Bollywood: Turn of a century!

By Hindustan Times

Mumbai, Jan. 25 -- It was reported a while ago that The Film And Television Producers' Guild was planning a celebration to commemorate 100 years of Indian cinema. News is that the merriment takes off at the Apsara Awards being shot tonight at Yash Raj Studios, Andheri.

Living legends like Dilip Kumar, Saira Banu, Shashi Kapoor, Waheeda Rehman, Asha Parekh, Manoj Kumar, Jaya Bachchan, Shabana Azmi, Vinod Khanna, Zeenat Aman, Vyajayanthimala Bali, Rajesh Khanna and Hema Malini will be presented with trophies for their contribution to Hindi cinema.

"We've designed an act with Shiamak Davar and his troupe to pay tributes to these artistes' iconic works. We haven't roped in a big star to pay homage through a dance performance because it's not even fair to pressurise one or two actors to pull off such a long act," says Sabbas Joseph of Wizcraft, the company that's helming the onground activity.

"We'll have producers like Yash Chopra and Ramesh Sippy doing the honours because they've seen the industry grow from close quarters." Producer-director Ramesh Sippy, who is making his directorial comeback this year with a thriller, seconds Sabbas, adding that the event is only the beginning.

"It was in May 1913 when the first Bollywood film released. And next year, we'll be a century old film industry. The reason we want to celebrate in such a big way is that we want the world to acknowledge our presence," he says, confirming that the celebrations will go on for a year. However, he says, it's too early to divulge details: "We're still working on the nitty-gritties. It's an event calendar that takes time to be readied. But we have planned a series of exhibitions where we'd like to show what our film industry has given to the world of cinema. There will also be collector's editions of films that we plan to bring out, replete with the best of Bollywood so far."

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