ASSAMESE FILM INDUSTRY: GROWTH, CHALLENGES AND FUTURE PROSPECTS

Girin Deka
Research Scholar
 Department of Communication & Journalism
 Gauhati University, Guwahati, Assam, India
&
Sailendra Das
Research Scholar
Department of Communication & Journalism
 Gauhati University, Guwahti, Assam, India

Abstract
The growth of Assamese film industry is very slow compared to the other parts of the country. Though future prospects can be expected, yet the challenges won’t be ignored. It is an endeavor to root out the cause and effect of decreasing the popularity of Assamese cinema in the 21st century where world class technical tools can be used for quality management. For this very task, historical and analytical methods have been used. Moreover interviews of some noted personalities i.e. actor, director, marketer, critic, related to the Assamese film industry have also been conducted to find out the actual scenario of this realm. After the observation and analysis, we have got some findings and on that basis a few suggestions have been offered for a partial remedy of this age long problem.

Keywords: Growth, film industry, challenges, prospect
1.Introduction 
The Assamese film industry was born in 1935 when Jyoti Prasad Agarwala released his movie Joymoti. Since the inception it has developed a slow-paced, sensitive style and carried out these peculiar features till date. Assamese cinema has never really managed to make the breakthrough on the national scene despite its film industry making a mark in the National Awards over the years. It doesn’t mean that cinema here is a lighter game; the state has always taken it seriously. Although the beginning of the 21st century has seen ‘Mumbai-style’ Assamese movies hitting the screen, the industry has not been able to compete in the market, significantly overshadowed by the larger industries such as Bollywood.

Till 2013, three hundred and fifty seven Assamese movies have been made since then. And some of them have won national and international awards too for its unique and rich styles of story-telling and cinematic expression in acting, cinematography, music and editing. But despite its rich history, and its artistic success, Assamese cinema has failed to make a long lasting impression in the national level. The 1960’s been an era of box office hits and also good was the result of 70’s, 80’s and late 90’s.
On the other hand Assamese cinema is in a miserable condition now as there is hardly a good movie can be seen in a year. The Assamese film industry is fraught with innumerable bottlenecks, be it financial constraints, technological shortcomings or competition with other states.

2.Objectives
(i)   To review the growth and development of Assamese cinema
(ii)  To examine the present status of Assamese film industry
(iii) To root out the causes of decreasing popularity of Assamese cinema and try to sort out some remedial measures.
3.Methodology
Historical, analytical and observation methods are used in this study. It’s descriptive in nature. Both primary and secondary data have been used in a scientific way. Interviews of some noted personalities related to the Assamese film industry have been given importance to explore real scenario of this genre.
4.Results and Discussion                                        
4.1Growth & Development of Assamese film industry

