Gandhi was a collaboration of British and Indian production companies and was written by John Briley and produced and directed by Sir Richard Attenborough. It stars Ben Kingsley in the titular role.
The film dramatizes Mahatma Gandhi's life from a defining moment in 1893 in South Africa in which he was physically thrown off a train for being "coloured" in a whites only first class compartment until his assassination on January 30, 1948. His massive funeral is also dramatized. Although a practicing Hindu, Gandhi's embracing of other faiths, particularly Christianity and Islam, is also depicted.
Gandhi was released in India on November 30, 1982, in the United Kingdom on December 3, 1982, and in the United States on December 6, 1982. It was nominated for Academy Awards in eleven categories, winning eight, including best picture. Ben Kingsley also won for best actor. The screenplay of Gandhi is available as a published book. The film opens with a statement from the filmmakers explaining their approach to the problem of filming Gandhi's complex life story:
“ No man's life can be encompassed in one telling. There is no way to give each year its allotted weight, to include each event, each person who helped to shape a lifetime. What can be done is to be faithful in spirit to the record and to try to find one's way to the heart of the man... ”
The film begins with Gandhi's assassination on 30 January 1948,:18-21 and his funeral.:15-18 After an evening prayer, an elderly Gandhi is helped out for his evening walk to meet a large number of greeters and admirers. One of these visitors—Nathuram Godse—shoots him point blank in the chest. Gandhi exclaims, "Oh, God!" ("Hē... [continues]
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