What Is Bollywood

Bollywood is the popular and an informal name given to the Hindi film industry of India which is based out of Mumbai, erstwhile Bombay; hence the name.

 The term Bollywood was coined sometimes in the 1970’s when Indian Hindi film industry surpassed Hollywood in the number of films produced. Bollywood comes from Bombay, which is the place where Hindi film industry is located and Hollywood, centre of U.S. film industry. While Hollywood is a district in Los Angeles, USA; Mumbai has no such place as Bollywood. According to Oxford English Dictionary, the term Bollywood was coined by a popular crime writer Henry R. Fitzwalter Keating in his 1976 novel. However this claim has been challenged by an Indian film journalist Bevinda Collaco, who claims, it was she who coined the term.

 The name Bollywood could have been inspired by Tollywood which is the film industry of West Bengal, India and Tollygunge in Calcutta was the centre of Indian film industry in 1930s. It is wrong to presume that Bollywood means Indian cinema because there many other film industries in India which produce films in numerous regional languages though the Hindi film industry or Bollywood produces the maximum number of films in India. Today, Bollywood produces not less than 1000 films per year,  

History of Bollywood goes back to the year 1896, when a short film by Lumiere Brothers was released. It was only in the year 1913 that first silent movie, Raja Harishchandra, directed by Dadasaheb Phalke was released. 

There are millions of movie enthusiasts in India whose primary source of entertainment is through movies. Earlier, most of the Bollywood movies made were approximately 3 hours long, featured a number of song and dance sequences and were full of drama, romance, and action. Most of the movies were escapists but there have been few which have tackled social issues and everyday struggles of a normal man.

But over the years, Bollywood industry has undergone tremendous change and Hollywood influence can be seen in terms of script writing and film making. Now days the dialogues are increasingly in Indian English; there are lesser songs and duration is short, sometimes less than 2 hours. The movie production costs have increased, owing to the demand from audiences who are exposed to technologically superior Hollywood movies. The movies are now shot in exotic locales, with special effects. The Bollywood actors are highly paid; most prominent among them are Amitabh Bachchan, Shah Rukh Khan, Aamir Khan, Aishwarya Rai, and Hrithik Roshan which have a huge fan base outside India.

Innovative stories, use of special effects, animation, and various other technical advances has started a new era of Bollywood since the year 2000.