Wadia Movietone was established by the Wadia brothers, J.B.H. Wadia and Homi Wadia in 1933. It was one of the first studios in the 1930s to achieve success through the production of stunt films. Lal-E-Yaman was the first talkie film to be released under the banner of Wadia Movietone. Each Wadia Movietone film served a purpose and made a social statement. Be it the Fearless Nadia era that changed the portrayal of women in Indian cinema or Nav Jawan, the first Indian film without a single song. J.B.H. Wadia and Wadia Movietone constantly challenged conventional cinema in ways more than one.

The Estate of Riyad Wadia comprising film posters from India’s most historical and legendary production house, Wadia Movietone, has been consigned to Prinseps. Given below are the posters up for auction that opens for bidding on September 19.

Miss Frontier Mail

Genre: Thriller

Release Date: 1936

Director/s: Homi Wadia

Producer: Wadia Movietone

Cinematographer: Vasant Jagtap

Art Director: Pestonji D. Mistry

Music Director: Master Mohammed

Script Writer: J. B. H. Wadia, Homi Wadia

Cast: Fearless Nadia, Gulshan, Sardar Mansoor, Master Mohammed, Sayani ‘Atish’, John Cavas, Jal Khambatta, Minoo the Mystic, Master Jaidev, Munshi Thoonthi, Bashir Qawwal, Hanif, Babu, Maske, Sadashiv, Kesari, Mohan, Abdul, Bismillah, Abdul Rehman, Tarapore, Debara, Suleiman, Kothare, Aga Mohammed (Motorcyclist)

Plot: Ishwarlal, the Deputy Station Master of a railway station is murdered by a masked man. In the ensuing scuffle the mask comes off and one of the henchmen happens to see the face. But they manage to escape. The Station Master Maganlal, comes to the room and pries the knife from his Deputy’s body. Just then the police arrive and arrest the Station Master.

Savita and Jayant are Maganlal’s children. Savita is fond of hunting, tennis, and racing fast cars. Jayant is an amateur filmmaker. Both of them receive a telegram about the news that their father has been arrested. It is sent to them by their Uncle Shyamlal. Jayant and his friend soon get involved in the villain’s actions when they manage to film him and his gang while they are planning to blow up a bridge. It is the masked man, who blows up the bridge. He has been engaged by a person who owns an airline company and wants to promote his business.

Savita and Jayant begin a hunt for the masked man, Sundar, the son of the head of the railway authority who is infatuated with Savita. Gulab, a gangster’s mall, who is siding with the villain also turns around and joins Savita in her quest to eliminate the masked man.

Savita and Sundar stage a fight with the gangsters atop a train and succeed. Meanwhile, Signal X the villain, and his men manage to steal the box containing the film of the gangster’s doings. When Savita lands up to fight them, Shyamlal pretends to help Savita but actually, he helps the hirelings to run away.

Fortunately, the film is replaced with bananas by Jayant’s friend. But Shyamlal succeeds in burning the film. The henchmen surprise Sundar in the cabin where he is posted as the apprentice. He fights valiantly but in vain. The trains crash and he faces an inquiry. His father refuses to yield even for the sake of his son. Sundar escapes and goes to the lonely house where Savita has been held by Shyamlal alias Signal X. He tricks Savita and Sundar into a trap. In reality, he wants to kill them. Just then the police come in with Jayant and his friend. The culprits are rounded up. But Signal X manages to escape in an airplane.

Raj Nartaki / Court Dancer

Genre: Drama

Release Date: 1941

Director/s: Madhu Bose

Producer: Wadia Movietone

Cinematographer: Jotin Das, Probodh Das

Art Director: Sudhanshu Chowdhury

Music Director: Timir Baran

Script Writer: Manmatha Ray, Modhu Bose

Songs/Lyrics: Pandit Indra

Costumes: Maganlal Dresswala

Cast: Sadhana Bose, Prithviraj Kapoor, Ahindra Chowdhury, Nayampally, Protima Dasgupta, Benita Gupta, Priti Mozumdar, Bibhuti Ganguly, Mrinal Ghosh, Moni Chatterjee, Probhat Sinha, Ashgar Ali, Y.G. Tale, Abani Mitra, Protap Mukherjee, Bechu, Feroze, Bijoy Das, Raj Kumari, Madhav Menon

Plot: Set in the early 19th century Manipur, the film is the story of a romance between King Chandrakirti and the dancer Indrani. Chandrakirti is to be crowned the King. He is spending time with his lady love. But his father frowns upon his choice. The father would like him to marry the Princess of the neighbouring Tripur.

The King would like the Prince to meet the visiting high Priest of Koshishwar. The Prince refuses to comply. Indrani performs the ‘Raas Leela’ for her Prince. The visiting Priest happens to come there and watch Indrani perform. He is fascinated by Indrani’s depiction of Radha. He approaches her to apply the sacred dust. But the King is horrified and informs the Priest of her lowly status. The Priest recoils at the revelation.

Indrani is further humiliated when she tries to accompany Chandrakirti to the temple and is refused entry. On her way back from the temple she passes another ruined temple where she is readily welcomed and her offerings accepted.

Prince Chandrakirti, who has followed her promises her that when he becomes the King and marries her he will abolish all such customs. Naturally, the King is enraged and orders her to be executed. The High priest intervenes and requests a chance to talk to Indrani. He finds her and asks her to sacrifice her love for the sake of peace and harmony for the people of Manipur. The Chief Guard too is coveting Indrani. He threatens her that if she does not accept him he will instigate trouble against both of them.

What happens to the lovers is the crux of the film.