The origin of Assamese Cinema can be traced back to the dreams and imagination of a revolutionary visionary Rupkonwar Jyotiprasad Agarwala, who was also a distinguished poet, playwright, composer and freedom fighter. He was instrumental in the production of the first Assamese Film “Joymati”, under the banner of Critrakala Movietone. Due to the lack of trained technicians, Jyotiprasad, while making his maiden film, had to shoulder the added responsibilities as the script writer, producer, director, choreographer, editor, set and costume designer, lyricist and music director. The film completed with a budget of Rupees Sixty thousand and was released on March 10th, 1935. But it failed miserably. It is unfortunate that like so many early Indian films, the negatives and complete prints of Joymati are missing.
Notwithstanding the failure of his venture, Jyotiprasad made another film after a lapse of two years titled Indramalati (1939). It was his second and last film. The eminent composer and singer of Assam Dr. Bhupen Hazarika, played a stellar role in the play. With the passing away of Jyotiprasad, the Assamese film scene witnessed a temporary lull for about a couple of years. But things changed with the onset of war. Taking advantage of this, Late Rohini Kr. Baruah made a film on a relevant historical topic called Manomati (1941).  It was followed by films like Parvati Prasad Boruwa’s Rupohi, Kamal Narayan Choudhury’s Badan Barphukan, Phani Sharma’s Siraj, Asit Sen’s Biplobi, Prabin Phukan’s Paarghat and Suresh Goswami’s Runumi, all made in the 1940s.
The 1950s saw several important Assamese films being made – Phani Sharma’s Piyali Phukon, Nip Baruah’s Smritir Parash, Maak aru Morom and Ronga Police, Bhupen Hazarika’s Era Bator Sur, and Prabhat Mukherjee’s Puberun. Hazarika composed the music for Piyali Phukon. Another important development of that decade was emergence of young film director Nip Boruah, who directed many popular films later.
Puberun was shown in the Berlin Film Festival. On the other hand, Piyali Phukon and Maak aru Morom earned a national-level certificate of merit in 1955 and 1957 respectively.
The period between 1959 and 1969 is generally regarded as the golden age of Assamese cinema. In all 25 films were made during the era and nine of them won National Awards. In the 1960s, Sarbeswar Chakraborty’s Lachit Barphukan, Bhupen Hazarika’s musical Sakuntala and Chik Mik Bijulee, Nip Barua’s Narakasur, Anil Choudhury’s Matri Swarga, Brajen Baruah’s Itu Situ Bahuto and Mukuta and Anwar Hossain’s Tejimola were released.
By the middle of the sixties, films were produced in Assam on a regular basis. It should also be mentioned here that between 1935 and to 1970 a total of 62 films were produced. Besides the film makers already referred to, many others engaged in film making during the period included Pravin Sharma, Saila Barua, Abdul Mazid, Amar Pathak, Indukal Pattazarika, Diben Barua, Debkumar Basu, Amulya Manna, Gauri Barman, Atul Bardoloi, Sujit Singh, Nalin Duara and Prafulla Barua. The Assamese movies went onto win numerous national and international awards.Dr Bezbarua was released in the year 1969. It was a crime thriller that starred Nipon Goswami, Brojen Barua, Meghali Devi, Tarun Duara, Ranjana Bordoloi, and Sadhan Hazarika.
During the period of 1970-82 a total of 57 Assamese films were made. New directors started emerging on the horizon. Samarendra Narayan Deb's Aranya (1970), Kamal Choudhury's Bhaity (1972) the first colour film of Assam, Manoranjan Sur's Uttaran (1973), Deuti Barua's Bristi (1974) Pulok Gogoi’s Khoj (1974) Padam Barua's Ganga Chilanir Pakhi (1976) and Dr. Bhabendranath Saikia's Sandhya Rag (1977) and Atul Bordoloi's Kollol (1978) are films worth - mentioning.
Papori was a film of 1986, directed by Jahnu Barua. It starred Biju Phukan, Gopi Desai, Sushil Goswami, Dulal Roy, Runjun, and Amulya Kakoti. The story depicts a man falsely accused of murder, his dying daughter tended to by his wife, the rape of the wife, the honest policeman stymied by political corruption - a grim story relieved only by the epilogue that speaks of the eventual justice for the accused and the policemen`s promotion. The film was set in the year 1983 during the All-Assam Students` Union turbulence.
Surya Tejor Anya Naam(1991), directed by Dinesh Gogoi, starred Mihir Jyoti Baruah, Alok Nath, Violet Nazir, and Mridul Sutiya. The political turmoil of the state is the subject of this film, the first to clearly deal with the topic. Konikar Ramdhenu(2003) revolves round the story of an imaginative and intelligent 11 years boy Kukoi. This film executes the horrors that happen in a juvenile home.
Jeevan Baator Logori(2009), an Assamese film, directed by Timothy Das Hanche depicts the journey of a young boy from his student life to the professional life. This film starred Nipon Goswami, Bishnu Kharghoria, Arun Nath, Moloya Goswami, Beauty Baruah and many others.
Assamese movies released in 2011 were-Tomar Khabar, A Weekend , Jetuka pator Dore, Janmoni, Pole Pole Ure Mon, Ramdhenu. Amongs these movies, Munin Barua’s Ramdhenu had done a good business and gained popularity for its unique marketing policy. In 2012, the released films were- Borolar Ghar, Me and My Sister, Bandhon, Rowd, Ekhon Nedekha Nadir Xipare, Richang, Tula Aru Teza,Samiran Baruah Ahi Ase, Bakor Putek,  Jaangfaai Joonak. Dwar, Luitok Bhetibo Kune, Mone Mor Koina Bisare, Ronangon, Akash Chuboloi Mon, Surjasta, Tumi Jodi Koa, Adhay, Bir Chilarai, Bhal Pabo Najanilu, Momtaaz, Local Kung Fu, Durjan and  Mahasamar are some films that were released in 2013.

