Filmfare Awards

For the Filmfare Awards for South Indian film industries, see Filmfare Awards South. For the Filmfare Awards for East Indian film industries, see Filmfare Awards East.
Filmfare Awards
61st Filmfare Awards

Trophy of the award
Awarded for Excellence in cinematic achievements
Country India
Presented by Filmfare
First awarded 21 March 1954 (1954-03-21)
Last awarded 15 January 2016 (2016-01-15)
Official website
Television/Radio coverage
Network Sony Entertainment Television (India) (2000-present)

The Filmfare Awards are presented annually by The Times Group to honour both artistic and technical excellence of professionals in the Hindi language film industry of India. The Filmfare ceremony is one of the oldest film events in India.[1][2][3] The awards were first introduced in 1954, the same year as the National Film Awards. They were initially referred to as the Clare Awards or The Clares after Clare Mendonca, the editor of The Times of India. A dual voting system was developed in 1956. Under this system, "in contrast to the National Film Awards, which are decided by a panel appointed by Indian Government, the Filmfare Awards are voted by both the public and a committee of experts."

The ceremony had been sponsored by various private organisations in the past as well as in present provisions. During several years in 1990s, a live ceremony was also broadcast to television audiences but was later discontinued due to unknown reasons. Some experts believe that, considering the growing popularity of the young heroines and in the view of safety and security of those young heroines, the live telecast was suspended from television. Presently, a recorded and an edited version of the awards ceremony is televised on SET within the gap of a week or two, after the ceremony which has already been held.

Until the mid-1990s, Filmfare Awards were not only preeminent but were also very well-recognized popular awards ceremony in India until several clone awards with similar model of awarding and stage performance pattern started sprouting up in Mumbai. There is no data statistics recorded in reference to T.V viewership for the ceremony, but several press reports have pointed out that with other several Indian film awards having similar paradigm and too much of cloning by other ceremonies had resulted with in curiosity among audiences and poor viewership since 2000s. The Filmfare Awards have been often referred to as the Hindi film industry's equivalent to The Oscars.[1][2][3][4]


The Filmfare awards were first introduced in 1954. The Clares was the original name of the award ceremony, named after The Times of India critic Clare Mendonca. Readers of Filmfare were polled to decide the winners, and over 20,000 readers spread throughout India participated in the polls; trophies were given to winners of the popular vote. In the first awards function, held on 21 March 1954 at the Metro Theatre of Mumbai, only five awards were presented: Best Film, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress, and Best Music Director. Do Bigha Zameen was the first movie to win the award for Best Film. The first winners for other four categories were: Bimal Roy for his direction of Do Bigha Zameen, Dilip Kumar for his performance in Daag, Meena Kumari for her performance in Baiju Bawra, and Naushad Ali for his music in Baiju Bawra.

Hollywood star Gregory Peck was invited to be the guest of honour at the first ever awards on 21 March 1954 at the Metro theatre, Mumbai but couldn't make it to the function since his flight from Colombo got delayed. However, Peck did attend the banquet that followed the award night at Wellington Club (Gymkhana), Mumbai.[5][6][6]

The winners for the year 1985 were announced in 1986 and the event was scheduled to be held at the Brabourne Stadium in December 1986. Unfortunately the 'Bombay film Industry', as was known then went on strike in '86 because of its many contentious issues with the Maharashtra Government. So the ceremony was pushed to the next year. The winners of 1985 were awarded on 28 January 1987. Due to Security reasons, filmfare was not awarded for 1986 and 1987.[7]

Due to the many award ceremonies in the Indian Film Industry, it is often questioned which ones are "real" and based on fair decisions made by the jury. The Filmfare went through a phase of controversy in which they were accused of a biased selection when nominating and presenting awards and it was believed that they were not awarded based on merit. But, it is a common trend for the award ceremonies to be questioned over such issues [8] The Bollywood fraternity has been around for over a century now and has acquired many new techniques, talents, story lines, and much more. The importance of these awards is that it recognizes an industry in which almost a thousand movies per year are produced making it one of the biggest in cinema. They are also a very important set of awards because everyone has a soft spot in their hearts for them due to they long lasting journey. The awards only started with a few categories back in 1953 but today, it recognizes about 31 categories. In the past century, they have proves to overcome any controversy and at the same time achieve something new each year as well.[9]

The statuette, depicting a woman whose arms uprise in a dance number with her fingers touching, is commonly referred to as "The Black Lady" (or "The Lady in Black"). Filmfare is widely known for "The Black Lady" not only because of its beautiful sculpture but because it is the token of honor presented to each winner. Originally designed by N.G. Pansare under the supervision of Times of India's art director Walter Langhammer, it is generally made of bronze, its height is 46.5 cm and it weighs around five kg.[10] To celebrate the 25th year of the awards, the statues were made in silver and to celebrate the 50th year the statues were made in gold.[11] The Filmfare trophy is manufactured by The Award Gallery since 2000.[12] Till 2012, there were only a few changes made to the trophy. But recently, as of 2013, a huge change has been made to give the trophy a 3-D look.[13] Two reasons were given for this change. The organizers believe that this was necessary to match the many advances in technology in today's world which will advance a lot more in the coming years as well. Also, this was an attempt to match the theme of the 2013 set of awards at Filmfare in Mumbai. The theme was a hundred years leap into the future. Hence, what is better than the idea of a new looking lady?[14] Winners are always very overwhelmed when they hold the lady in their hands not only because it proves and shows their hard work but also because of the warm feeling and excitement that comes with it. The appearance of this lady is quite surprising because the Indian population tends to believe that a dark appearance is not attractive in a human being but they beg to differ when it comes to this beautiful lady.[15]

