Vora in July 2012
|Born||22 January 1963
Bhuj, Gujarat, India
|Died||14 December 2017
Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
|Occupation||Director, writer, actor, producer|
|Parent(s)||Pandit Vinayak Rai Vora
Neeraj Vora (22 January 1963 – 14 December 2017) was an Indian film director, writer, actor and composer from Gujarat. He made a mark in Bollywood with his work as a writer for Aamir Khan's film Rangeela. His directorial debut was Khiladi 420 in 2000. Later in 2006, he wrote and directed Phir Hera Pheri. He suffered a stroke in October 2016 putting him in coma. He was working on Hera Pheri 3 before he went into coma and died on 14 December 2017 at 3 am in Criti Care hospital, Mumbai.
Early life and career
Vora was born in Bhuj in a Gujarati family in 1963. But he grew up in Santacruz, a suburb of Mumbai. His father, Pandit Vinayak Rai Nanalal Vora was a classical musician and a proponent of Tar- Shehnai. His father popularised Tar-Shehnai as the solo instrument for classical music.
As a child, Vora had no access to Bollywood movies. As he hailed from a classical musicians' family, listening to film music and watching films was not allowed. His mother Premila Ben had a tremendous fascination for films, and she used to secretly take her son Neeraj to watch movies. Vora went to famous Pupils' Own School in Khar, Mumbai. Many famous celebrities such as Falguni Pathank, Kinjal Bakshi, Tina Munim were his compatriots at this school.
Many students from his school used to attend music coaching classes conducted by his father who insisted on teaching classical Indian music while Neeraj would sneakily teach them how to play Bollywood songs on harmonium. This made Neeraj very popular at the school.
Luckily, a lot of Gujarati drama stalwarts followed his father’s work and knew him personally following which he got inclined towards Gujarati theatre. His love for theatre began at the age of 6, and when his father discovered this at the age of 13 he supported Vora and asked him to follow his passion.
During his college days, he started working professionally as an actor and he received intercollegiate awards for drama. In 1984 he worked for a film Holi by Ketan Mehta and later did a television show Choti Badi Baatien, Circus.
He later worked as an actor in Rangeela too, as the film director wanted to bring down the sets and the actor was absent. Neeraj Vora, who had written the script, played the role to finish shooting. After seeing that scene, Anil Kapoor and Priyadarshan called him for Virasat followed by Aamir for Mann and several other projects.
His 1992 Gujarati play Aflatoon which was a superhit was adopted by Rohit Shetty for Golmaal. The play was written and directed by Neeraj Vora. It was adapted from Harsh Shivsharan's original Marathi play Ghar-Ghar.
After circus in 1993, Neeraj Vora, Ashutosh Gowarikar and Deepak Tijori got together and made Pehla Nasha with Deepak Tijori as lead actor. Neeraj Vora was the writer and his he along with his brother directed music as Neeraj-Uttank. Later his career in writing took off after he wrote for Rangeela and then Akele Hum Akele Tum, Josh, Badshah, Chori Chori Chupke Chupke, Awara Paagal Deewana, Deewane Huye Paagal, Ajnabee and Hera Pheri, Phir Hera Pheri among many others. Vora’s work has always been appreciated by the critics. For Phir Hera Pheri, film critic Taran Adarsh said, "Vora's dialogues, as always, are outstanding!"
He first directed Khiladi 420, which did not fare well. After that he decided to produce movies and took up Familywala. After writing Awara Paagal Deewana and Deewane Huye Paagal for Firoz Nadiadwala, they collaborated for Phir Hera Pheri, which was to be directed by Satish Kaushik, but following the problems with dates, Neeraj Vora got the chance to direct it.
Vora was slated to direct Hera Pheri 3, but ultimately was replaced by Ahmed Khan following the departure of actors John Abraham, Abhishek Bachchan and Sunil Shetty due to conflicts with Vora. Vora was retained as the film's executive producer, but following his stroke in October 2016 and his death in December 2017, it was confirmed on May 11th 2018 that Hera Pheri 3 will now be directed by Indra Kumar.
2000: Screen Award for Best Screenplay - Khiladi 420
2000: Screen Award for Best Dialogs - Khiladi 420
2000: Screen Award for Best Screenplay - Hera Pheri
2000: Screen Award for Best Dialogs - Hera Pheri
Lions Gold award
Pearls Ratna Awards
- Run Bhola Run (shelved) (2016)
- Shortkut: The Con Is On (2009)
- Familywala (2009)
- Phir Hera Pheri (2006)
- Khiladi 420 (2000)
- Welcome Back (2015)
- Bol Bachchan (2012)
- Kamaal Dhamaal Malamaal (2012)
- Department (2012)
- Tezz (2012)
- Khatta Meetha (2010)
- Na Ghar Ke Na Ghaat Ke (2010)
- Familywala (2009)
- Maine Dil Tujhko Diya (2002)
- Tum Se Achcha Kaun Hai (2002)
- Company (2002)
- Yeh Teraa Ghar Yeh Meraa Ghar (2001)
- Dhadkan (2000)
- Har Dil Jo Pyar Karega (2000)
- Jung (2000)
- Pukar (2000)
- Mast (1999)
- Hello Brother (1999)
- Baadshah (1999)
- Mann (1999)
- Satya (1998)
- Daud: Fun on the Run (1997)
- Virasat (1997)
- Akele Hum Akele Tum (1995)
- Rangeela (1995)
- Raju Ban Gaya Gentleman (1992)
- Salim Langde Pe Mat Ro (1989)
- Holi (1984)
- "'Short Kut' a fun hare and tortoise story: Neeraj Vora". Deccan Herald. Retrieved 10 September 2010.
- Staff, Images (2017-08-29). "'Hera Pheri 3' on hold as director Neeraj Vora in a coma since 10 months: Indian media". Images. Retrieved 2017-09-01.
- "Neeraj Vora brought back to Mumbai; living in Firoz Nadiadwala's house - Mumbai Mirror -". Mumbai Mirror. Retrieved 1 September 2017.
- "Pandit Vinayak Vora". www.vinayakvora.com. Retrieved 1 September 2017.
- Mehta, Ankita. "Neeraj Vora in coma: Who is he? Things to know about the popular actor-director". International Business Times, India Edition. Retrieved 1 September 2017.
- Holi (1985), retrieved 1 September 2017
- "Neeraj Vora". IMDb. Retrieved 1 September 2017.
- Hungama, Bollywood. "Phir Hera Pheri Review - Bollywood Hungama". Bollywood Hungama. Retrieved 1 September 2017.
- Reporter, Manjusha Radhakrishnan, Senior (29 May 2016). "'Hera Pheri 3': What's going on with the Bollywood film?". GulfNews. Retrieved 1 September 2017.
- Staff, Scroll. "New 'Hera Pheri' film to reunite Akshay Kumar, Suniel Shetty and Paresh Rawal". Scroll.in. Retrieved 2018-05-29.
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