Archive for the ‘bollywood’ Category

Bollywood & the “new media” question

September 6, 2010

How do we map and analyze the relationship between “new media” and the Bombay film industry? In what ways have various new media technologies and platforms shaped the ongoing transformation of the Bombay film industry into “Bollywood”?And how do we then think about inter-media relations in a city like Bombay in historically grounded fashion?

This is a question I have been interested in for several years now, and one that is central to the book I’m working on. It emerged from fieldwork I conducted towards my dissertation (back in 2004-05), and subsequent research in Bombay confirmed my initial sense that radio, state-owned television, cable and satellite television, and the Internet and the mobile phone have all shaped the film industry in important ways. To begin tackling this problematic, I decided to work on a case-study of, one of the most popular and successful film-related websites. And now, that case study has been published in Media, Culture and Society!

From to Radio Ceylon: new media and the making of the Bombay film industry,” will be in the journal’s September 2010 issue. Writing this piece was crucial as it served as an opportunity to develop an argument for the book project, and also allowed me to locate contemporary issues of media convergence in a broader historical frame. In particular, stories about Radio Ceylon and the Bombay film industry were fascinating, and proved very useful for arguing that historically informed analyses of inter-media relations are crucial if we are to develop more complex and textured cultural genealogies of the Bombay film industry’s ‘global’ flows and influences.


Islamicate culture and Bombay cinema

March 31, 2009

For the longest time, one had to assign an article by Mukul Kesavan – “Urdu, Awadh and the Tawaif, the Islamicate Roots of Hindi Cinema” – to go with a screening of Umrao Jaan, Mughal-e-Azam, or even Jodhaa Akbar. We now have what seems like a terrific book-length study of Islamicate influences – language, poetry, music, and so on – that have shaped Bombay cinema for several decades.


The blurb informs us that Ira Bhaskar and Richard Allen argue that “it is in the three genre forms of The Muslim Historical, The Muslim Courtesan Film and The Muslim Social that these cultures are concentrated and distilled into precise iconographic, performative and narrative idioms.” More info here.

Hollywood studios stumbling in Bollywood?

March 26, 2009

A number of FICCI-Frames 2009 posts are languishing in draft form on wordpress, but the past few weeks have been very hectic. I will get to them as the semester winds down, but I did want to do a quick write-up of an article about how Hollywood studios’ are struggling to establish themselves in Bombay.

Anupama Chopra has a piece in the NYT outlining how Hollywood studios are discovering that “negotiating the distance between Burbank and Bollywood is trickier than expected” (full story). It’s been a decade since studios like Sony, Warner Bros., and Disney entered the world of film production in Bombay, but they are yet to make any noticeable impact. And why is this?

Chopra attributes it to the fact that Hollywood studios are still learning how to navigate and work within an industry where interpersonal relationships shape every aspect of the film business, where Hollywood-style contracts simply don’t work as well. Yes, it has been a decade since “corporatization” became a buzzword in the industry, with every major production house figuring out how to make the transition from a family-run, entreprenurial unit to a more “corporatized” model. She also quotes Karan Johar who argues that Hollywood studios might not “understand the pulse of this audience.”

Johar isn’t saying anything new – if anything, it’s tiresome. Put Johar or anyone else on the spot and ask them to explain their understanding of the “audience,” and you won’t really get anything concrete either. As Chopra reminds us, it’s not as if Bollywood filmmakers’ hit-to-flop ratio is anything to write home about. But there is something to be said for how long it takes for established business practices to change. What is crucial to note is the fact that Hollywood studio execs are being patient and, most importantly, beginning to recruit top talent within India. Shahrukh Khan’s bravado notwithstanding, execs like Vijay Singh of Fox Star Studios are working, slowly but surely, and there will be several interesting changes in the coming years.

FICCI Frames 2009: a decade of “corporatization”

February 12, 2009

At a national conference on “Challenges Before Indian Cinema” held in Mumbai (10 May, 1998), the Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Sushma Swaraj announced that the government had decided to accord “industry” status to the business of filmmaking in India. Among a series of financial and regulatory concessions that accompanied this major shift in state policy – reduction in import duties on cinematographic film and equipment, exemption on export profits, and other tax incentives – the most significant one was a declaration made in October 2000. The Industrial Development Bank Act of 2000 made it possible for filmmakers to operate in “clean” and “legitimate” fashion, instead of the mix of personal funds, money borrowed from individuals at exorbitant interest rates (in some cases, from the Mumbai underworld), and minimum guarantee payments advanced by distributors which characterized film financing in the Bombay film industry.

