Ryerson group dresses up for Bollywood film industry’s 100th anniversary

Ryerson students dressed up in their favourite Bollywood-themed costumes to celebrate Hindi cinema last month.

Ryeflix, a student group and movie club, was created in September by a third-year business technology management student, Zaeem Sarwar, and a fourth-year psychology student, Sarah Lane. The group includes nine executive members. Ryeflix’s Bollywood costume party was its latest event, and fifth of the year, celebrating the Bollywood film industry’s 100th anniversary.

“We bring together students from all over campus for the same interest: movies,” said Lane. “Our events are open to everyone including non-Ryerson students. Some of our events are off campus with other universities; we hope to expand to other communities as well.”

Guests were divided into four groups to participate in several games such as antakshari (a karaoke competition) or charades. They recreated scenes from classic films. Some students delivered their best impersonations, with dialogues, of celebrities like the “king” of Bollywood, Shahrukh Khan, and legend Amitabh Bachan.

“Bollywood is something that almost every South Asian person is a fan of,” said Sarwar. “We felt that there was a lack of Bollywood specific parties on campus and we wanted to cater to those fans at Ryerson.”

So far, Ryeflix has collaborated with student groups like Fanatics Domain Ryerson and Ryerson Model United Nations (RyeMUN). Sawar and Lane plan to partner with South Asian Student Alliance (SAA) and RyePride in the next year. Sarwar said, “we have tons of things lined up for the winter semester with organizations like The Get Real Movement and have reached out to Students for Mental Awareness Support & Health (SMASH).”

The group hosted a superhero-themed launch party and a Halloween film screening earlier this semester, along with many movie-themed parties and film screenings of all genres.

Bollywood, India’s largest film industry, features the Hindi language and produces almost 150 movies each year. It’s produced thousands of movies consisting of melodramas, romantic comedies and several dance singles. The industry rakes in from $2-3 billion annually, according to anthropology professor Tejaswini Ganti, author of the book Bollywood: A Guidebook to Popular Hindi Cinema.

Ryeflix’s next event will be held in January 2015.

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