B. R. Chopra

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B. R. Chopra
Baldev Raj Chopra 2013 stamp of India.jpg
Chopra on a 2013 stamp of India
Born
Baldev Raj Chopra

(1914-04-22)22 April 1914
Died05 November 2008 (2008-11-06) (aged 94)
Nationality India
OccupationFilm producer
Film director
Years active1944–2006
Spouse(s)Prakash Chopra
Children3, including Ravi Chopra
RelativesSee Chopra-Johar family
Honours

Baldev Raj Chopra (22 April 1914 – 05 November 2008)[1] was an Indian film director and film producer who worked in Bollywood movies and television serials. Best known for directing Hindi films like Naya Daur (1957), Sadhna (1958), Kanoon (1961), Gumrah (1963), Humraaz (1967), Insaaf Ka Tarazu (1980), Nikaah (1982), Awam (1987), and the producer of TV series, Mahabharat in 1988,[2] he was awarded the Dadasaheb Phalke Award in 1998.[3]

His younger brother Yash Chopra, son Ravi Chopra and nephew Aditya Chopra are also film directors and producers in the Bollywood industry. His nephew Uday Chopra is an actor and film producer.

Biography[edit]

Chopra was born on 22 April 1914 in Rahon, Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar district (formerly Nawanshahr district) to Vilayati Raj Chopra, an employee of the PWD. He later shifted to Lahore. He was the second of several siblings; his youngest brother was filmmaker Yash Chopra.[4]

Chopra received an M.A. in English literature from University of the Punjab in Lahore. He started his career in 1944 as a film journalist with Cine Herald, a film-monthly published in Lahore, he later took over the magazine and ran it until 1947.[5] In the same year, he launched a film with a story by I. S. Johar, Chandni Chowk. Naeem Hashmi was hero of this movie and Erika Rukhshi was the heroine. Just as the production of film was to start, riots broke out in Lahore and he and his family had to flee from the city. After the partition of India into India and Pakistan in 1947, he moved to Delhi. He later moved to Mumbai, where his first production, Karwat, began in 1948, though it turned out to be a flop. His first film as a director, Afsana, was released in 1951 and featured Ashok Kumar in a double role – the film was a hit and established his name in Bollywood. Chopra made Chandni Chowk, with Meena Kumari as a lead, in 1954. In 1955, Chopra formed his own production house, B.R Films. His first movie for this production house was Ek Hi Raasta which was highly successful. He followed it up with Naya Daur (1957) starring Dilip Kumar and Vyjayantimala Bali, the film became a golden jubilee hit. His subsequent releases like Kanoon, Gumrah, Humraaz were major hits in the sixties. In 1963, he was a member of the jury at the 13th Berlin International Film Festival.[6] His second film with actor Dilip Kumar was Dastaan which became a flop in 1972.

He directed successful film across genres after 1972, with films like suspense thriller Dhund, drama Karma (1977), comedy film Pati Patni Aur Woh, crime film in Insaaf Ka Tarazu, Muslim social in Nikaah and the political thriller Awam.

He was the producer for the films Dhool Ka Phool, Waqt, Aadmi Aur Insaan and Ittefaq directed by his younger brother Yash Chopra, and he also produced The Burning Train, Aaj Ki Awaaz, Mazdoor, Baghban, Baabul, Bhootnath which were directed by Ravi Chopra.

Chopra was instrumental in developing the career of singer Mahendra Kapoor, whom he employed in most of his movies. (Director-producer Yash Chopra cast Mahendra Kapoor's son in Faasle.) One prominent thing about B. R. Chopra is the relatively low number of songs sung by Lata Mangeshkar and Mohammed Rafi in his films, with Asha Bhosle and Mahendra Kapoor being his preferred singers. The reason behind this was never revealed by him or the singers. Incidentally, both Chopra and Kapoor died within a gap of little longer than a month in 2008, with the latter dying first.

Chopra forayed into television with Mahabharat, one of the most successful TV serials in Indian television history, where Nitish Bharadwaj played the role of Krishna and this was co-directed by him with his son. He also produced TV Series on Bahadur Shah Zafar, Kanoon (1993), Aap Beeti, Vishnu Puran (2000) and Maa Shakti. He produced films like Baghbhan, Babul and Bhootnath, after 2000.

