Bobby (1973 film)

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Theatrical release poster
Directed byRaj Kapoor
Written byJainendra Jain (dialogue)
Screenplay byKhwaja Ahmad Abbas
V. P. Sathe
Story byKhwaja Ahmad Abbas
Produced byRaj Kapoor
StarringRishi Kapoor
Dimple Kapadia
Prem Nath
CinematographyRadhu Karmakar
Edited byRaj Kapoor
Music byLaxmikant–Pyarelal
Distributed byR.K. Films
Release date
  • 28 September 1973 (1973-09-28)
Running time
169 minutes
Box officeest. 31 crore[1]

Bobby is a 1973 Indian Hindi-language musical romance film, produced and directed by Raj Kapoor, and written by Khwaja Ahmad Abbas.[2] The film stars Raj Kapoor's son, Rishi Kapoor, in his first leading role, opposite Dimple Kapadia in her debut role. The film became a blockbuster securing the position of highest grossing Indian film of 1973,[3] the second highest grossing film of the 1970s at the Indian box office,[4] and one of the top 20 highest-grossing Indian films of all time (when adjusted for inflation).[5] It also became an overseas blockbuster in the Soviet Union, where it drew an audience of 62.6 million viewers,[6] making it one of the top 20 biggest box office hits of all time in the Soviet Union.[7][8]

The film became a trend-setter. It was wildly popular and widely imitated. It introduced to Bollywood the genre of teenage romance with a rich-versus-poor clash as a backdrop. Numerous films in the following years and decades were inspired by this plot. Indiatimes Movies ranks Bobby amongst the 'Top 30 Must See Bollywood Films'.[9] The film was remade in Persian as Parvaz dar Ghafas in 1980. Bobby was Dimple Kapadia's first and only film of the 70s era. As she left the film industry following her early marriage, before returning back to proper movies in the mid-80s till the present date.


The story is about the love between two Bombay teenagers of different classes and religions—Raja 'Raj' Nath (Rishi Kapoor), the son of a rich Hindu businessman Ram Nath (Pran), and Bobby Braganza (Dimple Kapadia), the daughter of a poor Goan Christian fisherman Jack Braganza (Prem Nath).

Raj returns from his boarding school. Upon his return, his parents throw a party to celebrate his birthday. Raj's former governess Mrs. Braganza (Durga Khote) comes by with her granddaughter Bobby to give him a present, but Raj's mother Sushma Nath (Sonia Sahni) ignores Mrs. Braganza, which leads her to leave the party with Bobby in a rush.

Raj opens his gifts the next day and finds Mrs. Braganza's gift, so he decides to meet her in person. Reaching there, Bobby opens the door for him, and it is love at first sight for him. During that visit, he mixes his book with Bobby's, so he goes to meet her at the library to exchange the books, and from there starts their friendship. Raj and Bobby decide to go to see a movie, but find out it is a full house. Then Raj gets an idea to go to a party. At the party, Bobby sees Raj talking to Sushma's dance partner Nima (Aruna Irani) privately and thinks he is in love with her, so she breaks off her relationship before running off to Kashmir. However, Raj comes by to Kashmir and clears up the misunderstanding, prompting Bobby to resume her relationship with him. Despite Jack and Mrs. Braganza being very supportive of Raj and Bobby's relationship due to Raj's friendly nature, Raj learns that the matter is not taken kindly by Ram, who abhors the idea of his son falling in love with the daughter of a poor fisherman. Upon Raj's insistence, Ram invites Jack over to initiate talks of Raj and Bobby's relationship. But instead, a feud ignites when Ram insults Jack and accuses him of using Bobby's beauty and charm to trap Raj for his money; he even offered Jack a bribe of cash to stop Bobby from seeing Raj. Jack gets offended by this accusation and retaliates by insulting Ram before leaving in a huff with Bobby, forbidding her to hang out with Raj again. To ensure Bobby's distance from Raj, Jack sends her and Mrs. Braganza to live in Goa.

