Vintage Bollywood studio faces uncertain future
Mehboob Khan has carried equipment at the Filmistan Studio for the last 40 years, rubbing shoulders with some of the greatest names in Bollywood and playing a small role in the making of hit movies.
The ageing, slightly-built labourer is happy to show visitors around the complex in Mumbai and glows with pride as he pushes open the high, wooden gates to get to the studio’s very own prison.
“Every actor, be it Dilip Kumar or even Shah Rukh Khan, has been imprisoned in this jail while shooting their films,” he told AFP. “If there’s a jail scene in any Bollywood film, there’s no better place to shoot in Mumbai.”
In a modern-day world of big budgets and jet-setting film stars, the Filmistan Studio in the Mumbai suburb of Goregaon is as much a part of Bollywood’s past as Pinewood Studios is to British cinema or Warner Bros to Hollywood.