RMIM Archive Article "137".
From the RMIM Article Archive maintained by Satish Subramanian
# RMIM Archives..
# Subject: Year in Hindi Films
# years covered - 1931 to 1933
# Posted by: Surjit Singh, firstname.lastname@example.org
# Source: various (listed below)
From the RMIM Article Archive maintained by Satish Subramanian
1931 A Year in HIndi Talkies
The year 1931 will be remembered for the year in which the
first Hindi talkie was released. The movie was AALAM AARA
with the following "P-stats":
Movie: Aalam Ara
Producer: Imperial Movietone, Bombay
Director: Ardeshir M. Irani
Music: Pirojshah Mistry
Screenplay: A. M. Irani
Dialogs: Joseph David
The main actors were
1. Master Vitthal (father of Nanda) as hero,
2. Zubeida as Aalam Aara, the heroine,
4. Prithviraj Kapoor as the villain,
5. W. M. Khan as the singing faqeer,
6. Jagdish Sethi (the bad guy in "Phir Subah Hogi," with a
typical Panjabi accent, who bothers Mala Sinha ).
Some day, when I have time, I will post the story of the
movie! The movie had seven songs and ran for seven weeks.
The very first song in the movie was the very first song in
any Hindi movie. The whole song is,
de de khudaa ke naam pyaare taaqat ho gar dene ki,
kuch chahe agar to maang le mujhse himmat ho gar lene ki
It was sung by Mr. W. Z. Khan, the first singer of a Hindi
movie song. The movie was released on March 14, 1931 in
Majestic cinema, Bombay.
A total of 24 talkies were released in 1931, with names like
"Devi Devyaani", "Draupadi", "Harishchandra".
which has music by Master Ali Baksh, father of Meena
"Laila Majnu". (two of them)
in which Mehboob was one of the actors.
"Shakuntalaa" (two of them)
the Calcutta version having the largest number of
songs, 42, so far.
the second Hindi talkie, released on May 31, along
which the audience was treated to the first comedy
short film in Gujaraati, "Mumbayi Ni Shethaani"),
a histotical, which was the first Indian film in
which had Durga Khote who sang three songs, really
sang, not mouthed).
Seventeen of these movies were produced in Bombay (or should
I type Mumbai, smiley,) and seven in Calcutta by one pro-
ducer, Madan theaters.
1932- A Year in Movies
A total of 60 Hindi talkies were made in 1932. Apart from
Calcutta and Bombay, there were movies from Kolhapur, Poona,
Lahore and Hyderabad this year. Many famous movies were
Most famous of these was perhaps the first talkie from Pra-
bhat Film Company, Kolhapur, "Ayodhya Ka Raja" starring
Durga Khote and Govind Rao Tembe who also provided the
musical score. The Marathi version was the first Marathi
talkie. It was directed by V. Shantaram. Another film, "Zar-
ina", directed by Ezra Mir, starring Jal Merchant and
Zubeida (the heroine of the first talkie) has the most
screen kisses before kissing was "voluntarily" renounced by
the movie producers in the mid-thirties on the ground that
"Indians do not kiss in public". As everybody knows kissing
was restored in Hindi movies by Raj Kapoor in "Satyam Shivam
Sundaram" released on March 22, 1978. The fabulous K. L.
Saigal was introduced in "Mohabbat Ke Ansu" and acted in two
more movies, "Subah Ka Tara" and "Zinda Laash". All three
had music by R. C. Boral and were produced by New Theaters,
And then there was "Indrasabha" which has the distinction of
having the largest number of songs, 71. The songs were set
to tunes by Wazir Khan and Nagar Das Nayak recorded them for
the movie apparently using only harmonium for the purpose.
Challa hamara yaad rakhna,
Kati raat maze mein saari,
Kab se khadi hun tere dwara,
Chaman ko yun mere saqi ne maikhana bana dala,
Dil de diya hai unko dekhen wo kya karenge,
Maharaj se neha lagaibe, hamaar koi ka karibe.
Some other movies and their distinctions:
The first colored Indian film printed abroad.
based on Taming of the Shrew.
First talkie by A. R. Kaardaar, made in Lahore.
Rajkumari was a child artiste.
First talkie for Jairaj.
First movie by Shahu Modak, starring as a young
Krishan. Shanta Apte was Radha.
1933 A Year in Hindi Talkies
A total of 75 movies were made. The ones memorable for one
reason or another are listed below:
K. C. Dey's first as a music director.
The first movie to have a double role. Shahu Modak
played both "Rajkumar" and "Bholaram". Tabla was
played by Ahmed Jan Thirakawa.
Kanan Devi's first talkie. She was given Dadasahib
Phalke award in 1976.
Id Ka Chand
The first movie for Sardar Akhtar, wife of Mehboob.
The first to have an English song,"Now the moon her
light has shed", sung by Devika Rani, who got the first
ever Phalke in 1969 and this was also the first movie
jointly produced by India and another country, England
in this case.
King For A Day
Akhtari Faizabadi (Beghum Akhtar) sang many songs,
including, "Wo asire-dame-bala hun jise chain tak bhi
na aa sake".
The first talkie based on the famous story, Bachu was
Mirza and Noorjahan (the older one, not the other one
who was "Baby" Noorjahan at this time).
Director Debaki Bose's first Hindi film. Had famous K.
C. Dey numbers like, "Kya karan hai ab rone ka" and
"Jawo jawo ai mere sadhu". This was music director R.
C. Boral's first hit Hindi movie. One day, another
music director, Harishchandra Bali, told Boral about a
young man, a typewriting machine salesman at Rs. 80/- a
month, who wanted to act in the movies. So Boral fixed
a date to "test" him. In the meantime he heard a young
man singing near a cigarette stall, but could not con-
tact him. Next day, Bali brought his typewriter sales-
man. Boral was surprised to see that it was the singer
he heard the previous day. The whole world knows the
young guy, who was hired in the New Theaters Company at
Rs. 200/- per month, as Saigal. Boral got the Phalke in
1978. Saigal did not really act in this movie. He came
on the stage, sang four songs, "Bhajun main to bhav",
"Din neeke beete jat hain", "Awsar beeto", "Radhe rani
de daro" while they filmed him.
The first color film which was developed in India, but
the prints were made abroad.
Yahudi Ki Ladaki
First for Pankaj Mullick. Saigal acted and sang, "Nuk-
tachin hai", "Lag gayi chot", "Lakh sahi ab pi ki", "Ye
tasarruf alla alla".
The various sources for all the articles in this series are:
1. the Encyclopaedia, volume 1, compiled by Mr. Har Mandir
Singh "Hamraaz", published by Mrs. Satinder Kaur, his wife.
2. Listener's Bulletin, a monthly, edited by Hamraaz Saahib
and published by the Secretary, the Flying Listener's Club,
3. Limca Book of Records, 1993 edition, edited by Vijaya
Ghose, published by Bisleri Beverages Limited.
4. The Guinness Book of Movie Facts & Feats, by Patrick
Robertson, published by Guinness Books in 1988.
5. Star-Portrait, by Harish S. Booch and Karin Doyle, pub-
lished by The Lakhani Book Depot, Girgaon, Bombay in 1962.
It cost Rs. 4/- in those days and is probably out of print
Surjit Singh, email@example.com