Raj gets angry at Ram for driving Bobby away; this was further intensified when he learns that Ram intends to have him marry a mentally-challenged wealthy girl named Alka 'Nikki' Sharma (Farida Jalal) to establish business ties with her rich father Mr. Sharma (Pinchoo Kapoor) without even consulting Raj; Sushma and Nima are not supportive of the idea as well. On the advice from Nima (who sympathizes with Raj on the issue), Raj cuts off all ties to his father and drives off to Goa to reunite with Bobby, who runs away with him. As Sushma blames Ram for driving Raj away, the latter advertises a reward of $25,000 for anyone who can help find Raj. Upon spotting Raj and Bobby while seeing the reward on a local newspaper, a local greedy goon named Prem Chopra (Prem Chopra) decides that he wants the money so he and his goons kidnap Raj and Bobby. When the teens try to escape, Prem starts beating up Raj while having his goons to restrain Bobby. Eventually, Jack comes to the rescue by attacking Prem, who orders his goons to beat up Jack in retaliation. However, this was witnessed by an arriving Ram and the police, who furiously beat up and arrest Prem and his goons while Raj and Bobby escape. Deciding that they don't want their fathers to interfere in their relationship anymore, Raj and Bobby attempted to commit suicide by jumping over a waterfall after chewing out Ram for antagonizing Jack and starting the feud in the first place. However, a horrified Ram and Jack dive in and rescue both teens from being drowned.

Having realized the folly of the feud that almost drove both teens to death, a remorseful Ram and Jack agreed to end the feud by giving their blessings to Raj and Bobby's relationship, promising never to interfere with it again. With their relationships reconciled, the teens and their fathers happily head back home to their families.


Raj Kapoor launched his second son Rishi Kapoor in this film and wanted a new heroine as his romatinc lead in this young love story. Dimple Kapadia and Neetu Singh were auditioned for the role of Bobby Braganza, and Dimple was selected.


In an interview in 2012, Rishi Kapoor stated, "There was a misconception that the film was made to launch me as an actor. The film was made to pay the debts of Mera Naam Joker. Dad wanted to make a love story but he did not have money to cast a superstar like Rajesh Khanna in the film".[10]


Some scenes were shot in Gulmarg. One scene was shot in a hut in Gulmarg, which became famous as the 'Bobby Hut'.[11] A few scenes towards the end of the movie were shot on Pune-Solapur highway near Loni Kalbhor where Raj Kapoor owned a farm.


The film's music was composed by the Laxmikant-Pyarelal duo. The lyrics were written by Anand Bakshi, Rajkavi Inderjeet Singh Tulsi, and Vithalbhai Patel. Lyrics penned by Anand Bakshi except where noted.

Song Singer(s) Lyrics Notes
Main Shayar To Nahin Shailendra Singh Anand Bakshi Picturized on Rishi Kapoor. The song was reused and picturised on him in the 2004 film Hum Tum.
Ankhiyon Ko Rahne De Lata Mangeshkar Anand Bakshi Based on the song "Ankhiyan nu rehen de" by Reshma[citation needed]
Beshak Mandir Masjid Narendra Chanchal Rajkavi Inderjeet Singh Tulsi
Hum Tum Ek Kamre Mein Band Ho Lata Mangeshkar & Shailendra Singh Anand Bakshi Shot at Kapoor family's bungalow in Rajbaugh, now a memorial to Raj Kapoor inside the MIT World Peace University (MIT WPU) on the banks of Mula-Mutha River in Loni Kalbhor village 30 km east of Pune in Maharshtra.[12][13][14][15][16]
Jhoot Bole Kauva Kate Lata Mangeshkar & Shailendra Singh Vithalbhai Patel Picturized on Rishi Kapoor and Dimple Kapadia in a village dance setting
Mujhe Kuchh Kahna Hai Lata Mangeshkar &Shailendra Singh Anand Bakshi
Ae Ae Ae Phansa Lata Mangeshkar Anand Bakshi Picturized on Aruna Irani
Na Mangun Sona Chandi Manna Dey, Shailendra Singh & Chorus Vithalbhai Patel

Box office[edit]

Worldwide gross (est.)
Territory Gross revenue Inflation-adjusted gross revenue (2016) Footfalls
Domestic (India) 11 crore[3] (US$14.21 million)[n 1] 820 crore (US$100 million)[19] 53.5 million[20]
Overseas (Soviet Union) 15.65 million Rbls[n 2] – US$21.44 million[n 3] (19.24 crore)[n 4] US$121 million (638 crore)[24] 62.6 million[6]
Worldwide ₹30.24 crore (US$39 million)[1][25] ₹1,212 crore (US$184 million) 116 million

