Mohabbatein is a 2000 Indian Hindi-language musical romantic drama film directed by Aditya Chopra, marking his second directorial venture after Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge. It stars Shah Rukh Khan, Amitabh Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai in leading roles. The film also features Jimmy Sheirgill, Uday Chopra, Jugal Hansraj, Kim Sharma, Shamita Shetty, Preeti Jhangiani, Anupam Kher and Archana Puran Singh in other pivotal roles. Its soundtrack is composed by Jatin–Lalit and lyrics are penned by Anand Bakshi.
Mohabbatein marked the first collaboration between Khan and Bachchan. Shooting took place in India and the United Kingdom from September 1999 to June 2000. The film was released worldwide on 27 October 2000, clashing with Mission Kashmir. After Mohabbatein, Khan and Rai appeared in Devdas 2002. Before Mohabbatein, they also worked together in Josh 2000.
Produced on a budget of ₹ 19 crore US$2.7 million, Mohabbatein was billed as one of the most expensive Hindi films to that point. It received positive reviews from critics, who praised the direction, story, music, and performances. With a worldwide gross of ₹ 90 crore US$13 million, the film became a major critical and commercial success. It was the highest-grossing Bollywood film of the year worldwide as well as abroad, and the second highest-grossing Bollywood film of the year in India. The film changed Amitabh Bachchans career prospects and earned him critical acclaim as well as several awards, including the Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance. Shah Rukh Khans work in Mohabbatein is still regarded as one of his finest performances; he won the Filmfare Critics Award for Best Actor for his performance and also received a Filmfare Award for Best Actor nomination. Aishwarya Rai was also noted for her work, earning her a nomination for the Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress. Aditya Chopra was nominated for the Filmfare Award for Best Director.
Narayan Shankar Amitabh Bachchan has been the strict Headmaster of Gurukul, a prestigious all-boys college, for 25 years. He believes in bringing the best out of his students by emphasizing honor, tradition and discipline, with no room for fun and games. He is particularly intolerant of romance, decreeing that any student who is caught having a romantic affair will immediately be expelled.
Despite this draconian rule, three Gurukul students - Sameer Jugal Hansraj, Vicky Uday Chopra, and Karan Jimmy Sheirgill - fall in love. Sameer is head over heels in love with Sanjana Kim Sharma, a carefree and sweet young girl who his childhood friend but who already has a steady boyfriend named Deepak Raman Lamba. Vicky is attracted to Ishika Shamita Shetty, a sporty and feisty young student at the neighboring all-girls college who rebuffs his attempts to woo her. Karan falls for Kiran Preeti Jhangiani, an elegant young widow whose military pilot husband has been shot down and whom Karan sees alone one night in a train station.
Meanwhile, Narayan hires Raj Aryan Malhotra Shah Rukh Khan as Gurukuls new music teacher. Friendly and a firm believer in the power of love, Raj Aryan makes it his mission to spread love throughout Gurukul. He sympathizes with the predicaments of Sameer, Vicky, and Karan, and encourages them to not give up and stay loyal to their loves. He tells them that he has a special love himself, Megha Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, saying that although she is dead, he imagines her to be by his side every day.
One day, as part of his plan to spread love throughout the school, Raj Aryan throws a party and invites the students of the all-girls college. Narayan walks in on the party, shuts it down, and furiously threatens to fire Raj Aryan. At this point, Raj Aryan reveals that he had been a student at Gurukul over a decade earlier and that he had fallen in love with Megha, who happened to be Narayans one and only daughter. Narayan had expelled Raj Aryan from the school without even seeing his face, and a distraught Megha, unable to live without Raj Aryan, committed suicide. Raj Aryan declares that he has come back to Gurukul to honor Meghas memory by reversing the schools zero-tolerance policy on romance, and promises that before he leaves he will fill the school with so much love that even Narayan will be unable to stop it. A shocked Narayan takes this as a challenge and allows Raj Aryan to remain for a while longer.
Sameer, Vicky, and Karan are all able to win over Sanjana, Ishika, and Kiran, respectively, but Narayan retaliates by tightening the rules of Gurukul. The student body, however, encouraged by Raj Aryan, continues to defy the rules, and in a last-ditch effort to preserve the school atmosphere he has built up for 25 years, Narayan expels Sameer, Vicky, and Karan. Raj Aryan speaks up on their behalf, stating that they did nothing wrong by falling in love and accusing Narayan of causing his own daughters death with his intolerance of love. He also says that he feels Narayan lost the challenge because his daughter left him and now Raj Aryan who considered Narayan an elder is leaving him as well.
Raj Aryans harsh words sting Narayan, and he tearfully realizes his strict no-romance policy has been misguided. Narayan apologizes to the student body and resigns as headmaster of Gurukul, nominating Raj Aryan as his successor, who accepts and reconciles with Narayan.
