|Written by||Neeraj Vora|
|Based on||Ramji Rao Speaking|
|Produced by||A. G. Nadiadwala|
|Edited by||N. Gopalakrishnan|
A. G. Films (P) Ltd.
|Budget||₹ 7.5 crore|
|Box office||₹ 17.8 crore|
Hera Pheri (transl. Foul Play) is a 2000 Indian Hindi-language comedy film directed by Priyadarshan and written by Neeraj Vora, starring Akshay Kumar, Sunil Shetty, Paresh Rawal, Tabu, Om Puri and Gulshan Grover. The film is a remake of 1989 Malayalam film Ramji Rao Speaking. It is the first instalment of the Hera Pheri franchise. The plot revolves around two tenants, Raju and Shyam and a landlord Baburao Ganpatrao Apte , in desperate need of money, chance upon a ransom call via a cross connection. They hatch a plan to claim the ransom for themselves.
The film released on 31 March 2000. It was opened with mixed reviews, some of whom applauded the performances of Kumar and Rawal particularly. Film is considered Kumar's foray into comedy genre. Although film became moderate success grossing ₹17.8cr at the box office against the budget of ₹7.5cr. It spawned a sequel, Phir Hera Pheri, released in 2006.
Over the years, the film went on to become a cult classic. and is regarded as one of the best Hindi comedy films ever made. The film is noted for its authenticity and depiction of economic problem of lower middle class families in India, situational comedy, dialogues, performances of the lead trio Kumar, Rawal and Shetty. It was voted as the best Bollywood comedy film of all time in an online poll conducted by The Indian Express.
The film begins with Ghanshyam alias Shyam, a guy from Gurgaon searching for a job at a bank. Few years earlier this bank had accidentally caught fire and his father died in this incident, so according to the rule he should get the job. But there was also another person who died a few minutes after Shyam's father. As his daughter was the friend of manager, the manager wanted her to get the job. One day, Shyam accidentally bumps into a guy named Raju. Shyam mistakes Raju for a pickpocket and begins to chase him. However, he discovers the truth and the opposite occurs when Raju chases Shyam after mistaking him to be a pickpocket. Raju has his troubles, dealing with his daydreams and the unfriendly people he is working for. He is unable to keep a job and thus faces many problems.
Shyam then approaches a garage owned by a man named Baburao Ganpatrao Apte (fondly called Babu Bhaiya) and manages to get a room on rent by compromising on the amount for Babu Bhaiya's alcohol. Unbeknownst to him, Raju is staying in the same house on rent, which he hasn't paid for the last two years. The trio falls into hilarious situations that usually involve Raju instigating Shyam and purposefully trying to create a ruckus that Babu Bhaiya has to resolve. During one such fight, a girl named Anuradha Shivshankar Panikar arrives and tries to persuade Shyam to sign the Non-Objection Certificate, so that she could have the job at the bank. When Shyam refuses, Raju hatches a plot to make him sign the papers. Shyam eventually finds out that Raju deceitfully made him sign the papers and that is when the rivalry between the two hits its peak. An old friend of Shyam, Khadak Singh, comes to his place asking to return his money which Shyam took from Khadak Singh as a loan. Khadak Singh asks Shyam to pay the loan back as soon as possible or else his sister's marriage would be cancelled.
Shyam finds out that Raju has been deceiving his mother by posing as an engineer. Anuradha prepares a job resignation meanwhile and gives it to Shyam, who in return tears it up because of her mentally ill mother and the poor conditions of her home. Later, he confronts Raju who reveals that he wants to see his mother happy.
Their life takes an unexpected turn when they get a call from Kabira which is a wrong number meant for the owner of Star Fisheries, Devi Prasad. The wrong number is because of the misprint in the phone directory, which renders Star Fisheries' number as Star Garage's and vice versa. Kabira, a terrorist and kidnapper, thinking that it is Devi Prasad, tells him that his granddaughter Rinku is kidnapped and asks for a ransom. Eavesdropping on the entire conversation going between Kabira and Shyam, Raju decides to play a game.
The game involves Shyam calling Devi Prasad posing as the kidnapper and asking for double the ransom amount, which will solve their monetary problems. Shyam and Babu Bhaiya initially repel the idea, but they finally give in when Raju convinces them that even though it's wrong, this is a golden chance to earn money and also to save a life. They call the real Deviprasad and ask for double ransom. On their first attempt they wear helmets as a disguise but their attempt gets foiled by the police led by Prakash (called secretly by Devi Prasad's servant). Kabira later informs them that the ransom has been doubled. They call Deviprasad again and ask for a foolproof double ransom.
On their second attempt, they wear Zorro costumes to hide their identities. However, they reveal themselves to Devi Prasad to win his confidence and try to save Rinku from the kidnappers. But she recognizes Shyam as an imposter and Kabira gets alerted. A huge fight involving the police, Kabira's gang members, and Khadak Singh & his men, infuriated by the delay in returning the money, takes place. Rinku is saved by the trio and returned to Devi Prasad. Babu Bhaiya and Shyam go home happily intending to find Raju with the money, but they find him missing. Assuming that he has cheated them, they call the police to confess the crime. But Raju returns and reveals that he had gone only to return the money of the creditors. The police arrive and, seeing the money, arrest the trio.
In the end, Devi Prasad comes to the trio's rescue and convinces the police that it was all a misunderstanding and saves the three and they go home, richer than ever. The film ends with the trio getting a prank call from Rinku.
- Akshay Kumar as Raju
- Suniel Shetty as Ghanshyam "Shyam"
- Paresh Rawal as Baburao Ganpatrao Apte ("Babu Bhaiya")
- Tabu as Anuradha Shivshankar Panikar
- Asrani as Bank Manager
- Om Puri as Khadak Singh (Shyam's friend)
- Kulbhushan Kharbanda as Devi Prasad
- Gulshan Grover as Kabira
- Razak Khan as Chhota Chetan, Kabira's close aide
- Kashmira Shah as Kabira's gang member
- Mukesh Khanna as Inspector Prakash (special appearance)
- Sulabha Arya as Savitri Devi (Raju's mother)
- Ann Alexia Anra as Rinku (Devi Prasad's granddaughter).
- Dinesh Hingoo as Chaman Jhinga (a client of Star Fisheries)
- Snehal Dabi as the Man misjudging Bank Manager at the Bus Stand as a pimp
- Mushtaq Khan as Devi Prasad's servant
- Sharad Sankla as Bank Peon
- Bhairavi Vaidya as Mrs. Panikar, Anuradha's mother
- Kahkashan Patel in a special appearance in song "Jab Bhi Koi Haseena"
- Rajeev Mehta as Laundry Business Owner, Raju's boss
- Namrata Shirodkar as Miss Jhinga, Chaman's daughter & special appearance in the song "Tun Tunak Tun" (special appearance)
Hera Pheri was the first time that Priyadarshan worked with Akshay Kumar and Sunil Shetty. He had worked with Paresh Rawal in Doli Saja Ke Rakhna. It also marked the beginning of a long association between Priyadarshan and the three actors. Following Hera Pheri, Priyadarshan has made sure that either Kumar, Shetty, Rawal, or a combination of the three actors would star in his films. The only exceptions are Dhol, Billu, Tezz and Rangrezz. Parts of the film were shot in Dubai and South Africa and Hera Pheri 3 will also be shot there.
