Yash Chopra: King of Romance started his cinematic Supremacy in1959 with the film: ‘Dhool Ka Phool.’

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By Filmi Khan

Yash Chopra was a legendary film director and producer who made significant contributions to the Indian film industry, particularly in Bollywood. He was born on September 27, 1932, in Lahore, British India (now in Pakistan), and he passed away on October 13, 2012, in Mumbai, India. Yash Chopra is widely regarded as one of the most influential and iconic figures in the history of Indian cinema.

Yash Chopra
Picture: Social Media

Yash Chopra was born into a Punjabi family, and his father was a well-established businessman. He had five siblings, and the family moved to Jullundur (now Jalandhar) after the partition of India in 1947. Yash Chopra’s early exposure to the world of cinema came from his older brother, B.R. Chopra, who was a film producer and director himself.

Yash Chopra
Picture: Social Media

Yash chopra Entry into the World of Cinema:

Yash Chopra’s journey in Bollywood began when he joined his brother B.R. Chopra’s film production company, B.R. Films, in the 1950s. He initially worked as an assistant director and gradually worked his way up in the industry.

Yash Chopra
Picture: Social Media

Directorial Debut:

Yash Chopra made his directorial debut with the film “Dhool Ka Phool” in 1959. The film, which dealt with the theme of illegitimacy and social stigma, received critical acclaim and marked the beginning of his illustrious career as a director.

The film revolved around a Muslim bringing up an “illegitimate” Hindu child. The film was well received by critics and became the fourth highest-grossing film of the year. Encouraged by their success, the Chopras made another hard-hitting social drama, Dharmputra (1961).

In 1969, Chopra directed two films produced by his brother. The first was Aadmi Aur Insaan, which featured Dharmendra and Saira Banu in the lead roles. He directed Ittefaq (1969), a mystery thriller film based on a Gujarati play, depicting the events of a single night, with Rajesh Khanna and Nanda in the lead roles.

Yash Chopra
Picture: Social Media

Beginning of Yash Raj Films:

In 1973, Yash Chopra founded his own production company, Yash Raj Films, which would go on to become one of the most successful and prestigious film production houses in India. Under the Yash Raj Films banner, he produced and directed numerous iconic films.

His first independently-produced film, Daag: A Poem of Love (1973), a melodrama about polygamy, starring Rajesh Khanna, Sharmila Tagore and Raakhee was a major critical and commercial success and Chopra won his third Filmfare Award for Best Director for the film.

Yash Chopra’s Iconic Films:

He was known for his romantic and melodramatic filmmaking style. Some of his most iconic films include:

Waqt (1965): He directed this film under the umbrella of his brother’s production house. This film was written by Akhtar Mirza and Akhtar-Ul-Iman. the film stars an ensemble cast of Sunil Dutt, Raaj Kumar, Shashi Kapoor, Sadhana Shivdasani, Sharmila Tagore, Balraj Sahni, Achala Sachdev, Rehman and Madan Puri. It pioneered the concept of films with multiple stars, starting a trend followed by other films.

Film: Waqt
Picture: Social Media

Deewar (1975): This film, starring Amitabh Bachchan and Shashi Kapoor, is considered a classic in Indian cinema and established Amitabh Bachchan as a Bollywood superstar.

Film: Deewar
Picture: Social Media

Kabhi Kabhie (1976): A romantic drama featuring an ensemble cast, this film is remembered for its soulful music and enduring love story.

Film: Kabhie Kabhie Picture: Social Media

Silsila (1981): This film, starring Amitabh Bachchan, Jaya Bachchan, and Rekha, was known for its exploration of extramarital relationships and its real-life parallels.

Film: Silsila
Picture: Social Media

Chandni (1989): A romantic drama featuring Sridevi and Rishi Kapoor, “Chandni” was a major hit and solidified Yash Chopra’s reputation as the “King of Romance.”

Film: Chandni
Picture: Social Media

Lamhe (1991): This film was written by Honey Irani and Rahi Masoom Raza. The film stars Sridevi (in a dual role as both mother and daughter) and Anil Kapoor in titular roles along with Waheeda Rehman, Anupam Kher, Deepak Malhotra and Dippy Sagoo in pivotal supporting roles. The film marks the second and final collaboration between Sridevi and Chopra after Chandni (1989). The subject of this film was ahead of its time.

Film: Lamhe
Picture: Social Media

Darr (1993): Psychological romantic thriller film directed and produced by Yash Chopra The film stars Sunny Deol, Juhi Chawla and Shah Rukh Khan, with Annu Kapoor, Tanvi Azmi and Anupam Kher in supporting roles. In the film, Rahul (Khan) is obsessed with Kiran (Chawla) and stalks her constantly. However, Rahul goes berserk when she gets engaged to Sunil (Deol), a navy officer, and he decides to forcefully claim Kiran for himself.

