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Munna Bhai M.B.B.S.

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Munna Bhai M.B.B.S.
Theatrical release poster
Directed byRajkumar Hirani
Screenplay byRajkumar Hirani
Vidhu Vinod Chopra
Abbas Tyrewala (dialogues)
Produced byVidhu Vinod Chopra
CinematographyBinod Pradhan
Edited by
Music by
Distributed byAA Films
Release date
  • 19 December 2003 (2003-12-19) (India)
Running time
157 minutes
Budget100-120 million[1][2]
Box officeest. ₹562.8 million[1]

Munna Bhai M.B.B.S. (translation: Munna Bro M.B.B.S.) is a 2003 Indian Hindi-language satirical comedy drama film written and directed by Rajkumar Hirani in his directorial debut and produced by Vidhu Vinod Chopra under the banner Vinod Chopra Films. It features Sunil Dutt in his final film role as the father to his real-life son, Sanjay Dutt, who stars as the titular character. Gracy Singh, Jimmy Sheirgill, Arshad Warsi, Rohini Hattangadi and Boman Irani also appear in the film.

The first installment of the Munna Bhai film series, the film follows Munna Bhai, a don in the Mumbai underworld, trying to please his father by pretending to be a doctor, but when a doctor, Asthana (Irani), exposes his lies and tarnishes his father's honor, Munna enrolls in a medical college. Chaos ensues when Munna, upon finding that Asthana is the dean of the college, vows revenge, while also sparking a romance with a house doctor, Suman (Singh), unaware that she is his childhood friend and Asthana's daughter. The film was followed by its sequel, Lage Raho Munna Bhai (2006).[3]

Released on 19 December 2003,[4] the film was a major critical and commercial success, and went on to win the 2004 National Film Award for Best Popular Film, and several Filmfare Awards, including the Best Film (Critics) and Best Screenplay. At the box office, it achieved a silver jubilee status (25-week run) being one of only eight Hindi films to have achieved this status since the year 2000.[5] In its 26th week of release, the film could still be found playing on 300 screens throughout India.[6] The film's release was also accompanied by a mobile video game based on the film by Indiagames.[7]



Murli Prasad Sharma, nicknamed "Munna Bhai", is a street-wise, Bombay Hindi-speaking gangster who runs an extortion racket on the streets of Mumbai. He is supported by his loyal henchman, Sarkeshwar "Circuit" Sharma, who does most of his work for him. Once a year, Munna's gang converts his hide-out into a fully-functioning hospital, to fool Munna's visiting parents Hariprasad and Parvati, who believe Munna has become a real doctor. Munna's goons take turns playing doctors, staff and patients, to keep up the charade.

This works for many years, until one of Hari's annual visits with Parvati culminates in Hari bumping into Dr. Jagdish Asthana, who founded the first hospital in Munna's village years ago. Hari proposes to Asthana that they get Asthana's daughter and Munna's childhood friend "Chinki" married to him. Asthana agrees, even though Munna asks her to reject him, lest his parents discover the truth. However, it is when his maid reacts shockingly to Munna's photo that Asthana realizes the truth, and exposes Munna to Hari and Parvati. Humiliated and embarrassed at their son's lack of a real vocation, they leave the city and return home. Munna vows to set things right and exact vengeance from Asthana by getting a medical degree, but unknowingly ends up enrolling in the same college whose dean is Asthana. Certain that Munna has cheated his way through the entrance exam, but lacking real evidence, Asthana is forced to allow Munna to study there.

Upon becoming a student, Munna falls back to his ways by flouting all the rules of the hospital. He enforces his regime of "common-sense treatment", directly challenging Asthana's conventional opinions to get under his skin. Despite the school's emphasis on mechanical, cartesian, impersonal and often bureaucratic relationships between doctors and patients, Munna constantly seeks to impose a more empathetic and almost holistic regimen around himself. He also calls upon Circuit to 'tweak' the system for him when needed. His behaviour is well-received by the hospital staff and patients, who are able to see the good-natured intent behind his anti-establishment actions. Asthana, who perceives all this as symptoms of chaos, is unable to prevent it from expanding and gaining ground at his college, despite his efforts to expel Munna. He begins laughing in a way that implies that he has gone insanely mad, as an attempt to practice "laughter therapy", which serves more to convey his anger than diffuse it.

Meanwhile, Munna also develops a friendly relationship with Dr. Suman, who works at the hospital, unaware that she is "Chinki", an ignorance she hilariously exploits. Munna decides to confess his feelings for Suman and abandon his personal vendetta against "Chinki" and Asthana. Munna uses old-fashioned kindness and love to 'cure' many patients at the hospital, including Karan, a suicidal youngster he met on his first day of college, and home surgeon Dr. Rustom Pawri's father, who at one point fell ill and short of a desire to live. He even thanks an underappreciated janitor and arranges to bring a stripper inside the patient ward to cheer up Zaheer, a man dying from stomach cancer who he befriends in the process.

