Wednesday October 24, 2018

Guru Dutt classic ‘Pyaasa’ selected for Venice Film Festival

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Mumbai: The legendary Guru Dutt’s immortal classic “Pyaasa” is the only Indian movie restored by an Indian company that will premiere in the competition sector of the upcoming 72nd Venice Film Festival, a top official said here on Wednesday.

A team of 45 experts of Ultra Media & Entertainment Pvt. Ltd worked round-the-clock for over four months to restore the movie to its original quality and make it ready for a global audience.

“Pyaasa” will now compete with 20 other restored classic movies from all over the world for the prestigious ‘Venice Classics Award’ for Best Restored Film, said Ultra Media & Entertainment Pvt. Ltd.’ CEO, Sushilkumar Agrawal.

The 1957 black-and-white cult movie, starring Guru Dutt, Waheeda Rehman and Mala Sinha, with Rehman, Johny Walker, Mehmood and Tun Tun, will be screened on September 11 and 12 at the Sala Volpi Auditorium in Venice, during the festival scheduled between Sep. 02-12.

“Ultra Media & Entertainment, who are the negative rights owners of ‘Pyaasaa’, have restored this film completely for the grand occasion with an objective of preserving and presenting it in its original quality to the global audience. It is one of the rarest gems of Indian cinema,” Agrawal told a media outlet.

The most challenging part after acquiring the rights was sourcing the authentic material to complete the preservation. After lot of efforts, the company managed to recover the original camera negatives of “Pyaasa” at an archive in India, but many parts in it were either damaged or lost, he explained.

Undeterred, the company used as many parts as possible from the original Camera Negative and a few parts were used from 35mm prints.

A new digital transfer was created in 2K resolution on the ARRISCAN film scanner, an in-house technology of the company which helped in applying a multidisciplinary, data-centric approach to the entire film’s restoration process.

Once the complete film was digitally transferred, came the most challenging part of restoration in which thousands of instances of dirt, lines, scratches, splices, warps, jitters and green patches were manually removed frame by frame.

The in-house talented professionals used a specialized film content mending and defect removal mechanism in their repair process, carefully selecting the best way to restore the priceless classic to its original quality.

Out of the many classics restored by the company, “Pyaasa” always had pride of special place and the restored version has already created a significant buzz with distribution inquiries pouring in from all over the world, Agrawal added.

Buoyed by this, the company is planning a major theatrical re-release of “Pyaasa” after the competitive screening in Venice next month.

Besides the two screenings at the festival venue, Ultra Media & Entertainment plans to promote and market it during the fest, and expects a huge demand from international distributors, sales agents, ancillary content aggregators and exhibitors for the restored version.

Produced and directed by the late Guru Dutt, “Pyaasa” is a beautiful lament of an unemployed young man who tried to carve a niche for himself as a poet in society after he is disowned by his family, but encounters rejection at every step.

Penned by Abrar Alvi and cinematographed by the veteran V. K. Murthy, the movie has music by S. D. Burman, lyrics by Sahir Ludhianvi and several masterpieces rendered by Mohammed Rafi, Geeta Dutt and Hemant Kumar.

Some of its haunting numbers include: “Yeh duniya agar mil bhi jaaye to kya hai,’ “Jaane kya tune kahi” and “Jaane wo kaise log the…’

Besides “Pyaasa”, the company has restored other classics like “Dil Tera Deewana”, “Chori Chori”, “Half Ticket”, “Paigham” and “Insaniyat”.

(IANS)

 

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Amritsar Train Tragedy Leaves Bollywood Industry in Shock

Here's how the celebrities reacted:

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Anil Kapoor, Amritsar
Amritsar train tragedy: Bollywood shocked, calls for better safety. Twitter

The deplorable train tragedy in Amritsar in which 60 people were crushed to death and several others injured, brings the focus to how safety in public places needs to be taken more seriously in the country, say Bollywood celebrities who have sent out prayers for the victims.

The film fraternity expressed shock over the incident which took place on the festival of Dussehra on Friday. A 700 strong crowd was watching a huge Ravana effigy go up in flames amid exploding crackers when on the Joda Phatak track near Dhobi Ghat the Jalandhar-Amritsar DMU passenger train heading to Hoshiarpur from Amritsar came hurtling down around 7 p.m.

In just 10-15 seconds, it left behind a heap of crushed and dismembered bodies.

Here’s how the celebrities reacted:

Farhan Akhtar: Saddened to hear about the loss of life in Amritsar. Safety in public spaces has to be taken a lot more seriously. Deepest condolences to all families affected by this tragedy.

Alia Bhatt
Alia Bhatt. Wikimedia Commons

Anil Kapoor: A tragic incident that could have been avoided if only. Sending my thoughts and prayers to the families of the deceased and wishing a speedy recovery for the ones injured.

Alia Bhatt: The Amritsar train accident is heartbreaking. Terrible thing to have happened. This is just another example our extremely poor attitude towards caution and safety. Prayers for all those suffering.

Also Read- Microblogging Site Twitter Releases Tweets Linked to Russia, Iran

Shekhar Kapur: Absolutely horrific tragedy. Heart goes to the kin of those that dies and injured. Let’s not politicise this tragic event that has left more than 60 dead and huge numbers seriously injured… obviously there will be an inquiry later.

Diana Penty: Absolutely shocked at hearing the news of the train accident in Amritsar. I just cannot fathom how something like this could have happened. My deepest condolences to all the families that have lost their loved ones. Love and prayers. (IANS)