In India, Bobby was the highest-grossing film of 1973, earning 11 crore.[3] It was also the second-highest-grossing film at the Indian box office in the 1970s, second only to Sholay (1975).[4] Adjusted for inflation, it grossed 398 crore in 2011 value,[18] equivalent to 820 crore (US$100 million) in 2016 value. As of 2011, it is one of the top 20 highest-grossing films of all time in India.[5]

Overseas, Bobby was very successful in the Soviet Union when it released there in 1975, due to Raj Kapoor's popularity in the country. Bobby drew 62.6 million admissions at the Soviet box office, making it the second-best-selling film on the Soviet box office charts in 1975,[6] the most popular Indian film of the 1970s, the second-biggest foreign film of the decade,[7] the sixth-biggest box office hit of the decade,[7][8] the second-most-viewed Indian film of all time (after Raj Kapoor's Awaara), the sixth-biggest foreign hit of all time,[7] and one of the top 20 biggest box office hits of all time.[7][8] The film's success launched Rishi Kapoor into an overnight movie star in the Soviet Union,[26] much like Awaara had done for his father Raj Kapoor.

Similarly, the film was very successful in Southeast Asian countries such as Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore. It was popular among non-Indian audiences in these countries, despite a lack of local language dubbing or subtitles upon its initial Malaysian release. It was among the most popular foreign films in Malaysia at the time, along with Bruce Lee films such as The Big Boss (1972).[27] In China, the film was released in 1990.[28]

Critical reception[edit]

The Illustrated Weekly of India wrote upon release that despite a new style, the story formula remains the same as ever. The review further noted that despite some gimmicks, the film's commercial appeal is attributed to the two fresh-faced, delightful youngsters and praised the performances of the lead pair for acting with a natural ease and freshness. While Premnath was applauded for being outstanding as the expansive, volatile Braganza", Pran was accused of being typecast.[29]


21st Filmfare Awards:[30]


1974 BFJA Awards:

  • Best Male Playback Singer (Hindi Section) – Shailender Singh for "Main Shayar to Nahin"
  • Best Audiographer (Hindi Section) – Alauddin Khan Qureshi[31]


In his 2017 autobiography Khullam Khulla: Rishi Kapoor Uncensored, Rishi Kapoor revealed that he had paid 30,000 (equivalent to 900,000 or US$11,000 in 2023) to win him a Best Actor award. While it was inferred as the Filmfare Award since it was the only big-time award during the time, he clarified in an interview that he has not specified Filmfare or any other names in the book".[32]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ 7.742 Indian rupees per US dollar in 1973[17]
  2. ^ 62.6 million tickets sold,[6] average ticket price of 25 kopecks[21]
  3. ^ 0.73 Rbl per US dollar in 1975[22]
  4. ^ 8.973 Indian rupees per US dollar in 1975[23]