This reorientation in state policy was not limited to ascribing “industry” status to the film business and creating the opportunity for banks and other financial institutions to invest in film production. Beginning in the late 1990s, the state has played an active role in articulating a vision of a “corporatized” film industry that would resemble Hollywood in terms of technological, economic, business, and regulatory practices (part of a broader “creative industries” policy framework that the government was formulating with help from consultancy firms like McKinsey and Pricewaterhouse Coopers).

The film industry was brought under the purview of FICCI (Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry), and made part of a larger FICCI Entertainment Committee comprising leading players from film, television, cable, radio, music, animation, and live entertainment sectors. In addition to “facilitating the policy framework for the growth and development of the film industry,” this committee also began organizing an annual convention called FRAMES, which brought the film industry into contact with prominent Non-Resident Indian (NRI) venture capitalists, influential diasporic filmmakers, NRI media producers and executives (such as Ashok Amritraj of Hyde Park Entertainment), the IT sector in India and abroad, representatives from countries interested in co-production treaties, executives from transnational media corporations such as Sony and Warner Bros., global consultancy firms, and financial institutions.

Beginning in 2000, FRAMES emerged as an important state-sponsored site where the notion of “corporatization” was debated and eventually normalized as exactly what the Bombay-based film industry needed in order to shed its image as a dysfunctional “national” cinema re-imagine itself as “Bollywood Inc.” Consider, for instance, this excerpt from the inaugural address by R. S. Lodha, President of FICCI, at the 2002 conference:

We see ourselves as a facilitator and a promoter – and we have been trying to catalyse policy change in a direction that will make our industry truly world class and globally competitive. We carry our agenda with great conviction and this conviction stems from the belief that India does have the potential to emerge as a global powerhouse of the entertainment industry. The entertainment industry in India has historically grown in a somewhat unstructured manner and if I may say without much of government support or incentive. Therefore, our effort has been to provide a shape and vision to the industry and get it recognized as one of India’s core competencies (March 2002).

I do not wish to suggest that the idea of “corporatization” was normalized in a matter of months, or that everyone involved knew what exactly the term meant. Between 2000 and 2003, several stars, directors, producers, and other persons and groups in the film industry expressed reservations about the feasibility and indeed, even the necessity of corporatizing the film industry. However, in March 2003, following a disastrous year in which 124 films out of 132 reportedly flopped at the box office, when Ravi Shankar Prasad, Union Minister for Information & Broadcasting (I&B), inaugurated FRAMES by asking filmmakers to “introduce an element of corporate governance” and “respond to the demands of present competitive business,” “corporatization” seemed just the tonic that the industry needed.

Over the next few years, “corporatization” became a catch-all buzz word that alluded not only to new modes of film financing and the attenuation of the underworld’s hold over the film industry, but a series of changes at every step of the filmmaking process including preparing a bound script, developing and working with schedules, getting stars to sign and honor contracts instead of proceeding with verbal assurances, in-film branding through corporate tie-ups, aggressive marketing and promotions that reflected processes of market segmentation underway in India, and the entry of large industrial houses, corporations, and television companies into the business of film production and distribution. As one news report noted, “Bollywood has an itch and it has much to do with the perennial drone of corporatization as panacea for its ills” (Business Line, March 2003).

What is the state of Bollywood after nearly a decade of “corporatization?” This is the question that a number of panels at FICCI Frames 2009 will address. And I will be in Bombay attending these sessions! You can read more about Frames 2009 here, and take a look at the 3-day agenda here. There are several interesting sessions focused on the changing television landscape as well, but I’m afraid I will have to prioritize and attend the Bollywood-related panels. While I hope to post some quick notes, impressions, and celebrity-spotting news (maybe a few pictures) at the end of each day, I suspect proper entries will take shape only after I’m back in Ann Arbor.

Secret Slumdog Millionaire, a reality show?

