With Sonakshi Sinha’s Noor, Bollywood is trying once again to tell the story of a journalist and let’s agree, they have not been very successful all these years.
Journalists are often portrayed in our films as easy sell outs, and journalism, a dark, dank place full of corruption and grimy lives. How true is any of that?
However, it’s not completely hopeless. Bollywood has also given us a few memorable characters that were journos and here we try to list a few. Will Noor join the list or will it be lost forever like so many before her?
1. Yeh Jaawani Hai Deewani (2013)
Realistic or not, Ranbir Kapoor’s life as a video journalist inspired quite a few millenials. He would hop countries like we hop bars on a Saturday night and do it all with such style.
2. No One Killed Jessica (2011)
Enough was already said and written about Jessica Lall -- one of the most sensational murder cases in India --when Rani Mukherjee decided to join the film. She played a foul-mouthed fictional journalist Meera Gaity who worked with Sabrina Lall (played by Vidya Balan) to investigate the murder. Her efforts sparked a movement and eventually led to giving justice for Jessica.
3. Wake Up Sid (2009)
Again, Konkana Sen Sharma plays a columnist in Mumbai who tries to guide lost soul, Ranbir Kapoor in life. She gets him an internship as a photographer in her magazine where he learns that he is not worthless or without talent. The film was one of the lighter, more realistic portrayal of how life is for little journalists trying to make it big in the industry.
4. Page 3 (2005)
Konkana Sen Sharma played a page 3 journalist in this Madhur Bhandarkar directorial. She goes through the worst of situations in typical Bhadarkar-style tragedies. By the end of the film, she is sickened by the world of journalism and so is everyone watching the film.
5. Lakshya (2004)
Preity Zinta plays a war correspondent stationed in Kargil in Lakshya, a story about a boy, played by Hrithik Roshan, who finally finds his goal in life. Even though the film was mostly about him, Preity managed to leave a mark with her motivated performance as a journalist who loves her work.
6. Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani (2000)
Shah Rukh Khan again plays a reporter for a TV channel in Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani. The film, a little immature but with its heart in the right place, focused on the cut-throat war among media organisations for more attention and viewership. Though he is a corrupt journalist at first, planting fake stories and sabotaging the competition’s work, his heart changes when something utterly unjust happens before his eyes.
7. Dil Se (1998)
Shah Rukh Khan plays a programme executive for All India Radio in Dil Se. While on an assignment, he falls in love with a woman too dangerous for him. The journalism part of the film wasn’t it’s driving force, but we still remember SRK and his character for the brilliant work as a director by Mani Ratnam.
8. Mr India (1987)
Everyone remembers Anil Kapoor as the invisible man but even Sridevi played a daring journalist in Mr India. She went out trying to unmask the corrupt men in power in peculiar disguises, often, putting her life in great peril.
9. Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron (1983)
One of the sharpest and wittiest movie of our times, Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron also took a ruthless jibe at the world of journalism. Naseeruddin Shah and Ravi Baswani work as stringers for a the editor of a newspaper to expose the truth behind the lush, corrupt lives of two rich builders and a municipal commissioner. But, they end up learning that the real villain is the editor herself who spun it all to her advantage.
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