Monday, July 27, 2009

Nitin Sawhney & A Throw of Dice (Prapancha Pash) (1929)

Came across this wonderful post/review of 1929 Himanshu Rai and German director Franz Osten's Silent movie - A throw of Dice (Prapancha Pash) on Memsaab's Blog (which I think is the best blog dedicated to Indian Cinema). Check out Memsaab's blog for an awesome review of the film and some real cool screen grabs to see the grand scale of the movie. Can't wait to get a DVD of the movie.

She mentioned Nitin Sawhney's wonderful background score in her review, which caught my attention. Being a big fan of Nitin Sawhney's music I was wondering whether there was one more Nitin Sawhney during the silent era of Indian Cinema.

To know more, when I checked the official website* of the film. I was pleasantly shocked to know it's actually the same Nitin Sawhney. Nitin composed a new symphony to accompany this classic silent movie from 1929 in 2006. check out the video of song Koyal composed by him for the movie.

Not so long back, I was astonished to see (the video recording of) John Williams performing with his live orchestra for the 25th Anniversary screening of E.T. Its wonderful to see Nitin attempting the same with Prapanch Pash. He is doing a couple of Live Orchestral Screenings where his orchestra will play live background music along with the screening of the film.

PS. (*I would've never thought there can be a website for a movie from a long forgotten era, thanks Memsaab for putting it up on her blog.)

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Pehli Tarikh (1954) & Dairy Milk Ad

Recently saw Varun Badola mimicing Kishore Kumar in a Dairy Milk Ad. Thanks to the retro look created by the art directors, "Pehli Tarikh Hai" song has again become a rage like it used to be in the late 50s till early 70s. The original song was the most Farmayish-ed song on the 1st of every month on all the request shows on Radio Stations all over. It was kind of an unsaid programming policy (if we may call it) Radio Ceylon used to follow by playing the Pehli Tarikh Song on the 1st of every month.

The original song is my favorite because this is one of the songs which Papa ji used to sing for us, when we were kids. He always talk about this song and fondly remembers the good old radio days. So when this ad started airing on TV, it was kind of nostalgic for him and for all of us in different ways. I haven't seen the actual song ever in my life but as far as I remember the song is from the movie Pehli Tarikh (1954), Lyrics by Qamar Jalalabadi and music by Sudhir Phadke Sahab.

Qamar Jalalabadi not only wrote some real funny songs for Kishore Kumar (Remember Guni Jano Bhakt Jano from Aansoo Aur Muskan, 1970) but also wrote dialogues for many classic films. Phadke sahab was one of the pioneering music directors from Marathi Cinema. Phadke composed music for only two Hindi Films - Pehli Tarikh (1954) & Bhabhi Ki Chudiyaan (1961), which has one of my most favorite Lata Mangeshkar song-Jyoti Kalash Chhalke (which I think is one of her best songs too).

Anyway before I start my own Radio Show here, here is the Original Pehli Tarikh Song for you

Cadbury's Dairy Milk Version:

I really love the kid's Jhatkas and Ticket Blackiyas' expressions in this video.
Chalte-Chalte- Pics from my Lucknow trip, where they invited me to speak* on Story Telling, Content Creation & Pre-Production in Animation.

(*Statutory Warning : Inviting/Asking Alok Sharma to Speak can be extremely dangerous...)

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Jim Lee draws for Google

My most favorite artist JIM LEE draws for home page (which we can't see in India as it keeps on redirecting us to for San Diego ComiCon, a historical moment for all the comic book lovers like us.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Yayawari, Comic Books & lots more...

There was so much to say and so little time that I had to write and delete several posts before I realized its more than a month since I updated my blog.

Anyway, without wasting words and time anymore, I think I should say what I wanted to say. I wanted to talk a lot about the journeys we made in last one month (a little more than a month, to be precise) and the fun we had. But as its already over and most of the journey stories will sound stale, I think I should save those stories for some other time.

Har safar Ek Nayi Shuruaat

Without Neeshank none of these stories would've been as interesting and fun filled as they are. Neeshank was the 'driving force' behind all the fun we had in Delhi and otherwise too...

