Cinema is one of the industries that moves a lot of money in the world. Contrary to what you might think, India – and not Hollywood, is the country that produces more movies per year in the world. Regardless, Bollywood cinema (Hindu cinema) continues to be a great enigma for the average spectator, since it does not have the same promotion as the North American industry.

Bollywood, the cinema of dance

The Indian movies have nothing to do with the Americans. The storylines tell a love story between two or more characters. There are love affairs, love triangles, and so on. But the hallmarks are its music scenes. Every movie includes typical and traditional Indian dances and songs, mixed with Western pop choreographies. Certainly, it is a strange but incredible mix. The most curious thing is that the scenes are filmed without dialogs and then they are doubled (in India they speak up to 16 languages, so this is the simplest dubbing system).

In India the film industry is so important that their most famous actors are almost revered as gods. In fact, their songs are produced by great artists, both national and international: among the Asians are names like Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, and among the Westerners, British composer Andrew Lloyd Weber. The actors rarely really sing, but they produce a perfect playback. Usually soundtracks are released some months before the release of the movie. This way, the film’s premiere is always eagerly waited and everyone knows its songs.

The Bollywood dances, especially the older ones, are oriental dances: classical dances, dances of the northern courtesans of India (tawaif) or folk dances. In modern movies, the oriental dances are mixed with the western ones (like the dance routines on MTV or the Broadway musicals). The hero or heroine is often accompanied by a support group of dancers.

The fact is that Bollywood cinema is spreading like wildfire. Increasingly, it has gained more acceptance out of India and the films are shown more and more all over the world. In fact, outside the Indian borders, generations of countries like Nigeria, Egypt, Morocco, Senegal and Russia have grown up with the Bollywood cinema for years.

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