- Meena Kumari makes a brief appearance singing Aaja ri aa nindiya tu aa
- Bimal Roy was sceptical about casting Balraj Sahni. He thought Sahni was too educated and westernised for the role.
- Nirupa Roy actually wept for her scenes. "This is the first film I didn’t use glycerine for tears," she had said.
- The film is based on a short story by Salil Chowdhury, Rickshaw-wallah. Chowdhury agreed to Roy taking his idea, but on the condition that he would score the music.
- Dharti kahe pukar ke, Bollywood’s ultimate peasant song, is derived from the Soviet Red Army’s marching tune!
The epitome of the socialist-humanist Indian cinema of the 1950s, Do Bigha Zamin marries our traditional melodramatic elements of storytelling with the neo-realism of Vittorio De Sica and the idealism Roy derived from the ipta. This seemingly simple film is a dark parable about an exploitative, degrading society caught in the cusp of modernity. With its focus on migrant peasantry, the faceless...