Piya Milan

Title: Piya Milan

Genre: Drama

Release Date:1945

Director/s: S.M. Yusuf

Producer: J.B.H. Wadia

Music Director: Feroz Nizami

Songs/Lyrics: M. Naseem, Tanveer Naqvi, Saraswati Kumar

Cast: Motilal, Nirmala, Nazma, Mirza Musharraf, Wazir Mohammed Khan, S. Alam

Plot: Piya Milan is an emotional romantic drama drafted by S.M. Yusuf. The story focuses on the life of a young girl living with her family. Soon enough she crosses paths with a kind man and they fall in love with each other, wanting to get married. However, an unforeseeable incident occurs that changes their lives as they once knew it, putting their love for each other to the test. 

Amar Raj

Genre: Thriller

Release Date: 1946

Director/s: Homi Wadia

Producer: Wadia Movietone

Art Director: Baburao S Jadhav

Music Director: Feroz Nizami

Script Writer: J.B.H. Wadia, Pandit Fani, P N S Razdan

Cast: Naseem Jr., Trilok Kapoor, H. Prakash, Rehana, Nirupa Roy, Kelkar, Sayani ‘Atish’, Aziz Premi, Zafar Raje, Ganpat Premi, Ismail, Aftab, Ajay Kumar, Dalpat, Kalidas, Latif Parvez, Krishnakant, Sikandar Hayat

Plot: The inhabitants of Ghogha, in Gujarat, were facing a dual disaster. There was a severe drought and to add to it was a pandemic. The fields were dry and the houses empty.

The people of the village decided to sail to Lanka in order to escape this misfortune. While on the ship bound for Lanka all of them are dreaming of the good life they would have. But hardship does not seem to desert them. The ship encounters a sea storm. There is thunder and lightning and huge waves seem to take over the ship. The passengers were certain they were going to die. Bhadrapal, his wife, and his son Kamal are part of the unfortunate passengers.

When Bhadrapal realises that there was no chance they were going to come out of the storm alive, he ties his son to a plank and throws him overboard. There comes a huge wave and the ship goes down with all the passengers on it.In all this mêlée, Bhadrapal survives. He has lost everything, including his memory. As luck would have it the father and son both land on the shores of Lanka.

Bhadrapal is secure as the King’s Prime Minister, whereas a young Kamal is living in an ashram in the loving care of a Guru. He was a favourite of the Guru and had mastered the art of music and various sciences. He was a real support to the Guru’s adopted daughter, Bakula. Kamal was unaware of Bakula’s love for him. He was engrossed in his own self and his learning.

Bhadrapal in turn is very unhappy about the atrocities the King, Amarjyoti, inflicts upon his subjects. He tries very hard to stop the King from his mean ways but is always unsuccessful. The reason is Indrasen, the Commander–in–Chief of the Army. Indrasen has a great influence over the King.

Amarjyoti has in fact ascended the throne by usurping his brother Deendayal. The subjects of Lanka had been subjected to atrocities since the takeover of the throne. The people had tried to rebel against the massacre with Deendayal as their leader, but the rebellion had been crushed. In order to humiliate his brother further, he makes him a watchman during the swayamvar of his daughter Usha. But Deendayal dies. Mahakaal predicts that Amarjyoti will die at the hands of a musician.

Does he really die? How does it happen? How do the wheels of fortune turn is the crux of the film.

Stunt Queen

Genre: Thriller

Release Date: 1947

Director/s: Ramnik Vaidya

Producer: Homi Wadia / Basant Pictures

Cinematographer: Haren Bhatt

Music Director: Chitragupt

Script Writer: Batuk Bhatt, Shyam Hindi

Songs/Lyrics: Shyam Hindi

Cast: Fearless Nadia, John Cavas, Sona Chatterjee, Dalpat, Shyamsundar, M.K.Hasan, Anant Prabhu, Karim Jan, Ranibala, Dog Moti, Trainer N. Mani

Plot: This is the story of Hansa, Seth Kishorilal’s daughter. Seth Kishorilal, who is no more, leaves behind a huge fortune for his daughter which includes a car factory. Since Hansa is a minor, Shobha, the deceased man’s Secretary is appointed as the guardian. This angers the General Manager of the firm, Kalinath.

Since Kalinath has his own plans about misappropriating the legacy, he does not expect Shobha to interfere. But Shobha is very protective towards Hansa and has made up her mind to set things right for her. She visits Kalinath in his den. But is captured by him and. Shobha being cleverer than him manages to escape with her trusted servant.

As the pair of them are rushing away, their car starts to give them some trouble. Forced to stop, the pair finds another car parked close to where they are stranded. Shobha manages to get into the car and the two of them drive away.

After a little while, the owner of the car comes out of the hotel where a party is in progress, and finds the car replaced. The lady thinks of only one alternative and walks into a police station to complain about the theft. So she gets into the available car to drive to the Police Station. Just then the police who are after Shobha, to get hold of her for speeding, arrive and arrest the lady. At the Police Station, the police realise that the arrested lady is not Shobha. In fact, it is Meena, the wife of a wealthy merchant called Seth Krishnalal.

Meena had always wanted some adventure in her life. She is locked up in the police station for the night, which was an adventurer for her alright. But she blamed the newspapers for giving more publicity to her husband when actually she was the one who had suffered.

Shobha meanwhile has managed to reach the Office. Here she meets Amar, who is also interested in helping her. But Shobha tells him that her first task is to make sure that Hansa is settled. Hansa is in love with a boy employed in the factory called Anup.

Once again Shobha finds out that Kalinath is sending out empty boxes instead of packing the cars in them. She takes up the responsibility of confronting Kalinath about the misdeed. In this, she is helped by Amar. Kalinath also plans to kidnap Anup and take him away to another place so that he can then get Hansa under his control.

On the other side, Seth Krishnalal is not keeping good health and the doctor advises him on a trip to the hills. Meena, his wife manages to convince him to make that trip. Kalinath is successful in kidnapping Anup. Shobha follows on their trail to the hill station. On the same train as Kalinath and his men are Seth Krishnalal and his wife Meena, going to the same hill station.

Bhagu and Amar join forces to help Hansa. Both of them get on the train which has all the people on it. Amar comes across Meena and mistakes her for Shobha.

