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Thursday, March 13, 2014
The biggest blockbusters of 1961.
The biggest Bollywood blockbusters of 1961.
1961 was an important transition phase in the history of Bollywood films in India. A number of Indians became coloured in that year like Junglee, the producers and directors started shooting in romantic landscapes and the music got modernized to every extent possible. In addition to the superstars Dilip Kumar and Raj Kapoor, new stars gave hits like Rajender Kumar, Shammi Kapoor, Joy Mukherjee, Biswajeet and others. Along with Vaijayantimala, Meena Kumari, the new comers created impression like Saira Banu, Sadhna, Nanda and others.
Junglee was the biggest blockbuster of 1961. It was produced and directed by Subodh Mukherjee. Shankar Jaikishan was the music director of the film. The story was related to an arrogant person Shammi Kapoor, who was ill-tempered and rude, who fell in love with an innocent girl Saira Banu who softened his character. The rock and roll image of Shammi Kapoor was created in the film Junglee which continued for the next 10 years. Shankar Jaikishan composed music in 22 films of Shammi Kapoor. The Rafi Shankar Jaikishan magic flabbergasted the music lovers of the country with songs like “meri yaar shabba khair”, “ehsan tera hoga mujhpar”, “yahoo, chahe koi mujhe jungle kahen”, “ai ai ya karoon me kya sukoo sukoo”. The list continues. Shashikala and Lalita Power also did well in the film.
Ganga Jumna was the second biggest blockbuster of 1961. Dilip Kumar was the uncrowned king of Bollywood films between 1940s to 1970s. Ganga Jumna was produced by Dilip Kumar and directed by Nitin Bose. Dilip Kumar was his brother Nisar Khan faced huge amount of oppression at the hands of the zamindars. So Dilip Kumar became a dacoit while his brother Nisar Khan became a police officer. Dilip Kumar loved Vaijayantimala who was killed at the end of the film. The music of Naushad Ali and the Naushad Shakeel Mohammd Rafi combination created magic again in Ganga Jumna. All the songs were super hit including the Bhojpuri style song “nain lad jai he o manwama kasak hoy bekari”. Even Lata’s songs “dhundho dhundo re saajna”, “do hanson kaa jora” became smash hits. Dilip Kumar Vaijayantimala pair rocked Bollywood at that time. All the films that acted before Ganga Jumna ended up being blockbusters including Naya Daur, Madhumati, Paigham. Ganga Jumna also received a number of awards. Vaijayantimala received the best actress award for her performance in the film. Ganga Jumna received the best film award in 1961. Nitin Bose received the best director award for Ganga Jumna.
Gharana was the third biggest blockbuster of 1961. It was a multi-starrer film directed by SS Vassan. Ravi composed the music of the film. It was a family story where the karta of the family Bipin Gupta did not have personality and his wife Lalita Power manipulated events in the house. So there was misunderstanding among the brothers and sisters in the house including Raj Kumar, Rajender Kumar, Shubha khote and others. Rajender Kumar married Asha Parekh and from that time there was peace in the house. At the end of the film Bipin Gupta showed his personality and over powered the dominance of Lalita Power. Ravi’s music was brilliant. He received the best music director award for his music in Gharana. Rafi’s songs “jab se tumhe dekha hai” and “husnwale tera jawab nahi” created magic. Raj Kumar and Rajender Kumar were elegant in their respective roles.
Aas Ka Panchi was the fourth biggest blockbuster of 1961. It was produced by J. Om Prakash and directed by Mohan Kumar. The music of the film was composed by Shankar Jaikishan. It was a film based on the ambition of young persons in joining the Indian army, navy and air force. Rajender Kumar did not want to join the clerical job that his father Nasir Hussain used to do. So he joined the Indian army. He loved Vaijayantimala who married him inspite of the hard days he faced. The music of Shankar Jaikishan was awesome. SJ gave chance to Bengali singer Subir Sen, who sang the hit song “dil mera ek aas ka panchi”. Mukesh and Lata’s song “tum ruthi raho” was also hit. Rajender Kumar gradually became jubilee kumar and majority of his films started doing business of more than 25 weeks in the following years. Bollywood was blessed with the superstar of his calibre who just gave hits after hits from 1957 to 1970. Vaijayantimala was at the top of her career in the early 1960s.
There were other critically acclaimed and good films released in 1961 like Raj Kapoor Vaijayantimala’s Nazrana, Balraj Sahani’s Kabuliwala, Rajender Kumar’s Sasural, Zindagi Aur Khwab, Dev Anand’s Hum Dono and Jab Pyar Kisi Se Hota Hai, Dharmender’s Shola Aur Shabnam and others. Among music directors still Shankar Jaikishan dominated Bollywood films. The artistic composers like Naushad Ali, Madanmohan Kohli, Roshanlal Nagrath, OP Nayyar were still at their top. The films and the music require restoration.