4.2Characteristics of Assamese films

Films play a positive and educative role and inculcate in the young generation, love and respect for our culture and history of harmonious existence. Cinema provides people as a major means of entertainment, education, information and motivation. The Cinemas of Assam of greats like Padum Barua, Dr. Bhupen Hazarika, Dr.Bhabendra Nath Saikia, Jahnu Barua and many more have reflected problems and issues in society which were and are existent. The Cinema makes the people aware and teaches us or gives us moral education apart from entertainment. For example, the recent movie directed by Chandra Mudoi, “Bakor Putek” (2012) is about Superstition. The movie ‘Mon Jai’ (2006) is about the unemployment problem of Assam and the frustration in youths.
Assamese films carry some common characteristics which can be elaborated as follows:
i)Family Centric: Earlier Assamese films were based on family life.  Phani sarma’s Dhumuha, Bhaben das’s Lakhimi, Sunil Gonggopodhyai’s Sati Bewla, Prabin phukan’s Biplobi, Nip Baruah’s Amar Ghar, Brajen Baruah’s itu hetu Bohutu, Indukalpa Hazarika’s Niyoti, (1978), Dibon Baruah’s Maram(1978)Sivaprasad Thakur’s Ghar-Sansar(1983), Nip baruah’s Koka Dewtar Nati aru Hati(1983)Biju phukan’s Bhai Bhai (1989), Suman Haripriya’s Kokadewtar Gharjowai were some films that can be categorized as family centric movie. Munna Ahamed’s Jon Jole Kapalat(2000) is also based on Assamese family. These films carried only the family’s emotion, background, problems etc. In a nutshell, we may say that most of the Assamese movies were made on family lives of all sections of people including poor, lower middle class, middle class and even high class society. This trend flows till now.
 
ii)Women Centric: Assamese films have also dealt with women. BhabendraNath Saikia’s Agnisman, Jahnu Baruah’s Firingoti, Kankan Rajkhowa’s Shiyor(2014), Rajesh Bhuyan’s Me & my Sister (2014), Manju Baruah’s Jaimoti(2007) are some films that have time and again raised the problems of the condemnatory women.
iii)Love centric films: Love story based film is the main character of Assamese films which are very popular among the youth.  Since 1935 to till date this topic is very common among the Assamese films. Jaymoti(1933), Monomoti(1941), Saguntala(1961), Tejimola(1963), MaramTrisna(1968), Rashmirekha(1973), Marami(1978), Aviman(1990), Shiraj(1988), Prem Janamea Janamea(1992), Hridoyor area are(1994), Obuj Bedona( 1994), Bukur Majot Jolea( 1999), Maram Nodir Gavoru Ghat(1999), Hiya Diya Niya( 2000), Tumi Mur Mathu Mur( 2000), Dagg(2001), Ai Maram Tumar Babea( 2001), I Love You ( 2001), Pream aru Pream (2002), Jonaki Mon(2002), Prem Pahare Bhoyame(2008), Tomar Khabar (2011), Rowd(2012), Bhal Pabo Najanilu (2013), Hiya Diba Kak (2014), Durjan(2013) are some very popular movies in Assamese film industry.

iv)Based on Socio Economic problems: Noted film maker Bhupen Hazarika, Phani Sarma, Jyoti Prasad Agarawala, Indukalpa Hazarika, Pulak Gogoi, Munin Baruah, Anuwara Hussain, Manju Bora, Jahnu baruah, Bhabendra Nath saikiya, Abdul Mazid, M Maniram, Bidyut Kotoki, in the era of the great depression the film industry created film that spoke to public about current controversial issues of time. Barud, Konikar Ramdhenu (2002), Man jai (2008) Jaymoti(1933), Shiraj(1988),  Ekhon Nedekha Nodir Shiparea(2012), Ramdhenu(2011), Dinobandhu, Me & my sister(2012), Shiyor(2014), Mamtaz(2013), Dewwar(2012) are the famous films which carried social and  economical massage for the audiences.