SP and his tactics to safeguard the luggage was another funny addition during our South India visit.
I can't thank Amrit & Amol enough for making our Delhi visit one of the most memorable experience. With all the Hawabaaziyaan we did there (check out the size of Mango Shake), we almost forgot that Delhi isn't our hometown and we are actually out of home.

Bangalore Trip was more like a deja vu. Having spent a considerable time in Bangalore (back then it was called Bangalore), it was nothing new for SP or Me. Besides we were roommates for such a longtime that throughout on our way from Station to Mayunk n Abha's, we felt like we are going back from some friends place to Mrs.Pinto's at Brigade Road. Bengaluroo trip became zimbly subaarb, all thanks to Mayunk & Abha ki Mehmaannawazi. I so wanted to steal Mayunk's treasure of old comic books but before I could do that, Mayunk booked our return tickets and we had to leave Bangalore..oops...Namma Bengaluroo. But on our way we raided Blossoms and bought some superb comic books from there.

Neeshank & Me

Our trip from Bangalore to Chennai was really eventful. In true Indiana Jones fashion, we fought rogues (in this case the rowdy travel agents), deciphered codes to unearth a mysterious platform (no. 14 B) made by some mysterious civilization at Kempegowda Bus Terminus, just to get a Bus (which plays some trashy 1980s Kannada Movie on its way which none of the passengers wanna see, on its way) to Chennai.

On our way to Kempegowda Bus Terminus

SP & Neeshank, Chennai ki Or...

Poochho Na Kaise Maine Rain Bitayee

Chennai was pure awesomeness. Spent the night on the floors of a friend's office, which was a true 'Kasam Se Mazaa Aa Gaya' Experience. The next morning after having a delightful brunch at Sarvana Bhawan, T Nagar, we met some real cool people and after buying dozens of DVDs from Burma Bazaar, we returned back to Pune the same day. Our journey back home could've been a disaster, if we wouldn't have met this awesome TC, who 'helped' us out and we got an 'upgradation' to 2 Tier AC wunnly for wunn naayiitt!

Other trips and meets were awesome too, but I think Sabka mention kiye bina kaam chal sakta what I will mention here is THE GIFTS!
Somebody (I would love to mention the person's name, once I am allowed to do that) gifted me 200+ Indrajal Comics.
All the publishers I met gifted me massive bunches of comic books. My greed made me buy another bunch of comic books from all of them and every time I returned home from any trip, I had another carton full of comic books with me.
Bunty sent me his collection of Comic Books (easily 500+). I was going through the comic books last night and was getting all nostalgic about the years when I used to run a Lending Library with Bunty, where we used to share even an athanni and our fights on these comic books, almost every book has a personal memory attached to it. I can't thank him enough for this.

I am yet to start reading the comic books and books I have acquired in last one month.

To Err is...??

I also wanted to write something on some silly mistakes I noticed, while I was travelling -

Number 1 is the trailer of Kambakht Ishq: where they play the Mantra - "Mangalam Bhagwan Vishnu, Mangalam Garudadhwaja, Mangalam Pundrikakshah Mangalaya Tanoh Hari" along with the text on the screen... I was shocked to see 'Mangalam Pundrikakshah' wrongly written 'Mangalam Kundrikakshah' going on air unnoticed by so many people. This one mistake changes the meaning of the Mantra and nobody was actually bothered about bringing this to the Director's/Producer's/Media's notice. STRANGE!!!

Second is a DVD released by Shemaroo: How To Draw Comics The Marvel Way, which is based on the very popular book by the same name by Stan Lee & John Buscema. It was a pleasant surprise to stumble upon this DVD at a Planet M outlet in Mumbai. But I was shocked to see DC's Superman on the cover of the DVD which will teach you How To Draw Comics 'The Marvel' Way. I would love to see Stan 'The Man' Lee's reaction on this cover. I think, we need a serious 'Comic book Education' in India. Nevertheless, despite the blasphemous cover, the DVD is an awesome product and a must have for every comic book lover/creator/'self proclaimed' creator. Check out the videos on youtube here.

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