Wednesday, Jun 29, 2022
Outlook.com
Book Excerpt

Fear Of The Dark: Life As A Ramsay

Like many small businessmen in post-Partition India, Fatechand Uttamchand Ramsinghani was drawn to the film industry. And Ramsay Films was born.

Fear Of The Dark: Life As A Ramsay
House of horror Asha & Shyam Ramsay with little Alisha at Shyam’s wedding

In Housefull 4, actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui plays an exorcist called Ramsay Baba. I watched the Akshay Kumar-starrer and realised just how much my maternal family—the Ramsays—has contributed to Bol­lywood.

The Ramsay name is synonymous with horror and the paranormal, and has frequently been mentioned across films. To be remembered over decades as the pioneers of horror in Bollywood is a testimony to the Ramsay achievements. The Ramsays have often been tagged as ‘B-grade’ filmmakers, but theirs was a purposeful endeavour to make films for the masses and on a limited budget; they never claimed to be making classics. They wanted people to experience fear through their films, and they wanted to make money while doing this. When they started, they could not have imagined that their films would eventually gain such a cult following. Unfortunately, most of the brothers and their father passed away before they could see the renewed interest in their trademark genre—horror. The surviving ones have the same question on their lips, “Why the interest in us now, after all these years?’”

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement