In a one-of-its-kind initiative to digitize the century-long history of the globally celebrated Hindi film industry, Google Arts & Culture last week launched the largest ever online exhibition on Hindi cinema.
The exhibit leverages technology, such as Google’s augmented reality and street view to offer an immersive experience across more than 120 expert-curated stories and more than 7,000 assets, including about 5,000 hi-res images and more than 1,500 videos, posters and songs related to films spanning early classics such as, Manthan, to modern blockbusters.
The exhibit will be accessible to film enthusiasts and the public free-of-charge on the Google Arts & Culture platform.
Union Minister of Information and Broadcasting, Youth Affairs and Sports Anurag Singh Thakur said in a statement: “I encourage everyone to visit the Hindi Cinema exhibit, both at the Film Bazaar and online on the Google Arts & Culture platform, and regale in the magic and history of an artform that has been shaping our culture for well over a century, and is a cornerstone of our society and our global soft power.”
The company said that the exhibit is built to help visitors and film enthusiasts immerse themselves in the world of Hindi cinema, traversing the history of Hindi filmmaking through stories about iconic films and industry legends, and through a 3D virtual gallery space and virtual Hall of Fame featuring posters, film archives and music.
“Together with 21 partner institutions from India and across the world, Google Arts & Culture has crafted an online homage to the brilliance of the movie making culture in India,” said Amit Sood, director, Google Arts & Culture. “This tribute is the combination of the passion of cinema experts, curators and cultural organizations.”
Moreover, the company said the immersive street view captures will guide visitors on a 360-degree virtual tour of Mumbai’s iconic Art Deco theaters like Liberty and Regal Cinemas, while augmented reality technology will enable them to project hand-painted posters and banners of iconic films onto walls with their smartphones.
“Films add a new level of immersion and wonder to storytelling — overcoming literacy barriers, catering to India’s linguistic diversity, and effortlessly engaging people across the spectrum,” said Sanjay Gupta, country head & vice president, Google India.