v)Local subject matter: One remarkable character of Assamese films is subject. Everybody knows that the subject matter is the key of any film which plays a vital role among the masses. A touchy subject can evaluate, explain, and handle among viewers. But interestingly subject matter of Assamese film is very local. Some film couldn’t make a good relation with viewers only because of poor topic. Film is a strong media, so that topic should be reliable and connectivity. Tula aru Teza(2012), Boralar Ghar(2012), Maghot mamonir Biya(2002), Dewtar Biya(1997) are the some film where story, plot are too poor where people neither enjoy during movie time nor learn anything. It is important to select a good story and make a film.

vi)Festival centric: Most of the producers/directors stress on art film targeting the national and international film festivals from where they can earn a huge sum of money and proceed for another one. Almost all the films in this genre win award and media coverage with best acclaimed. But these films are ignored by the general audience for many reasons. Firstly, these are available in the market like other commercial movies. Secondly, some of the films of this kind are so boring that audiences compel to leave the cinema hall before the film end. Thirdly, these films are made for the festival and award. So the target audiences of the movies are some intellectual audiences rather than general one. Moreover the directors/producers don’t bother about the cinema industry to revive; their ambition fulfilled when they get awarded.

4.3Challenges of the Assamese film industry
Despite its rich history and its artistic success, Assamese cinema has failed to make a lasting impression in the national and international level. Though the beginning of the 21st century saw a new trend emerging in this genre, a trend that emphasized on the commercial success of films by toeing the style of Bollywood blockbusters; the results were short lived as it couldn’t stand a chance with its other Hindi, Tamil, Telegu and Bengali counterparts. The reasons behind it are as follows-
Market- Due to the small market, Assamese film industry couldn’t grow faster as Bengali and South Indian cinema. It is because all the people reside in Assam don’t speak or understand the Assamese language. If an Assamese film screen one or two weeks in the cinema halls at a stress, it will be fruitful for the producer. But it never happens here.
It may be mentioned that Assamese film-makers like Bhabendranath Saikia, Jahnu Barua and Santwana Bordoloi have received national and international acclaim, but the growth of Assamese cinema has been impeded due to a small market and lack of finances. So the noted film maker Jahnu Barua expressed his views after directing ‘Maine Gandhi ko Nahi Mara’ as "The market of Assamese films is very small. Therefore at times we fail to make the kind of films we want to.”(The Hindustan Times, 21st January 2006)
Till the 1990’s there were about 350 cinema halls and 100 plus touring centers which used to showcase movies in Tea Gardens, villages and remote areas. Till 2003, there were about 240 registered cinema halls. But today there are only 49 cinema halls in good condition and with satellite connection. And among them 41 are with UFO connection. Thus we have seen the decline of cinema halls in Assam. In the year 2004 when militants caused serial bomb blast in cinema halls to stop screening of Hindi cinema it had actually affected the local cinema industry more than the other. Since then majority of the cinema halls have been closed down. This has again caused problems in the quantity and quality of films since to earn profits from the limited halls is nearly impossible.
Convergence- With advent of new technology and changing socio-economic environment, the audience is also taking advantage of other tools for the enjoyment of cinema. They collect movies from various sites by taking the advantage of internet. Most of the audience collect movies from YouTube and enjoy it in his/her computer or mobile.
Quality- In the modern era people try to get as much entertainment as they can from a film and hence they never compromise with quality of the product. After having the taste of Hollywood, Bollywood and the South Indian movies, the audience of Assam also expects such kind of quality and taste from an Assamese film. But the Assamese films are technologically very poor compared to Hollywood, Bollywood or other regional cinema industry like Bengali, Telegu etc. So the audience doesn’t bother to see an Assamese film by wasting Rs.100; rather he/she will chase after a Bollywood movie.
Lack of technical persons such as camera persons, screenplay and artists are some common reasons behind the poor quality of the Assamese film. Moreover producers and directors choose actors through references without bothering their quality. Noted actor Tapan Das feels that audiences are available; but they expect quality product. In his words-“people want to watch a movie; but we have to offer them quality product as they are now acquainted with the world cinema for the advent of technological adventure. To enter in a hurry and make a film for a wish without having technical and commercial knowledge can’t revive the industry. Rather it demolishes the future prospects and discourages the ancestors in this realm.”
