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When Amitabh and Jaya turned producers with Abhimaan

The Bachchans, whose film Abhimaan released 43 years ago, a month and a half after their marriage, produced the film under their banner, Amiya Productions.

Sonal Pandya

Many people assume that Abhimaan (1973) was based on the lives of stars Amitabh and Jaya Bachchan. However, director Hrishikesh Mukherjee made the film after watching singer-actor Kishore Kumar and his first wife, Ruma, who was also a talented singer.

Amitabh and Jaya Bachchan had already worked with the editor-turned-filmmaker in Anand (1971) and Guddi (1971), respectively, and the couple had acted together in films like Ek Nazar (1972) and Bansi Birju (1972). They wanted another chance to work together again and the opportunity presented itself in the form of Abhimaan.

However, the film went through a bit of financial trouble and that was when the husband and wife backed the film by presenting it under their banner, Amiya. The name takes the first three letters of Amitabh’s name and combines it with the last two of Jaya’s. This was the only film the production company produced.

Curiously, their names do not show up as producers in the film. Pawan Kumar, who was Bachchan’s secretary at the time, and Susheela Kamat, the assistant director, are listed as producers in the opening credits. In 1996, Amitabh and Jaya Bachchan turned producers yet again for Tere Mere Sapne produced under their company, Amitabh Bachchan Corporation Ltd. It was relaunched in 2001 as AB Corp. Their last co-production was R Balki’s Shamitabh (2015).