Hirani at an event for PK in 2014
|Born||20 November 1962|
|Education||St. Francis De'Sales High School, Nagpur, Maharashtra|
|Alma mater||Film and Television Institute of India|
|Occupation||Film director, film producer, screenwriter, film editor|
Rajkumar Hirani (born 20 November 1962) is an Indian film director and editor. Hirani only directed five Hindi films, which are Munna Bhai M.B.B.S. (2003), Lage Raho Munnabhai (2006), 3 Idiots (2009), PK (2014) and Sanju (2018) and all five of his films have been commercial and critical successes. Most have won several awards, including the national awards, and have often been regarded by the media and audiences as some of the most path-breaking films in the history of Hindi cinema. He has won 11 Filmfare Awards. He is the founder of production house Rajkumar Hirani Films.
Early life and education
Hirani was born on 20 November 1962 in Nagpur to a Sindhi family. His ancestors originally belong to Mehrabpur, a city now in the Naushahro Firoz District, Sindh, of Pakistan. His father Suresh Hirani ran a typing institute in Nagpur. Rajkumar Hirani studied at St. Francis De'Sales High School, Nagpur, Maharashtra. He did his graduation in commerce. His parents wanted him to be a chartered accountant, but he was more keen on theatre and film.
In his college days he was involved with Hindi theatre. He had many friends in Nagpur's medical college and hence spent much time in theater at the college. Suresh had his son's photographs taken and sent him to an acting school in Mumbai. However, Hirani could not fit in and returned to Nagpur after three days. His father then asked him to apply to the Film and Television Institute of India in Pune, but the acting course had shut down and his chances of admission to the directorial course looked slim as there were far too many applicants. Hirani opted for the editing course, and earned a scholarship.
Early work (1994—99, 2000)
Hirani tried his luck as a film editor for many years. Bad experiences forced him to shift to advertising, and he gradually established himself as a director and producer of advertising films. He was also seen in a Fevicol ad where some men and elephants were trying to pull and break a Fevicol plank, saying "Jor laga ke Haisha". He was also seen in the Kinetic Luna ad campaign created by Ogilvy & Mather.
He was doing fairly well in the advertisement industry, but he wanted to make movies, so he took a break from advertisement and started working with Vidhu Vinod Chopra. He worked on promos and trailers for 1942: A Love Story (1994). He edited promotions for Kareeb (1998). He got his first big opportunity as a film editor with Mission Kashmir (2000).
Directorial debut and initial success (2003—06)
In 2003, Hirani made his directorial debut with the comedy film Munna Bhai M.B.B.S. starring Sanjay Dutt, Arshad Warsi, Boman Irani, Gracy Singh, Jimmy Sheirgill, and Sunil Dutt. It was about the titular protagonist (played by Sanjay Dutt), a goon going to a medical school who is helped by his sidekick (Circuit, played by Warsi). The film received a positive response from critics. Hirani's direction was praised, and the film emerged as a major commercial success with a worldwide total of ₹1 billion (US$14 million). Munna Bhai M.B.B.S. won the National Film Award for Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment and the Filmfare Critics Award for Best Film, and earned Hirani his first Filmfare Award for Best Screenplay and a nomination for the Filmfare Award for Best Director. The film was the first film of the franchise Munna Bhai.
In 2006, Hirani directed the second installment of the Munna Bhai franchise, titled Lage Raho Munna Bhai, which retained some of the original cast, including Sanjay Dutt, Warsi, and Boman Irani, and added Vidya Balan as the female lead replacing Gracy Singh. The feature proved to be Hirani's highest-grossing release to that point, earning over ₹1.93 billion (US$27 million) worldwide, thus attaining a blockbuster status and becoming the third highest-grossing film of that year. Just like the previous film, it won the National Film Award for Best Popular Film, and earned Hirani a second Critics Award for Best Film award, a first Best Story award, a first Best Dialogue award, and a second Best Director nomination at Filmfare.
Widespread success (2009—present)
Hirani's next directorial venture was the coming-of-age comedy-drama 3 Idiots (2009), which starred Aamir Khan, Kareena Kapoor Khan, R. Madhavan, Sharman Joshi, and Boman Irani. It follows the friendship of three engineering students, and was a satire about social pressures under an Indian education system. 3 Idiots received positive reviews from critics, and proved to be the highest-grossing Bollywood film up until then, earning ₹4.60 billion (US$64 million) in global ticket sales. Hirani won his third National Film Award for Best Popular Film Award, first Filmfare Best Film and Best Director Award, and second Filmfare Best Screenplay and Best Story Award, for his direction. The film established Hirani as one of Hindi cinema's most prominent filmmakers.
In 2014, Hirani directed PK. PK was released on 19 December 2014. It received generally positive reviews, with praise for the performances, particularly by Khan, and its portrayal of superstitions. The film received eight nominations at the 60th Filmfare Awards, winning two. PK was the first Indian film to gross more than ₹7 billion and US$100 million worldwide. At the time, it emerged as the highest-grossing Indian film of all time, and ranks as the 70th highest-grossing film of 2014 worldwide. The film's final worldwide gross was ₹854 crore (US$140 million).
He also directed Sanju (2018). The film follows the life of Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt, his addiction with drugs, arrest for alleged association with the 1993 Bombay bombings, relationship with his father, comeback in the industry, the eventual drop of charges from bombay blasts, and release after completing his jail term. Upon release,it received positive reviews from critics, who praised Kapoor and Kaushal's performance and Hirani's direction; some criticised its supposed image-cleansing of its protagonist. It registered the highest opening for any film released in India in 2018, and on its third day, it had the highest single day collection ever for a Hindi film in India. With a worldwide gross of ₹586.85 crore (US$82 million), Sanju ranks as the highest grossing Bollywood film of 2018, the second highest-earning Hindi film in India of all time, and one of the highest-grossing Indian films. Sanju earned seven nominations at the 64th Filmfare Awards, including Best Film and Best Director for Hirani. It won two; Best Actor for Kapoor and Best Supporting Actor for Kaushal.
|Denotes films that have not yet been released|
|2003||Munna Bhai M.B.B.S.||Yes||Yes||No||Yes||Nominated—Filmfare Award for Best Director|
|2006||Lage Raho Munna Bhai||Yes||Yes||No||Yes||Nominated—Filmfare Award for Best Director|
|2009||3 Idiots||Yes||Yes||No||Yes||Filmfare Award for Best Director|
|2012||Ferrari Ki Sawaari||No||No||No||Yes|
|2014||PK||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Nominated—Filmfare Award for Best Film|
Nominated—Filmfare Award for Best Director
|2016||Saala Khadoos||No||No||Yes||No||Bi-lingual film; producer of the Hindi version|
|2018||Sanju||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Nominated—Filmfare Award for Best Film|
Nominated—Filmfare Award for Best Director
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- Hasan Ansari, PK' director Hirani to visit Pakistan in April, The Express Tribune, 20 February 2015. Retrieved 31 May 2018.
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- "IMDB Title for 1942". IMDB. Retrieved 23 December 2009.
- "IMDB Title for Kareeb". IMDB. Retrieved 23 December 2009.
- "IMDB Title for Mission Kashmir". IMDB. Retrieved 23 December 2009.
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