Today marks the 116th birth anniversary of veteran Indian filmmaker V Shantaram. Marking this occasion is a special Google Doodle dedicated to the filmmaker illustrated by Sukanto Debnath. Today’s doodle portrays three of Shantaram’s most popular films produced, and directed by him in the 1950s. The doodle begins with Shataram shaped to depict the ‘G’ in Google, followed by a camera with two reels taking the shape of the double ‘O’. Rest of the letters are portrayed by the characters of his three popular films.
Speaking about these films, the first is Amar Bhoopali released in 1951. The film is set during the days of the Maratha Confederacy, and revolves around the story about an ordinary cow herder who has a natural gift of poetry. Next is Jhanak Jhanak Payal Baaje released in 1955, which is about a love story among Indian classical dancers. This film was one of the first in India to use Technicolor. Lastly, Do Aankhen Baara Haath released in 1957 shows the life of a young jail warden who helped dangerous prisoners change into persons of virtue through hard work.
Born as Shantaram Rajaram Vankudre on November 18, 1901 in Kohlapur, he began his journey at the age of 16. He first took up a job at a local tin-shed cinema where he earned Rs 5 per month. After four years, he had his break and debuted as an actor in the film Surekha Haran. Shortly after in 1927, Shantaram had his first directed film released, Netaji Palker. Following this, he continued with his six-decade long career which included memorable films like Dr. Kotnis Ki Amar Kahani, Navrang, Duniya Na Mane, Pinjra, Chani, Iye Marathiche Nagari, and Zunj. ALSO READ: Sitara Devi’s 97th birthday celebrated with a Google Doodle
Among his achievements include the Dadasaheb Phalke Award in 1985, and Padma Vibhushan in 1992. One of his films, Manoos was also praised by Charlie Chaplin who reportedly like it very much. He also has his autobiography Shantarama published in both Hindi and Marathi. You can also discover more of his life and works in Google’s Arts & Culture. ALSO READ: Anasuya Sarabhai’s 132nd birthday celebrated with a Google Doodle