Highlights: Patrons watch Mera Naam Joker, Sangam on the last day of Delhi’s Regal theatre
Delhi’s iconic regal cinema will be shut down for renovation after the final show of Mera Naam Joker and Sangam. All the seats have been booked by patrons to catch the last day, last show at the city’s oldest single-screen theatre.delhi Updated: Mar 31, 2017 01:31 IST
Regal Theatre, the 85-year-old iconic cinema in the heart of Delhi, will shut its doors to moviegoers on Thursday.
A monument to the city’s cinematic history, its social and culture life, the Connaught Place theatre is screening Raj Kapoor’s Mera Naam Joker and Sangam on its last day. A favourite of Kapoor, it hosted premieres of several films released under RK films, including Sangam that released in 1964 and Mera Naam Joker, first screened in 1970.
Known as the New Delhi Premier Theatre in its early days, it opened in 1932 and was the city’s biggest and grandest theatre, a venue for ballets, plays and talkies. It was also the most sought-after theatre for red carpet premiers of both Hollywood and Bollywood movies.
The theatre that once had Viceroy Lord Mountbatten and Jawaharlal Nehru among its famous patrons may return as a multiplex with four auditoria.
The hall that has 154 balcony seats, 285 rear seats, 40 boxes and 179 front seats drew a houseful for both the shows at 6pm and 9pm.
Our correspondent joins those at the historic cinema that is screening movies one last time.
Watch this space for live updates from the theatre.
1:25am: Patrons get together to sing ‘Jeena Yaha Marna Yaha’ song from the movie Mera Naam Joker inside the theatre before it shuts its doors on the last day.
1:10am: Regal Theatre takes a bow amid cheers and whistles as its last show comes to an end.
12:23am: The chartbuster ‘Dost Dost Na Raha’ by legendary playback singer Mukesh plays on screen, bringing back sweet memories attached with the movie Sangam.
12:00am: Sangam screening resumes after a break.
11:35pm: Regal’s food counter staff tells HT, “Last time there were so many people here was during Dangal. We rarely see this kind of crowd.”
11:25pm: People take a break during the first intermission of Sangam, click photos to keep the memories alive.
10:15pm: Sangam, another Raj Kapoor film, being screened as people clap and sing along.
9:00pm: Screening of Mera Naam Joker ends to make way for the last movie ever at Regal Cinema Hall - Sangam.
7:50pm: It’s intermission at the Regal Cinema Hall, which is screening for the last time, Mera Naam Joker.
6:28pm: A young Rishi Kapoor comes on screen
6:15pm: And the show begins. Most seats have been taken inside Regal’s theatre, save a for a few rows up front
5:30pm: Our correspondent Ritam Halder is at Regal cinema