The Bollywood List of Plagiarism, Remakes and Inspirations (2008)

I am bad at math and statistics – but I still think there has to be some kind of an index, like the Sensex -  to keep tabs on Bollywood plagiarism. It might take time before someone really works out a convincing formula for it – for the moment let’s call it the BoPla. With each Bollywood release, we could recalculate the BoPla and work out if plagiarism in Bollywood is healthy and kicking or a dying art.

Let’s begin with analyzing all major Bollywood releases in 2008. And let’s work out how many have been plagiarized, copied, lifted, inspired and the one-in-a-while officially remade. The were 70 major Hindi releases last year, and let’s try to calculate how many fall into the BoPla category.

1920: Vikram Bhatt’s mix and match of Exorcist and Exorcism of Emily Rose

Anamika: Anant Mahadevan writes and directs his own version of Alfred Hitchcock’s Rebecca

Aamir: Straight lift of Filipino film Cavite

Bachna Ae Haseeno: A cross between John Tucker must Die and Teen Deviyan

Dasvidaniya: A lift of The Bucket List, but nicely done.

De Taali: An urbanised remake of the Telugu film Totti Gang

Dil Kabaddi: Based on Woody Allen’s Husbands and Wives

Don Muthuswami: A lift of Sly Stallone starrer Oscar

Dostana: Pretty close to I now pronounce you Chuck and Larry

Ek-the power of One: Remake of Telugu film Athadu – which in any case was a remake of The Wanted.

Ghajini: Remake of Ghajini and a poor copy of Memento

God Tussi Great Ho: Even the poster was a lift of Bruce Almighty

Golmal Returns: Plot pretty close to the 1973 film Aaj ki Taaza Khabar

Hari Puttar: The desified Home Alone

Hello: Official screen adaptation of Chetan Bhagat’s terrible novel.

Heroes: Motorcycle Diaries?

Hijack: yet another Die-Hard lift

Karzzzz: A remake of Karz with additional zzzs. Originally stolen from The Reincarnation of Peter Proud.

Krazzy 4: Rakesh Roshan got caught for stealing Ram Sampath’s tune, but still stole the plot of The Dream Team

Kismat Connection: Aziz Mirza is inspired by Just My Luck

Kidnap: A poor remake of Shattered

Maharathi: Based on Gujarati play of same name.

Mere Baap Pahle Aap: remake of Malayalam film Ishtam

Mission Istanbul: Loosely based on John Grisham’s novel The Firm. The legal firm is changed to a News Channel.

One Two Three: Blame it on the Bellboy

Race: Abbas Mastan continue copying – this time from Goodbye Lover.

Rub a Ru: Lifted from If Only

Shaurya: Samar Khan adapts A Few Good Men

Sorry Bhai: Dan in Real life

Sunday: A remake of the Telugu film Anukokunda Oka Roju

U, Me Aur Hum: Ajay Devgan is inspired by The Notebook

Ugly aur Pagli: Straight lift of Korean film My Sassy Girl

Via Darjeeling: Different scenario, but still inspired by Akira Kurosawa’s Rashomon

Of all the above – only Hello and Maharathi are authorized “adapted” screenplays. The rest are plain remakes, lifts, copies and inspirations.

Out of 70 Hindi films, 32 are non-originals. And among orginals, only Jaane Tu and Singh is King could work at the box office. The rest were maha-flops like Drona.

So, that gives a BoPla index a count of 46%. That means more than half of the filmmakers still have the nerve make original Bollywood movies. They ought to be jailed.

Posted by Manish on January 11, 2009 in In Bollywood,Deshwa


1 Anshu { 01.11.09 at 5:23 pm }

Good list. Giving you much more simple homework. Enlist Pritam’s tunes which are plagiarized. Maybe we should be asking quizzers: name one original tune of Pritam which is not plagiarized.

2 Manish { 01.11.09 at 6:37 pm }

Pritam’s list has already been compiled by Karthik at

3 Padma { 01.11.09 at 10:12 pm }

the list doesnt include all the songs from parineeta-direct lifts from bengali songs, baul songs and other folk songs. lyrics also direct translation.
bheja fry scne to scene lift from the French film Un diner de cons. Never admitted.

4 Padma { 01.11.09 at 10:13 pm }

again another Hindi film whose name I am forgetting is a direct lift of three men and a cradle which in turn is a direct lift of the French original Trois hommes et un couffin

5 Manish { 01.11.09 at 10:43 pm }

Both Bheja Fry and Heyy Baby were 2007 releases. And that’s why they aren’t on this list.

And Parineeta wasn’t Pritam’s work – it was Shantanu Moitra’s.

6 Padma { 01.11.09 at 11:58 pm }

sorry sorry sorry
i knew abt them being 2007 releases but still wanted to mention

7 Padma { 01.11.09 at 11:59 pm }

and yes you are right obviously abt shantanu moitra

8 Padma { 01.11.09 at 11:59 pm }

ok i am just plain dumb. SORRY!!!!!!!!!!!!!

