It was a cloudy Sunday so I chose to spend it inside plopped down in front of the television watching old mythologicals. One was the 1975 film Maya Machhendra starring Abhi Bhattacharya as Sage Machhendra, Kanan Kaushal as Tilottama, and Master Satyajeet as Ghoraknath. Here is a magazine advert for the 1940 film Alakh Niranjan which takes off where the legend of Maya Machhendra ends, with the further adventures of Ghoraknath, the young disciple of sage Machhendra.

The director of Alakh Niranjan is Bhal G. Pendharkar who made quite a few mythologicals over the course of his five decade career which began during the silent era. He was the elder brother of actor Baburao Pendharkar, who appeared in several of his films including Vande Matram Ashram (1926), Voice from the Sky (1934), Bhakta Damaji (1942), Valmiki (1946), and Shilanganache Sone (1949), and he was half-brother to actor/director Master Vinayak who also worked in a few of his films. The female lead in Alakh Niranjan is Leela, Bhal Pendharkar’s wife, and a busy actress of the 1930s and 40s.

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