When Asthana learns about the stripper episode, he sees this as a potential reason to expel Munna on disciplinary grounds, but is unable to do so after Munna injures himself in order to stay back. However, when he does recover, the hospital staff, patients and students stand in Asthana's way and refuse to let Munna leave. Munna is then made to take a test in front of the entire college the next day to keep his enrolment. Later that night, Zaheer dies; still in shock, Munna gives up at a point during the test and leaves; in the process, Anand Banerjee, a paraplegic patient who has been brain-dead for the last 12 years, comes back to life. Suman realizes Munna as the miracle behind Anand's recovery and gives a heartfelt speech, defending his actions. Asthana, finally moved, is forced to change his opinion of Munna.

Munna does not end up becoming a doctor, but news of his 'miraculous' treatments reaches his parents. They return to the city and forgive him. Munna ends up marrying Suman after learning of her true identity, and together, they open a real hospital in Munna's family village. Circuit also gets married a year later and has a son, who is nicknamed "Short Circuit". As the film concludes, Anand, restored to normal mental health, narrates the story to a few children at the hospital as he is about to leave for Kolkata.





Early developments


In an interview, Hirani discussed how the idea for the film emerged from his interaction with some friends who were medical students.[8] Later, he also had the opportunity to interact with a lot of medical professionals when some members of his family became sick. These experiences gave birth to the idea for the film.

Hirani initially conceptualised the tale of Munna Bhai M.B.B.S. as a series, and approached R. Madhavan to play the lead role. The actor turned down the offer citing that he was busy with other commitments.[9] After Hirani chose to make into a film, during the scripting stage, he wanted Anil Kapoor to play the lead role.[8] However, Shah Rukh Khan was later cast as Munna along with Sanjay Dutt as Zaheer but due to his back problems Khan was forced to turn down the film.[10][11][12][13][14][15] Nevertheless, the end credits of the film thank Khan for his inputs into the script.[8] Hirani also narrated the script to Aishwarya Rai during the time he was in talks with Shahrukh Khan.[8] Khan and Rai were working together on Devdas at the time. Vivek Oberoi was considered for the role, but in the end Sanjay Dutt took the role as Munna, which ultimately gave him an image make over and helped change the public perception of the controversial superstar;[16] his real-life father Sunil Dutt returned to the silver screen after 10 years to play Munna's father. This is the first and only film in which real-life father and son Sunil and Sanjay appear together, although they both appeared in Reshma Aur Shera (1971), Rocky (1981) and Kshatriya (1993) but not in any scenes together.[17][18]

The original choice for Circuit's role was Makarand Deshpande. Arshad Warsi took over the role which proved to be a turning point for his career.[19] The scenes of the Medical College were shot at the Agriculture College of Pune and Grant Medical College Mumbai.[20]

Accusations of plagiarism


The film has a similar premise to the 1998 American film Patch Adams, starring Robin Williams. The producer Vidhu Vinod Chopra, however, denies there being a resemblance, and says that he had not watched the film before the release of Munna Bhai.[21] Years later, accusations of plagiarism resurfaced on social media when some netizens highlighted scene-to-scene copies.[22]

Lack of budget


Hirani did not have a big budget to shoot the film. As a result, he had to change the way certain scenes were shot. For example, the film ends with stills of Munna Bhai's wedding. Hirani was told that setting up a wedding stage and making a wedding outfit for Gracie Singh would cost him several thousand rupees. To save on some of that money, Hirani arranged to have the stills shot on an actual wedding stage set up for a real wedding near the sets. The production team reached an agreement with the wedding hall management and used their stage after a wedding ended.[8]


Munna Bhai M.B.B.S.
Soundtrack album by
ProducerAnu Malik
Anu Malik chronology
LOC: Kargil
Munna Bhai M.B.B.S.

The music is composed by Anu Malik. Lyrics for the songs are penned by Abbas Tyrewala and Rahat Indori. Vocals for Dutt were supplied by Vinod Rathod.

