Posts tagged Prince Aly Khan
Pronoti Datta | TNN (THE TIMES OF INDIA; May 20, 2012)
Mumbai: Liberty Cinema is arguably one of Mumbai’s most sumptuous art deco theatres. But ever since 2005 when multiplexes began opening, it has had few takers. As with all single screen cinemas, competition from multiplexes and home video has taken a toll on business.
In an attempt to make the theatre sustainable, owner Nazir Hoosein, 72, is expanding Liberty’s offerings to include art forms such as alternative cinema and performances. While screenings of Hindi movies will continue, the theatre will host festivals of foreign films and perhaps even drama and music concerts. The first such event is a festival of French cinema organized by the Alliance Française from June 22-24. “The idea is that the property survives,” Hoosein says. “The idea is not to make me a multimillionaire. That would happen if I sold it.”
Liberty has also been crippled, Hoosein says, by the entertainment tax—theatres have to pay 45%—and the Rent Act. One wing of Liberty has offices but because the building falls within the purview of the Rent Act, Hoosein says he can only charge his tenants Re 1 per sq ft.
Liberty opened on March 21, 1949, with Mehboob Khan’s Andaz, starring Raj Kapoor, Nargis and Dilip Kumar. It was built by Hoosein’s father, Habib Hoosein, and designed by British architect M A Riddley Abbott. When Abbott died a year after construction began in 1947, Indian architects John Fernandes and Waman Namjoshi took over. They used wood More >