- Amrish Puri as Major General Ajitesh Khanna– Kirans father-in-law
- Anupam Kher as Kaake
- Helen as Miss Monica Khanna
- Aishwarya Rai Bachchan as Megha Shankar
- Jugal Hansraj as Sameer Sharma
- Preeti Jhangiani as Kiran Khanna– A widow, Ajiteshs daughter-in-law, Karans love interest
- Jimmy Sheirgill as Karan Chaudhry
- Archana Puran Singh as Preeto
- Parzan Dastur as Ayush Khanna- Nandini’s son, Kiran’s nephew
- Shamita Shetty as Ishika Dhanrajgir– Vickys love interest
- Amitabh Bachchan as Mr. Narayan Shankar
- Sindhu Tolani as Abhilasha Verma– Ishikas friend
- Shahrukh Khan as Raj Aryan Malhotra
- Uday Chopra as Vikram Kapoor Oberoi
- Shefali Shah as Nandini Khanna– Kirans sister-in-law
- Kim Sharma as Sanjana Kewalya– Sameers love interest
- Saurabh Shukla as Hardik Kewalya– Sanjanas father
Before the production of the film, Bachchan was attempting a revival of his career with little success, and was also in financial trouble with the bankruptcy of his production company, ABCL, not only hurting his image but leaving him almost penniless. It was at this time that Bachchan contacted his friend, director/producer Yash Chopra, who told him of an upcoming production that he could be in. With Mohabbatein, Bachchan was finally able to shed his "hero" image and to play older, more mature roles. This was also the first film in which Bachchan and Khan appeared together. This created a strong buzz for the film, as it brought two huge stars of different generations together.
3.1. Production Filming
Filming took place in India and England. Longleat, a country house in Wiltshire, England, was used as the location of Gurukul. Oxford and Cambridge Universities were also used for filming. The scene where Narayan Shankar walks right before meeting Raj Aryan was filmed at the Queens College, Oxford. The railway station scenes were shot at Apta Railway Station, Panvel Maharashtra, India. The scene where Karan asks for friendship from Kiran was shot at Birla Mandir, Revdanda, Hyderabad, Alibag, Maharashtra, India. It was rumored that Sridevi was approached to be a love interest to Narayan Shankar, but she turned down the role. Midway through the filming of the song "Aankhein Khuli", Jugal Hansraj fractured his foot, which required him to wear a cast for the rest of the filming of the song. Aishwarya Rai was slated to only make a guest appearance, but her presence generated so much interest that her role was promoted to that of a regular character.
The music of Mohabbatein was composed by Jatin Lalit while lyrics were penned by Anand Bakshi. The album was very well-received by the audience. It was the best-selling Bollywood soundtrack of the 2000s. According to the Indian trade website Box Office India, 5 million soundtrack albums were sold. Yash Chopra earned an advance of ₹75 million for the music rights.
Music was used extensively throughout the film and features leitmotifs that relate to each of the main characters each couple having unique theme music.
5.1. Reception Box office
Mohabbatein grossed ₹ 70.62 crore US$9.9 million in India and $4.17 million ₹ 19.39 crore in other countries, for a worldwide total of ₹ 90.01 crore US$13 million, against its ₹ 19 crore US$2.7 million budget. It had a worldwide opening weekend of ₹ 11.37 crore US$1.6 million, and grossed ₹ 20.45 crore US$2.9 million in its first week. It is the highest-grossing Bollywood film of 2000 worldwide.
5.2. Reception India
It opened on Friday, 27 October 2000, across 315 screens, and earned ₹ 1.19 crore US$170.000 nett on its opening day. It grossed ₹ 3.54 crore US$500.000 nett in its opening weekend, and had a first week of ₹ 7.62 crore US$1.1 million nett. The film earned a total of ₹ 41.88 crore US$5.9 million nett plus a distributor share of ₹ 25.52 crore US$3.6 million), and was declared "Blockbuster" by Box Office India. It is the 2nd-highest-grossing film of 2000 in India after Kaho Naa. Pyaar Hai which grossed ₹ 44.27 crore US$6.2 million nett.
5.3. Reception Overseas
It had an opening weekend of $1.16 million ₹ 5.39 crore and went on to gross $1.63 million ₹ 7.57 crore in its first week. The film earned a total of $4.17 million ₹ 19.39 crore at the end of its theatrical run. Overseas, It is the highest-grossing film of 2000.
5.4. Reception Critical reception
Mohabbatein received mixed to positive reviews from critics. Savera R Someshwar of Rediff.com commented, "Its a mish-mash alright. But it is also a successful, feelgood film. Youll enjoy yourself as you watch it." Taran Adarsh of Bollywood Hungama gave it 3 out of 5 stars. He praised the conflict between the lead characters and the three love stories depicted in the film but criticized its excessive length.