Cinema: Past & Future at one Place

Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated India’s first cinema museum in Mumbai.

Next time when you are in Mumbai, make sure to visit the National Museum of Indian cinema (NMIC) in Peddar Road.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated India’s first cinema museum in Mumbai. Talking about NMIC, Modi said that it showcases the multi-faceted aspects of the film industry, its rich tradition and the struggles the people have undergone in making movies. It will serve as an opportunity for the younger generation to understand several aspects of films and film-making.

Speaking about the two buildings in which the museum is  housed, the PM said that while Gulshan Mahal speaks about our history, the ultra-modern New Museum Building is a testament to our vision for the future.

The National Museum of Indian Cinema is a ready-reckoner of the history of Indian cinema showcasing technological aspects of production and screening of films, as well as its social aspects of more than 100 years.

Through its interactive galleries, it traces the evolution of celluloid from the Lumiere Brothers, Raja Harishchandra onwards, and showcase Indian cinema in three stages – silent era, golden era and the modern era. It portrays the footsteps taken by Indian cinema, from the period of silent films to the studio period, and then recreate the times when stars and mega stars dominated the silver screen.

Visitors can also watch clips of old classics on a number of monitors or listen to rare film music from the past. There is also an interesting collection of posters of landmark movies from   across India. A Section on cinemas from all parts of India are on display.

Many famous studios of yesteryears like Mehboob Studios, RK Studios and Prasad Studios have donated equipment to the museum. Some private collectors too have come forward to donate items. The Films Division has also displayed old Eymo and Mitchel cameras, recording equipment etc. from its collection. Also of interest are some even older instruments that created an illusion of movement, which were precursor to the movie camera.

The New Museum Building has four Exhibition Halls which encapsulate:

  • Gandhi & Cinema: It not only depicts the movies made on the life Mahatma Gandhi but also showcases the deep impact his life had on cinema.
  • Children’s Film Studio: It gives visitors, particularly children, an opportunity to explore the science, technology and art behind filmmaking. It offers hands on experience on various facets associated with making cinema like camera, light, shooting, experience of acting, etc. – presented in an interactive format. The exhibits displayed include chroma studio, immersive experience zone, stop-motion animation studio, virtual makeover studio, etc.
  • Technology, creativity & Indian cinema: It showcases the creative use of technology by Indian filmmakers over the years to produce cinematographic impact on the silver screen.
  • Cinema across India: it showcases the charismatic as part of the NMIC project. The displays present here showcase the journey of over a hundred years of Indian cinema. It is divided into 9 sections viz. The Origin of Cinema, Cinema comes to India, Indian Silent Film, Advent of Sound, The Studio Era, The impact of World War II, Creative Resonance, New Wave and Beyond and Regional Cinema.


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