National Film Archives of India restores 1960 classic Barsaat ki Raat, first public screening at National Museum of Indian Cinema on Saturday

azadi ka amrit mahotsav

Mumbai/Pune, 4 August 2023


The 1960-classic Barsaat Ki Raat starring Madhubala and Bharat Bhushan in lead roles has been digitized and restored from a 35mm Master Positive by the National Film Archives of India. The film is the first film to be restored by NFAI under the restoration project, as part of the National Film Heritage Mission, funded by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.

The original print of the film was preserved by the archive for more than 46 years. A group of trained film restoration professionals of NFAI worked for months through a rigorous process to digitise the original print. The 35mm Master Positive was scanned with utmost care, in 4K resolution on ARRISCAN XT, with a state-of-the-art archival film scanner. This was followed by the digital restoration of both picture and audio. During restoration, each and every frame was painstakingly worked upon by fixing time induced defects, such as, but not limited to scratches, dust, vertical bands, heavy flicker, splice marks, hiss, noise and pop. This will enable contemporary cinema audiences to experience the film as it was witnessed by audiences at the time of its release.

The musical, directed by P. L. Santoshi, explores the love story between Aman (Bharat Bhushan), a poet-singer, and Shabnam (Madhubala), a mysterious woman he meets one rainy night. As her parents oppose the union, Aman leaves Hyderabad for Lucknow, where he enters the heady world of qawwali compositions and competitions.The music of the film, composed by Roshan with lyrics by Sahir Ludhianvi, was widely loved by cinema and music lovers, with playback singers including Manna Dey, Mohammed Rafi, Lata Mangeshkar and Asha Bhosle.

In its new digitised avatar, the film will be screened for film fans for the very first time at the National Museum of Indian Cinema (NMIC) in Mumbai on Saturday, August 5, 2023, at 4pm. The film screening is being done exclusively for NMIC visitors. It is a double bonanza for those visiting NMIC this Saturday, since they can not only witness the history of Indian Cinema in the museum, but also watch a restored classic on the same premises using their NMIC ticket!


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(Source: NFAI) | PIB Mumbai | SC/ DR

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