Yash Chopra: 22 films in 53 years

From social dramas, action thrillers to romance sagas, Yash Chopra told every filmy story Bollywood had to offer.

Dhool Ka Phool

After assisting his elder brother BR Chopra in Naya Daur, young Yash Chopra landed his first directing job. Dhool Ka Phool starring Mala Sinha, Rajendra Kumar, Nanda and Ashok Kumar, dealt with an illegitimate Hindu child brought up by a Muslim and became a critical and commercial hit.


Mala Sinha returned as lead actress and Shashi Kapoor played his first adult lead role. In this film, also dealing with illegitimacy and communal issues, Yash Chopra reversed the theme from his first film with a Muslim child being brought up by Hindu parents.


Probably Bollywood's first movie with an ensemble cast, Waqt boasted of some great music like Ae Meri Zohra Jabeen and the soulful Aagey Bhi Jaane Na Tu. It also made the ‘lost and found’ theme popular. It won Yash Chopra a Filmfare award for Best Director.


This murder mystery starring Rajesh Khanna and Nanda was a remake of the Hollywood movie Signpost to Murder, and one of the first Bollywood films to be made with no song and dance routines. Yash Chopra won another Filmfare Best Director award.

Aadmi Aur Insaan

Yash Chopra’s only film with Dharmendra in the lead, Aadmi Aur Insaan was a story of thwarted love and revenge against the backdrop of commerce.

Daag: A Poem of Love

This was the first film produced by the new Yash Raj Films banner. An adaptation of Thomas Hardy’s novel The Mayor of Casterbridge, the movie starred Rajesh Khanna, Sharmila Tagore and Rakhee. The film dealt with bigamy, became a superhit and won Yash Chopra another Filmfare.


Dev Anand, Rakhee and Hema Malini played the lead roles in this complex web of intrigue and murder. The film received only a lukewarm welcome at the box office.


Starring Amitabh Bachchan and Shashi Kapoor as brothers on two sides of the law, the superhit Deewar propelled Amitabh Bachchan and Shashi Kapoor to super stardom and established Salim-Javed as the most sought after script-writers. Deewar won Yash Chopra another Filmfare, and also scooped Best Film

Kabhi Kabhie - Love Is Life

Yash Chopra repeated his Deewar heroes but veered sharply from action drama to romance drama. The movie, about old loves and friendship, is also remembered for it’s soulful poetry and music.


Starring Amitabh Bachchan and Shashi Kapoor yet again, the film dealt with a favourite Yash Chopra theme – revenge borne out of illegitimacy. Also starring Sanjeev Kumar, Trishul was a blockbuster hit and fetched Best Director and Movie, among other honours, at the Filmfare Awards.

Kaala Patthar

The Yash Chopra-Big B-Shashi Kapoor winning streak was broken with this critically acclaimed but commercially unsuccessful film. Kaala Patthar was based on the Chasnala coal mining disaster of 1975.


Possibly Yash Chopra’s most famous film, Silsila is remembered not just for it’s unusual storyline about an extra-marital affair and beautiful music but also for the casting of Amitabh Bachchan, Jaya Bachchan and Rekha, mirroring their rumoured real-life love triangle.


Anil Kapoor’s first film with Yash Chopra, and Dilip Kumar’s only film with him, Mashaal dealt with the breakdown of values and tells the story of a mentor who abandons his own convictions, becoming a criminal.


Sunil Dutt and Rekha played the lead roles in what was the most unsuccessful movie in Yash Chopra's career. The story, about a father’s sacrifice for his daughter and eventual opposition to her choice of husband, was weak and was compounded by poor editing.


Starring Rajesh Khanna, Hema Malini, Rishi Kapoor and Anil Kapoor in the lead roles, Vijay is another riff on love across social boundaries, illegitimacy and revenge. Sridevi makes a special appearance.


The movie that made Sridevi the undisputed queen of Bollywood, Chandni was a quintessential ‘Yash Chopra romance’ with the eponymous heroine loved by two men. Chandni was among the handful of mainstream films that centred around a female character.


Starring Anil Kapoor and Sridevi, Lamhe’s incestuous undertone was considered to be ahead of its time. It was also Yash Chopra’s favourite of his own film.


Starring Aaamir Khan, Raveena Tandon, first timer Saif Ali Khan and Neelam, this tale of family rivalries was a commercial failure at the box office.


Shah Rukh Khan played the obsessive lover Rahul with Juhi Chawla as the object of his unwanted attentions and Sunny Deol as her lover. The movie was a huge success and earned Yash Chopra another Filmfare Award.

Dil To Pagal Hai

SRK's second outing with Yash Chopra proved to be successful too. The musical-romantic-drama, also starring Madhuri Dixit and Karisma Kapoor, won almost all major Filmfare awards including Best Film. Karisma Kapoor won the National Film Award for Best Supporting Actress.


Yash Chopra was back with his lucky mascot SRK in Veer Zaara. Starring Preity Zinta and Rani Mukherji as the female leads, the Indo-Pak love story is also memorable for its music which was based on old compositions by the late musician Madan Mohan.

Jab Tak Hai Jaan

This Diwali will bring with it the last movie directed by Yash Chopra. SRK, who plays an army officer, will romance Katrina Kaif and Anushka Sharma on the big screen in Jab Tak Hai Jaan. A R Rahman’s songs are already topping the charts.