He died in Mumbai at the age of 94 on 5 November 2008,[7] survived by his son, Ravi Chopra, and two daughters Shashi and Bina.[8]

Awards[edit]

B. R. Chopra (sitting left) and Yash Chopra attending audio release of Naya Daur.
Civilian awards
National Film Awards
Filmfare Awards
Other Awards
  • 1998: Kalakar Awards for Lifetime Achievement[citation needed]
  • 2008: Phalke Ratna Award by the Dadasaheb Phalke Academy[12]

Filmography[edit]

Apraadhi Kon? (2006) No Yes TV Series
Year Title Director Producer Notes
1951 Afsana Yes Yes Directorial debut
1953 Shole Yes No
1954 Chandni Chowk Yes No
1956 Ek Hi Raasta Yes Yes First film under B.R. Films
1957 Naya Daur Yes Yes
1958 Sadhna Yes Yes Nominated – Filmfare Award for Best Film
1959 Dhool Ka Phool No Yes
1960 Kanoon Yes Yes
1961 Dharmputra No Yes National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Hindi
1963 Gumrah Yes Yes National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Hindi
1965 Waqt No Yes Nominated- Filmfare Award for Best Film
1967 Hamraaz Yes Yes
1969 Ittefaq No Yes
1970 Aadmi Aur Insaan No Yes
1972 Dastaan Yes Yes
1973 Dhund Yes Yes
1975 Zameer No Yes Directorial debut of Ravi Chopra
1976 Chhoti Si Baat No Yes Nominated- Filmfare Award for Best Film
1977 Karm Yes Yes
1978 Pati Patni Aur Woh Yes Yes
1980 The Burning Train No Yes
1980 Insaf Ka Tarazu Yes Yes Nominated- Filmfare Award for Best Film
1981 Agni Pareeksha No Yes
1982 Beta No Yes
1982 Nikaah Yes Yes Nominated- Filmfare Award for Best Film, Nominated- Filmfare Award for Best Director
1982 Teri Meri Kahani No Yes Telefilm
1983 Mazdoor No Yes
1983 Dharti Aakash No Yes Telefilm
1984 Aaj Ki Awaaz No Yes
1985 Ghazal No Yes
1985 Tawaif Yes No
1986 Kirayadar No Yes
1986 Dahleez No Yes
1987 Awam Yes Yes
1988 Mahabharat No Yes TV series
1991 Mahabharat katha TV Serial
1991 Pratigyabadh No Yes
1992 Kal Ki Awaz Yes Yes
1992 Sauda Yes Yes TV series
1993 Kanoon Yes No TV series
2000 Vishnu Puran No Yes TV series
2001–2002 Ramayan No Yes TV series
2001–2004 Aap Beeti No Yes TV series
2002–2003 Ma Shakti Yes Yes TV series
2003 Baghban No Yes Nominated- Filmfare Award for Best Film
2004 Kamini Damini No Yes TV series
2006–2007 Viraasat No Yes TV series
2006 Baabul No Yes
2008 Bhoothnath No Yes

References[edit]

  1. ^ Filmmaker B R Chopra passes away. Press Trust of India via NDTV. 5 November 2008
  2. ^ B.R.Chopra made socially relevant films The Hindu, 6 November 2008.
  3. ^ B.R. CHOPRA – Purposeful Film Maker – 30th Recipient – 1998 Archived 1 September 2009 at the Wayback Machine Dadasaheb Phalke Award.
  4. ^ Taliculam, Sharmila (4 April 1997). "And miles to go..." Rediff.com. Retrieved 29 October 2018.
  5. ^ Films transformed Chopra's destiny and vice-versa The Times of India, 6 November 2008.
  6. ^ "Berlinale: Juries". berlinale.de. Archived from the original on 29 March 2010. Retrieved 13 February 2010.
  7. ^ Filmmaker B.R. Chopra dead. Thaindian.com (5 November 2008). Retrieved on 2018-11-09.
  8. ^ Bollywood producer BR Chopra dies. BBC News, 5 November 2008.
  9. ^ "Padma Awards" (PDF). Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India. 2015. Archived from the original (PDF) on 15 November 2014. Retrieved 21 July 2015.
  10. ^ "8th National Film Awards". International Film Festival of India. Archived from the original on 23 November 2016. Retrieved 7 September 2011.
  11. ^ "9th National Film Awards". International Film Festival of India. Archived from the original on 2 December 2016. Retrieved 30 July 2012.
  12. ^ Apunkachoice Archived 1 October 2012 at the Wayback Machine

External links[edit]