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Sunday June 23, 2024

Mughal-e-Azam: from Oscars to New York Times Square

By Murtaza Ali Shah
May 27, 2023
— Photo by author
— Photo by author

LONDON: India’s greatest-ever film Mughal-E-Azam has arrived at New York Times Square in an epic journey from its recent entry into Oscars to now in New York for a three-month-long tour.

Now India’s greatest stage musical, Mughal-E-Azam has been taken from Oscars to New York by Akbar Asif, the son of late legendary filmmaker K Asif whose parents were from pre-partition Lahore and many of the family members now live in various Pakistani cities.

Akbar Asif has taken the film to New York Times Square as a way of continuing the legacy of his father who registered his name in world history by making the film Mughal-E-Azam.

Viral videos show the musical cast singing and performing “Jeb Payar Keeya Tau Derna Kaya” in the iconic square, wearing colourful Bollywood costumes. London-based businessman Akbar Asif’s office has made it a mission of his life to exhibit the film around the world.

The first show was played on 26th May 2023 and will continue in different cities till 20th of August. The show will cover Atlanta, New York, Baltimore, Orlando, Chicago, New Jersey, Toronto, Houston, Dallas, Seattle, Vancouver, San Jose and Phoenix. Based on the iconic 1960 Bollywood blockbuster of the same name, the play is the first of its kind Broadway-musical phenomenon from India.

Previously, Mughal-e-Azam became the first film from the golden age of Bollywood to have its screenplay admitted in the official Oscars library in Los Angeles. Called the Shehenshah of all films, Mughal-e-Azam is so well liked that its screening was allowed for the first time in Pakistan in 2007, opening the way for several Bollywood films at the time. A spokesman of the musical said: “It is needless to say how much Americans are going to enjoy this musical epic.

The response has been overwhelming and emotional. The film continues to make history on the world stage. We hope future generations can learn and get inspired by the work of my late father and his incredible team of writers.”