You must have seen the making of Movie, Album, Documentary etc . . Have you ever wondered how the first movie was made? Just imagine when no one knew anything about the movie. When Movie (Moving pictures) was a new thing. When people were scared of moving pictures. Can you dare to do something which is unimaginable in your time? Dhundiraj Govind Phalke (Dada Saheb Phalke) did. He made the first full length motion picture.
Yeah yeah, you know all this. This post is not another review of Harishchandrachi Factory. (although you can read a nice review here) Its about what we can learn from the movie ( Dada Saheb Phalke, to be precise).
1. Don’t do the work you are not interested in: Phalke was a Photographer then Printing Business then Magician then a film maker. Just because he was restless with his job and its constraints.
2. There is no age constraint to find your interest/skill: Phalke made his first film at the age of 42!!!
3. Believe in yourself: People used to laugh at Phalke, used to call him mad, still he stuck to his dreams and rest is history.
4. Knowledge, research, training & Practice is must:
Knowledge of Motion Pictures by watching it many times
Research by reading books, asking help from the guys involved in it (The man in the projector room)
Training from the professionals (Going England to get trained and buy essential equipments) &
Practising by making movies(family, growing plant)
5. Having a clear goal: Phalke had a clear vision of starting a new industry of Motion Pictures in India. that lasted even when he was asked to make movies in Foreign countries
6. Hard work, perseverance: All the above are a waste if you don’t add hard work in to that. Phalke involved himself completely to make the movie
Going England by selling House, Jewellery
Searching for the actors to act in the movie (got the musician who was a road performer)
Going to extents such as asking sex-workers to act for the leading role, Giving training to the actors
Working even when his son was ill
7. Leadership, Having a good team: You may start alone but after some time you will need a team. Team makes your work easier by sharing the tasks.
Hard working Team members – Phalke’s Wife Saraswatibai, who helped him with developing, printing and camera
Skilled member – Phalke’s friend, getting his friend Tryambak Telang who knew photography very well, Phalke himself using tactic to make lord shiva appear magically in the frame
Team Management – When a actor complained that people laughed at him, suggesting, calling the movie as a factory, Convincing a actors father to let him shave his moustache, Convincing the Police that they are not decoits
Fun at work – Phalke always smiled & kept a light mood, which makes work less stressful
8. Analysis, Awareness, Marketing & Expansion: When for the first few days, film didn’t work well, Phalke analysed and-
Awareness : People were not aware of the Movie and thus awareness had to be developed
Marketing: He started spreading the word by distributing pamphlets of Raja Harishchandra, doing road shows
Expansion: Once the film was a stupendous hit, he took the film to have shows in Foreign countries thus getting ready to produce more movies
9. Sticking to the roots: However innovative you maybe, sticking to the roots is necessary
Selecting a story which the audience will like
When offered by foreigners to make movies there and for them, Phalke refused and said he wanted to make it a big industry in India
Besides these, the movie gave a big message to today’s Film makers too -
- Select a story which Audience likes
- It should reflect/relate/based on our culture (Indian thoughts, behaviour)
I made my best efforts to collate all the possible, if I missed out, some thing, or you noticed which I didn’t, do let me know.