Shree Pundalik

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Shree Pundalik
Advertisement in The Times of India of 25 May 1912 announcing the screening of the first feature film of India, Pundalik, by Dadasaheb Torne
Directed by Dadasaheb Torne
Produced by Dadasaheb Torne
Release dates
  • 18 May 1912 (1912-05-18) (India)
Country India
Language Silent

Shree Pundalik, which was released on 18 May 1912 at the Coronation Cinematograph, Girgaum, Mumbai, is one of the candidates for the first Indian film. Shree Pundalik was produced and directed by Dadasaheb Torne.


Pundalik was a silent film without dialogue. Torne and his colleagues Nanasaheb Chitre and Ramrao Kirtikar wrote the shooting script.

Shree Pundalik was sent overseas for processing by Dadasaheb Torne. Torne's Pundalik was about 1,500 feet or about 22 minutes long. The film had a shooting script, was shot with a camera, and its negatives were sent to London for processing. Positives were produced and finally released at Coronation Cinematograph, Girgaum. The film ran for two weeks.[1]

Debates about the film[edit]

Some have argued that Pundalik does not deserve the honour of being called the first Indian film because it was a photographic recording of a popular Marathi play, and because the cameraman—a man named Johnson—was a British national and the film was processed in London.[1][2] Detractors argue that Dadasaheb Phalke’s Raja Harishchandra, which was released nearly a year later, is more deserving of the title of the first Indian film.[1]


Shree Pundalik celebrated its centennial on 18 May 2012.