Remembering Baldev Raj Chopra, Hindi film industry’s legendary filmmaker and master of social filmmaking, on his 10th death anniversary today.
Baldev Raj Chopra, always known as BR Chopra, was one of the legendary figures of Hindi film industry. Whether making musicals or dramatic, socially conscious films he combined quality film-making with an ability to cater to popular taste.
The production banner, B.R. Films that Chopra launched in 1955, came to be respected for its sustained efforts to effect social change through meaningful cinema, without falling prey to the diktats of box-office.
In a career spanning six decades Chopra used the celluloid as a mean to transform society. Some of his hard-hitting revolutionary movies include Ek Hi Raasta (widow-remarriage), Naya Daur (Tug of war between man and machine), Dhool Ka Phool (illegitimate child born out of wedlock), Kanoon (Raised questions on Capital Punishment), Insaaf Ka Tarazu (Demanding stringent punishment for rapist) and above all Nikaah, in which he gave a tight slap to male chauvinist society putting across the message that a wife is the better half of a person and not an object to be gifted to others!
In his various roles as writer, producer and director, he made some 40 films. He also introduced his younger brother, Yash Chopra, into the industry.
He was among the first Bollywood biggies to realise the potential of television industry, with the long and successful dramatisation of the epic Mahabharat which captured the imagination of the entire nation.
In 1999 the Indian government conferred the prestigious Dada Saheb Phalke Award on Chopra for his contribution to Indian cinema.