On This Day: Amitabh Bachchan First Film Hits Mumbai
Thursday 21 May 2020 12.30 IST
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On this day exactly 49 years ago the first Amitabh Bachchan film Saat Hindustani hit Mumbai. The date was 21st May 1971 and the film released at Maratha Mandir in matinee shows only. It was a low key release as it was earlier released in Delhi / UP and fared very badly.



Coincidentally the film clashed with a release of the box office king of that time Rajesh Khanna. Haathi Mera Saathi also released in Mumbai on 21st May 1971 though the film had released earlier in Delhi / UP and East Punjab. This film became the first film in history to collect 1 lakh nett in Mumbai on day one. It was released on 27 theatres and Rajesh Khanna beat his own day one record in Mumbai city which was set with Sachaa Jhuta in 1970.



Saat Hindustani was the first release of Amitabh Bachchan but it was not the first time that Mumbaiites got to see the star that was going to become a future megastar. The other coincidence that in Mumbai the first sight of Amitabh Bachchan also came in a Rajesh Khanna starrer which was released a couple of months before Saat Hindustani in Mumbai city. The film was called Anand.



Another point here is that last year there were celebrations of fifty years of Amitabh Bachchan hitting the big screen and that was not the case. The fifty years were actually hit a couple of months back. It was funny to see fifty years of Saat Hindustani celebrated when the film did not even release in 1969. It showed a lack of knowledge with these commentators and even the millions of fans but they cant really be blamed as the media has a tendency to follow what is out there rather than actually collect facts. Then the fans follow what the media has to say. Its understandable that the date of the first film is not known of some small actor but this is Amitabh Bachchan who is the biggest star the country has seen till date.



The fifty years of Amitabh Bachchan were hit on 27th March 2020 as Saat Hindustani first released in Delhi / UP on 27th March 1970. Amitabh Bachchan made his debut in 1970 and not 1969 as it is claimed by the media. The main cinema for Saat Hindustani was Sheila and it also released in Eros, Minerva, Amba, Ajanta and Radhu Palace as well as some theatres in UP. The release in Delhi of 6 cinemas was a good release as it was a small film and the biggest films released on around 8 theatres in the city at that time. The collections were horrific with just 10,000 apprx coming on day one with capacity of around 40,000. The film was out of theatres very fast and next it went to Mumbai a year later but the response in Delhi meant it was more of a token gesture release. The other circuits saw a release when Amitabh Bachchan had become a star with more creative posters keeping in mind the image Amitabh Bachchan but it was a black and white film and pretty much an art film so had no takers. 



Just like Saat Hindustani had no takers there will not be many takers that Amitabh Bachchan actually debuted in 1970 as there has already been a false picture painted by the media but facts are facts and anyone with access to genuine sources can do the research and easily check what is fact and what is fake.



Some of the details of Saat Hindustani can be see here



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