Date(s) - Monday, September 12th - Sunday, September 25th
Shalom Bollywood celebrates the all-singing, all-dancing history of the world’s largest film industry. It reveals the unlikely story of the 2000-year-old Indian Jewish community and its formative place in shaping the world’s largest film industry.
When Indian cinema began 100 years ago it was taboo for Hindu and Islamic women to perform on screen, so Indian Jewish women, who were more liberal and progressive, took on female lead roles, which they then dominated for decades. However, because of their stage names, people thought they were Muslims or Christians. Until now….
Shalom Bollywood tells its tale through the lives of nice Jewish girls who became icons at the heart of Indian cinema from the turn of the 20th century to the present day. From the 1920s silent era, we meet Sulochana (aka Ruby Myers), arguably the greatest ever female superstar of Indian cinema. In the 1930s there was Miss Rose (aka Rose Ezra) the Queen of Bollywood’s racy party scene, and in the 1940s Pramila (aka Esther Abraham), who became the country’s first Miss India. Then, in the 1950s and 1960s golden era of Indian cinema, the quintessential Bollywood vamp Nadira (aka Farhat Ezekiel). All these actresses were household names in India and beyond.
View the talkback featuring award-winning producer and director Danny Ben-Moshe here. One of Australia’s leading documentarians, Ben-Moshe will discuss his inspiration, research, and some of the unique experiences and challenges he encountered in creating an entertaining and edifying vehicle for telling the story of Jewish actresses who dominated Indian movies for the first decades of its 100-year history.
Free for Members | $10 for Nonmembers
Sponsored by Israel Center, a program of the Milwaukee Jewish Federation.
In connection with Beyond Borders: The Art of Siona Benjamin, an exhibit on display at the Jewish Museum Milwaukee, June 17 – September 25, 2022.
About the Presenter
Award-winning producer and director Danny Ben-Moshe is one of world’s foremost filmmakers of Jewish documentaries. His acclaimed films have screened on leading networks around the world, including the BBC, PBS, ABC, and YES in Israel; played at multiple film festivals; and gained rave reviews in the press. His filmography includes My Mother’s Lost Children and Shalom Bollywood: The Untold Story of Indian Cinema, Code of Silence, Buchenwald Ball, and China’s Artful Dissident, which was screened at the Tate Modern in London. Danny recently completed production on a series of virtual reality films with Holocaust survivors and his first podcast series, My Lost Family, for Audible.
Shalom Bollywood had its world premiere at the MAMI Mumbai Film Festival in 2017. It has screened at dozens of film festivals globally, played on TV networks such as YES in Israel, and won Best Documentary at the Indian Film Festival of Houston.
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