If we go through the history of Indian cinema, we will get a lot of unforgettable names that are evergreen. Within those, there are names of directors who have created films which will be considered as cults forever. The point here is that time was different then, and technology was not like it is now. But they still did what they did and succeeded. They lived their passion. Let’s remember some of them who have gifted gems to the Indian cinema at its initial stage.
Pramathesh Chandra Barua was a famous actor, director, and screenwriter of Indian films in the pre-independence era. Barua made a small investment in Dhirendra Nath Ganguly’s Indo British Film Co. and also worked for him as an actor. After that, he established Barua Pictures Limited. Barua directed cults like ‘Devdas’ in 1935, ‘Manzil’ in 1936, and ‘Adhikar’ in 1938. However, ‘Zindagi’ was the film that brought him to the limelight in the 40s.
Films like ‘Bandhan’ and ‘Azad’ were among his best directions. He began as an employee of the East India Film Company in Kolkata in 1934, one of the first sound film studios in India. Being one of the best directors during 1940s and mid-50s, Acharya directed films most of which became his best works in the Indian cinema.
Chandulal Jesangbhai Shah was a famous director, producer, and screenwriter of Indian films, who founded Ranjit Studios in 1929. The first film independently directed by him was Typist Girl in 1926 starring Sulochana and Gohar which was made only in 17 days. Shah directed films like ‘Achhut’, ‘Papi’, ‘Barrister's Wife’, and ‘Pardesi Pankhi’ which became super hit in the 40s and 50s.
Abdur Rashid Kardar was not only a famous director of that time but also got popularity as an actor and a producer. Though Kardar entered as an actor in the industry with the film ‘The Daughters of Today’; ‘Nai Duniya’, ‘Sharda’, ‘Kanoon’, and ‘Sanjog’ are the films directed by him the 40s established him as a great director in Bollywood.
He was one of the top directors and actors in the Indian cinema and well-known for his innovative use of sound and music. Bose started his own production company, Debaki Productions, in 1945 and during this period he directed films like ‘Meghdoot’, ‘Krishna Leela’, ‘Alakananda’, and ‘Chandrashekhar’ which made his work famous in the industry. Many of the Bengali films made by him were also released in Hindi and even in Marathi and Tamil.
Mehboob Khan is best known for directing the social epic ‘Mother India’ in 1957 which won the Filmfare Awards in the categories of Best Film and Best Direction. The film was also a nominee for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. During his career in the Indian Film Industry, Mehboob directed films like ‘Aan’, ‘Amar’, and ‘Andaz’ which made him one of the most popular directors of 50s.
He was the recipient of Dadasaheb Phalke Award which is the most prestigious award in the Indian Film Industry. Bhalji started his career in the era of silent films. He was associated with Prabhat Film Company's earliest talkies. Later he acquired his own studio ‘Jayprabha’ and gifted some cult films to the industry like, ‘Netaji Palkar’, ‘Chhatrapati Shivaji’, ‘Rani Rupmati’, etc.
He joined Ranjit Film Industry in 1929 and ever since he has worked on various films that are still considered some of the bests in the 1940s. ‘Toofani Toli’, ‘Tansen’, ‘Har Har Mahadev’, ‘Amber’, are some of those works that showed his capabilities as a director of that time.
These men have not only made Indian cinema special but have set the example of hard work and loving what you do. No matter how far Bollywood goes in the future, it will always stay connected to its strong base that these directors have created.