Producers/directors mentality- Some Assamese producers/directors think that they are expert in this area and so audience will have to accept what they give. They never try to understand the audiences’ mentality, their need, and their expectations.  They just make films for their own satisfaction and show grievances through media. Film makers like Sanjib Sabhapandit, Pulak Gogoi and many more says-‘…audience are fool. They don’t know which movie should be watched.’ But they never introspect themselves why the audience ignores them and the same audience runs after the Hollywood-Bollywood movie. Frankly speaking, they are not serious over the industry. They never study the films made by the Hollywood, Bollywood or other regional directors.
Proper marketing policy- Lack of proper marketing policy is one of the key reasons of declining Assamese cinema industry. Before producing a film, there should be a marketing plan which includes the target audience, production cost, distribution cost, advertisement cost/ promotional cost and plan and even the expected profit too. Releasing date should be declared before three months of the release of the movie so that promotional activities can be done properly to attract the audiences. Unfortunately we never see such kind of situation in the Assamese film industry. Instead of that the producer declare the releasing date before one month and a few hoarding and small posters are pasted in some selected areas as part of promotional activity. Some producers use electronic media but new media is yet not get importance.
Film maker and actor Kenny D Basumatary also opines that the main challenge before the Assamese film industry is lack of distribution and a feasible market. Two possible solutions that he has prescribed are to have more theatres in various towns that don't have any, and to create travelling cinema, just like mobile theatre.
Star branding- In Hollywood or bollywood, the stars have strong in the minds of the audience. They rush to the theatre to see their dream stars. ‘Bodyguard’, ‘Ek tha tiger’, ‘Joy ho’ are some examples which have proved that the audiences watched these movies not for the story, script or action; it’s Salman Khan that matters a lot for the audiences. But unfortunately there are no such stars in Assamese film industry now. They have no brand image. Of course once Brajen borah was a big brand in Assamese film industry. Bisnu kharghoria is still a demandable actor. Nipan goswami, Tapan das, Biju Phukan were some popular actors a few years back whereas Jatin-prastuti Jodi was very popular in the first half of this century. People still…
Vcd culture and piracy- With the coming of VCD culture and lack of big budget movies small scale VCD movies started to be produced by mainly unprofessional people which resulted in poor quality and lowered the status of the Art form.
Another cause of declining this industry is Piracy.  Since digital technology like CD, DVD digital formats in Pen drive, memory card is easy to be copied and within a very short time it can be transferred to different areas.
Lack of Research Work- It can be mentioned that several good movies of Hollywood and Bollywood are the result of the hard work of the directors and actors. Films like James Cameron’s Titanic, Avatar, Rakeysh Ompraksh Mehra’s Bhag Milkha Bhag, Sanjoy Lella Vansali’s Merry Kom, Tigmanshu Dhulia’s Pan singh tomar, Amir Khan’s Tare Jamin Par are some good examples for which a team of artists worked for day and nights. Before shooting they had some research work done to make them perfect. The lead actor of Bhag Milkha Bhag Farhan khan met Milkha Singh to know how he ran and tried to be as him as he could. Same was the case of Priyanka Chopra who went to Mnipur to see how Merry Kom lived and brought up. And these news were published which gave the films free publicity and miledge before the shooting. On the other hand, there are no such initiatives taken by Assamese film directors/ actors. They are not interested in research work and hence we can’t expect perfection. The films like Samarendra Narayan Dev’s Veer Chilarai, Surya Hazarika’s Sankardev show the pitiable condition and lack of research was reflected by these movies.
4.4Future prospects of Assamese film industry
If we trace the growth and development of Assamese film industry, we can see that it has a golden path and history. Film makers like Bhupen Hazarika, Padma Barua, Abdul Mazid and Manoranjan Sur produced some memorable films in the 60’s.The state has just one government owned studio with the post production being done in Calcutta, Bombay and Chennai. Some notable Assamese films include Bhabendranath Saikia’s Sandhya Rag, Anirban, Agnisaan & Kolahal and Barua’s Aparoopa, Papori, Halodhia Choraye Boodhan & Hkhagoroloi Bohu Door.  Halodhia Choraye Boodhan khai won theGolden Lotus in 1988 and also went on to bag the Grand Prix for Best film and Best Actor at Locarno. After 90’s till the first part of 21st century, there were several superhit Assamese movies screened in the theatres and most of them succeeded commercially. But at present the pitiable condition of this industry lead to a dark future. Yet we can have ray of hope if the following suggestions may be applied properly-
(i)     The audiences are getting bore by watching the traditional styled cinema with same subjects like family problem, love, emotion and so on. The new generation expects new ideas from a film. So the producers/directors should conscious about it and should try to make film with new subjects like science fiction, love-action-romance with different style etc. They should differentiate the target audiences and produce films for them in proper way after researching the market.

