Film buffs have a reason to rejoice, as a private museum depicting rare pictures, posters, songs and booklets of old films from Indian cinema is in the pipeline in the city. US-based NRI Jayant Kulkarni and his wife Veena have put together their private collection of extraordinary old movie pictures and music records, and film research scholar Sulbha Ternikar, who is taking a keen interest in the initiative, is assisting them in the endeavour.
Although the location for the museum is not yet fixed, an area in Sahakarnagar is being considered.
100th yr of cinema
The project coincides with the ongoing celebrations of the centenary year of Indian cinema, and Kulkarni and Ternikar are hoping their museum is up and running before the end of the centenary year. Earlier, Kulkarni had exhibited some of this collection at Pt Bhimsen Joshi Art Gallery, kick-starting hundredth year celebrations of Indian cinema few months ago.
Kulkarni, who has over 2,000 rare pictures of Indian cinema and similarly over 4,000 music records, had previously worked at the art department of ‘Star and Style’ magazine in Mumbai. During his time there, he came across many legendary artists and singers from Bollywood.
During his recent visit to the city, Kulkarni said, “Luckily, I could lay my hands on rare original pictures of classic films like Kamal Amrohi’s Pakeezah, Mehboob’s Mughal-e-Azam, Guru Dutt’s Pyasa and Raj Kapoor’s Awara and many other films. In addition, I had also developed a habit of purchasing scratch free rare music records while in Columbia.”
Putting it together
Sulbha Ternikar, who supported the idea since its inception, has already started preliminary work of putting together the entire project.
“Kulkarni has digitised his entire collection and handed it over to me. He has already made hard copies of the pictures for the museum. We are using that material by making positive prints. The work has already begun and we are planning to complete the work and are hopeful of inaugurating the museum before the completion of the centenary year,” said Ternikar. “This collection will help film scholars and those who want to write on films and its different dimensions,” she said. “Those who want to donate material from their private collections are most welcome. We assure them it will be preserv
ed and used for public benefit only.”
Aarti Karkhanis, librarian and assistant research officer with the National Film Archive of India (NFAI), said, “A permanent museum of film documents is the need of the hour. There are many good film photos, and collectors should come together under one umbrella in this intiative.”