Coronation Cinema

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Coronation Cinematograph and variety hall was a hall in the Girgaon area of south Mumbai, India used for variety entertainment shows, dramas and to screen movies.[1]

The first Indian movie Raja Harischandra was screened here, thus heralding the birth of the Indian film industry.[2]

Location and ownership[edit]

Coronation cinema, built in 1912 was located at Narayan chawl[3] at the junctions of Sandhurst road and Khetwadi road[4][5] in the Girgaum area of Mumbai.[6] It was one of the so-called "Sandhurst road cinemas" of the 1910-1917 Bombay cinema era, during which this area hosted a number of cinema houses including Coronation, the American-India, the Olympia and the New Alhambra.[7] The theatre was managed by Narayan Govind Chitre,[8] a friend of the film maker Dadasaheb Torne.[9]

The screening of Raja Harischandra[edit]

Further information : Raja Harischandra (Movie)

On 3 May 1913 Raja Harishchandra (राजा हरिश्चंद्र), a silent Indian film directed and produced by Dadasaheb Phalke, was screened at Coronation cinema. The film was based on the legend of King Harishchandra, recounted in Ramayana and Mahabharata and was the first Indigenous Indian film.

Other screenings and purposes of Coronation Cinema[edit]

Coronation cinema was also used for other variety entertainment shows such as dances (by Miss Irene Delmar), comical sketches like "The McClements", jugglery shows by Alexandroff,[10] other Indian movies like Pundlik[11] (made by Dadasaheb Torne)[12] and dramas (A dead man's child).

Current status[edit]

The theatre is no longer in existence. The area housed Majestic cinema for a few decades, which was replaced by an office complex.[13]


  1. ^ Bhowmik, kaushik. "The emergence of the Bombay film industry, 1913 - 1936". A Thesis. Retrieved 21 May 2014. 
  2. ^ Bollyworld: Popular Indian Cinema Through A Transnational Lens. New Delhi, India: Sage Publications. 2005. ISBN 0761933204.  |first1= missing |last1= in Authors list (help)
  3. ^ "Happy birthday Bollywood: Indian cinema enters 100th year". IBN Live. 3 May 2012. Retrieved 21 May 2014. 
  4. ^ "Coronation cinematograph, page 641". The Times of India Directory. 1912. 
  5. ^ Baghdadi, Rafique. "From playhouse to movie theatre". Experts speak. National Film Archive of India. Retrieved 21 May 2014. 
  6. ^ Bose, Ishani (25 April 2013). "Dadasaheb Torne, not Dadasaheb Phalke, was pioneer of Indian Cinema". Daily News Analysis Pune. Retrieved 21 May 2014. 
  7. ^ Edwardes, S.M. (1909). The Gazetteer of Bombay City and Island. Bombay. p. 364. 
  8. ^ "Cinema on 18 May 1912". Indian Age. Retrieved 21 May 2014. 
  9. ^ Gajendragadkar, Nikhil. "Beginning of the dream world...". Deccan Herald. Retrieved 21 May 2014. 
  10. ^ "Publicity poster - Raja Harischandra". Retrieved 21 May 2014 – via Wikimedia commons. 
  11. ^ Dwyer, Rachel (2006). Filming the Gods: Religion and Indian Cinema. Routledge. p. Chapter 2. ISBN 0415314259. 
  12. ^ Encyclopedia of Indian Cinema. Oxford University Press. p. 227. 
  13. ^ Mohamed, Khalid (17 May 2013). "Happy 100th Birthday". Khaleej Times. Retrieved 21 May 2014.