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Gandhi Jayanti 2022: Lesser known facts about Richard Attenborough’s Oscar winning film Gandhi

Gandhi Jayanti, as we all know, is celebrated on October 2 every year to celebrate the birth anniversary of the father of the nation, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, who was known as Mahatma Gandhi. Lovingly called Bapu, he led India’s freedom movement along with many other national leaders against British rule in India. His method of non-violence inspired many civil rights movements across the world. To celebrate his contribution to the nation, the day of his birth anniversary is celebrated every year as a national holiday. October 2 is also celebrated as the International Day of Non-Violence by the United Nations.

Today, as we remember The Father of the Nation- Mahatma Gandhi, we have listed down a few lesser-known facts about the Oscar-winning film based on his life- ‘Gandhi’.

1. ‘Gandhi’, directed and produced by Richard Attenborough, was released in India on November 30, 1982. A few days later, the film was released in the United Kingdom on December 3, and three days later after that, the film was released in the United States of America on December 6.

2. The film had a grand premiere in the UK on December 2, 1982, at the Royal Premiere at the Odeon Leicester Square in London. The film’s premiere was attended by Prince Charles and his then-wife Princess Diana. Apparently, ‘Gandhi’ had a limited release in the US initially but that was later followed by a wider release in January 1983.

3. The iconic film was nominated for Academy Awards in eleven categories out of which it won eight awards. Director Richard Attenborough won the Oscar for Best Director. The film also won the Best Picture, Best Original Screenplay, Best Film Editing, Best Art Direction, Best Cinematography, Best Costume Design that went to Bhanu Athaiya, and the Best Actor Award went to Ben Kingsley who played Mahatma Gandhi in the film.

4. Director Richard Attenborough waited for several years to finally complete ‘Gandhi’. It took almost 18 years to make a film on Mahatma Gandhi.  According to news reports, in 1952, Gabriel Pascal, a Hungarian film producer, and director had secured an agreement with the then Prime Minister of India, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru to produce a film on Mahatma Gandhi’s life. However, Pascal passed away in 1954 and the film could not be made.

5. The director of the critically acclaimed film ‘The Bridge on the River Kwai, David Lean had also planned to make a film on the life of Mahatma Gandhi. He had planned to start making the film after finishing ‘The Bridge on the River Kwai’ reportedly with Alec Guinness as Gandhi. However, it is rumored that the project was abandoned and the makers decided to make ‘Lawrence of Arabia instead.

ALSO READ: Gandhi Jayanti 2022 EXCLUSIVE: Aasif Sheikh and other TV celebs pay tribute to Bapu’s ideologies

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