National Museum of Indian Cinema

A dreamland for all the film afficionados, the National Museum of Indian Cinema ilocated in Mumbai, Maharashtra, is a repository of exhibits depicting in detail the history and evolution of Indian cinema over the decades.


Information for Visitors

Timing: 11 am to 6 pm (Monday closed)

Location: Gulshan Mahal, 24, Pedder Road, Cumballa Hill, Mumbai, Maharashtra

Entry Fees: Rs20 for Indians, Rs500 for Foreigners

About the Museum

For all the film lovers out there, who would like to have a deep understanding of the evolution of films in India and all the equipment related to making a film, the National Museum of Indian Cinema in Mumbai, Maharashtra, is the place you must visit. Nestled amidst the sumptuous arches and spacious halls of Gulshan Mahal, a 19th-century Victorian bungalow, the NMIC chronicles the history and progression of Indian cinema by housing vintage artifacts from the early 19th century in Gulshan Mahal to the technically advanced equipment and interactive exhibits of the modern era in the new museum building beside it.

The exhibits are housed in the sprawling two-stories of Gulshan Mahal and five stories of the new glass building beside it, the museum is headed by the veteran filmmaker ShyamBenegal and is supported by the Information and Broadcasting Ministry. Gulshan Mahal has a tranquil ambiance which is only broken by the faint sounds of the films playing on small screens while the visitors explore the chronological history of Indian cinema such as the event like the first show of the Lumiere brother’s films in Mumbai in 1896. The museum building is divided into nine exhibition spaces that have distinct themes such as the Origin of Cinema, Silent Films, Studio Era, the Impact of World War II, Creative Resonance, New Wave and Beyond, and Regional Cinema. The walls of the museum are decorated with posters of classic films making it even more fascinating to explore.

The hand-cranked camera used by Dada Saheb Phalke for his movie Raja Harishchandra, the first-ever motion picture of India, Arricord 35mm camera used in the 1950s, film magazines of 1940s, a sequential repository of famous movies in India from 1913 to present day, and booklets and EP records of Satyajit Ray films is some of the vintage exhibits visitors can expect to witness. The museum also explores the socio-cultural and economic conditions of India over the years and how the cinema impacted it. The depiction of nationalism in films during the British Raj, female-led silent films, the rise and prominence of stardom in films, films, and social turmoil, and how the film industry became a catalyst for political aspirants are some of the topics it sheds light on.

The exhibits in the new museum building are spread over four floors and are dedicated to themes such as Gandhi and Cinema, Children’s film studio, technology, creativity and Indian cinema, and Cinema across India. The section Gandhi and Cinema tells us about the impact of Gandhiji on cinema and various movies which were influenced by his philosophies. Charlie Chaplin’s movie called Modern Times which was released in 1936 is based on the meeting between the two and is one of the interesting things to explore in this section. The Children’s Film Studio offers a hands-on experience with camera, light, accessories, shooting, editing, etc., while the Technology, Creativity, and Indian Cinema section illustrate the use of technology and different equipment in various stages of filmmaking and the use of different gadgets by film veterans. The Cinema Across India section offers a take on the cinematographic culture in the country. This one-of-a-kind museum provides a vivid and comprehensive description of the evolution of Indian cinema and its existence in Mumbai, the country’s entertainment capital is an appropriate tribute.

Nearby Tourist Attractions:

  • Haji Ali Dargah
  • Shree Mahalakshmi Temple
  • Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus
  • Hanging Gardens

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