Shashank Khaitan

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Shashank Khaitan is an Indian film writer and director, known for his work in Hindi cinema. He has directed films like Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania and Badrinath Ki Dulhania, which released in 2017.And Dhadak in 2018 which is a remake of sairat a marathi movie.[1][2] His work on the latter garnered him a nomination for the Filmfare Award for Best Director.[3]

Early life[edit]

Khaitan was born in Kolkata and raised in Nashik, Maharashtra in a Marwari business family.[1]

Although he was interested in watching movies since a very young age, he was initially more into sports, playing cricket and tennis tournaments. At the age of 17, he decided to pursue a career in entertainment.[1][4]

Khaitan joined Whistling Woods International Institute (a film institute started and supported by veteran movie director Subhash Ghai) to break into the movie industry. He credits the institute with giving him the technical background, and also credits the institute's faculty (who work actively in the movie industry) with making him feel comfortable on set by inviting the students to accompany them to set.[4] While at Whistling Woods, Khaitan worked on his first attempted movie, Sherwani Kahaan Hai, with some of his fellow students at Whistling Woods, but the movie was not successfully completed.[5]

In 2008, Khaitan starred as Manohar in Roorkee By-Pass, a 22-minute drama directed by Arundhati Sen Verma,[6] and assisted on the set of Subhash Ghai's Black & White.[4]

Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania (2014)[edit]

Khaitan's initial plan with Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania was to make it a story of two con artists, similar to Bunty Aur Babli. However, as he worked on the script, he found the characters turning out sweeter than he had anticipated and falling in love.[7] Khaitan cites Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (DDLJ) and Casablanca as inspiration for his script, and the movie pays homage to DDLJ as well as Kuch Kuch Hota Hai.[1]

Khaitan, who believed that Bollywood had not produced a great love story since Jab We Met, strove to keep the characters more real and grounded, while at the same time conveying a grand love story. In response to critics who say that the movie continues some old Bollywood cliches such as approval of parents, he calls this a reflection of how Indian society has not changed all that much since the making of DDLJ.[1]

After finishing the first draft of his script, then with the title Humpty Sharma Di Love Story, Khaitan sent it to Dharma Productions. Karan Johar looked at the script, said he liked it, and said that Dharma Productions would make the film, though he wasn't sure if Khaitan would direct it. Khaitan made some improvements to the script and Johar decided to let Khaitan direct. This was a departure from precedent at Dharma, where most directors were people who had previously worked as assistant directors or assistant producers.[7] Khaitan selected Varun Dhawan and Alia Bhatt for the movie after watching their performance in Student Of The Year.[8] One of Khaitan's goals with the filming was to "keep it real" and to make sure that all characters were well-prepared before they shot a scene.[8]

The film was released in July 2014 and became a success at the box office.

Badrinath Ki Dulhania (2017)[edit]

In May 2016, it was announced that Khaitan will write and direct another romantic comedy under the Dharma Productions banner with Dhawan and Bhatt playing the lead roles. Although the two films will have different plots and characters, the film is considered the second installment in a franchise that began with Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania. The second installment, titled Badrinath Ki Dulhania, had been released on 10 of March 2017 which also became success.


His third directional film is Dhadak starring Ishaan Khatter & Jhanvi Kapoor (Sridevi's daughter) under Dharma Productions.The film is scheduled to release in 20 July 2018.


Year Film Notes
2014 Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania Debut Film
2017 Badrinath Ki Dulhania Nominated for Filmfare Award for Best Director
2018 Dhadak Post-production


Year Show Channel Notes
2018 Dance Deewane Colors TV As a Judge in the dancing reality show


External links[edit]