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A dedication to Indian musicals

The National Film Archive of India (NFAI) has brought alive musicals from the Indian screen released over the years by way of a poster exhibition on the theme ‘Rhythm, Raga and Melody’. These rare movie posters highlight the gigantic contribution of film music to Indian consciousness, while providing details about the music of the respective films, including the influences followed by music directors such as ragas from Indian classical music and Carnatic music, western melody, folk music and so on.

The secretary for Union Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Bimal Julka, who inaugurated the poster exhibition at the Art Gallery of Kala Academy on November 21, in the presence of actor, Anupam Kher and filmmaker, Shekhar Kapur, on the sidelines of the ongoing International Film Festival of India 2014 said that the National Film Heritage Mission of the central government will digitise the best of Indian cinema. “The project set up at a cost of  ` 597 crores will use digital technology to correct and preserve available Indian films, right from the silent era to modern times”, he added, pointing out that the work of digitisation could start any time now.

Under the Mission, altogether thirty new vaults of the National Film Archives of India will be created and ` 30 crore will be spent to construct these new ‘temperature and humidity’ controlled vaults. The NFAI will execute the project.

Stating that it is very important to restore and save Indian films, Anupam Kher told NT BUZZ that our films represent our culture. “They are the milestones of our socio-economic times”, he maintained, noting that Indian films, in fact, form part of our invaluable treasure.

The exhibition displays posters vis-à-vis music of various films ranging from ‘Mahal’ to ‘Chandralekha’ during the 1940s, from ‘Chor Bazar’ to ‘Anarkali’ during the 1950s, from ‘Mughal-e-Azam’ to ‘Guide’ during the 1960s, from ‘Pakeezah’ to ‘Aalap’ during the 1970s, from ‘Umrao Jaan’ to ‘Disco Dancer’ during the 1980s, from ‘Lekin’ to ‘Godmother’ during the 1990s and modern-day productions like ‘Kal Ho Na Ho’.

The poster exhibition also presents musical films of other Indian languages including ‘Sankarabharanam’ and ‘Megha Sandesam’ from Telugu cinema. A small section of the exhibition is also devoted to North-Eastern cinema.

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