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Transmission: Tuesday, 30th October 2007

Bollywood's Big B

Alan Yentob meets the world’s biggest movie star: Amitabh Bachchan, otherwise known as 'The Big B'.

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Bollywood's Big B 

Episode Guide: Bollywood's Big B

Episode Guide: Bollywood's Big B

Posted: Monday, 29th October 2007

Imagine goes on the trail of the world’s biggest – and busiest – film star. Amitabh Bachchan was voted Star of the Millennium in a BBC on-line poll to discover the world’s greatest film star, ahead of Sir Lawrence Olivier and Charlie Chaplin. Yet many Western film goers have never heard of the man who has been the king of Indian cinema for more than 30 years.

Alan Yentob follows Amitabh Bachchan to his home city of Mumbai and gains exclusive access to a Bollywood film set as Amitabh shoots a new version of “Sholay” - one of India’s most popular films which helped shoot him to stardom in the 1970s.

At the age of 65, Amitabh is working harder than ever. In an extensive interview he tells Imainge… about the controversy surrounding his recent films which have provoked demonstrations, in which he has taken on darker or more daring roles. He also speaks openly about his failed political career, his relationship with Rajiv Ghandi, and admits the difficulties that befall an older actor now playing alongside a hugely popular newer generation of screen-stars.

The documentary features an interview with the actor's son, Abhishek, now making a huge impact in his own acting career. And as well as talking to members of Bollywood’s filmmaking elite, Alan finds out about Indian diaspora from Sanjeev Bhaskar and explores the extraordinary devotion Indian fans show their favourite stars.

Bollywood's Big B, BBC One, Tuesday, 30th October 2007.

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