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V Shantaram was the man who changed the Indian cinema with his work. Wikimedia Commons

By Ruchika Verma

  • V Shantaram was a veteran filmmaker
  • He was also an actor and recipient of many awards and achievements
  • He was one of the most prolific personalities in the history of Indian cinema

Shantaram Rajaram Vankudre, or popularly known as, V Shantaram or Shantaram Bapu, is hailed as a pioneer of Indian cinema. He was a successful Marathi film director, producer and actor whose career spanned over nearly 66 illustrious years.

A Google doodle in the memory of V Shantaram in the honour of his 116th birthday. Google

He is mostly known for introducing sound and colour to Indian cinema. V Shantaram before venturing into mainstream cinema used to work at Maharashtra Film Co., doing odd jobs. He debuted as an actor in 1921 in the silent movie, Surekha Haran.

This veteran filmmaker has achieved a lot during his long career. Here is all you need to know about the great man who changed the Indian Cinema, V Shantaram :

  • V Shantaram has shaped the history of Indian cinema by introducing sound and colour to the movies. He was born on 18th November 1901 in Kolhapur, Maharashtra and died at the age of 88 on 30th October 1990 in Mumbai, Maharashtra, India.
  • He started directing films at the age of 18, which included the famous Gopalkrishna in 1929.

Also Read: Indian art gaining worldwide recognition

Indian cinema wouldn’t have been the same without V Shantaram and his contributions towards it. Pixabay

  • V Shantaram, who was also famously known as Annasaheb, used cinema as an instrument to bring in social changes, advocate humanism and raise a voice against injustice.
  • He was also a supporter of strong female characters and women empowerment. One of his earlier films, ‘Kunku’ was about a young girl who is forced into a marriage with an older man and how she bravely protests against it. His film, ‘Manoos’ is the love story of a police officer and a prostitute.
  • When sound was introduced to the cinema in the 1930s, V Shantaram made the first bilingual film in the history of Indian cinema called ‘Ayodhyecha Raja’ or ‘Ayodhya Ka Raja’ in Hindi.

He introduced colour and music to Indian Cinema. Wikimedia Commons

  • V Shantaram was a multi-talented man. His interest also lied in music and he actively participated in the creation of music in his films. It is said that he also ‘ghost-wrote’ music for many of his music directors.
  • V Shantaram also had a long list of admirers, from veteran actor Rajesh Khanna to international star Charlie Chaplin who was a great fan of his film, ‘Manoos’.

Also Read: Indian Diaspora: Dissecting the incredible

  • V Shantaram was recipient of many awards and honors, he was bestowed with the Dadasaheb Phalke Lifetime Achievement Award in 1985 and received the prestigious Padma Vibhushan in 1992. He won the National Film Awards and also the President’s Gold Medal. His movies were also screenedin many international film festivals. He also received nominations in the Golden Globe Awards.

A still from his famous movie, ‘Shakuntala.’ Wikimedia Commons

  • His 1942 movie, ‘Shakuntala’ ran for 104 weeks in Mumbai.
  • His personal life is also very interesting, he had three wives. He was one of the first men who took divorce after it became legal in 1956.


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