According to the Indian trade website Box Office India, with around 1,000,000 units sold, this film's soundtrack album was the year's one of the highest-selling.[23]

Track list
1."Chann Chann"Rahat IndoriVinod Rathod, Shreya Ghoshal7:00
2."Dekhle Aankhon Mein Aankhien Daal"Rahat IndoriSunidhi Chauhan, Anu Malik3:24
3."M Bole To"Rahat IndoriSanjay Dutt, Vinod Rathod, Prachi, Priya Mayekar8:20
4."Subha Ho Gayee Mamu"Abbas TyrewalaShaan4:01
5."Apun Jaise Tapori"Abbas TyrewalaVinod Rathod, Sanjay Dutt, Arshad Warsi5:32
6."Dekhle Aankhon Mein Aankhien Daal (Remix)"Rahat IndoriSunidhi Chauhan, Joi Barua5:22
Total length:33:39



Munna Bhai M.B.B.S. was the recipient of a number of awards. At the 50th Filmfare Awards, it received the Best Film (Critics), Best Screenplay, the Best Dialogue, and Best Comedian (for Warsi) in addition to four other nominations. It won a number of awards at the 2004 Zee Cine Awards including Best Debuting Director, Best Actor in a Comic Role (for Warsi), Best Cinematography, and Best Dialogue.

Other ceremonies include the 2004 National Film Awards where it won the National Film Award for Best Popular Film and the 2004 International Indian Film Academy Awards where it won the IIFA Best Comedian Award.

Date of Ceremony Awards Category Recipient(s) and nominee(s) Result Ref.
3 February 2005 51st National Film Awards Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment Munna Bhai M.B.B.S. Won
20 February 2004 49th Filmfare Awards Best Film (Critics) Won
Best Film Nominated
Best Screenplay Vidhu Vinod Chopra, Rajkumar Hirani, Lajan Joseph Won
Best Director Rajkumar Hirani Nominated
Best Comedian Sanjay Dutt Won
Boman Irani Nominated
Best Dialogues Abbas Tyrewala Won
Best Supporting Actor Arshad Warsi Nominated
22 May 2004 International Indian Film Academy Awards Best Screenplay Vidhu Vinod Chopra, Rajkumar Hirani, Lajan Joseph Won
Best Actor in a Comic Role Boman Irani Won
Best Dialogues Abbas Tyrewala Won
Best Film Munna Bhai M.B.B.S. Nominated
Best Editing Rajkumar Hirani Won
Best Director Nominated
Best Story Nominated
Best Actor Sanjay Dutt Nominated
Best Supporting Actor Arshad Warsi Nominated
Best Music Director Anu Malik Nominated
Best Lyrics Rahat Indori (for the song "Dekhle Aankhon Mein Aankhen Daal") Nominated
Best Female Playback Singer Sunidhi Chauhan (for the song "Dekhle Aankhon Mein Aankhen Daal") Nominated
28 May 2004 Producers Guild Film Awards Best Debut Director Rajkumar Hirani Won
Best Editing Won
Best Director Nominated
Best Film Munna Bhai M.B.B.S. Nominated
Best Actor Sanjay Dutt Nominated
Best Supporting Actor Arshad Warsi Nominated
Best Screenplay Vidhu Vinod Chopra, Rajkumar Hirani, Lajan Joseph Nominated
Best Cinematography Binod Pradhan Nominated
26 February 2004 Zee Cine Awards Best Actor in a Comic Role Arshad Warsi Won
Boman Irani Nominated
Best Debut Director Rajkumar Hirani Won
Best Cinematography Binod Pradhan Won
Best Film Vidhu Vinod Chopra Nominated
2004 Bengal Film Journalists' Association Awards Best Film (Hindi) Won [24]
Best Actor (Hindi) Sanjay Dutt Won
Best Supporting Actor (Hindi) Arshad Warsi Won
Bollywood Movie Awards Best Director Rajkumar Hirani Won
Most Sensational Actor Sanjay Dutt Won
Best Supporting Actor Arshad Warsi Won
21 December 2010 BIG Entertainment Awards Best Film of the Decade Munna Bhai M.B.B.S. Nominated



In February 2004, after the success of Munna Bhai M.B.B.S., Rajkumar Hirani decided to work on his next project. He, along with his co-writer Abhijat Joshi, started to write the script of their new film. They didn't wanted that script to include Munnabhai but after they wrote it, the script eventually turned out to be of Lage Raho Munna Bhai. Sanjay Dutt, Sunil Dutt, Arshad Warsi and Boman Irani were to reprise their roles but after the death of Sunil in May 2005, Hirani decided that the film will only have Sanjay & Warsi to reprise their characters from Munna Bhai M.B.B.S. and other actors like Boman Irani and Jimmy Shergill were cast in new roles. Lage Raho Munna Bhai was released on 1 September 2006 and turned out to be a huge success.



The film was remade in Tamil as Vasool Raja M.B.B.S. (2004), in Telugu as Shankar Dada M.B.B.S. (2004) and in Kannada as Uppi Dada M.B.B.S. (2007).


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