  1. ^ a b "On Independence Day, here are the most successful Indian movies of every decade since 1947". Hindustan Times. 15 August 2018. Archived from the original on 8 May 2019. Retrieved 14 December 2018.
  2. ^ Banerjee, Shampa; Srivastava, Anil (1988). One Hundred Indian Feature Films: An Annotated Filmography. Taylor & on Francis. p. 53. ISBN 978-0-8240-9483-6. Archived from the original on 1 September 2023. Retrieved 2 May 2022.
  3. ^ a b c "Box Office 1973". Archived from the original on 21 July 2011. Retrieved 2011-06-01.
  4. ^ a b "Top Earners 1970–1979". Archived from the original on 14 October 2013. Retrieved 2011-06-01.
  5. ^ a b c Top 50 Film of Last 50 Years Archived 4 November 2011 at the Wayback Machine, Box Office India, 3 November 2011
  6. ^ a b c d Indian Films in Soviet Cinemas: The Culture of Movie-going After Stalin Archived 6 August 2023 at the Wayback Machine, page 89, Indiana University Press, 2005
  7. ^ a b c d e Sergey Kudryavtsev. "Зарубежные фильмы в советском кинопрокате". Archived from the original on 21 June 2019. Retrieved 11 June 2017.
  8. ^ a b c Sergey Kudryavtsev. "Отечественные фильмы в советском кинопрокате". Archived from the original on 22 March 2019. Retrieved 11 June 2017.
  9. ^ Kanwar, Rachna (3 October 2005). "25 Must See Bollywood Movies". Indiatimes movies. Archived from the original on 15 October 2007. Retrieved 8 November 2010.
  10. ^ "Proud of Ranbir's choice of roles: Rishi Kapoor – Latest News & Updates at Daily News & Analysis". 15 September 2012. Archived from the original on 26 October 2012. Retrieved 14 June 2017.
  11. ^ "Shah Rukh Khan ek kamre mein band in Kashmir". Archived from the original on 4 April 2014. Retrieved 28 February 2014.
  12. ^ Google (8 July 2020). "Google map location of Smadhi of Raj Kapoor and Prithviraj Kapoor at Rajbaugh at the camputof MIT-WPU" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved 8 July 2020.
  13. ^ With RK Studios up for sale in Mumbai, here is how Pune still hangs on to Raj Kapoor’s memories Archived 12 July 2020 at the Wayback Machine, Hindustan Times, Sep 02, 2018.
  14. ^ Raj Kapoor Memorial Archived 5 July 2020 at the Wayback Machine,
  15. ^ Madhu Jain, 2009, Kapoors: The First Family of Indian Cinema Archived 15 March 2023 at the Wayback Machine, Penguin Books.
  16. ^ Raj Kapoor Memorial brief Archived 5 July 2020 at the Wayback Machine,
  17. ^ PACIFIC Exchange Rate Service Archived 12 May 2015 at the Wayback Machine
  18. ^ a b Worth Their Weight In Gold! (70's) Archived 22 October 2017 at the Wayback Machine, Box Office India, 3 November 2011
  19. ^ 398 crore in 2011[18][5]
  20. ^ Mittal, Ashok (1995). Cinema Industry in India: Pricing and Taxation. Indus Publishing. pp. 71 & 77. ISBN 9788173870231. Archived from the original on 18 January 2023. Retrieved 24 June 2019.
  21. ^ Moscow Prime Time: How the Soviet Union Built the Media Empire that Lost the Cultural Cold War, page 48 Archived 10 May 2018 at the Wayback Machine, Cornell University Press, 2011
  22. ^ Archive of Bank of Russia Archived 17 July 2017 at the Wayback Machine
  23. ^ "Reserve Bank of India – Publications". Archived from the original on 2 September 2014. Retrieved 18 June 2017.
  24. ^ "67.175856 INR per USD in 2016". Archived from the original on 13 July 2017. Retrieved 18 June 2017.
  25. ^ "Official exchange rate (LCU per US$, period average)". World Bank. 1973. Archived from the original on 15 December 2018. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  26. ^ Moscow Prime Time: How the Soviet Union Built the Media Empire that Lost the Cultural Cold War, page 43 Archived 10 May 2018 at the Wayback Machine, Cornell University Press, 2011
  27. ^ Heide, William Van der (2002). Malaysian Cinema, Asian Film: Border Crossings and National Cultures. Amsterdam University Press. p. 147. ISBN 978-90-5356-580-3. Archived from the original on 1 September 2023. Retrieved 15 June 2020.
  28. ^ "Films popular in China". Data India. Press Institute of India. 1990. p. 111. Archived from the original on 2 July 2023. Retrieved 15 May 2022. A spokesman of China Film Export and Import Corporation said in Bombay that films such as Sholay, Bobby, Qayamat-se-Qayamai Tak, Hero Hiralal, Shahenshah, Jalwa, Nacha Mayuri, Naseeb, Dance Dance, Disco Dancer and Naam, are being exhibited all over China.
  29. ^ "Film Review – Bobby". The Illustrated Weekly of India. The Times Group. 1973. p. 41.
  30. ^ "1st Filmfare Awards 1953" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 12 June 2009. Retrieved 1 June 2011.
  31. ^ "69th & 70th Annual Hero Honda BFJA Awards 2007". Archived from the original on 22 April 2008.
  32. ^ "Uncensored: Rishi Kapoor reveals *exactly* why he bought an award for Bobby". India Today. 19 January 2017. Archived from the original on 15 December 2018. Retrieved 15 December 2018.

External links[edit]