February 4, 2009

The Economic Times reports that the producers of Slumdog Millionaire are considering producing a reality TV show called Secret Slumdog Millionaire, a variation on a U.K. show called Secret Millionaire. Instead of doling out money in impoverished communities in the U.K., millionaires will now scour the slums of Mumbai and identify “slumdogs.” A television insider says, ““It’s a fantastic idea….The millionaires who sign up will see real poverty in Mumbai and it is going to be very moving when they reveal their identity and offer these people help” (full story). Needless to say, the producers want to get going asap so they can cash in on the film’s tremendous popularity.

They are, of course, “bracing themselves against charges that they are cashing in on poverty.” Bracing? Heh. If the protests surrounding the film are any indication, I’m sure we’ll see much more drama around the television show. Given that Reality TV-as-social-welfare shows like Extreme Home Makeover have not entered the Indian television landscape, this will be an interesting show to follow and see if it sets the stage for other experiments in reality TV.

Corporate Bollywood?

February 3, 2009

During the mid-late 1990s, a series of police investigations revealed the extent to which the underworld was involved in Bollywood, with some officials claiming that close to 60% of films were being financed by the mafia. In January 2001, Sucheta Dalal wrote:

As many as 20 films released recently are suspected to have been financed by the underworld don, Chhota Shakeel, who allegedly forced film stars into signing movies and rescheduling their shooting dates, he told PTI here. Since the arrest of Mr. Nazim Rizvi, producer of the unreleased film Chori Chori Chupke Chupke, allegedly financed by Chhota Shakeel of the notorious Dawood Ibrahim gang, Crime Branch sleuths had got a lead and were now zeroing in on more ‘go-betweens’ in the film industry, he said. ‘A few more arrests within a couple of days are expected.’ (Jan 8, 2001, Indian Express).

This was nearly three years after the Indian government, global consultancy firms like Pricewaterhouse Coopers, and eminent film industry personalities like Yash Chopra declared that Bollywood would be corporatized. The film industry was folded into the Entertainment division of FICCI (Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry), and prominent producers and directors swore to do everything in their power to “corporatize” and “globalize” the industry. What did “corporatization” that mean? By according “industry” status to the business of filmmaking, a number of people and companies hoped for, among other things, significant changes in film financing. To be sure, “clean funds” from banks, media companies like UTV, venture capitalists, and U.S. companies such as Fox and Warner Bros. did begin to define a new circuit of capital in the city. But claims of “corporatization” were always regarded with a healthy dose of skepticism.

In 2005, questions about the mafia’s involvement in Bollywood were raised again following the arrest of Abu Salem, an underworld don who had tried to assassinate film directors Rajiv Rai and Rakesh Roshan. At the time, Yash Chopra, chairman of FICCI’s Entertainment Committee, quickly issued statements asserting that the situation had improved and that there was no cause for concern. “Money is easily available,” declared Chopra.

Now, after a decade of corporatization, film companies going public, and global media corporations making a beeline for Bombay, is the situation any better? I’m not optimistic. Just a few days back, Vijay K. Taneja, who ran a mortgage loan business in Fairfax, Virginia, and was known as a Bollywood promoter and film producer, was “sentenced to seven years in prison Friday for one of the largest bank fraud scams in the state’s history” (full story). Defrauding banks and his customers, Taneja has produced at least two major films – Humko Tumse Pyaar Hai (2007) and Aap Kaa Suroor: The Real Luv Story – featuring stars such as Arjun Rampal, Bobby Deol, Mallika Sherawat, and Himesh Reshammiya. Aap Ka Suroor was made on a budget of $16.5 million, pretty substantial by Bollywood standards.

So much for corporatization. This story certainly skews the triumphalist narrative of the role played by the diaspora in the globalization of Bollywood. But more than anything else, I was struck by the fact that this forges the link between real estate money and the Bombay film industry once again!

p.s. for a terrific account of the relationship between film, real estate, and other industries in Bombay, see Ashish Rajadhyaksha’s essay, “The Curious Case of Bombay’s Hindi Cinema: The Career of Indigenous Exhibition Capital.”

Circulation and cultural reach

January 27, 2009

In the rush to declare Bollywood as being “globalized,” clips such as these are wonderful reminders of the long history of Bombay cinema’s global circulations and the many south-south interactions that define media flows.

[via ultrabrown]

Jai Ho, A. R. Rahman!