(ii)   Proper marketing policy is another key for the success of this industry. Until and unless the producers give importance to the marketing and promotion, Assamese film industry won’t grow with properly. Internet marketing may be another way in this regard. Moreover the actors should promote the film before it release like the Bollywood way.

(iii) The Assamese film can be send to other states after dubbing it properly which has already been done by the South Indian producers. According to Saurav Dutta,Manager,UFO, Assam circle , Assamese films should be dubbed in several languages which will give the industry a wide market and profit.

(iv) Cinema halls in the rural areas can be another measure for reviving the industry. At least 6/7 cinema halls must be built in a district.

(v)   The producers/directors should not compromise in quality. They should give the roles to them who can characterize it well. Moreover technical side should also be taken seriously to enhance the quality of the movie.

(vi)   They may try to make it unique so that people have to watch it for curiosity.

(vii)  The artists should be professional in their tasks. The producer should remind that if he uses unprofessional artists he would bear huge loss.

(viii) Research work should be done by the directors as well as the actors which will enhance their quality.

(ix) Commercial film making culture should be grown here; otherwise the industry won’t be revived.

(x)   Assam Government should take steps for the betterment of this industry. Govt. should recognize it as an industry and invest for the development of infrastructure development, production and marketing. The promise of 200 mini cinema halls making should be implemented soon. Other steps like tax subsidy, controlling, policy making are also needed.

(xi) The price of the cinema ticket is too high to afford in the rural and semi urban areas. So it should be lowered as other parts of the country like Hyderabad, Mumbai etc. where a good quality cinema hall ticket can be bought only by Rs. 20-30/-.Film makers like Bani Das and Munin Barua stressed on this issue to execute here recently in a TV show.

(xii)  Rajni Basumatary, a film maker, suggests that cinema workshops and film appreciations courses in senior schools, college and universities must be introduced to bring awareness about the art and craft of cinema. These workshops and courses should involve the parents as well, because till today many of our parents attach films to distractions to young people and the religious sections of society even term it as evil! It can't be generalized and good cinema should be promoted well.

5.Conclusion
There are many ups and downs in the Assamese film industry since its inception. The path was built by Rupkonwar Jyotiprasad Agarwala and it’s bloomed in the 60s and continued the trend till 80s and 90s. The last regime of 20th century and first half of 21st was also very smooth period for the industry; but after last part of 2003 it has lost the pride. Of course there are several reasons for the downfall of Assamese film industry. In around 2003 a section of insurgent groups issued warning letters to the cinema-hall owners and distributors’ asking them to stop showing Hindi movies as thought it was doing harm to the local culture. They also warned that if Hindi films are exhibited stern actions will be taken against the exhibitors and they (the hall-owners) will be responsible if any unforeseen happened to the audience who came to watch Hindi movies. As a result for many months audience stayed away from venturing into cinema halls- to watch a Hindi or an Assamese movie and very of the cinema halls shut down, partly because of the threat from the insurgency groups and partly because they were running movies in empty cinema halls. Moreover, the habit of a family going cinema once a week has been replaced by hundreds of TV channels, internet and other mode of recreation.

At present producers can’t expect profit from an Assamese movie; he/she may probably gain a big loss and he/she must be ready for that. In such kind of situation can we expect revival of Assamese film industry? Of course, yes. Proper policy is the remedy for it. Film makers as well as Govt. may take proper policy to revive this prospective industry after a quality research work. The Assam government has been doing a bit for the industry. The state owned film studio named Jyoti Chitraban was established in 1968 and today has sufficient infrastructure for shooting and editing films and video productions. The Assam State Film Finance and Development Corporation gave an amount of 1 crore to Samarendra Narayan Dev and 50 lakh to noted film maker Jahnu Barua to produce Veer Chilarai and  Bandhon respectively. Similarly corporation has called in producers to finance films with a 60:40 ratio where 60 percent would be borne by the corporation and remaining 40 percent by the film producers for the production of Assamese films (in 2012).