All lyrics are written by Sameer; all music is composed by Anu Malik with the exception of the song "Tun Tunak Tun", which was composed by Lalit Sen and Bally Sagoo. Soundtrack album released by Saregama
|1.||"Mujhse Milti Hai Ek Ladki Rozana" (Not used in the film)||Udit Narayan, Alka Yagnik||6:00|
|2.||"Jab Bhi Koi Haseena"||K.K.||6:40|
|3.||"Main Ladki Pom Pom"||Abhijeet Bhattacharya, Kavita Krishnamurthy||6:12|
|4.||"Denewala Jab Bhi Deta Deta Chhappar Phaad Ke"||Abhijeet Bhattacharya, Vinod Rathod, Hariharan||6:50|
|5.||"Humba Leela"||Abhijeet Bhattacharya, Vinod Rathod, Hariharan||7:58|
|6.||"Tun Tunak Tun"||Richa Sharma, K.K. (in film)||7:06|
|7.||"Sun Zara" (Not used in the film)||Udit Narayan, Alka Yagnik||7:15|
|8.||"Tun Tunak Tun" (Remix)||Richa Sharma||2:43|
Reception and legacy
The film did not open well upon release, but picked up later and became a box office success, grossing Rs. 24,25,00,000 in India. Much of the acclaim went to Akshay Kumar and Paresh Rawal for their comic timing and acting, Film is considered Kumar's foray into comedy genre and critics calling Rawal as "Baburao" is best performances ever. Aparajita Saha of Rediff stated "the movie belongs entirely to Paresh Rawal. Whatever laughter the film solicits is solely due to him. He has impeccable timing and a natural flair for comedy. Sunil Shetty's role and his performance is also too good." Indiainfo wrote, "Paresh Rawal is brilliant in the film. Akshay Kumar is better than Sunil Shetty and, Namrata in a song appearance appears cold. On the whole, this film is mainly for the city audiences who can understand and appreciate subtle humour."
Alok Kumar of Planet Bollywood wrote, "All in all, Priyadarshan's Hera Pheri is a delight to watch for its performances, some songs, and an interesting story line. Indian audiences would be doing Bollywood injustice if they accept an inane film like Dulhan Hum Le Jayenge and reject a thrilling and entertaining Hera Pheri. Hopefully, the film will click with the masses, and the trailors and songs, if not the stars, will pull audiences to the theaters. Namrata Shirodkar's number has already caught on strong in India. Let's see if in a dull year of flicks like Mela, Krodh, and Bulandi a good film like Hera Pheri can make an impact.".
It has achieved a cult status among Indian audiences and is regarded as one of the best Hindi comedy films ever made. The dialogues of the film became widely famous through out the years and are used popularly in Indian memes.
Awards and nominations
This section needs additional citations for verification. (June 2020)
|Awards||Category||Recipients and Nominees||Results|
|International Indian Film Academy Awards||Best Actor in a Comic Role||Paresh Rawal||Won|
|Filmfare Awards||Best Comedian||Paresh Rawal|
|Screen Awards||Best Comic Actor||Paresh Rawal|
|Best Screenplay||Neeraj Vora|
|Best Dialogue||Neeraj Vora|
|Best Performance in a Comic Role||Om Puri||Nominated|
|Best Story||Anand S. Vardhan|
|Best Editing||N. Gopalakrishnan|
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- Editor/reporter), Arti Dani (sub. "Hera Pheri 3 to take off in the UAE". Khaleej Times. Retrieved 20 March 2019.
|last=has generic name (help)
- "Hera Pheri: Audio Listing". Bollywood Hungama. Archived from the original on 31 May 2009. Retrieved 19 April 2011.
- "Box Office 2000". Box Office India. Archived from the original on 23 October 2013. Retrieved 19 April 2011.
- Saha, Aparajita (31 March 2000). "The review of Hera Pheri". Rediff. Archived from the original on 5 May 2011. Retrieved 19 April 2011.
- "Bollywood masala: Reviews - Hera Pheri". 13 December 2000. Archived from the original on 13 December 2000. Retrieved 1 April 2023.
- Kumar, Alok. "Film Reviews: Hera Pheri". Planet Bollywood. Archived from the original on 19 December 2010. Retrieved 19 April 2011.
- "लॉकडाउन से लेकर क्वारंटीन, सब पर हैं हेरा फेरी मीम". Navbharat Times (in Hindi). Retrieved 30 January 2022.
- "21 years of Hera Pheri: Check out hilarious memes of Akshay Kumar, Suniel Shetty and Paresh Rawal's film". Jagran English. 31 March 2021. Retrieved 30 January 2022.
- "If you're going to see one thing today let it be 'The Daily Hera Pheri Meme Project'". Hindustan Times. 17 April 2020. Retrieved 30 January 2022.
- "Paresh Rawal Awards: List of awards and nominations received by Paresh Rawal | Times of India Entertainment". The Times of India. Retrieved 12 February 2020.