Tuesday, June 4, 2013

40 th Anniversary of First Cinemascope Film in South India

We are now celebrating the 100 Years of INDIAN  CINEMA. This year also happens to be the 40 th Anniversary of the First Cinemascope Film in South India - RAJA RAJA CHOZHAN ( Tamil) which was released in 1973. The First Indian Cinemascope film was Guru Datt's KAGAZ KE PHOOL ( Hindi - B&W ) released in 1959.The legendary  Cinematographer V.K.Murthy was the man behind the camera.

RAJA RAJA CHOZHAN   CinemaScope - Colour
First CinemaScope Tamil Film Produced in South India

The film was produced by G. Umapathy of Anand Theatres , Chennai and Directed by A. P. Nagarajan. The Music scored by Kunnakudi Vaidyanathan and the Cinematography by  W.R. Subba Rao.
Censor Certificate Dated 16 th March 1973
The cast :  Sivaji Ganesan,  R. Muthuraman, Sivakumar, M.N.Nambiar, Lakshmi, Manorama,Vijayakumari,S. Varalakshmi. It also had Singer actors T. R. Mahalingam  and Sirkazhi Govindarajan 

Sivaji Ganesan and M.N.Nambiar
Many, even from the Film Industry are not aware of the fact that CinemaScope is the Registered  Trade Mark  of 20 th Century Fox  International Corporation and Royalty had to be paid for the use of the name "CinemaScope" in the publicity material. But in the First CinemaScope film, there is a special title card regarding this:

License from 20 th Century Fox

Inspite of the new wide screen CinemScope format,  grand settings and super actors the film bombed at the box office and it was only few years later that Cinemascope as format was revived and came into vogue. I think that the next one was my film ALLAVIDHEENUM ARPUTHA VILAKKUM (Tamil and Malayalam - 1979) Directed by I.V.Sasi.


Afterwards there was no going back and now it had become the most widely accepted format in India!

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