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Cinema: How the Idea Turned into Reality!

Cinema was moving from an insecure business to a well established entertainment industry

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Turning of cinema into a reality
Eadweard Muybridge captures movement, the beginning of cinema. Wikimedia
“Films can heal! Not the world, of course, but our vision of it, and that’s already enough.” – Wim Wenders

New Delhi, July 19, 2017: The history of cinema dates back to the end of 1800. It was in 1827 that the first still photograph was taken, and in 1878 that Eadweard Muybridge succeeded in capturing movement after five years of continued efforts. Muybridge was asked to settle a bet as to whether horses hooves left the ground when they galloped. He showed this by setting up a bank of twelve cameras with trip-wires connected to their shutters, with each camera taking one picture when the horse tripped its wire. Muybridge developed a projector to present his finding. By 1891, Thomas A. Edison and his assistant W.K.L Dickson invented their Kinetograph camera, and after two years build a studio to produce films from it.

However, The Lumière family remained the biggest manufacturer of photographic plates in Europe. Brothers Louis and Auguste were once asked to make films which were cheaper than the ones sold by Edison. Louis and Auguste, eventually, designed a camera which served as both a recording device and a projecting device and called it the Cinématographe. The camera shot films at sixteen frames per second, against the forty-six which Edison used. Sixteen frames per second became the standard film rate for nearly 25 years.

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Until 1927, there was no sound included in the motion pictures. Motion pictures emphasized just on movement in their first phase. This era is referred to as the silent era of film. There with practically no plot or story either. One of the earliest movie “La Sortie des ouvriers de l’usine Lumière” (Workers Leaving the Lumière Factory), a documentary in its most elemental form, showed exactly what the name of the film suggests, a single shot of dozens of men and women, all of whom happen to be wearing hats, leaving a factory for the day. People in Paris were delighted by the early Lumiere presentations, drawing huge crowds.

The first few years of the motion pictures showed the cinema moving from an insecure business to an established large scale entertainment industry.

David Wark Griffith, One of the most dynamic early directors, produced literally hundreds of one-reelers in the period from 1908 to 1912. Griffith and others in the industry wanted to do something different than the regular but the owners were reluctant to change the style of limited story telling. For this reason, they moved to a rural area near Los Angeles. It was at this place, Hollywood, that Griffith and others began to work with long feature films, and eventually, Griffith happened to produce the first full-length feature film, “Birth of a Nation”.

Many countries after that started to get involved in serious film production. Russia began its film industry in 1908. In Italy, production was spread over a number of centres. In Northern Europe, Denmark was the most important film producing country. The Indian film production, as the centenary celebrations suggest, began in 1913. But as a matter of fact, from about 1910, American films share the largest market in all European countries except France.

Cinema indeed was an idea that turned into reality, in fact, a sophisticated reality. It has undergone, without a shadow of doubt, a long course of research, creation and innovation, and because of that, it stands where it is now.

– by Samiksha Goel of NewsGram. Twitter @goel_samiksha

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Actor Anupam Kher Says That Cinema And Politics Cannot Be Separated

"The Accidental Prime Minister" is slated to release on January 11

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National Award winning actor Anupam Kher, who essays the character of former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in “The Accidental Prime Minister”, says cinema and politics cannot be separated since one reflects the other.

The film, even before its release, has grabbed a lot of eyeballs and faced criticism for the projection of its central character and for being timed to hit the screens before the 2019 general elections.

Anupam told IANS: “Look, when the audience is going to the theatre to watch a film, they are regular cine-goers and movie lovers. They are not entering the hall as a voter.

“But yes, when they come out, the film might linger in their mind. But then, cinema and politics cannot be separated, because they are a reflection of each other.”

The actor further said: “A filmmaker or an artiste really cannot figure out why people are voting for a political party. Some voters are loyalists; some are making a list of good and bad to choose a party and the government. How much can a film could contribute to that?

“Having said that, I personally believe that when people go to vote for choosing a government, they do not decide anything based on the impact of a film.”

The movie is based on an eponymous book which was released during the 2014 elections when the political transformation happened and the nation voted the Bharatiya Janata Party government over the Congress-led UPA government.

Does the film intend to influence the voters to form an opinion on the Congress party by showing Singh in a critical light?

“It is ridiculous to say that people choose a political party and a change happened in the government because of Sanjay Baru’s book! Similarly, it would be silly to say that this film will change the result of the election this year,” replied the 63-year-old actor.

Anupam Kher
Cinema, politics can’t be separated: Anupam Kher, flickr

Directed by Vijay Ratnakar Gutte, the film also features Akshaye Khanna, Aahana Kumra and Arjun Mathur.

The book gives an insight of the Prime Minister Office (PMO) as well as the personal journey of Singh. And the film’s trailer gives a glimpse how the narrative will emphasise on the contradiction and difference of opinion between the PM and the Congress Party, especially its then president Sonia Gandhi.

In fact, such elements in the book also received some criticism in 2014.

Asked if highlighting on the conflict between the former PM and Congress party president is the core content of the film, Anupam said: “No, no, the story is a very humane tale of a man, who was born into a middle-class family and with his merit, he excelled and became a Prime Minister.

“He is a man with all heart, a true patriot, well read, humble man who went through a huge struggle and felt vulnerable as a Prime Minister of the country.”

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Commenting on the party president and PM conflict, the actor added: “It was never a secret. It was rather an open secret that has come out. It was there in the book as well!

“Everyone knew that he was chosen to become a Prime Minister by the Congress party and he was the least expected candidate. Our film is shown from the point of view of a media advisor in the PMO.

“It would be appreciated if audiences watch the film, as a story.”

“The Accidental Prime Minister” is slated to release on January 11. (IANS)