January 12, 2009

A. R. Rahman, as many of you will doubtless know by now, has won the Golden Globe award for best original score (link)! And what a nice way for me to break blog silence…here’s one of the many videos that Rahman fans are uploading (thanks, Aravind):

Brit-Asians and Bollywood

July 24, 2008

In Playing to the World’s Biggest Audience, Michael Curtin asks why, how, and under what circumstances a city, say Mumbai, becomes a global media capital? In examining the emergence of Hong Kong as a powerful media capital, Curtin asks us to pay attention to “trajectories of creative migration” (among other variables, of course). It is quite easy to see how this has shaped Mumbai as well – for over a century now, the migration of actors, directors, music directors, playback singers, costume designers, choreographers, and a range of other creative and technical personnel to Mumbai has, without doubt, been central to the city’s status as a media capital in India. The question that interests me is, what new trajectories of creative migration are being plotted as the Bombay film industry seeks to “globalize” and reimagine itself as Bollywood?

The answer is rather easy to locate: the (first world) desi diaspora. An article in Mint focuses attention on the growing number of Brit-Asians who are turning to Bollywood as a potential career path instead of struggling to break into the European or American creative sectors (link). With the exception of the Goodness Gracious Me trio, and indie artists like Hanif Kureishi, the record of Brit-Asians succeeding in British media is rather abysmal. Little surprise, especially given that these second/third-generation desis have grown up watching Bollywood films (and perhaps singing and dancing at community/college events), that they are signing up to train at institutes such as the one Anupam Kher has set up (story here).

Fists clenched, face contorted, the woman berates her best friend with accusations: How could she steal her boyfriend and then lie about it? A waistcoat thrown over her green kameez, she paces the floor in rage. Dressed in jeans and high heels, the younger woman weakly protests her innocence.

The scene, performed by two aspiring actors, unfolds not in India’s film hub of Bollywood but in Ealing, west London, as part of the first batch of auditions at the UK arm of Actor Prepares, a school run by actor Anupam Kher. The actors are in their 20s: Pirah Palijo, 28, is a lawyer from Karachi, Pakistan, and now lives in London, while her counterpart Seetal Linbachia, 23, was born and raised in London, and works as a hairdresser in her father’s salon. The duo represent a growing number of British Asians who are looking outward and hitching their acting careers to opportunities in the rapidly expanding Indian film industry.
To be sure, this is a welcome development and one hopes that such initiatives will, if only slowly, make it easier for actors without any family connections to enter the film industry. At the same time, we do need to recognize that this particular trajectory has rather high entry costs (financial and cultural capital) and might end up overpowering other, older trajectories and life-worlds (in ways similar to transitions in the domain of casting extras or those who used to work in costume design – see this).

From Mumbai

June 23, 2008

I’ve been traveling in India this past month – Bangalore for a week, then Delhi, and I’m now in Mumbai. While I was occupied with family-stuff in Bangalore and Delhi, my time in Mumbai is devoted to hanging out and conducting interviews with a range of professionals in film, television and new media companies. I’ve been here a week now and there is already much I need to chronicle and write about.

Back in 2005, I spent a few months in Mumbai conducting fieldwork towards my dissertation. So I do know the city, but this time around, my experience of the city is completely different. I am staying in Colaba, right next to Regal cinema (I was in Chembur the last time), and within walking distance of some fantastic galleries and stores. But most important, my dear friend Parmesh is in the city and is showing me a fantastic time.

So far, I’ve been to a studio where I was able to hang out and osberve a meeting between an art director and a global fashion magazine that has signed on as a major sponsor, brunch at Basilico (apparently run by a gangster’s son) and Not Just Jazz By the Bay, a Raghu Rai exhibit at the National Gallery of Modern Art, and the launch party of Amitav Ghosh’s latest novel (Sea of Poppies) at The Oberoi! And yes, I am getting work done as well 🙂 I’m off in a couple of hours to Mehboob Studio in Bandra to meet an asst director and of course, hang out and observe the shoot in progress.

I’ll do my best to write a few posts over the next few days. If not, expect something new here after the 15th of July.

Of Chai and Samosas: Indian cinema and exhibition in the U.S.

