Know facts of Bollywood journey from a short film in 1899 to magnanimous Bahubali. So, here are the 26 Amazing facts of Bollywood which change the course for Indian films in India.
1. Facts of Bollywood starts back in 1899 with the production of a short film by Harishchandra Sakharam Bhatavedkar. He was a portrait photographer from Mumbai who filmed a wrestling match in Mumbai’s Hanging Gardens.
In 1896, Lumiere Brothers (French) arranged a screening of six films at Watson Hotel in Bombay (now Mumbai) and Harishchandra Sakharam Bhatavdekar was one of the attendees. As a result, he started documenting real-life events, which transformed into initial Indian films.
2. The first wholly produced Bollywood film was Raja Harishchandra in 1913, a silent film by Dadashaeb Phalke. He is considered the father of Indian cinema. The silent film was a commercial success. This Indian film marks the beginning of feature film in facts of Bollywood.
As filmmaking was in initial years in India, Dadasaheb was the director, writer, cameraman, editor and make-up artist for this film.
3. In 1926, Fatma Begum directed film-Bulbul-e-Paristan became the first Bollywood film to have a female director.
Bonus facts of Bollywood- In contrast for the first female director in a patriarchal nation like India, this film was a big-budget fantasy abounding with special effects set in a Paristan or Fairyland.
4. In 1931, Ardeshir Irani directed film- Alam Ara was the first Indian film with sound.
The amazing facts of Bollywood- While shooting of this film instrumentalists- harmonium and table players were made to hide behind trees to provide background music to the film.
5. In 1931, Debaki Bose directed film- Apradhi was the first Indian film to use artificial lights.
P. C. Barua, one of the iconic personalities in Indian cinema observed the production techniques in a London studio and as a result, bought lighting equipment to India. This is how Indian films started using artificial lights and marks a major milestone in the facts of Bollywood.
6. In 1933, P. V. Rao directed film- Marthanda Varma featuring A. V. P. Menon and Padmini was the first Indian Malayalam-language film to have an on-screen kiss.
This was the second feature film from Malayalam film industry. Furthermore, Devika Rani and Himanshu Rai shared the first Hindi film on-screen kiss in film- Karma.
7. In 1934, Debaki Bose directed film- Seeta was the first Indian film to premiere at the Venice Film Festival. It became the first Indian film to win an International award.
The movie, featuring Durga Khote and Prithviraj Kapoor won an Honorary Diploma, as a result making Seeta the first Indian film to win an International award.
8. In 1935, Nitin Bose directed film- Dhoop Chhaon became one of the most important developments in Bollywood as well as in Indian cinema with playback singing.
Bonus facts of Bollywood- Prior to using the technique of playback singing, actors would sing live on the set and that was also recorded like dialogues.
9. In 1937, Moti B. Gidwani directed film- Kisan Kanya became the first Indian film in colour. Ardeshir Irani was the producer of this film.
10. In 1946, Chetan Anand directed film- Neecha Nagar was the first Indian film to win the Palme d’or at Cannes Film Festival.
The movie shows a tyrant divert water supply of a low lying city suburb Neecha Nagar to make profits.
11. In 1947, Shaukat Hussain Rizvi directed film- Jugnu starring Dilip Kumar and Noor Jehan was the most memorable film of Independent India’s year 1947. Jugnu wast the highest grosser film of that year, earning a total ₹ 50 lakh.
Dilip Kumar went on to become a big-time movie star whereas Noor Jehan moved to Pakistan with her husband and also the film director Shaukat Hussain Rizvi due to India-Pakistan separation.
12. In 1950, K. B. Lall directed film- Hanste Aansoo featuring Madhubala and Motilal became the first Indian film to receive an A-certificate, only for adults.
An old report in Dainik Bhaskar states that this film was certified ‘A’ not because of adult scenes but because of the title.
Isn’t it is one of the most amazing facts of Bollywood?
13. In 1957, Mehboob Khan directed film- Mother India was India’s first submission for Oscars in the best foreign-language category. It was one of the five nominations for the category.
Mother India was also the highest Grosser film of the year 1957, earning a total of ₹ 4 crores.
14. In 1960, K. Asif directed film- Mughal-e-azam was a cinematic landmark in terms of lighting, actors dedication to their roles, huge sets and a whooping cost of ₹ 1.5 crores at that time.
The Bollywood film took 16 years to be completed to release from the development beginning in 1944 to be released in in 1960.
15. In 1964, Raj Kapoor directed film- Sangam became the first Indian film to be shot abroad, i.e. Switzerland.
Sangam was Raj Kapoor’s first colour film.
16. In 1975, Ramesh Sippy directed film- Sholay was the first film in India to celebrate a silver jubilee at over 100 theatres.
Sholay has the longest theatrical run in India until Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (1995) broke its record of 286 weeks in 2001.
17. In 1984, Jijo Punnoose directed film- My Dear Kuttichathan was the first Indian film to be shot in 3D. It is an Indian Malayalam language fantasy film.
To be shot in 3D, the lighting department needed a lighting budget that was twice of a 2D film.
18. In 1994, Vidhu Vinod Chopra directed film- 1942: A Love Story became the first Bollywood film with Dolby sound in India.
This film was R. D. Burman’s last film as Music Composer.
19. In 1995, Aditya Chopra directed film- Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge continued to run for 20 years in a single screen theatre- Maratha Mandir, Mumbai (1995 to 2015).
It won 10 Filmfare awards- the most for a single film at that time.
20. In 1998, Subash Ghai directed film- Taal was the first Indian film to have insurance. Subash Ghai is credited to start the trend of film insurance in India.
Taal became the first Indian film to reach the top 20 on Variety’s box office list.
21. In 2006, Rajkumar Hirani directed film- Lage Raho Munna Bhai became the first Indian film to be screened at the United Nations.
The film enjoyed a golden jubilee run at 210 cinema screens, being the only Bollywood film to achieve this feat since DDLJ (1995).
22. In 2008, A. R. Murugadoss directed film- Ghajini became the first Indian movie to cross the ₹ 100 crore mark.
Ghajini is a remake of A. R. Murugadoss’s own 2005 Tamil film with the same name.
23. In 2009, Rajkumar Hirani directed film- 3 Idiots became the first Indian film to cross the ₹ 200 crore mark.
This Indian cinema is listed in Guinness World Records for the record of highest box office film gross for a Bollywood film till then.
24. In 2014, Rajkumar Hirani directed film- PK became the first Indian film to cross the ₹ 300 crore mark.
It was jointly produced by Rajkumar Hirani and Vidhu Vinod Chopra.
25. In 2016, Nitesh Tiwari directed film- Dangal made ₹ 2000 crores worldwide and became the highest-grossing Indian cinema of all time.
This Bollywood film was fifth highest-grossing non-English film ever and the highest-grossing sports film ever.
26. In 2017, S. S. Rajamouli directed film- Bahubali 2 became the first Indian film to cross ₹ 500 crore mark in India and made ₹ 1810 crores worldwide.
The Bahubali 2 is also the first Indian cinema from Telugu industry to release in 4K format.
India cinema have an annual output of more than 2000 films in 2020. Bollywood is its largest film producer in India. Bollywood represents 43 percent of Indian net box-office revenue; Tamil and Telugu cinema represents 36 percent, and the remaining regional cinema comprises of 21 percent.
As of 2020 value of Film Industry in India is 183.2 Billion INR.