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New BBC Tamil series chronicles Tamil film comedy

BBC Tamil is embarking on an exploration of film comedy with a new 15-part weekly radio series, The History of Tamil Film Comedy,  starting from Sunday 30 March.

Based in the Southern Indian city of Chennai, the Tamil film industry is one of India’s largest mass-culture institutions, alongside Mumbai-based Bollywood. From their beginnings in the silent movies and on to the ‘talkies’ age, Tamil films had developed a rich tradition of original comedy which has continued to the present day.

The History of Tamil Film Comedy is produced and presented by the former BBC journalist, Sampath Kumar.

BBC Tamil Editor, Thirumalai Manivannan, said, “Through its nearly 100 years of vibrant history, the Tamil film industry has nurtured a uniquely original comedy tradition. Our new series highlights the fact that, as a genre, Tamil film comedy has reflected the Tamil cultural mores, occasionally drawing on the ‘non-Tamil’ traditions such as Hindi and Western slapstick comedy.

The series will be broadcast at 15:45 GMT (21:15 Indian and Sri Lankan Standard Times) on Sundays, and will be available as podcasts online via the BBC Tamil website