There was a time when we only hailed actors and actresses, and the people behind the scenes, i.e., the directors were left in the shadows. But then there came some phenomenal directors, who changed the way Bollywood looked at directors and made themselves into legends of Bollywood cinema. One amongst those is director Ashutosh Gowariker. He needs no introduction, and his films are enough to show his talents. On his birthday, let’s celebrate him with his famous 5!
When Mohan (Shah Rukh Khan) sees the conditions of rural communities in India, he doesn’t make a big speech about how he wants to change the entire country. He is a simple man, who sees a problem, and knowing that he has the means to solve the problem, devises a solution. Patriotism is in small steps, and Swades shows that in the best possible way. Ashutosh’s direction and scriptwriting gained cult status with this movie.
Image via: Eastman Museum
Ashutosh Gowariker’s Lagaan was even nominated for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, such is its greatness. A story of India trapped under the British Rule, and one village’s fight for their lagaan using the Britishers’ own game, Cricket, paved the way for Gowariker in every heart, where he still holds a place. Even after countless patriotic films, this one still makes us cry and explode with joy at the same time.
Image via: Netflix
Ashutosh Gowariker did not direct this Marathi film but has acted in it. It tells the story of one Karmakar family and their Gajju Kaka, who, a few days before Ganesh Chaturthi, is put on a ventilator after slipping into a coma. The film tells the story of the family’s personal issues that come to light while waiting at the hospital, and how they deal with them. The film features Ashutosh Gowariker, Jitendra Joshi, Tanvi Abhyankar, and Kirti Adarkar among others, and has won three National Film Awards.
4. Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey
Bringing the story of revolutionary Surya Sen to life, Ashutosh Gowariker’s direction for this movie was also praised, even though the film did not do well at the Box Office. With a cast like Abhishek Bachchan and Deepika Padukone, he showed how Sen and his revolutionaries did their part in the Indian Freedom Struggle, and how their acts helped the nation.
5. Jodhaa Akbar
A love story for the ages, Ashutosh took upon himself the mammoth task of bringing Rajput princess Jodhaa and Mughal Emperor Akbar’s story to life. With a stellar cast, amazing cinematography, costumes, and songs, this historic film is also a diamond in Ashutosh’s crown. Without resorting to sensationalism, he showed the beautiful love between two people from different sections of society and proved just how versatile a director he is.