Often we blame Bollywood for “copying” Hollywood films. But there have been certain instances of role-reversal. Here are Hollywood movies that were inspired by Bollywood!
1. A Common Man – A Wednesday
A Common Man, starring Ben Kingsley and Ben Cross, is an award-winning thriller. The official English remake of Bollywood’s hit film A Wednesday, A Common Man reflects a reconstructed plot, while the director, Chandran Rutnam, has kept the basic story-line the same. It is one of those rare cases in which Hollywood has made an official remake of a film from the Hindi movie industry, that is often accused of plagiarising scripts and ideas from the world cinema, especially Hollywood.
2. Leap Year – Jab We Met
The 2010 Hollywood film by Anand Tucker, Leap Year, starring Amy Adams, Matthew Goode and Adam Scott, is said to be inspired from the super-hit Hindi film of 2007, Jab We Met. According to blog portal Universal Film News, “the film is loosely based on Jab We Met, a 2007 Bollywood film.” The similarity in the plots of the films can be easily traced as both the story lines follow a girl who goes out of the way to meet her boyfriend and feels him to be the right man. She, then, meets a guy who helps her reach her destination but ends up having an attraction towards him. The boyfriend has to settle for peanuts!
3. Madhumati continues to inspire books & films about reincarnation.
The concept of reincarnation was popularised in the western culture through Hindi movies like Madhumati. The plot of Madhumati is very similar to the one of the book The Reincarnation of Peter Proud and its movie adaptations. It is obvious that the plot of both, the novel and its movie adaptations, is inspired from Madhumati, as the Hindi film was released in 1958, whereas the novel came out later in 1973.
4. Win a Date With Tad Hamilton – Rangeela
The movie is not an official remake or adaptation of the Hindi flick Rangeela. However, the similarity of the plots of both the movies is sufficient enough to prove that the Hollywood movie is inspired from Rangeela. In both movies, a lovable street-toughened orphan loses it to a famous actor when it comes to winning the affections of a girl. The only difference? In Win a Date With Tad Hamilton, the girl gets to go on a date with the famous actor whereas in Rangeela, she gets a lead role opposite him in a movie through an audition.
5. Fear – Darr
Again, like Rangeela, Darr (1993) is also not credited to have inspired its Hollywood counterpart, Fear. The 2004 Hollywood film has the same plot as that of Darr – a crazy stalker’s obsession for a girl, from which her protective husband saves her. The only difference is that in Fear, the stalker becomes the girl’s boyfriend and in Darr, he doesn’t get to be the boyfriend. An obvious example of Fear being inspired by Darr is the stalker carving the girl’s name on his chest, which was famously first done by Shah Rukh Khan’s character in Darr.
There are plenty of other examples of Hollywood movies inspired from Bollywood such as the Oscar-winning Slumdog Millionaire, which is partially inspired from Deewar. The director of Slumdog Millionaire, Danny Boyle claims that the two brothers in the movie are a tribute to the two brothers in legendary Bollywood movie, Deewar.
Besides, films like Maine Pyaar Kyun Kiya and Just Go With It & Chhoti Si Baat and Hitch share seemingly similar plots. Often, Bollywood is blamed of being the centre of plagiarism when it comes to cinema. But let’s give Bollywood the credit when it deserves, shall we? Most of the times, a film adaptation or inspiration is just an inspiration and not plagiarism. When it comes to matters of art, inspiration plays a huge role, and usually inspiration is confused with copying, given how thin the line of difference is there between the two.
Do you remember other instances when a Bollywood film was adopted by a foreign cinema industry? Share it with us in the comments below!