1991: Of Super-Hits & Stars


Jumma chumma reigned alongside Henna and Nadeem-Shravan hits, Madhuri Dixit and Sridevi reigned even as their challengers appeared. And yes, we saw the emergence of future comedy Czars Akshay Kumar and Ajay Devgan. Welcome to 1991, a year of blockbusters, chartbusters and new stars.

Box-office bounty and more

Saajan, a romantic triangle directed by cinematographer Lawrence D'Souza, Saawan Kumar's love story Sanam Bewafa, and Kuku Kohli's action drama Phool Aur Kaante topped the box-office. And the year was also studded with other major hits like Saudagar, Henna, Hum, Sadak, Dil Hai Ke Manta Nahin, Izzat and Prem Quaidi.

The many other successes included 100 Days, Narsimha, Ramgarh Ke Sholay (a spoofy C-grade version of Sholay that surprisingly proved a success), Kurbaan, Ajooba, Akayla, Indrajeet (all three with Amitabh Bachchan), Phool Bane Angaray, Prahaar (Nana Patekar's directorial debut) and Maa.

The parallel cinema saw Mira Nair's Missisippi Masala, Tapan Sinha's Ek Doctor Ki Maut and Govind Nihalani's Dimple Kapadia-driven Dhristi. For a year, Nana Patekar became the high-priest of this genre with Amol Palekar's Thodasa Roomani Ho Jaayen, Sai Paranjpye's Disha and Arun Kaul's Diksha.

Two very interesting films from the South, D.Rama Naidu's Mayor Saab starring Kamal Haasan and Mani Ratnam's Anjali, were also critically appreciated.

The milestones

* Saajan: Nothing was path-breaking in this film. But the huge draw came from Nadeem-Shravan's music, Salman Khan who was riding high on the success of Maine Pyar Kiya and Madhuri Dixit. This romantic triangle where the underdog (Sanjay Dutt) gets the girl connected big-time and went in for a 50-week run.

* Sanam Bewafa: Another Golden Jubilee for Salman Khan this year, this film was inspired from a Pakistani movie and was a love story between offsprings of two warring Pathan families. The heroines did not make it big but the film did, and Saawan Kumar has never delivered a super-hit since.

... contd.


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