Kalinath is giving Anup a hard time. The purpose is so that Hansa will come around. Amar and Bhagu while chasing one of the henchmen of Kalinath turn up at the den. Here they manage to save Shobha. Elsewhere Kalinath’s men capture Meena thinking she is Shobha. She is taken to Kalinath. Now Seth Krishnalal is confused because he has mistaken Shobha for his wife. He takes her to the Police. But she and Amar escape.

They reach the den with the Police at their heels. Now Kalinath is in a fix because he confronts two Shobhas. The only way left for Kalinath is to flee the place to escape all these people. He jumps on a horse and runs away. Amar follows him.

Whilst fleeing Kalinath stumbles over a rocky outcrop and falls and meets his end. Everything gets settled for Hansa. But Seth Krishnalal is left wondering which of the two Shobhas is his wife.

P.S. Through the kind courtesy of ‘Osianama Archive and Library, India’.

Toofani Tirandaz

Genre: Thriller

Release Date: 1947

Director/s: Boman Shroff

Producer: Homi Wadia

Cinematographer: A. M. Bhanji

Art Director: Hirabhai Patel, Kalyan Shribatri

Music Director: A. Karim

Script Writer: Boman Shroff

Songs/Lyrics: Aziz Minai

Cast: Fearless Nadia, Sayani ‘Atish’, Dalpat, Boman Shroff, Mithoo Miyaan, Azim, Krishnakant, Lallu Bhai

Plot: Jaysingh and Durjansigh amongst themselves have managed to upstage the King of Vijaynagar, King Fatehchand. The King had to run away to a distant place with his daughter, Laxmi.

Durjansingh, who is now the King, has a surprise in store for him. On the occasion of the fifteenth anniversary of his ascension. He is sent a gift on a platter. When he opens the gift and it turns out to be the bleeding head of his tyrannical Commander. He also gets to know that the disposed of King Fatehchand is very much alive. Immediately Durjansingh launches a search for Fatehchand.

Rajkumar is the designated successor to the throne as named by Durjansingh. But Jaysingh covets the throne and plots to eliminate him along with the stepmother of the Prince. He gets Rajkumar arrested.

There is also a band of people who are working for the good of the subjects led by the Patel of Ramgarh, his daughter Sone and Pratap. Pratap in reality is the brother of Jaysingh and has been driven out of the bandit’s den.

Seeing all the chaos that is around Laxmi decides to take matters into her own hands. She comes to save the Prince who has been locked up in a lion’s cage. Known as Toofani Tirandaz, she ties up all the soldiers and takes revenge on the evil-doers with the help of her two trusted friends Dr. Nathoo and Dr. Buddhoo.


Genre: Family, Romance, Drama

Release Date: October 8, 1948

Director/s: S. U. Sunny

Producer: Hilla Wadia Productions

Cinematographer: Fali Mistry

Art Director: V. Jadhav

Music Director: Naushad

Script Writer: Azim Bazidpuri

Songs/Lyrics: Shakeel Badayuni

Costumes: Kalidas

Cast: Nargis, Dilip Kumar, Jeevan, Roopkamal, Noorjahan, Chandabala, Amar, Allauddin, Khalil, Abbas, Rehman, Baby Zubeida, Maqbool, Ghulam Mohammed, Rajendra Kumar.

Plot: This is the story of Manju and Mohan. They live in a small village and are childhood friends. Their friendship blossoms into love and their marriage is fixed. Mohan goes to town to buy jewellery and clothes for his bride. On the way back he is looted and beaten up. This lands him in the hospital and he is unable to reach back for the wedding. Mehkoo, a no-good ex-army man labels Mohan as a cad. In fact, Mehkoo is always lusting after the village belles.

In the absence of Mohan and with the wedding day fixed Manju is married off to an older sickly widower with children. After the wedding, the old man realises his mistake, but it is too late. Eventually, he dies leaving Manju, now a widow, to look after his children. One stormy night Manju goes out to meet Mohan and falls off a cliff and dies. The villagers convict Mohan of murder and he is sentenced to twenty years of prison. After completing his sentence Mohan returns to the same place where Manju has fallen off the cliff and sees her spirit beckoning him. As he follows her he too falls off the cliff and dies.


Genre: Drama

Release Date: 1949 (black and white)

Director/s: Homi Wadia

Producer: J.B.H. Wadia

Music Director: Husnlal - Bhagatram

Songs/Lyrics: Qamar Jalalabadi

Cast: Suraiya, Wasti, Nigar, Jayant, Jankidas

After the phenomenal success of Mela in 1948, J.B.H. Wadia produced “Balam”, another star-studded musical-social. Suraiya, Nigar Sultana, Wasti, and the villain Jayant shine in this pot-boiler about social injustice arising from ignorance and petty politics. WIth Husnlal-Bhagatram’s memorable music (the duo at the peak of their career) “Balam” allowed Suraiya her first dramatic role and launched her career as a full-fledged superstar. 

Basant (Wasti) the elder son of an orthodox landowner returns to his village after studies in the city. As the farmers of the village are unable to pay their dues to his father, he decides to investigate and disguises himself as a poor farmhand. He befriends two sisters, Kamla (Suraiya) and Tara (Nigar), who take him to their father, the Choudhary, where he comes upon the evil genius of the village, Gangoo (Jayant). When his father’s Muninmi (Jankidas) unwittingly unmasks Basant’s guise, confusion ensues.

The plot twists and turns with dramatic appeal replete with Kamla having a child out of wedlock and Gangoo committing murder and implicating the Choudhary. In the end, things get resolved but not before tragedy strikes Kamla, who dies in one of the most powerfully charged screen deaths ever filmed. “Balam”’s expressionist B/W photography and neo-realism was much praised by critics of the time and it is a classic drama from the late forties.