According to film maker Rajni Basumatary, the government must encourage the filmmakers by implementing the cinema-policies they seem to have initiated. They should make two weeks' theatrical running of regional films mandatory. I have always maintained that one week's running is not good enough to bring target audience to an Assamese cinema. Unlike Hindi films, our regional films have very little budget dedicated to publicity & promotions of the movie and hence we need to mainly depend upon word-of-mouth publicity. And it takes time to get word-of-mouth spread. We can conclude by the opinion of Bidyut Kataky, a noted film maker-“We should not depend upon the Govt. thinking they will make policy, build infrastructure etc. etc. We can’t wait for the audience too. The most applicable way is to march forward. Go to the doorstep of the people like the mobile theatre.”

References
  • A. L. Das. (Ed.) Axomiya solochitrar Etihakh (A history of Assamese films)”, Guwahati: Sishu Sashi Prakashan, 2010.
  • A. Rajadyaksha. Ed. “Encyclopedia of Indian Cinema, London: British Film Institute, 2008.
  • A. Sharma. Jyoti Prasad as a Film Maker, Gauhati: Adi Publications, 2005.
  • G. Kalita and M. Borpujari. (Ed.) “Perspectives on Cinema of Assam”, Guwahati: Guwahati Cine Club, 2008.
  • J. Belton. (Ed.) “Movies and Mass Culture”, London: Athlone Press, 1999.
  • K. J Kumar. Mass Communication in India. New Delhi: Jaico Publishing House, 1994.
  • Y. Thoraval. (Ed.) “Cinemas of India”, Delhi: Macmillan Publishers India, 2007.

Appendix

Table-1: List of super hit Assamese films

Sl.No.

Title

Year

1

Nimila Anka

1955

2

Piyoli Phukan

1955

3

Ara Bator Sur

1956

4

Ronga Police

1958

5

Dr. Bezbaruah

1969

6

Cik Mik Bijuli

1969

7

Sameli Memsab

1975

8

Ajoli Nobou

1980

9

Ghar Sansar

1983

10

Siraj


1988

11

Bhai Bahi

1989

12

Haladhar


1993


13

Hridoyor area area


 1994


14

Sagoroloi Bohuduir

1995

15

Joubonea amoni korea


1998


16

Maharothi


1999


17

Bukur majot jolea

1999

18

Hiya Diya Niya


2000


19

Dinobandhu


20

Dag


2001


21

 Nayak

 2001

22

kanyadan


2002


23

GunGun ganea gane


2002


24

Manjai

2007

25

Ramdhenu


2011


26

Local Kun fu

2013

27

Shiyor

2014



Table 2: List of Award winning Assamese films


1

Piyoli Phukon (1955)


 Certificate of merit


2

Dhumuha(1957)

 Certificate of merit

3

Ronga police(1958)

 President Silver 

4

Saguntola(1961)

medal winning first

5

Puberun (1959)

Assamese Film


6

Tezimola ( 1963)

 Certificate of merit


7

Dr. Bezbaruah (1969)

Regional best film


8

Aranya (1971)

Regional film award


9

Oupoja Matir son (1972)

Regional film award


10

Mamota( 1973)

Regional film award


11

Sameli Memsab (1975)

Best Music director all India basis/Regional film award


12

Putola Ghar(1976)

Regional film award


13

Sandhyarag (1977)

Regional film award


14

Kallol (1978)

Best film of Regional language


15

Anirman (1981)

Best Regional film award


16

Papori(1986)

select for Indian panorama


17

Haladhiya saroraiyea baudhan Kahai( 1987)

Wining Sarna kamal award / select for Indian panorama.


18

kolahol ( 1988)


19

Banani (1990)

Wining Best film in Environment section / select for Indian panorama

20

Firingoti (1991)

Second best Regional film


21

Sarothi(1991) 

Best film of Regional language


22

Relor alir Dubori bon(1992)

National award


23

Haladhar (19930

Indira Gandhi Award


24

Abortan (1993)

National award in regional basis


25

Hagoroloi Bohudur ( 1995)

Best director in Natioanl level.


