The Hindi film industry, commonly dubbed 'Bollywood', was born with the release of a single film, Raja Harishchandra in 1913. By the end of the 20th century, it had grown into a multi-million-pound business, producing more than 800 films a year and entertaining billions of fans all over the world. This colourful book examines in detail the rich history of Bollywood. The story is told decade by decade, from the early silent years via the introduction of sound, music and colour to the golden age of the 1950s, when eternal classics such as Awaara and Mother India were created. What emerges above all is the great diversity of the industry's output: as well as a multitude of sentimental musicals, there are 'curry' westerns, romantic comedies, horror flicks and period dramas. A final chapter considers the influence of Bollywood on Western culture, with 'crossover' works such as Bend It Like Beckham and Bollywood Dreams enjoying mainstream success. The overall picture is that of a thriving industry, building on the strengths of a glorious past and looking towards a glittering future.
Indian film journalists and Bollywood experts Dinesh Raheja and Jitendra Kothari worked together for many years as editor and deputy editor of the popular magazine MOVIE. They are the co-authors of The Hundred Luminaries of Hindi Cinema.