Maya Mahal

Release Date: 1949

Director/s: Keshav Talpade

Producer: Wadia Movietone

Art Director: Hirabhai Patel, Kalyan Shribatri

Music Director: Lala Sattar

Script Writer: Dwarka Khosla

Songs/Lyrics: Faorukh Kaiser

Costumes: Shivaji Salvi

Cast: Fearless Nadia, John Cavas, Dalpat, Ali, Sona Chatterjee, Leela Kumari, Qamar, Rajani, Abdul Gani, Putli, Anwaribai

Plot: In the Kingdom of Shyamgarh King Rupsinh and his children Prema and Yashodhan lived a happy life. But the Goddess of Evil (Badi) did not like this contentment. In fact, she is jealous of the quiet and cheerful life that the three led.

Badi decides to stir things up and sends one of her maids disguised as Maya to create chaos in the lives of the three of them. The Goddess of Goodness (Neki) is upset with this turn of events and feels it is an injustice. She takes on the mantle of opposing Badi.

Maya lands in Shyamgarh. She entices Rupsinh and he promptly falls in love with her. Maya weaves her web and the King begins to dance to her tunes. He issues orders that are contrary to his earlier behavior. The people are confused and do not like it. He goes to the extent of banning his subjects from offering prayers to God.

The Commander-in-Chief Vijaysinh, Prema, and Yashodhan revolt against this order. They are ordered to be put behind bars. But they manage to flee and take refuge in the forest. Neki keeps in touch with them and helps them whenever they face any dangers or are in difficulty.

Maya, meanwhile, manages to overpower Rupsinh and condemns him to a slow death by slowly turning into a stone. There is only one way in which the witchcraft of Maya can be halted. It needs the protagonists to procure the mirror kept in the possession of a Genie at Palanghat and water from the Houj of Sisa Pahad before the moon rises on the night of the full moon day.

Vijaysinh and his faithful servant Bhondu set out to take the necessary action. But will they be able to accomplish it? Will King Rupsinh come out of the curse? Will Maya be vanquished?


Genre: Romance

Release Date: 1950

Director/s: R.D. Mathur

Producer: J. B. H. Wadia

Cinematographer: R. D. Mathur

Art Director: S.N.Desai, Babubhai Mistry, Pandurang

Music Director: Sajjad, Bulo C. Rani, Ram Punjwani

Script Writer: Aga Jani Kashmiri

Songs/Lyrics: Raja, Mullanji, Zia Sindhi

Costumes: Maganlal Dresswala

Cast: Rehman, Meena Kumari, P. Jairaj, Nigar Sultana, Durga Khote, Mirza

Musharraff, Jilloobai, Hamida, Gulnar, Laddan, Kalidas

Plot: A film depicting the conflict of emotions between pride and happiness. The story of Chandni and Manohar. Chandni, born with a silver spoon will only marry for love. She accidentally meets Manohar. Manohar is a farmer with a modern bent of mind and also a proud owner of a tractor. Both of them realise that they are attracted to each other.

Meanwhile, Chandni’s Aunt would be happy if she married Moti. Moti becomes conscious of the fact that Chandni does not love him. So he fakes his marriage and tells the Aunt that he is married to a girl called Minoo Roy.

Minoo Roy coincidentally is an employee in the Pune Branch of the Office. Once the Aunt gets to know about the marriage she brings Moti and Minoo together and locks them up. Minoo escapes the confinement. Meanwhile, the Aunt is shocked to learn that the person Chandni wants to marry is not the right person for Chandni to marry. Chandni wants Manohar to stay with her in the palatial house. Manohar refuses to comply.

There is a clash between the husband and wife. Manohar goes back to his farm. Moti goes to the Poona Branch and is thrown out by Minoo thinking that he has come after her. She does not realise that he is in fact the Boss. To keep up the ruse, Moti asks Manohar to act as the boss.

Manohar makes the most of his tenure by indiscriminately increasing the staff salaries and giving donations. After a charity show, the Aunt drags Moti to meet Chandni. She is pining for Manohar but will not keep her pride aside. Minoo and Manohar too lands up at Chandni’s house and sees Moti carrying away Chandni. A misunderstanding ensues. After which Manohar requests Minoo to come to the farm to help him.

Realizing that Minoo is in the village with Manohar, Moti comes to meet her. Manohar intercepts and tells him that he plans to marry Minoo. Infuriated Moti decides to kill Manohar. Minoo informs Manohar’s mother of all the developments. The mother decides to meet the Aunt to clear all doubts.

In the interim Chandni decides to swallow her pride and returns to Manohar, who in turn insults her. The mother and the Aunt take matters into their hands and rush to the farm where Manohar and Moti are fighting bitterly. Chandni gets hit with an iron rod. The young men come to their senses. Manohar and Chandni are reconciled.


Genre: Thriller

Release Date: 1950

Director/s: Balwant Bhatt

Producer: Homi Wadia / Basant Pictures

Cinematographer: Anant Wadadekar

Art Director: Babubhai Mistry

Music Director: Chitragupt

Script Writer: Nanabhai Bhatt

Songs/Lyrics: Shyam Hindi

Costumes: Mohamed Umar, Shiva Dalvi

Cast: Fearless Nadia, John Cavas, Dalpat, Shyam Sundar, Sona Chatterjee, Narmada Shankar, Shapoor Aga, Bismillah, Abdulla

Plot: The Sole Proprietor of the Bharat Gramophone Company Seth Jayprasad is an old man. He divides his property between Bharati, his friend’s daughter, and his Navneet, who is looking after the business now. Bharati is given all the money and Navneet is given all the immovable property. Seth also wishes that Bharati gets married to Bipin, one of his old, faithful servants.

Navneet is not too happy about all the developments. So he arranges for a road accident in the hope of killing the girl. The plan goes off without a hitch. Bharati’s car, on the way to Khandala, is forced off the road and she falls off unconscious along the road in the forest.

