Fatima Begum was India’s very first female movie director and one of the early stars of Indian cinema. She was brought up in an Urdu Muslim family and was married to Sachin State's last ruler, Nawab Sidi Ibrahim Muhammad Yakut Khan III. However, there is no proof or record of her marriage. She had three children, namely Zubeida, Sultana, and Shehzadi. Additionally, She was the grandmother of Jamila Razzaq, daughter of Sultana and Seth Razaaq, and Durreshahwar Dhanrajgir and Humayun Dhanrajgir, daughter, and son of Zubeida and Maharaja Narsingir Dhanrajgir.

Begum began her career on Urdu stage but later shifted to films. She did her debut in the silent film, Veer Abhimanyu, released in 1922 and directed by Ardeshir Irani. In 1926, she established Fatima Films, which in 1928 changed to Victoria-Fatima Films. The first film which she directed Bulbul-e-Paristan in 1926 made her the first female director of Indian Cinema. She continued acting till 1938 and was last seen in the movie Duniya Kya Hai?.

Fatima died at the age of ninety-one years in 1938, but her legacy was taken forward by her daughter, Zubeida, who appeared in India’s first talkie, Alam Ara and was even a silent film star.

G. V. Iyer

Internationally renowned film producer-director G. V. Iyer started his career as a stage artiste. He was born on September 3, 1917, in Nanjanagud (Mysore). This veteran film personality started his career as a stage artiste in 'Sadarame' drama in Mysore and later worked in the film field. In early stages of his career, he engaged himself as a poster writer and carpenter. Later, he had gone to act with several veteran actors both on stage and in the film field. After getting a chance as an actor, he turned producer and director. He brought many film heroes to the limelight including Dr. Rajkumar and Narasimharaju. Over the years, he achieved international acclaim through his classic works of celluloid, which brought fame and awards for Indian cinema. It is for this the veteran is considered to be ‘"Kannada Bheeshma’ in the film industry. G.V.Iyer was the first director to make films in the Sanskrit language. Every film that he has directed is seen as a landmark in Kannada cinema. He made his debut as an actor in the film ‘Radha Ramana’(1943). Later he went to act in many devotional films such as Mahakavi Kalidasa, Hari Bhaktha and Bedara Kannapa. He also wrote scripts, lyrics and produced and directed commercial Kannada movies. One of the most notable films that were a huge success was ‘Ranadheera Kanteerava’. In 1983, he directed India’s first Sanskrit film for NFDC ‘Adi Shankaracharya’ which won four national film awards. G.V.iyer then made two biopic films; Madhvacharya (1986) in Kannada and Ramanujacharya in Tamil (1989). After the success of his first Sanskrit film, he made ‘ Bhagavad Gita’ (1993), which was declared as the best film in National Film Awards. His last religious film ‘Swami Vivekananda’ was not a very successful movie although it had popular actors such as Mithun Chakraborty and Hema Malini. The director also made his foray in TV series. He had gone to the city Mumbai to finalize actors for his forthcoming movie when he died on December 21, 2003. His body was brought from Mumbai to Bangalore where his last rites were performed.

G. V. Iyer Hindi Actor