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Top 8 "firsts" of Indian cinemas.

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1) Raja Harishchandra was the first Indian film in the year 1913.

The film marked a historic benchmark in the Indian film industry. Only one print of the film was made and shown at the Coronation Cinematograph. It was a commercial success and paved the way for everything that makes up Indian cinema today.

2) Alam Ara  was the first Indian talkie in the year 1931.

The film that gave the medium of cinema a voice was a period fantasy about an ageing king and his two rival queens. The film took months to make because of hazardous recording conditions and the secrecy surrounding the project.

3) Kisan Kanya (1937) was the First colour film of India.

Kisan Kanya was a 1937 Hindi Cine colour feature film which was directed by Moti B. Gidwani and produced by Ardeshir Irani of Imperial Pictures.The film unfolded the poor plight of a farmer and the consequences he faces for being a peasant. The film was not a commercial success but is remembered for being the country’s first colour film.

4) Dhoop Chhaon (1935) was the First playback song  

One of the most important developments in Indian cinema was the introduction of playback singing. Rai Chand Boral was the first to use the systematic technique of playback singing in the film Dhoop Chhaon. Prior to this, actors would sing live on the set and that was recorded just like dialogues.

5) Apradhi (1931) - First Indian film to be shot with artificial lights

One of the most iconic personalities in Indian cinema, PC Barua is also noted for being the first to use artificial lights while filming. He observed the production techniques in a London studio and bought lighting equipment used in the studio. The first film from his studio Apradhi, directed by Debaki Bose, was made using artificial lights.


6) Sangam (1964) - First film to be shot abroad

Raj Kapoor's Sangam had various scenes shot in Europe. The cinema goers at that time would queue up just to see the foreign locales in motion picture. 

7) First on-screen kiss --  Marthanda Varma (1933)

The second Malayalam feature film, Marthanda Varma, released in 1933 and raised a lot of eyebrows for showing a kiss between the lead actors. Later that year, Devika Rani and Himanshu Rai also shared a four-minute-long kiss in the Hindi movie, Karma.

8) Bhakta Vidur in 1921 was the first film to face a ban

This film directed by Kanjibhai Rathod came in the wake of the Rowlatt Act which put restrictions on Indian imports. This mythological allegory alluded directly to political issues of the day and was banned in Madras and Karachi.

posted Jun 21, 2017 by Ram Bhatia

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