26

itihakh (1996)

Best film of Regional language


27

Rag-Boirag (1996)

Indira Gandhi Award Wining


28

Mimankha (1996)

select for Indian panorama

29

Adhahya (1997)

select for Indian panorama


30

Boihob (1999)

Best film in Dhaka Film Festival


31

Kukhal Kuwar(1999)

Best film of Regional language


32

Pokhi(2000)

Best film of Regional language


34

Jon Jolea Kapalat(2000)

Best Nitattik Film in National film festival

35

Konikar Ramdhenu(2002)

Select for Indian panorama


36

Mon Jai(2008)


37

Jetukla Pator Dorea(2011)



38

Ekhon Nedekha Nodir Hiparea(2012)


39

Ajeyo(2014)

(Best film in Film Fare Assamese)




Table 3: List of Assamese films released through UFO Movies

SL No

Film

Director

Releasing Date

1

Grahan

Tilak Sarma

6/27/2014

2

Jilmil Jonak

Sibanan Boruah

5/30/2014

3

Abhadra

Aman Kumar

5/9/2014

4

Hiya Diba Kak

Rajib Borah

2/21/2014

5

Raag - The Rhythm Of Love

Rajni Basumatary

2/7/2014

6

Shinyor

Kangkan Rajkhowa

1/17/2014

7

Ajeyo

Jahnu Barua

1/3/2014

8

Mahaasamar

Jones Mahalia

11/22/2013

9

Durjon

Moupran Sarmah

10/25/2013

10

Local Kung Fu

Kenny Basumatary

9/27/2013

11

Bhal Pabo Najanilu

Rhituraj Dutta

9/20/2013

12

Momtaaj

Pulak Gogoi

8/23/2013

13

Veer Chilarai

Samarendra Narayan Dev

7/26/2013

14

Tumi Jodi Kuwa

Simple Gogoi

6/14/2013

15

Adhyay

Arup Manna

5/24/2013

16

Surjasta

Pradyut Kumar Deka

5/3/2013

17

Aakash Chuboloi Mon

Manash Hazarika

4/26/2013

18

Ranangan

Pranabjyoti Bharali

4/19/2013

19

Mone Mur Kaina Bisare

Sadananda Gogoi

3/15/2013

20

Luitok Bhetibo Kune

Prabin Bora

3/1/2013

21

Dwaar

Bidyut Chakravarty

1/4/2013

22

Borolar Ghar

Mani C. Kappen

11/2/2012

23

Me & My Sister

Rajesh Bhuyan

11/2/2012

24

Baandhon

Jahnu Barua

10/26/2012

25

Rowd

Gautam Baruah

10/5/2012

26

Ekhon Nedekha Nodir Xhipare

Vidyut Kotoky

9/14/2012

27

Rishang

Manas Barua

5/11/2012

28

Tula Aru Teja

Junmoni Devi Khaund

4/13/2012

29

Samiran Barua Ahi Ase

Prodyut Kr. Deka.

3/30/2012

30

Baakar Putek

Chandra Mudol

3/2/2012

31

Jaangfaai Joonaak

Sanjib Sabha Pandit

1/13/2012

32

Tomar Khabar

Rajib Borah

10/14/2011

33

A Weekend (Assamese)

Diganta Mazumdar

9/23/2011

34

Jetuka Patar Dare

Jadumoni Dutta

8/19/2011

35

Jaanmoni

Rajesh Bhuyan

4/15/2011

36

Poley Poley Urey Mon

Timothy Das Hanse

3/18/2011

37

Raamdhenu

Munn Baruah

2/4/2011

38

Ochin Chinaki

Munna Ahmed

12/17/2010

39

Srimanta Sankardeva

Sri Surjya Hazarika

3/5/2010

40

Jibon Bator Lagori

Timothy Das Hanse

10/2/2009

41

Mon Jai

M. Maniram

9/19/2008

42

Prem Pahare Bhoyame

Rajesh Bhuan

5/30/2008

43

Joymati

Manju Borah

11/30/2007

44

Joonda Eman Goonda

Mr Chandra Mudoi

9/7/2007
  

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