Pollywood Means Punjabi Cinema

Part one Rise and Downfall of Pollywood.

Pollywood Means Punjabi Cinema

I have been a witness of Punjabi cinema aka Pollywood since childhood. When I was a kid. I don’t remember when I went to watch a Punjabi movie in our town’s cinema. During the 80’s and 90’s Punjabi cinema was not that popular even very big names were not enough to draw a crowd to the theaters. We used to watch Punjabi movies on VCR but it was a special treat to see one in the theater.

Pollywood Rise and Down-Fall During the ’90s

The reason was that the storyline and influence of Bollywood’s big-budget and big-star movies caused harm to the popularity of Punjabi movies. Famous actors performed in many successful movies. Likewise, ” Uccha Dar babey nanak da,” Jatt te Zameen, Putt Jattan de, Badla Jatti da, Truck Driver, Shaheed-E-Mohabbat (Boota Singh), Shaheed Udham Singh, Subedaar, Jatt Jiyona Maud, Purja Purja Katt Mare, Katt Mare,” etc. But yet they didn’t attract the audience to cinemas. Despite their success, the movies did not attract audiences to cinemas. As VCR was the king of that era. The convenience of watching movies at home on VCRs overshadowed the appeal of going to the cinema.

Punjabi Cinema has low-budget issues as well. which is also a big factor that Filmmakers were afraid to experiment with the movies.

It was the biggest hit of 1980 when Chann Pardesi came out. It was the first Punjabi film to win a national award. There was Kulbhushan Kharbanda, Amrish Puri, Om Puri, Rama Vij, Raj Babbar, and Rama Vij in it. The film’s success marked a turning point in Punjabi cinema.

The Punjabi film Long Da Lishkara came out in 1983. Harpal Tiwana was in charge of producing and directing it. Jagjit Singh directed this movie, in which Gurdas Maan sang the evergreen “Challa.” Jagjit Singh sang “Main Kandyali Thor Ve,” “Ishq Hai Loko,” and other songs for this movie. The movie was a huge success at the box office.

These movies did well because Bollywood superstars joined the revolution of Punjabi cinema. Names like Dharmendra, Satrugan Sinha, Dara Singh, Raj Babar, Kulbhushan Kharbanda, Amrish Puri, Om Puri, Rama Vij, Preeti Saproo, and many more contributed to the success of Punjabi cinema. Veerendra, Yograj Singh Guggu Gill, Gurdas Maan, and Mehar Mittal. During this golden time, the thing that harmed Punjabi cinema was the assassination of Veerendra.

Pollywood Means Punjabi Cinema

Veerendra, whose real name was Subhash Dhadwal, was a great actor, director, producer, and writer who worked on 25 Punjabi-language movies over 12 years. His first movie was Teri Meri Ek Jindri, which came out in 1975 and starred Dharmendra. Here I would like to add that Veerendra is related to superstar Dharmendra, Both are cousins. He was the godfather of the Punjabi industry. He was shot and killed in 1988. His spouse, Pammi Veerendra, and two sons, Randeep and Ramandeep Arya, raised him.

Pollywood Means Punjabi Cinema

It was a shocking act that left the entire industry in mourning. It was a double loss, as Amar Singh Chamkila (March 1988) and Veerendra (December 1988) were assassinated within a year. There was a great outpouring of grief and disbelief at the tragic loss of two such talented artists. It was a devastating blow to the music and film communities

Both their fans and their fellow artists felt a great void after their deaths. They were both mourned and remembered for their immense contributions to the world of entertainment. Their legacies will continue to inspire and influence future generations.

In the next blog, we will discuss how Pollywood holds the spotlight and stands up again and how the Punjabis are rocking Bollywood nowadays. Stay tuned!

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