By Bharati’s good fortune a circus caravan is passing through and they find her in an unconscious state. She is revived. But it comes to light that she has lost her memory. The Circus people take her under their wing, name her Dolly and teach her to perform. Pratap and Panna take good care of her.

One day Navneet comes to watch a circus performance. He sees Dolly performing and is convinced that it is Bharati. He tries to blow her off along with a trolley carrying explosives, but the plan fails.

Pratap and Panna realize that if Dolly has to get back her memory a good doctor must be consulted. Bipin goes in search of that Doctor. As always Navneet tries to foil his efforts. The other way is to get Dolly to listen to the record that she has sung just before she loses her memory. Navneet tries to destroy that record and Bipin tries desperately to retrieve it.

This is a struggle between good and evil. Will Bipin succeed? Does Bharati come out of her amnesia?


Genre: Romance

Release Date: December 7, 1951

Director/s: J. B. H. Wadia

Producer: J. B. H. Wadia

Cinematographer: R. D. Mathur

Art Director: A. Kakad

Music Director: Madan Mohan, Khan Saheb Vilayat Khan

Script Writer: R.V. Dighe, J. B. H. Wadia

Songs/Lyrics: Raja Mehdi Ali Khan

Costumes: Maganlal Dresswala

Cast: Manhar Desai, Meena Kumari, Usha Kiran, Jilloobai, Kuldeep Akhtar, S.

Nazir, M.K. Hasan, Goldstein, Habib Sandow, Shivdutt, Bismilla, Ram

Krishna, Mubarak

Plot: Sajalpur a pretty town is ruled by two warring families, the Manes and the Jadhav’s. Rambhaji is the arrogant Chief and Bhujwa is benign and kind. The

townspeople are tired of Rambhaji’s atrocities and do not shy away from showing their preference for Bhujwa. Raya, Rambhaji’s son is equally intoxicated with arrogance and spoiled by his father. But Soni, Bhujwa’s daughter is not impressed by him when both of them clash in the market. In the market on the same day is Shakriya, one of Rambhji’s men. He is injured but his master refuses to help him and whips him instead. Bhujwa rescues him and Soni nurses his wounds. In gratitude, Shakriya gives a family heirloom necklace to Soni which has magical powers.

Years go by and Soni grows up into a beautiful lady. Raya too has grown up to be a handsome man. He returns to the town during a festival. Not knowing who he is Soni and her friends make fun of him. Raya who has been smitten by her since childhood is now completely enamoured by her. Soni is as disdainful of him as before.

Rambhaji is thrilled to have his son back. But Raya is soon bored and decides to sneak away to watch a known dancer perform. The dancer is Raina, Shakriya’s daughter. Shakriya now lives in the forest with his gang of outlaws and is now a staunch enemy of Rambhaji. Raina is attracted to Raya. He too enjoys the attention she gives him. But it is cut short when Shakriya arrives with his bodyguard and finds out who Raya is. Raya is immediately thrown out. Shakriya has not forgotten the insult meted out to him by Rambhaji. Raina is also discouraged from showing any interest in him. What follows is a love triangle and family pride and the sacrifices that are expected out of them.

Husn ka Chor

Genre: Adventure, Fantasy

Release Date: 1953

Director/s: J.B.H. Wadia

Producer: Basant Pictures

Cinematographer: Anant Wadadekar 

Art Director: Bachubhai Mistry 

Songs/Lyrics: Raja Mehdi Ali Khan

Cast: Mahipal, Abdullah, Aftab, Arti, Azim, Shree Bhagwan, Bismilla, Dalpat, Goldstein, Gulab, Ismail, Usha Kiran, Lalita Kumari, Sardar Mansur, Mithoo Miya, Patanjal, Patel, Rajkumar, Babu Rege, Raja Sandow, Sharada, Brijmohan Vyas, Zarina

Plot: Qamar(Mahipal) was a neurotic thief. One day he steals Princess Husn’s (Usha Kiran) precious gems, but so enamoured is he with Husn, that he returns her jewels. When several foreign Princes come to propose to her, he too goes there, disguised as a prince in the hopes of marrying her. Husn selects him, but his secret is revealed by Nadira(Lalita kumari), a dancer who loves Qamar and who could not accept his selection by Husn. Qamar is put in Jail but is soon rescued by Nadira and his friends. A Faqir advises Qamar to become a real prince to win Husn’s heart.

Qamar sets out on a magical flying horse to meet Moon Fairy to get the Magic wish bowl. The Moon fairy is rescued by him from the custody of an evil genie. Meanwhile, Husn’s father faces the threat of mutiny and death if Husn is not married to the Vazir. Qamar arrives on a flying carpet and takes Husn to the moon.

Jungle Ka Jawahar

Release Date: 1952

Director/s: Homi Wadia

Producer: Basant Pictures

Cinematographer: A. D. Wadadekar

Art Director: B. Mistry, S.B. Kadam

Music Director: Madhavlal Master

Script Writer: Boman Shroff, Adi Marzban

Songs/Lyrics: Firoz Jalandhari, Dipak

Costumes: Mohammed Umar

Cast: Fearless Nadia, John Cavas, G. Goldstein, Leela Kumari, Daplat, Shapur Aga,

Rajani, Shyam Sundar, Abdulla, Julian, Korega, Yadav, Raja Sandow

Plot: Simbola is a vast unexplored jungle full of ferocious tribals and their ruling Queen Sheena. Sheena is ruthless and fierce. Mala and her doctor father are doing a lot of humanitarian work. Mala is the exact opposite of Sheena. She is a do-gooder, taking care of the village population’s health care. Mala hence becomes a thorn in her side. She insists on saving the people that Sheena keeps sending out of the forest to die. In this Mala is also aided by her faithful horse, Rajput. Another reason Sheena is wary of the father and daughter is that the Doctor is in possession of a Rajnishani, which is given to him by Sheena’s father.

