Lucknow, the capital city of Uttar Pradesh is best known for its rich cultural heritage, ultimate lip smacking dishes, cordial hosts, and the rustic old world charm. However, the city has still much more to offer than these traditional temptations. While it is an ideal tourist place for globetrotters, its picturesque locales and timeless monuments also keep on enthralling Bollywood more often. The shooting of films is almost a regular in the city since a long time, be it Shatranj Ke Khiladi (1977), Umraao Jaan (1981), Gadar (2001), Omkara (2006), or even the latest Youngistan (2014). There is definitely something charismatic in the locations of this city that keeps the movie makers busy throughout the year. To add to this entertaining discussion, let us find out top 5 movies been shot recently in this majestic city.
Tanu Weds Manu I & II (2011 & 2015)
The heart rendering love story of Tanu and Manu unfolds beautifully in this mesmerizing movie. Lucknow became immortal in this flick with the Director Aanand L. Rai shooting an important sequence of the movie in Safed Baradari in Qaiserbagh. Even the recently released Tanu Weds Manu Returns consists of scenes shot in Lucknow. The sequel begins with the couple’s wedding in Safed Baradari, from where the first part ended. Some scenes of the sequel have also been shot in Bhargava house, in the heart of Hazratganj. The traditional building was depicted as Jimmy Shergill’s house in the movie.
Dedh Ishqiya (2014)
The classical movie pilfered much rumble owing to its star cast comprising Madhuri Dikhshit Nene (Begum Para), Naseeruddin Shah, Arshad Warsi, Huma Quarishi, and Ratna Pathak Shah. The remaining of its sheen was dedicated to infamous Mahmoodabad Fort of Sitapur district, 60Kms from Lucknow. The fort was taken under tight security during the shooting of the film, with both the Police and Private guards securing the place. The UP government even gave Rs 1 crore to the film in a bid to promote the state among film makers.
Daawat E Ishq (2014)
Habib Faisal’s film portrays a unique combination of food and love in the backdrop of some placid and traditional locations of Lucknow. The city is just like another character in the movie where Aditya Roy Kapur and Parineeti Chopra lost heart to each other. The film is in fact the first to get permission for shooting in the Ambedkar Park, which is better known as Mayawati Lawns. Usually, the park does not allow any such activity owing to the apprehensions that it could affect the flora and fauna, ambiance and the exquisiteness of the place. However, since the request was from Yash Raj Films, the authority gave a positive response instantly. Later on, Jacky Bhagnani and Neha Sharma starrer Youngistan also captured few shots of the park in the charbuster song “Suno Na Sangmarmar”.
Bullet Raja (2013)
The film was better known for the acting prowess of the Nawab Saif Ali Khan, the dynamic Jimmi Shergil, the veteran actor Raj Babbar and the gorgeous Sonakshi Sinha. Made to unleash the nexus between politics and the underworld, the film has been shot explicitly in and around Lucknow. Considering the movie as an attempt to promote Lucknow tourism, the UP. Government has even awarded Rs 1 Crore to the film along with Derh Ishqiya. Tigmanshu Dhulia, the director, shot this cinematic extravagance in a flurry of locations including the areas around Rai Umanath Bali auditorium and Jehangirabad Palace. The climax sequence of the gangster film has been shot in Kakori, near Lucknow, which has its own historical significance.
The passionate, burning and sensational love story between Parma (Arjun Kapoor) and Zoya (Parineeti) Chopra was beautifully shot in different locations of Lucknow and a nearby small town Hardoi. Some important scenes of this brilliant adaptation of the classic Romeo and Juliet have been filmed at the Hardoi Railway station. The popular ‘Jhalla’ song has been completely shot at the famous Ahmad Manzil in Chowk, the famous location of Old Lucknow. In addition, the college scenes from the movie were captured in Lucknow University. Overall, the romantic thriller has encapsulated the slice of the city in an awesome manner.
These are not the only films that depicted the city of Nawabs on the Silver Screen. There have been films since decades that continue to reflect the contemporary life and times of Lucknow. Hopefully, we will see many more of the supercharged actors from Bollywood enjoying Biryani and wandering Roomi Darwaza in the better future on the big screen.