Archive for June 27th, 2012

June 27, 2012

Supermen of Malegaon (2008)

Malegaon is a struggling town about 300 km northeast of Mumbai, where the local industry is mostly powerloom weaving, poverty is rampant, and communal tension between Hindus and Muslims is constant. Like most places in India, the townspeople are crazy for cinema; but in this one some of them on the Muslim side of the river have taken that obsession a step further. A former video-parlor owner named Nasir Sheikh decided to make a parody of Sholay ten years ago called Malegaon Ke Sholay, armed only with a hand-held video camera, two VCR players for editing, and his considerable imagination. Gabbar Singh became Rubber Singh, and Basanti, Basmati. The famous train scene from that movie was changed to dacoits on bicycles trying to rob a bus. His friends and neighbors pitched in, and the film ran to appreciative audiences for weeks. The team went on to make localized spoofs of other hit films (Malegaon Ki Lagaan, Malegaon Ke Karan Arjun, Malegaon Ka Rangeela, etc.), and in 2007 decided to spread their wings and take on Hollywood—and Superman.

Mumbai-based director Faiza Ahmad Khan took a crew to film these entrepreneurs making their Malegaon Ka Superman and this absolutely delightful (and film festival award-winning) documentary is the result.

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