Saturday, February 08, 2003

no place for sholay in the archives

The National Film Archives of India (last heard losing precious rare negatives in a fire) does not have a copy of Sholay in the vault. For those not in the know, Sholay (despite its post-modern moments of pastiche) has been regarded as arguably the most influential film ever to come out of Bollywood (call it Hindi cinema's Citizen Kane if you will). What is worse, the NFAI has a copy of the box-office success Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge (which achieved more at the box office than in the cinematic progression department), and this copy was acquired not from the producer, but from the lost property department of the Indian Railways. Truly India does not possess a culture of appreciating its rich cinematic heritage (my acerbic posts about recent trends in Bollywood filmmaking only reflect the continued disregard that the new generation of yuppie director wannabes have for our rich legacy in filmmaking).

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