May 8, 2008

Distribution and exhibition of Indian films (mostly Hindi language Bollywood films) in North America have been un-organized sectors for nearly five decades now. In cities/regions with a large concentration of South Asians – New York/NJ, California, Toronto, and so on – a desi family would often run a weekend business that involved screening films at university halls or by renting a screen (for one weekend) at a local cinema theatre. While things have changed in larger cities – from dedicated screens to entire multiplexes (Naz8 in California, for e.g.) for Indian films – there has been no concerted effort to organize distribution and exhibition across the continent.

However, given the ways in which the “NRI market” has been targeted in increasingly sophisticated ways by the film industry in Mumbai, perhaps it is not a surprise that a Bollywood company has decided to launch a major exhibition venture. According to a story in India West, Adlabs is in the process of acquiring close to 200 cinemas in cities across the U.S. (link):

The new theater chain will likely be branded as Big Cinemas and will program a mix of Hindi, South Indian, and first-run and second-run Hollywood movies.

It has already begun a quiet rollout: the company’s first West Coast property to open is the Norwalk 8 Theaters in Southern California, which will screen the subtitled Hindi thriller “Tashan” and the unsubtitled Tamil romance “Santhosh Subramaniam” starting April 25, along with a mix of second-run features such as “Fool’s Gold” and “The Spiderwick Chronicles.”

If Adlabs does succeed in establishing a chain of theatres across the U.S., I have no doubt it will change the way Bollywood imagines and mobilizes an “overseas market.” In addition to bringing about a shift in distribution and marketing practices, this will also allow filmmakers to track revenues in a more organized and reliable fashion.

Family Matters – two takes

April 30, 2008

On the one hand, a story in the Washington Post about lower class/caste men and women trying to break into the film industry (go here):

Today, a trickle of actors, dancers and screenwriters from India’s lower and middle castes are trying to break into a formerly impenetrable star system, full of actors from Bollywood royalty and other insiders hailing from high-caste families. New drama schools are training Indians from all castes. And Bollywood is starting to tackle more serious plots that could potentially star low-caste actors.

“Will you get more attention if you have the right surname and are part of an entrenched star family? Of course,” said Anupama Chopra, a film critic and author of several best-selling books on Bollywood. “But there is increasing space now for a booming Bollywood film industry, and there’s a feeling that if you are talented enough, well, maybe you will get noticed, no matter what your family ties are.”

And on the other hand, Time Out Mumbai offers a map of the film industry to illustrate how important family ties are (subscription required, link):

Despite enormous changes in recent years, the Hindi film industry is still influenced tremendously by society’s most basic unit. A snap survey of today’s noteworthy actors reveals that many of them were either born into a film family or married into one. Hrithik Roshan? The son of actor-turned-filmmaker Rakesh Roshan and the grandson of filmmaker J Om Prakash. Salman Khan? The son of scriptwriter Salim Khan. Aamir Khan? The son of filmmaker Tahir Hussain, the nephew of producer Nasir Hussain, and the cousin of director Mansoor Khan. Abhishek Bachchan? The son of Amitabh Bachchan and Jaya Bhaduri. Saif Ali Khan? The son of Sharmila Tagore. Kareena Kapoor? A member of the Kapoor clan. Kajol? The daughter of actor Tanuja and director Shomu Mukherjee. Rani Mukerji? A member of the Mukherjee clan and the niece of Bengali actor Debashree Roy. The only outsider to have made it in recent times without family connections is Shah Rukh Khan. Akshay Kumar qualified too until he married Twinkle Khanna, herself an actor and the daughter of actors Dimple Kapadia and Rajesh Khanna.

Many more DNA matches can be found among directors, producers, and distributors as well as among second-rung actors. These include Karan Johar, Rohan Sippy, Goldie Behl, Aditya Chopra, Farhan Akhtar, Sidharth Anand, Sajid Nadiadwala, Anil Thadani, Meghna Gulzar, Amrita Arora, Zayed Khan, Esha Deol, Neil Nitin Mukesh, Ravi Chopra, Shaad Ali, Pooja Bhatt, Bobby Deol, Farah Khan and Sanjay Leela Bhansali.

Workers and Unions in Bollywood Inc.

April 12, 2008

A recent article in the Wall Street Journal (link) pays attention to an aspect of film production we don’t think about very often – who gets to be an extra in contemporary Bollywood films. Pointing out that directors these days look for “extras who fit the scene,” the reporter Amol Sharma documents the emergence of entrepreneurs who work closely with directors to help cast extras. And what’s more, these entrepreneurs, who carry CDs with images of potential extras and broker deals with directors and producers, are proving to be a threat to a well-established institution in the film industry – the Junior Artists Union.