One day three strangers arrive on a plane from the city. They are immediately captured by the tribals. But the strangers overpower them with their superior guns till they run out of bullets. Ultimately the tribals take them prisoners.

Kiran, one of the three strangers, has come to the forest with the sole aim of getting hold of the Rajnishani. It would help him to get to the late King’s treasure of diamonds. The second one is a man named Deepak and the third is Vijay. Vijay falls off a cliff but is saved by Mala. Finally, all four of them are taken prisoners.

Fortunately, a good doctor arrives to save them. He produces the Rajnishani and all the tribals bow down and go into a trance. This helps the prisoners to escape. Kiran then tells the Doctor that his brother is very ill and dying in the city. The doctor is persuaded to go and visit his brother Ramesh.

In order to go to the city, the doctor needs money. Everyone accompanies him to a cave, heavily guarded by Sheena’s men. Again the Doctor produces the Rajnishani and all the guards go into a trance. A box of diamonds is brought out by the Doctor; he takes one out of it and puts away the rest. Kiran is mesmerized by the treasure. The Doctor and Kiran leave for the city. The Doctor hides the Rajnishani in his house. Mala and Vijay are left behind in the forest. Sheena again captures the duo on the pretext that someone needs medical attention. Mala and Vijay give a valiant fight before Mala is hit on the head and collapses.

In the city, Ramesh is not ill at all. The Doctor has been tricked. Ramesh and Kiran try to force the Doctor to tell them where the Rajnishani has been hidden. When he refuses, he is killed. Kiran and Ramesh, now posing as the Doctor, return to the forest. Hand in glove with Sheena, they only want the Rajnishani and the treasure. Will they be successful? Will Mala be able to outdo them? The film answers these questions.

Veer Rajputani

Genre: Drama

Release Date: 1955

Director/s: J.B.H. Wadia

Producer: Homi Wadia

Music Director: Bulo C. Rani

Cast: Shakeela, Manhar, Meenakshi, Helen, Bipin Gupta, B.M. Vyas, S.N. Tripathi

Plot: J.B.H Wadia’s penchant for producing films with strong women characters saw its culmination in Veer Rajputani, the epic tale of Princess Padmavati whose bravery helps uphold Rajputana’s honour against the mighty Mughal Empire. Inspired by the writings of Colonel Tod and based on the famed Gujarati novel ‘Veer Hak’ by Shaida, Veer Rajputani is a large canvas costume drama encompassing some of the greatest legendary names from 18th-century Indian history and played by an all-star cast. 

Princess Padmavati is trained by Gurudeo in martial arts at his Ashram. She falls in love with Veersingh whom she saves from his evil brother Daku Zalimsingh. Zalimsingh is a war profiteer who pits the armies of Maharana Pratap and Akbar the Great by creating misunderstandings. Padmavati and Veersingh along with Rajkumari Surekha help solve the sticky situation. In dramatic events involving legendary characters like poet Prithviraj, the Rajputs realise that Zalimsingh has deceived them and prepare for the great battle of Panipat. The film climaxes as the mighty army led by Maharana Pratap go off to battle singing “Insaan Bano'' (a tune that Nehru’s Indian Army adopted during the 1962 Indo-Pakistan war)

Veer Rajputani is also noted for the first screen appearance of Helen as a dancer. J.B.H. Wadia’s direction and use of actual locations were lauded by critics when the film was released.

Captain Kishore

Genre: Action, Thriller

Release Date: February 28, 1957

Director /s: J. B. H. Wadia

Producer: Wadia Brothers

Cinematographer: Aga Hasham

Art Director: Babubhai Mistry

Music Director: Chitragupt

Script Writer: J. B. H. Wadia

Songs / Lyrics: Tanvir Naqvi, Raja Mehdi Ali Khan, Khummar Barabankv

Costumes: Mohmed Umar

Cast: Shashikala, Suresh, Anwar Hussain, Naina, Roopmala, Mirza Musharraff, Shaikh, Tun Tun, Munshi Munaqqa, Pakkoo, Shri Bhagwan, Azim, Mohini, Abdulla, Korega, Yadav, Julian, Bismilla, M.K. Hassan, Mithoo Miyan, Kalla, O.M. Singh, Mohammadali, Gani.

Plot: Set in an imaginary kingdom before Independence, the storyline revolved around the throne of Rajnagar and the attempts of the Army Chief to usurp the throne. He has killed the King and blames it on a conjured character called Captain Kishore. But when he actually plans to kill the Boy Prince, Captain Kishore turns up to save the little prince. Captain Kishore accidentally enters Princess Kiran’s chamber. Balwant Singh, the Army Chief, tells the Princess that the little boy has been kidnapped by Captain Kishore. After many twists and turns, the Princess is informed by Captain Kishore that the real enemy of the State is Balwant Singh. Balwant Singh manages to get hold of the prince and escapes with him. But Kishore catches up and in the ensuing scuffle rescues the little Prince. Balwant Singh meets his end.

Duniya Jhukti Hai

Genre: Drama

Release Date: February 19, 1960

Director/s: J. B. H. Wadia

Producer: Wadia Movietone Pvt. Ltd.

Cinematographer: Aga Hasham

Art Director: Bachubhai Mistry

Music Director: Hemant Kumar

Script Writer: Aga Jani Kashmiri

Songs/Lyrics: Rajinder Krishen

Costumes: Mohamed Umar

Cast: Sunil Dutt, Shyama, Kum Kum, Agha Jaan, Daisy Irani, B.M. Vyas, Sheila Vaz, Wasti, Habib, Uma Dutt, Shri Bhagwan, Dalpat Sinha, Abdulla, Salim, Neelambai, Kesar, Satyrani, Ismail, Shethi, Madhu Apte, Julian, Yadav, Korega, Kalla, Bismilla, M.K. Hasan, Mithoo Miyan, Bagla, Kapur, W.M. Khan, Damuanna Malvankar.

