As curtains on the World Cup come down today, we bring to you Bollywood's most memorable cricket based flims in the final edition of our 11-part special.
Patiala House (2011) Latest in the league, this movie brought back the widely followed game on the big screen with Akshay Kumar essaying a role inspired by England cricket team’s first Sikh member Monty Singh Panesar. The movie portrayed Kumar as Parghat Singh Kahlon, a British citizen whose dream is to be a pace bowler.
Dil Bole Hadippa! (2009) This one brought Rani Mukerji out of her shell in a slimmer than ever avatar as a turban-clad munda. Story of an ordinary girl who aspires to play cricket for the national team, the movie showed how she pretends to be a man to join an all-male cricket team in order to fulfill her dream. "It's a great sport to play... people say it's a gentleman's game but it is a ladies' game too because it is a lot of fun. I would in fact tell a lot of girls to try their hand in cricket,” she had said.
Victory (2009) All about India’s obsession with cricket, it told the story of a struggling cricketer who defies all odds to realise an almost impossible dream. Starring Hurman Baweja and Amrtia Rao in the lead alongside several international cricketers, it was about an arrogant sensation-turned-man with an awakened conscience, who rises from doused ashes to win back his glory through the game.
Meerabai Not Out (2008) About a starstruck cricket fan who self-confesses to be married to cricket, this one showed Mandira Bedi sans her on-field noodle straps but drowned in the cricket frenzy – so much so that it even leaves her onscreen hubby Eijaz Khan pulling out his tufts.
Hattrick (2007) The title doesn't really relate to cricket, which anyway, stays in the background. Having an ensemble cast with the likes of Kunal Kapoor, Rimi Sen and Nana Patekar, it revolved around the cricket fever and narrated how people’s lives revolve around get affected by the game.
Iqbal (2005) Cricket knows no boundaries and no voice. Throwing light on the love and passion for the game even in remote corners of the country, Iqbal introduced Shreyas Talpade as a deaf and dumb who fights all odds to play for the Indian National Cricket Team. Directed by Nagesh Kukunoor and also starring Naseruddin Shah, it also looked at the politics behind the most-celebrated game.
Stumped (2003) Raveena Tandon’s debut production, it highlighted the lives of the residents of a complex who share the common interest of watching and playing cricket. Making their presence felt with cameos in this one were master blaster Sachin Tendulkar and Salman Khan.
Lagaan (2001) Set in the times of the Raj in a long-forgotten village in the country, Lagaan took cricket to the most commercially successful level in Bollywood. Hitting directly on people’s minds, it narrated the never-say die spirit of the villagers who train themselves to beat the Colonists at their own game to ward off their annual taxes. Directed by Ashutosh Gowariker and starring Aamir Khan in the lead, it also earned itself an Oscar nomination.
Chamtakaar (1992) With a story revolving around redemption of a Don, the movie is also remembered for its hilarious cricket sequence where a ghost (Naseeruddin Shah) helps the hero’s (Shah Rukh Khan) team win with his powers. Quirky, funny and quick – it made for its cricket element on the big screen.
Awwal Number (1990) Perhaps one of the first few movies that pioneered the theme of sports-based jealousy, passion, love and spirit of the game – the movie revolved around a new hero in the team in who takes over from the existing star. Directed by Dev Anand, it starred Aamir Khan, Aditya Panscholi and the evergreen Anand.
All-Rounder (1984) One of the firsts to focus on the game and its effects on the lives of those involved, the movie revolves around two brothers and their relationship which is tarnished because of a competitor’s tactics. However, the player redeems himself and makes his brother, beloved and fans proud.
Other films on cricket
Chain Kulli ki Main Kulii (2007)
Say Salam India (2007)
Silence Please… The Dressing Room (2004)
Some of famous Bollywood and cricket couples
Sangeeta Bijlani and Mohammad Azharuddin
Sharmila Tagore and Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi
Reena Roy and Mohsin Khan.
Some of the Bollywood-Cricket relationships:
Kim Sharma and Yuvraj Singh
Geeta Basra and Harbhajan Singh
Isha Shravani and Zaheer Khan
Amrita Singh and Ravi Shastri
Sayali Bhagat and Shoaib Malik