Film: Darr
Picture: Social Media

Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (1995): This film was directorial venture of his elder son Aditya Chopra, starring Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol is one of the most iconic Bollywood films of all time and enjoyed immense success both in India and abroad.

Film: DDLJ
Picture: Social Media

Dil to Pagal Hai (1997): This romantic-musical film was the highest-grossing film of the year. The film received widespread critical acclaim, with praise for its direction, story, screenplay, soundtrack, cinematography and performances of Shah Rukh Khan, Madhuri Dixit, Karishma Kapoor and Akshay Kumar.

Film: Dil To Pagal Hai Picture: Social Media

Veer Zara (2004): Film stars Shah Rukh Khan, Preity Zinta and Rani Mukherji. Veer Pratap Singh (Khan) is an Indian Air Force officer, and Zaara Hayaat Khan (Zinta) is the daughter of a Pakistani politician. Veer is imprisoned on false charges, and a young Pakistani lawyer, named Saamiya Siddiqui (Rani Mukherji), fights his case. Films music was based on old compositions by Madan Mohan with lyrics by Javed Akhtar, was the highest-selling album of the year.

Film: Veer Zara
Picture: Social Media

Yash Chopra received numerous awards and honors throughout his career, including several National Film Awards and Filmfare Awards. He was also honored with the prestigious Dadasaheb Phalke Award, India’s highest award in cinema, in 2001.

Yash Chopra’s contribution to Indian cinema cannot be overstated. He played a pivotal role in shaping the Bollywood film industry and was known for his knack for storytelling, visual aesthetics, and music. His films continue to be celebrated for their timeless romance and enduring appeal.

Yash Chopra was married to Pamela Chopra, and they had two sons, Aditya Chopra and Uday Chopra, both of whom are involved in the Indian film industry.

Yash Chopra with Son Aditya
Picture: Social Media

Yash Chopra’s career spanned several decades, and his influence on Bollywood remains profound. He is remembered as a visionary filmmaker who left an indelible mark on Indian cinema. His films continue to be cherished by audiences around the world, and his legacy lives on through Yash Raj Films, which remains a major player in the Indian film industry.


1959Dhool Ka PhoolYes
1961Dharamputra Yes
1965WaqtYesFilmfare Award for Best Director
1969Aadmi aur InsaanYes
IttefaqYesFilmfare Award for Best Director
1973DaagYesYesAlso co-wrote the dialogue- Filmfare Award for Best Director, Nominated- Filmfare Award for Best film
1975DeewarYesFilmfare Award for Best Director
1976Kabhie Kabhie YesYesAlso co-wrote the storyNominated- Filmfare Award for Best film. Nominated—Filmfare Award for Best Director
1977Doosra AadmiYes
1978TrishulYesNominated—Filmfare Award for Best Director
1979Kaala PAththarYesYesNominated—Filmfare Award for Best Film, Nominated—Filmfare Award for Best Director
NoorieYesNominated—Filmfare Award for Best Film
SilsilaYesYesAlso co-wrote the screenplay
1989ChandniYesYesNational Film Award for Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment. Nominated- Filmfare Award for Best Director, Nominated– Filmfare Award for Best Film
1991LamheYesYesFilmfare Award for Best Film, Nominated- Filmfare Award for Best Director
DarrYesYesNational Film Award for Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment. Nominated- Filmfare Award for Best Film, Nominated- Filmfare Award for Best Director
1994Yeh DillagiYes
1995Dilwale Dulhania Le JayengeYesNational Film Award for Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment
1997Humko Ishq Ne MaaraYesTelevision film
Dil To Pagal HaiYesYesAlso co-wrote the screenplay National Film Award for Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment Filmfare Award for Best Film Nominated—Filmfare Award for Best Director
2000Mohabbatein YesNominated—Filmfare Award for Best Film
2002Mere Yaar Ki Shadi HaiYes
Mujhse Shadi KarogeYes
2004Veer-ZaraYesYesNational Film Award for Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment, Filmfare Award for Best Film, Nominated—Filmfare Award for Best Director
2005Bunty Aur BabliYesNominated—Filmfare Award for Best Film
Salaam NamasteYes
Neal ‘n’ NikkiYes
2008Rab Ne Bana Di JodiYesNominated—Filmfare Award for Best Film
2010Badmaash CompanyYes
2011Mere Brother Ki dulhanYes
2012Jab Tak Hai JaanYesYesPosthumous release

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