LInde fantome: Reflexions sur un voyage is a 1969 French seven part television documentary miniseries about India, directed by Louis Malle. It was shown on BBC television as Phantom India.
Malle later said that the film was his most personal work and the one he was most proud of, it is widely regarded as the crowning achievement of his career. It was initially inspired by a two-month trip to India in late 1967 that Malle made on behalf of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs to present a selection of "new French cinema" throughout the country. Filming took place between January 5, 1968 and May 1, 1968 with a crew of two, a cameraman and a sound recordist. Malle arrived in India with no particular plans and financed the trip himself. The resulting 30 hours of footage was then edited down to the 363 minutes of Phantom India. The 105-minute long Calcutta used the footage he had recorded over his three-week stay in that city. Phantom India was shown on French television and the BBC in the UK in 1969. Many British Indians and the Indian Government felt that Malle had shown a one-sided portrait of India, focussing on the impoverished, rather than the developing, parts of the country. A diplomatic incident occurred when the Indian government asked the BBC to stop broadcasting the programme. The BBC refused and were briefly asked to leave their New Delhi bureau.
Louis Malle called his gorgeous and groundbreaking Phantom India the most personal film of his career. And this extraordinary journey to India, originally shown as a miniseries on European television, is infused with his sense of discovery, as well as occasional outrage, intrigue, and joy.