Le 3 mai 1913 avait lieu la première projection publique payante d’une fiction réalisée par un Indien pour les Indiens:
Raja Harishchandra, Dhundiraj Govind Phalke
The story of Raja Harischandra is taken from the Mahabharata, the classical Indian Epic and tells about the righteous king who sacrifices his kingdom, wife and son to fulfill his promise to Sage Vishwamitra.
Convinced of his ideals, the Gods in Heaven declare him to be the living embodiment of Truth and restore him to his former regal glory.
The original film is in four parts. Only the first and the last part could be salvaged so far.
These two reels of the first Indian film are preserved in the National Film Archive of India.
Some film historians are of the view that the reels preserved in the NFAI are of a subsequent remake of the same title produced in 1917
Comme pour toute la mythologie, quelques reprises de l’épisode de Raja Harishchandra dans l’histoire du cinéma:
Raja Harishchandra, Raman B. Desai (1952)
Harishchandra Taramati, B.K. Adarsh (1963)
Satyavadi Raja Harishchandra, Shantilal Soni (1989)