9 Manish { 01.12.09 at 4:54 pm }

What is a baul song?

10 Padma { 01.12.09 at 6:12 pm }

songs sung by bauls of west bengal and east bengal, nomadic spiritual esoteric movement and lovely philosophical songs sung accompanied by an ektara and a very interesting percussion instrument whose name i have forgotten. You have to be initiated as a baul and they all smoke dope.

11 Padma { 01.12.09 at 6:38 pm }

genuine bauls seek alms with a bowl in their hand and go from house to house.
i think the percussion which produces an amazing sound is called dugi.
I think you will like their music manish and all the more so if you understand bengali but especially for the raw earthy uncut tones and the sound of the dugi.
They are a mystic sect with lots of mysterious practices which only initiated bauls are privy to.

12 Padma { 01.14.09 at 2:27 am }

also in ghajini the scene where asin is helping a blind man cross the road is a direct lift from the french film Amelie Poulain

13 Anshu { 01.15.09 at 11:46 am }

I loved Amelie… wasn’t it nominated for the Oscars with Lagaan?

14 Padma { 01.15.09 at 3:55 pm }

yes it indeed was. Check out the scene where amelie is helping a blind man out and the same ditto is to be found in ghajini!!!!

15 Navneet Mundhra { 01.16.09 at 2:40 pm }

Great Work, dude.
You have done an extensive reserach.
Keep up the good work.

16 prakhar gupta { 05.04.09 at 11:55 pm }

nice handiwork

17 raffu { 05.05.09 at 10:57 pm }


18 Milly { 05.19.09 at 2:31 am }

Bhabhi (1991) was a remake of gujju Sau Dada Sasu Na (1985)

19 Bobby Sing { 10.09.09 at 12:05 am }

All friends interested in this topic are invited to the site :
with more movies inspired from the West & World Cinema.


20 Bobby Sing { 11.12.09 at 8:49 pm }

Only wanted to mention that “Singh Is King” was also all copied and and not an original work apart from the Sikh Hero angle.


21 Jay { 12.06.09 at 2:33 pm }

Bollywood not only copies from foreign films but also from old hindi movies viz Ghar Jamai(1992) is a scene-to-scene copy of old hindi movie Sasural(1961) which in turn was a remake of illarikam(1959), Meera ka Mohan(1992) is from Zindagi(1964),Aurat(1953) is from Aurat(1940),Anamika(2008) is from Kohraa(1964) which was a remake of Hollywood Rebecca(1940),Bandhe Haanth (1973) is from Mujrim(1958),Haatim Tai(1990) is exact copy of Saat Sawaal(1971),Gumnaam (1965) is a version of
And Then There Were None (1945).

22 durga prasad { 12.11.09 at 9:48 pm }

Frankly speaking, every work is a plagiarism , because ABCD…XYZ and 123…..infinitive are not of us ,still no writer, or author never give the source rather they tell that these are his or hers. This is absolute plagiarism. It is strange when you cheat from one, it is plagiarism, but from many , it a RESEARCH.

23 durga prasad { 12.11.09 at 9:57 pm }

I am afraid, most and many of the Indian artists viz writers, authors, narrators, directors, editors, actors and actresses, players and sportsmen are always involved in plagiarism because they never ever quote the names of their predecessors, seniors etc from whom they have learnt, have taken the techniques, ideas, notions, etc which helped them in creating their project, exhibition and the like. I am very very sorry , being an essayist, sportsman, human rights activist and a writer.

24 Rohit { 05.26.10 at 1:03 pm }

In ‘Metro’ one of the story tracks is lifted from ‘The Apartment’

25 i hate bollywood { 09.16.10 at 1:38 am }

all indian film makers and actors/actressess(except a few) are just bullshit .they make hindi film in english(by delivering dailogues in english)what an abusrd ..
this guys when win any award, even at that moment they speak in english that “im happy blab bla…” why they dont say ” main khush hu”

ok they dont wannt to say ,but atleast make some creative, innovative film which havenot been made earlier..
these bullshits are just watching american movies ,singing us/uk tracks, and making fucking hindi fillm for indians with lots of stupid songs which has no sense..
i have more to say and ill speak everyday ,in every website against these //// yes… fuckers…

26 Shashi Reddy { 11.20.10 at 8:05 pm }

Guzaarish is lifted from “The Sea Inside” and “The Prestige”. Saawariya was lifted from a russian flick. Hum dil de chuke sanam from “Swayamvaram”, an old telugu film.

27 Rakesh { 11.20.14 at 3:32 pm }

Athadu was not a remake of “The Wanted”. Athadu released in 2005 whereas The Wanted released in 2008.

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