. These films were also blockbusters of those times. Her co-stars include Amitabh BachchanShashi KapoorFeroz KhanDharmendraRajesh KhannaVinod Khanna and Rishi Kapoor who were all leading stars of the 1970s and 1980s. Some of the songs picturized on her become hugely popular, and this includes "Jawaani Jaaneman" and "Raat Baaqi Baat Baaqi" in Namak Halaal, "Pyaar Karne Waale" in Shaan and "Maara Thumka" in Kranti
At the peak of her career, she left the film industry for a spiritual journey with U. G. Krishnamurti She returned to India after a gap of 6 years.It is said that she was a patient of  paranoid schizophrenia, a mental illness,
In an interview in 1998, she said: "I was born a Muslim and later, I converted to Christianity. But I have never done things I didn't believe. Even when I was a Muslim, I didn't understand why it made me a more spiritual entity, She converted to Christianity during the late 1990s and also started eating pork.
In the 90s, she took up keen interests in music, piano, painting, architecture, literature, writing, cultural and archaeological study, politics, photography, sculpture and human rights issues.
She was found dead on 22 January 2005 after her residential society secretary alerted the police that she had not collected milk and newspapers from her doorstep for three days.
Song of Majboor 1974

Song of Kaala Sona  1975

Song of Bullet 1976

Song of Amar Akbar Anthony 1977

Song of Kaala Patthar 1979

Song of Suhaag 1979

Song of Shaan 1980

Song of Namak Halaal 1981

Song of Namak Halaal 1981

Song of Khuddaar 1982

Song of Kaalia 1982

Song of Mahaan 1983

Friday, 3 April 2020

Bollywood celebs in Advertisements

Endorsing a brand by a Bollywood celebrity is not a current trend but being done before the independence of the country. The biggest advertiser in India was Lux Soap. The launch of the first Lux soap in India dates back to the year 1929, a black and white Ad that featured a popular actress of the time, Leela Chitnis in 1941. Since then all the popular heroines of their time appeared in Lux advertisements. 
On researching on this subject I noticed that most of the Top heroes did appear on one Ad or another except Dev Anand. I came across an Ad of a Pickle company being endorsed by Dilip Kumar, similarly in one Ad of an airline company Raj Kapoor, Balraj Sahni, and Nirupa Roy appeared together.

 Lux entered India in 1929 and while its early advertisements would feature Hollywood actresses, Some of these were printed in English newspapers and magazines. Of course, the westernized and elite movie-going Indian audience reading these newspapers would have been able to identify known faces.3 These two images, for instance, featured in the Times of India Annual of 1937. While their faces may appear vaguely familiar, they do not seem to belong to any recognizable star. Perhaps some of them were just generic images of "glamorous women," the presumed visual iconography of stars.

Appearing in a Lux advertisement was indeed a “must do” thing for a female movie star in India, a way of announcing her arrival in the industry. I am not certain about the first heroine of Bollywood was Leela Chitnis or Devika Rani but either of two may be the first Bollywood celebrities to appear in an Ad. The first Lux Ad with Bollywood Heroine came in the year 1941. I came across of Devika Rani's Ad for Afghan Snow Cream, once very popular in India.

In the 30s and 40s Calendar, Ads were very popular as every household used to keep one calendar.  Before the celebrity Ads, the trend of the pictures of God & Goddess was there. Below I am posting two images of calendar Ads, one of the images of Lord Krishna in the 1932 Calender and other of Meena Kumari in the 1954 Calender.

Besides Meena Kumari, the calendar features Suraiya, Kamini Kaushal, Krishna Kumari, Shashikala and Rehana (She had appeared as a Lux girl as early as 1947 after the success of two Filmistan films, Shehnai and Sajan).By this time colored printing in India had started. Suraiya who was well established as a singing actress also featured in the 1954 calendar.

In the 50s and 60s, Madhubala was also in great demand by the advertising companies, she appeared in lux soap as well as in Godrej soap and also in a Beedi Ad

Enjoy the best collection of Ads from good old days featuring famous celebrities of Bollywood endorsing different products

 Do you remember this print ad of Kishore Kumar?

Many of you will be surprised to see Prem Chopra, a villain of yesteryears in an Ad

Nirupa Roy chooses the pure, white luxury of the Lux beauty soap and suggests you get the big bath size, just like she did. 

Ashok Kumar in Ambika Mills

Helen in Lux

Shammi Kapoor in Paan Parag Ad, infract Ashok Kumar was also in this Ad

Nanda in the 1960s was among popular heroines, she too appeared in Lux Ad.

Mala Sinha, Sadhana, Asha Parekh, and Sharmila Tagore were the top heroines of the 60s also endorsed Lux soap

Zeenat Aman In Air India

In the 70s Rekha, Hema Malini were the hot girls for the Ad industry, they endorsed many products. Hema Malini with Dharmendra was also a popular modeling product.

With the opening of the economy in India, the advertising industry had a boom. A lot of products were endorsed by celebrities. In fact, many film stars started endorsing many products. Amitabh Bachchan and Shahrukh Khan became the leading actors in the field of advertising.
One point of time Amitabh Bachchan was the top earner from endorsing various products. Even now at the age of 77, he remains to be most sought after celebrity for endorsements.
Here are a few of his iconic ads.

Shahrukh Khan in various Ads.

A few old iconic Ads by various Stars

It's not that the Advertisement Industry used only Bollywood Hero Heroines for the Ads but also gave the film industry many celebrities who started their career as a model then entered Bollywood 
We all know that Shahid Kapoor was a Complan boy, but did you know that he starred in a Pepsi commercial with SRK, Kajol, and Rani way back in the '90s

Before making her big debut in Om Shanti Om, Deepika Padukone can be seen dancing to the tunes of "Kya Aap Close Up Karte Hain?", and flashing her million dollar smile.

While Akshay Kumar may be a health freak now, way back he did a print ad for Red and White cigarettes.

The bubbly girl Pretty Zinta did a small appearance in a Cadbury ad, she was noticed there and then came into films.