Cine bigs dig into Bhojpuri pockets?
WHEN LUCKNOW girl Madhurima Tiwari declared her intentions to turn producer and churn out Bhojpuri films, the obvious question was “why Bhojpuri?”
She replied, “Because it’s the boom time for Bhojpuri films.” Madhurima apparently had done proper homework.
For, Bollywood too is learning to speak Bhojpuri these days. Big stars, like Amitabh Bachchan, his son Abhishek, Ajay Devgan, Suman Rangnathan and famed producer-directors like Subhash Ghai all are turning to Bhojpuri films.
Asha Bhonsle too broke her silence after 20 years in Bhojpuri when she agreed to sing for Nehiya Sanehiya after being persuaded by city based music director, Kewal Kumar.
The turnaround, came after the phenomenal success of two Bhojpuri films, Daroga Babu I Love You and Sasura Bada Paisewala which did better business in Bhojpuri speaking regions of UP and Bihar overtaking the Amitabh Bachchan starrer Bunty aur Babli.
The success of these films didn’t go unnoticed in the valley of dream merchants where the first Bhojpuri film Awards were held recently with some of the prominent names like Dilip Kumar, Saira Banu, Govinda etc taking part in it.
“When the shooting of Nehiya Sanehiya started in Shivgarh Estates, near Bachrawan, recently, a large crowd turned up to watch the shooting of the films. You had to see the enthusiasm of the people to believe how popular Bhojpuri films are becoming now,” said Kewal Kumar, movie’s music director while talking to HT Live.
Due to the extensive migration of people from those regions of Bihar and UP where Bhojpuri is spoken to other states of the country as well as in countries like Guyana, Surinam, Fiji, Trinidad & Tobago and Mauritius, the market for Bhojpuri films is now suddenly looking rosy.
According to an estimate India has 25 million people speaking the language, with neighbouring Nepal and Mauritius alone having approximately 3,00,000 speakers of the language.
The saga of Bhojpuri films in the tinsel world covers four decades of creativity, essentially focusing villages and the traditional aspects of the society being made for niche target audience. Says Kumar, “The first Bhojpuri movie was Ganga Maiyya Tohe Piyari Charaihbo released in 1961 by Vishwanath Shahabadi. Since, the journey has been quite fulfilling, with better and innovative story ideas.”
Says Tahir, a Mumbai based producer who is making a Bhojpuri film, “With most of the Bollywood films revolving around the urban and upper middle class, the rural backdrop of Bhojpuri movies is what many are finding different and refreshing.”
Also, “the rural charm and traditional values portrayed in most Bhojpuri movies is a hit with migrants who find these movies nostalgic.”
And most importantly as Madhurima says, “Now, talented people from UP and Bihar who otherwise had to struggle to make their presence felt in Bollywood are fast discovering that Bhojpuri films have provided them with a better alternative.”
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