Filmy Flashback

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Poking around TIME magazine’s archives, I came across a piece featuring Baburao Patel – the eccentric, snarky, and influential editor of Film-India, an important fanzine that set the stage for Filmfare, Stardust, and so on. Here it is, from November 3, 1941 (link):

In Bombay’s movie fanpaper, Film-India, Editor Baburao Patel conducts an unusually piquant question-&-answer department. Last week Hollywood learned how Editor Patel does it.

Excerpts:

Q. Are there any raw-film manufacturers in India?

A. No. But we have directors who expose the film and make it look more raw than ever before.

Q. What is the exact relationship between Anuradha and Rafio Guznavi?

A. Come, I give you the guess.

Q. I hear bad rumors about Director Shantaram. Every man from Poona and Bombay says that Shantaram has done such & such a thing. I am sure that he is not a person to do such a thing. I think that Mr. Shantaram is aware of his fame and would not have done that thing. So you must tell the public that Shantaram is innocent by publishing his innocence in the next issue.

A. And I must also publish my innocence about what you are talking.

Q. Please tell me, which is the easiest way to get a job in a film company?

A. Get hold of the most attractive girl in your town and bring her to a film studio. . . . The other way is rather roundabout.

Q. Whenever I see a romantic picture, its effect lingers with me for five days and I cannot prosecute my studies. What shall I do?

A. Stop seeing pictures. Studies first.

Q. How many of our actresses are virgins?

A. I don’t know much about the actresses being virgins. This is an antique commodity in a modern world and you may find it in rural surroundings.

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2 Responses to “Filmy Flashback”

  1. swati Says:

    A,
    This is so great! Especially, “This is an antique commodity in a modern world and you may find it in rural surroundings.” Here I was thinking it was only the feminist movement post 1975 that was instrumental in rubbishing the issue of the tissue. I want more of these interviews, please post.

  2. aswinp Says:

    Swatib – “issue of tissue” indeed! Have you seen Khoya Khoya Chand yet? And come to think of it, remember the 1970s filmfares that I have? Some of the articles in there don’t pull any punches either.

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