Anu Malhotra is one of India’s most acclaimed filmmakers (Director, Producer & Screen Writer), with a large body of work spanning two decades with 18 National and 2 International awards to her credit. But for Anu, filmmaking is not just a profession, it is a passion with a cause – to create meaningful and uplifting television content.
Over the past decades, Anu has transformed the lives and minds of people across India and the world, through her insightful documentaries, trend setting television programming and revolutionary awareness campaigns, that are a tribute to India and her infinite diversity.
In 1994, Anu set up AIM Television as a boutique production house and went on to create over 600 hours of quality non-fiction television programming, for premiere Indian television channels (Zee TV, Sony and DD) and a range of infotainment series for reputed international channels (BBC, Discovery, Travel Channel U.K., France 5 et al.)
A pioneer of the travel show genre on Indian television, Anu created innovative formats and cutting edge style which became the benchmark for non-fictional work in India since then. These shows remain, till date, the most compelling documents of India of our times.
Among her many firsts, Anu also introduced fashion on Indian Television. Khoobsurat, the first fashion TV programme showcased Indian designers in India and worldwide. Some of the greatest names of the Indian fashion industry – Rohit Bahl, Tarun Tahiliani, J J Vallaya, Ashish Soni and others – were given a compelling platform on television by Anu.
Anu also successfully formatted and showcased pioneering lifestyle programming (Jhatpat Khana, Take 5, Peoples Club, Breakfast with Zee et al) which became household names and their dynamic, glamorous and funky style defined a whole generation of Indian audiences.
AIM Television’s global appeal was garnered with high-quality shows such as Tribal Wisdom, Yatra- Indian Travels and Holistic Healing, that were aired internationally (Discovery, Travel Channel UK, France 5, et.al.)
With her incisive vision, Anu turned her experiences into several captivating commercials and promotionals, for the Department of Tourism, to market India’s tourism potential abroad. The first series of the Incredible India films were created by Anu – a slogan, that was coined by her! She also penned a column, Travels With My Camera, for HT city in 2003, besides writing travel articles for various magazines.
Anu has also consulted for the BBC World Service Trust as the Creative Head for its India Project, with the specific mission of raising awareness about HIV/AIDS in India. For this campaign, she designed and directed a hugely successful and impactful ‘Behaviour Change Communication Project.’ Haath Se Haath Milaa a 52 episodes television series involving 50 of Bolly woods top stars which won the UNAIDS Global Award (2007).
But despite her remarkable repertoire of work, Anu’s first love has always been her insightful documentary films, which have showcased unique cultures and wisdom traditions of India, which were documented for the first time, by her.
Post 2000, Anu defined the landscape of socio-cultural documentaries with her path-breaking films, Tribal Wisdom, Coming Full Circle, The Apatani of Arunachal Pradesh, The Konyak of Nagaland, The Maharaja of Jodhpur, and Shamans of the Himalayas – all seminal pieces of work, showcasing unique cultures and wisdom traditions of India.
“I have always sought to capture India’s rich cultural heritage and vibrant living traditions through my films. My mission is to document cultures that are fast disappearing and remind viewers of the importance of learning from and sustaining, their traditional wisdom.”
Since 2010, Anu’s creative spirit has found expression in Art. In 2011, Anu showcased her first solo photography and multimedia exhibition, titled ‘Soul Survivors’ at the National Museum, New Delhi. This hugely successful and much appreciated exhibition was showcased at Bikaner House, New Delhi, in 2018, where her first published book, titled Soul Survivors, was released. Anu’s second book, Shamans of the Himalayas, will be published in 2021.
At present, Anu is developing several non-fiction and fiction shows for presentation to premiere international digital platforms.