Plot: Mohan, a young man is an embittered man in life. He has lost the one woman, Laxmi, he loved. She is married off to a rich man. He decides to become a rich man and in the process turns into a criminal, changing his name to Bankey. Yet, he is only a cog in the machine, catering to an unknown boss. One day he saves a fatherless child from drowning. He becomes ‘Daddy’ to the little boy. On the advice of the School Head Master and due to his reputation as a bully he avoids Munna. Munna in turn has come to love Bankey and wants to spend most of his time with him. Munna is Laxmi’s child and when she finds out that Munna is friendly with Bankey she forbids her son from meeting Bankey forever.

One day while being chased by the police Bankey lands up in the house of Balma, a dancing girl. She is deeply in love with Bankey. But Bankey is still nursing his love for Laxmi. Balma pleads with Bankey to give up his bad ways. Bankey breaks down and tells her the story of his life and the entry of Munna into it. During a local festivity that he has organized, Munna comes up to him and requests him to give up his bad ways. Bankey feels insulted and slaps the little boy. But repents when he comes to know that Munna is ill and goes to visit him in the hospital. He decides to reform and turns himself to the police.

The police keep him out of jail so that he may come in handy when they have to capture his Boss. The Boss is facing losses ever since Bankey has stopped working for him. Munna is kidnapped by the Boss. It is a ploy to get Bankey to restart work as a goon. Bankey goes to kill the Boss, but Laxmi comes there and reveals that he is the father of Munna. Bankey is stupefied, taking this chance the Boss tries to shoot him. But the police arrive and the Boss is gunned down. Bankey or Mohan has to pay the price for his bad ways. He is jailed. After serving his term he is united with Laxmi and Munna.

Main Shaadi Karne Chala

Genre: Comedy

Release Date: 1962

Director/s: Roop K. Shorey

Producer: Wadia Brothers Production

Cinematographer: Anant Wadadekar W. I. C. A.

Art Director: Bhojwani

Music Director: Chitragupt

Script Writer: Roop K. Shorey, I.S. Johar, Madhusudan Kalelkar

Songs/Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri

Costumes: Mohamed Umar

Cast: Feroz Khan, Sayeeda Khan, Mumtaz, Prem Chopra, Durga Khote, Badri Prasad, Rajendranath, I.S. Johar, Parveen Chaudhry, Mallika, Manju, Tabassum, Vivek, Neelambai, Leela, Bose, Mithoo Miyyan, Yog, Ismail, Bismilla

Plot: Deepak and Raja run a photo studio, on the banks of the Jhelum, in a houseboat. Deepak and Seema meet and fall in love and want to get married. But Seema’s parents, a Barrister father Jankidas, and her mother Jankibai will not consent to the marriage till her four elder sisters are married. All the four sisters are faddists. One is literati, a dancer, a singer, and a sportswoman. They will only marry the expert and champion from their fields of interest.

Through highly humorous and original pranks Deepak manages to find four grooms for the respective sisters – Prakash, Ashok, Kewal, and Raja himself. In reality, they are no experts but complete novices in their fields. Due to a blunder committed by Kewal, the truth is soon revealed. The exception is Kewal himself who is a swimming champion. The angry girls refuse the marriage proposals.

When the fraud is established the father is fed up and decides to send the girls away. Seema manages to make her sisters see sense. Everyone appears to be happy and things seem to be going the right way. When suddenly Kewal announces that he cannot marry until his sister Shyama ties the knot. Deepak steps in and promises to find a suitable husband for her. But Deepak is misunderstood. And to his surprise, he finds himself engaged to Shyama. Seema is heartbroken and tells her parents that she is ready to marry any person her parents choose for her. Deepak finally manages to pull himself out of the mess and comes looking for Seema. It is too late. Seema has left the house. With many twists and turns, Deepak locates Seema and brings her back from near death on the brink of a waterfall.

All's well that ends well. All the girls are married to their respective bridegrooms and the parents heave a sigh of relief.


Genre: Action, Romance

Release Date: 1966

Director/s: J. B. H. Wadia

Producer: Wadia Movietone

Cinematographer: Aga Hasham W. I. C. A.

Art Director: Sudhendu Roy

Music Director: C. Ramchandra

Script Writer: D.N. Madhok, J. B. H. Wadia

Songs/Lyrics: D.N. Madhok, Prem Dhawan

Costumes: Hilla Wadia

Cast: Feroz Khan, Kalpana, Helen, Sajjan, Nazir Hussain, Lalita Pawar, Raj Mehra, Rajendranath, Sabina, Indira Bansal, Arti, Dalpat, Bismilla, Gaikwad, Badshah, Darshan, Prem Kumar, Kishan Kumar, Dog Rover.

Plot: Shyam and Ishrat are very good friends. Shyam belongs to a wealthy family and Ishrat is a painter, who is not so well-off. Ishrat finds out that Alka, a social butterfly, is trying to trap Shyam, he pretends to be in love with her. When Shyam finds out that his friend is interested in Alka he steps away from Alka and angers her by this move. One day while on a visit to Ishrat’s studio he spots the painting of a Kashmiri girl, Pelu. Ishrat is secretly in love with Pelu. Shyam leaves the studio without informing Ishrat.

In Bombay, in an attempt to avoid the marriage with Alka, Shyam ends up saying that he is in love with the girl in the painting and leaves for Kashmir. On reaching Kashmir and after he meets Pelu he realises that he has actually fallen in love with her. But Thakore Baba, Pelu’s grandfather, is averse to the marriage. It so happens that Pelu’s mother, his daughter, too was married to a person from the city and was betrayed.

However, as time goes by Baba is convinced of Shyam’s sincerity and gives in. Pelu and Shyam are married. Now in Bombay, for the wedding party of Shyam and Pelu, Ishrat is shocked to find out that his friend is married to the girl he secretly loved. Sometime later Alka comes to meet Shyam. He insists that she marry Ishrat, saying that Ishrat is in love with her. Alka agrees on one condition if Shyam gives her the diamond necklace, which is a family heirloom. Pelu is very attached to it.