Indian directors say they need to be picky about extras as they try to go global and appeal to the United Kingdom and the U.S. markets, where higher production values are expected. “You can’t keep using the same faces every time,” says Sudhir Mishra, director of the recently released “Khoya Khoya Chand” (Lost Moon), a love story set in the 1950s. Mr. Mishra bypassed the union to hire actors he felt could more authentically portray prostitutes, bouncers and pimps in a brothel scene.

Directors also try to boost the international appeal of their films by using foreign extras, often European or American vacationers rounded up at Mumbai tourist spots — a tactic that is particularly galling to unionized extras. Film producers “give excuses, like ‘We’re shooting in a pub, so we want to have some foreigners there,'” says Firoz Khan, a 25-year-old member of the Junior Artistes Association, the union for male extras. “It’s just excuses.”

The Junior Artists’ Union is fighting back valiantly, trying to figure out how they can renegotiate their place in an industry that is currently besotted by the language of “corporatization.” Read the whole article here, and here’s a video that accompanies the article:

It’s important to note that this isn’t an isolated domain of the industry that is under siege. In an article in Anthropological Quarterly, Clare Wilkinson-Weber maps the changing world of costume design and the growing marginalization of “dressmen:”

Dressmen have always employed informal methods and techniques in their work, and they now find their skills, knowledge, as well as their privilege of maleness in a male-dominated industry being eroded as Hindi filmmaking is transforming itself aesthetically and organizationally in response to global forces.

Drawing on in-depth interviews with a number of such “dressmen,” Wilkinson-Weber explains how the “de-skilling” of dressmens’ jobs has to be understood in relation to changing industry logics and specifically, the entry of a number of young, urban women who “claim superior knowledge of filmmaking techniques and of the fashion world that informs film costume” [The Dressman’s Line: Transforming the Work of Costumers in Popular Hindi Film, Anthropological Quarterly, 79(4), 2006].

I know very little about the history of workers’ unions in Mumbai, but this story points to the importance of industry-focuses studies that can provide nuanced understandings of production culture in “Bollywood Inc.”

NDTV Lumiere

April 5, 2008

Over at MediaCommons, two comments pointed to the importance of situating initiatives like NDTV Imagine in relation to the network as a whole. I couldn’t agree more, and as I’ve pointed out in earlier posts, transitions in the television industry are central to the film industry as well. It would be a mistake to continue to examine film and TV in isolation, especially given the importance of television rights to producers in Bollywood. Films aside, we are yet to map, in any systematic fashion, the workings of numerous filmy shows on television – song and dance talent/game shows of various kinds have been part of television for nearly two decades now (ZEE TV’s Antakshari began in 1993).

And now, NDTV has added another dimension to TV’s relationship with film with the launch of NDTV Lumiere.

Led by Sameer Nair, former CEO of Star Entertainment India, NDTV Lumiere has roped in Manmohan Shetty, founder of Adlabs, and Sunil Doshi, a film producer. The goal, as the video above suggests, is to develop NDTV Lumiere as a niche space for audiences interested in cinema from around the world. Instead of competing with Zee Cafe and Star World for “elite audiences” (see this), this seems like a smart differentiating tactic.

More broadly, I think this initiative signals the working out of a radically new set of relationship between two screens in India – at the level of industry logics, productions cultures, and audiences’ viewing practices. More on this in posts to come.

Filmy Flashback: Silver Jubilee Filmfare Awards

February 29, 2008

A couple of years back, I chanced upon a set of Filmfare issues from 1977-78 being auctioned on eBay. And as luck would have it, I managed to get them (12 issues in all) for about $14! I figured I might as well use snippets from them and make “filmy flashback” a regular feature on BollySpace 2.0. To kick things off, here are some snapshots from the April 1978 issue that covered the Silver Jubilee of the prestigious Filmfare Awards!

Best Actor: Amitabh Bachchan, for Amar Akbar Anthony; Best Actress: Shabana Azmi for Swami; Best Supporting Actress: Asha Sachdev for Priyatama; Best Supporting Actor: Sriram Lagu for Gharaonda; Special award: Amol Palekar for Bhumika; and a Special Award to Naseeruddin Shah for Manthan.

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