The Red Carpet is a segment that takes place before the beginning of the actual ceremony. This is when actors, actresses, producers, directors, singers, composers, and others that have contributed to Indian cinema are introduced.[16] The tradition of the red carpet has been around for several years now and is nothing different from any other normal set of awards that take place. As we know, this tradition is a way for the ladies to cat walk down the carpet so show-off their gowns, dresses, hairstyles, and even makeup. The elegant men also walk down the carpet showing off their Indian or Western look.[17] It is also a way for the audience to meet and greet their favorite stars, to see who their favorite celebrities walk in with, and see how the industry mingles with one another. It is a way for the organizers to welcome and thank the beauties to such a prestigious occasion. Hosts question the celebrities about upcoming performances and who they think deserves to take the Black Lady home.[18]

The latest 2013 Filmfare awards took place in Mumbai at the Yash Raj Studios in Andheri. The unique thing about this year was that a special press conference was held just for its announcement and this took place at the Suburban hotel in Mumbai as well. As mentioned earlier, the theme this year is a hundred years in the future. The reason for this theme to be held this year was because it was meant to be a continuous from last year's theme where the fraternity celebrated the completion of a hundred years in Indian cinema at the box office.[14]


As of 2016, there are total 31 awards given in different categories. Some of the categories which have been discontinued, are also mentioned along with the years through which they prevailed. There is a separate category of critics awards, decided by noted film-critics rather than popular votes. Awards are given in the following categories. Follow the links for lists of the award winners, year by year.

Merit awards

Critics' awards

Technical awards

Special awards


Most awards to a single film
Most awards for Best Director
Most awards for Best Actor
Most awards for Best Actor (critics)
Most awards for Best Actress
Most awards for Best Actress (critics)
Most awards for Best Supporting Actor
Most awards for Best Supporting Actress
Most awards for Best Music Director
Most awards for Best Lyricist
Most awards for Best Male Playback Singer
Most awards for Best Female Playback Singer

See also


  1. 1 2 AlMishra, Vijay, Bollywood Cinema: A Critical Genealogy (PDF), Victoria University of Wellington, p. 9, retrieved 2011-02-24
  2. 1 2 Mehta, Monika (2005), "Globalizing Bombay Cinema: Reproducing the Indian State and Family", Cultural Dynamics, 17 (2): 135–154 [145], doi:10.1177/0921374005058583
  3. 1 2 Boltin, Kylie (Autumn 2003), "Saathiya: South Asian Cinema Otherwise Known as 'Bollywood'", Metro Magazine: Media & Education Magazine (136): 52–5, ISSN 0312-2654
  4. "Filmfare Awards have lost their gleam over the years". Retrieved 8 March 2011. The Filmfare is equivalent to the Oscars for India.
  5. "'I behaved like Gregory Peck to impress Suraiya' – The Times of India". 2003-06-14. Retrieved 2012-09-30.
  6. 1 2 "Filmfare Awards Facts". Retrieved 2012-09-30.
  7. "50 years of filmfare awards". Hamara Forums. Retrieved 2012-09-30.
  8. "FILM AWARDS GENERATE CONTROVERSY - Bollywood Article". 2002-01-10. Retrieved 2014-08-05.
  9. "Brief history of Bollywood | The Jillbrary". Retrieved 2014-08-05.
  10. Pinto, Jerry (April 1997). "Tangy titbits from the Filmfare past". Filmfare. Archived from the original on 1998-07-05. Retrieved 2012-01-13.
  11. "A golden glow for Filmfare". The Hindu. PTI. 2005-01-28. Retrieved 2011-01-26.
  12. "The Award Gallery – Trophy Partners".
  13. "Filmfare Award 2014: Priyanka Chopra Unveils Special 3D Trophy [PHOTOS]". 2014-01-07. Retrieved 2014-08-05.
  14. 1 2 "Filmfare Awards to be held on January 24 - The Times of India". 2014-01-07. Retrieved 2014-08-05.
  15. "Call of The Black Lady: Filmfare Awards". 2013-07-23. Retrieved 2014-08-05.
  16. Kritika Ajmani (2014-01-25). "59th Idea Filmfare Awards 2013: Amitabh Bachchan, Salman Khan, Priyanka Chopra sizzle on the red carpet. View pics! – Bollywood News & Gossip, Movie Reviews, Trailers & Videos at". Retrieved 2014-08-05.
  17. "Filmfare Awards: Red Carpet dazzles with Bollywood's beautiful". Emirates 24/7. 2014-01-25. Retrieved 2014-08-05.
  18. "Tonight at 7.30pm: we live blog (well, not really) about the Filmfare Awards | The National". 2014-01-26. Retrieved 2014-08-05.

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