Film historian turns collection to ‘Bollywood in Posters’

June 13, 2009

Macau, Mumbai-based film historian S.M.M. Ausaja, who has been passionately collecting rare Bollywood posters for 20 years now, finally handpicked 200 of them for his book “Bollywood In Posters”.

The book was launched by megastar Amitabh Bachchan at the ongoing International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) weekend.

“I started collecting posters of Amitabh Bachchan’s films over 20 years back around the 1980s. That’s how the passion began and soon enough I started expanding my collection by collecting posters of classics. Now I have over 5,000 posters,” Ausaja told IANS here.

Ausaja, who hails from Lucknow, said he had two options to share his collection with the masses – either to showcase them at an exhibition or to convert them into a book. He chose to bring out a book.

“Beyond a point, I didn’t know what to do with the posters till one day I thought that I should either put up an exhibition or compile a few into a book. I discussed the idea with Amitabh Bachchan and he gave me tremendous support for turning some of the best posters into a book,” he said.

According to Ausaja, though choosing the select 200 posters to include in his book was a difficult task, he picked them on two criterion – creativity and performances that a film had.

The oldest film’s poster to feature in Ausaja’s book is “Alam Ara”, which is India’s first talkie film and dates back to 1931.

Asked about how he preserves his collection of such old posters, Ausaja said: “I have a huge personal archive of these and I preserve them in rolls. I have cupboards and cupboards in my house and that’s where I store them.”

The book will hit stands in July with 5,000 copies in India.





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