Shyam steals the necklace and hands it over to Alka. Pelu sees this exchange. She misunderstands and decides to leave her husband and go back to her grandfather. She writes a letter to that effect to Shyam’s Uncle, Monu, saying, since she is a misfit in this elite society she has decided to return to her grandfather and that she is carrying the necklace with her as a souvenir. Shyam confesses to his Uncle to have stolen the necklace. Ishrat overhears the conversation between Shyam and his Uncle. He goes to Alka and has a showdown with her and forcibly takes away the necklace.

Shyam follows Pelu to Kashmir. Thakore Baba is furious to see Shyam and rushes to the place where Shyam and Pelu are meeting. He fires the gun at Shyam a few times but misses the target. It is winter in Kashmir and there is snow all over. The gunshots start an avalanche. And all three of them get enveloped in it. Shyam manages to save Baba. Ishrat, who has followed Shyam manages to save Pelu. But in doing so he gets crushed under a huge boulder. Shyam and Baba bring out Ishrat. Ishrat hands over the necklace to Pelu and dies carrying his secret love for Pelu with him. Shyam and Pelu are united.


Genre: Thriller

Release Date: 1968

Director/s: Homi Wadia

Producer: Basant Pictures / Homi Wadia

Cinematographer: A. D. Wadadekar

Art Director: Hirabhai Patel, Kalyan Shribatri

Music Director: Lala Sattar

Script Writer: Dwarka Khosla, Saraswatikumar Deepak, Chand Pandit, Masoom Saharanpuri

Songs/Lyrics: Faorukh Kaiser

Action: Master Kishore

Costumes: Shivaji Salvi

Cast: Fearless Nadia, Dileep Raj, Uma, Sujata, Sheikh, Tun Tun, Amarnath, Uma Dutt, Dalpat, Habib, W. M. Khan, Vishwas Kunte, Introducing Suzie

Plot: Khilari, a person who loves to play with fire and come out of it successfully. The sincerity of purpose and the coolness of facing the situation are the keywords. A well-known professor, who has a formula for a dangerous drug, is kidnapped.

The hero of the film is deputed with the task of crushing the enemy responsible for the abduction. In his pursuit, he meets a lady who is a Fire Ball. She can change disguises in a jiffy and is willing to help the hero in his chase.

Incidentally, the gang, known as the Golden Dragon, who has kidnapped the professor is an organization of a mysterious girl. Her purpose is to decimate the hero and his girlfriend. But the trio, the Fire Ball Lady, the Hero, and his girlfriend, like the Musketeers, manage to squash the enemy gang and rescue the Professor.

The film is fast-paced with many thrills showcasing the talent of the Fire Ball Lady. This was also a come-back film for Fearless Nadia.

Saaz Aur Sanam

Genre: Romance

Release Date: 1971

Director/s: J. B. H. Wadia

Producer: Wadia Movietone

Cinematographer: G. Kale W. I. C. A.

Art Director: R.K. Handa

Music Director: Chitragupt

Script Writer: Hamid Jalal, J. B. H. Wadia

Songs/Lyrics: Kaifi Azmi

Action: Azim

Costumes: Mani Rabadi

Cast: Rekha, Premendra, Suresh Chatwal, Sapru, Poornima, Renu, Ratan Kumar, Brahmachari, Bhagwan, Rajnibala, Arvind.

Plot: Vijay loves to play the trumpet. But his landlord throws him out of the rented place because he disturbs the neighbours with his constant trumpet playing. Chandra, his friend, gives him the keys to his Goa home where Vijay can play the instrument to his heart’s content. Chandra is also secretly in love with a girl called Pushpa.

Meanwhile, Satish Babu takes his daughter to Goa to Sushilabai’s place on one Bihari’s advice. Sushilabai is a rich spinster, she had adopted Chandrika and the mischievous Tikkoo, Chandrika’s brother. Chandrika is in love with Chandra, but he does not reciprocate. So Vijay contrives to take Chandra to Goa so he could be in close proximity with his beloved.

Vijay also tries his tricks on Pushpa. But instead of being irritated, she is attracted more and more towards him.

Satish Babu gets to know that Pushpa has spent a whole night with Vijay in his villa. He forces Vijay to marry her. But he manages to escape disguised as a hippie with the help of Romeo, Chandra’s trusted servant. Vijay returns to Bombay, having failed in his mission to bring Chandra and Pushpa together. In the meantime, he too has fallen in love with Pushpa. On his way back he comes upon the gambling den of a ‘Boss’, he is none other than Bihari. Luckily a Policeman named Pinto helps him escape.

Bihari coerces Satish Babu to let him marry Pushpa. Satish Babu is not in favour of it. So Bihari blackmails him by showing the evidence of a murder that apparently Satish Babu has committed. But it is a false claim. Pushpa overhears their conversation and agrees to marry Bihari to help her father.

Chandra and Chandrika suspect Bihari as the ‘Boss’. They come to Bombay to solve this mystery. Romeo has also followed them to take back Vijay. Vijay sees the ‘Boss’ and follows him to a gambling den. He finds Chandra and Chandrika there as prisoners. Vijay too is taken over as a prisoner and tortured. Romeo manages to reach the den with the police and rescues all of them. But the ‘Boss’ manages to escape.

One day of the wedding Vijay, with the help of Romeo and Tikkoo overpowers Bihari the ‘Boss’, and reaches the venue dressed as the groom. In the marriage hall, Bihari exposes Vijay, but he manages to escape with Pushpa.

In the climax, there is a car chase, a dangerous fight on a launch, and a life and death struggle on a hilltop. Finally, the police arrive and arrest Bihari as the ‘Boss’ and the film ends on a happy note.

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