Marathi cinema refers to Indian films produced in Marathi, the language of the state of Maharashtra, India. Based in old Mumbai, it is the oldest and one of the pioneering film industries in India.  The first Marathi film to be released in India was Dadasaheb Torne’s Shree Pundalik on 18 May 1912 at Coronation Cinematograph, Mumbai.   and a Marathi team that was performing natikas (musicals) in Marathi and Sanskrit Sangeet and plays in Marathi at that period. The first Marathi sound film, Ayodhyecha Raja,  was released in 1932, just a year after Alam Ara, the first Hindi talkie. Although the industry is much smaller than the large market-driven Hindi cinema based in Mumbai, Marathi cinema is duty-free and seeing growth in recent years. Raja Harishchandra, directed by Dadasaheb Phalke, was a Marathi film, now known as India’s first feature film, released in 1913. The Dadasaheb Phalke Award is India’s highest film award given annually by the Maharashtra government for its lifetime contribution to Indian cinema. . It is also known by the nickname Mollywood in various print and online media (a portmanteau of Marathi and Hollywood).