Imtiaz Ali (born 16 June 1971) is an Indian film director, producer, and screenwriter. He is best known for directing Jab We Met (2007), Love Aaj Kal (2009), Rockstar (2011), Highway (2014) and Tamasha (2015).

Imtiaz Ali
Ali in 2012
Born (1971-06-16) 16 June 1971 (age 52)
Occupations
  • Film director
  • screenwriter
  • producer
Years active1994–present
Spouse
Preety Ali
(m. 1995)
Children1
RelativesKhalid Ahmed (maternal uncle)

Early and personal life edit

Imtiaz Ali was born in Jamshedpur[1][2][3] and spent some of his early years in Patna.[4][5] Imtiaz belongs to the Muslim family of Jamshedpur in Bihar (now Jharkhand).[6] His father Mansoor Ali was a contractor who did irrigation job, and as a child he would sometimes accompany him, which gave Imtiaz a sense of what was going on in the innards of India.[7] His uncle, through his mother, is Pakistani TV actor and director/producer Khalid Ahmed.[8][9] He had his early education in St. Michael's High School, Patna and later in D.B.M.S. English School, Jamshedpur,[10][11][12] He is the brother of director Arif Ali (who made his directional debut with the film Lekar Hum Deewana Dil).

In an interview with The Times of India he talks about his early influence of cinema:

My parents were still in Patna but I, along with my brother Arif, joined mid-term and stayed with my aunt at Karim Mansion (an old well-known building in Jamshedpur, where they had three cinema theatres, two of which were attached to the house). Even when I went to sleep, I had the sound of cinema in the background and since we lived there, I could go there whenever I wanted even though I was not allowed to. I had made friends with the projectionist and would see him changing reels and call him from his bidi break if the reel stopped in between. I was not studying and I failed. I was so self-conscious after that and for the first three days, I could just not go back to school. This whole embarrassment of failing and craning my neck down and avoiding my friends who had become my seniors, was difficult. Even though I had failed, my father never made me feel worse and was only there to always encourage me. It's after that, that I started applying myself and excelled in studies and sports and started doing theatre.[13]

He attended Hindu College, University of Delhi, where he took part in college theater. He was very successful in college. He also started Ibtida, the dramatics society of the college.[14] Thereafter he moved to Mumbai and did a diploma course from Xavier Institute of Communication.[15][16]

Ali is married to Preety Ali. They have a daughter named Ida Ali, who is also a director.

Career edit

Initial struggles and directorial debut (1994–2006) edit

Ali began his career directing TV programs including Kurukshetra for Zee TV and Imtihaan for Doordarshan.[17] He moved on to Bollywood films. In 2005, he made his directorial debut with the romantic comedy Socha Na Tha starring Abhay Deol and Ayesha Takia. The film received mixed-to-positive reviews from critics, but emerged as a commercial failure at the box office.[18][19] He quoted, later in a talk, that it took him three years to make the film.[20]

Widespread success (2007–2015) edit

His second directorial venture, the romantic comedy Jab We Met starring Kareena Kapoor and Shahid Kapoor, emerged as a major critical and commercial success.[21][22] The film earned him the Filmfare Award for Best Dialogue, in addition to his first nomination for the Filmfare Award for Best Director. It has been consistently ranked as one of the most popular romantic films of Bollywood.[23][24]

His next film, the romantic comedy-drama Love Aaj Kal starring Saif Ali Khan and Deepika Padukone, emerged as his biggest commercial success to date.[25][26] The film received widespread critical acclaim, earning Ali his second nomination for the Filmfare Award for Best Director.[27][28] It has gone to achieve cult status, and has been acclaimed for its depiction of the feeling of pure love which never changes, although the perspective of realizing one's soulmate changes over time.[29][30]

Ali's fourth directorial venture, the musical romantic drama Rockstar starring Ranbir Kapoor and Nargis Fakhri, also emerged as a major commercial success at the box office and received widespread critical acclaim with high praise for Ali's direction, Kapoor's performance and A. R. Rahman's music.[31][32] The film earned him his third nomination for the Filmfare Award for Best Director. It has now achieved cult status, and also has been frequently ranked in the lists of most iconic musical romances of Bollywood.[33][34]

Post Rockstar, Ali penned the story and screenplay for the romantic comedy-drama Cocktail (2012), directed by Homi Adajania, starring Deepika Padukone, Saif Ali Khan and Diana Penty in lead roles. The film received positive reviews from critics upon release, and emerged as a commercial success at the box office.[35][36]

Ali founded his film production company, Window Seat Films in 2013, whose first release was the road drama Highway (2014). Starring Alia Bhatt and Randeep Hooda, the film was highly appreciated by critics upon release, and also emerged as a commercial success at the box office.[37][38] The film has been widely credited as one of Bollywood's best films depicting mental disorders (in this case, Stockholm syndrome).[39][40]

His next directorial venture, the coming-of-age romantic drama Tamasha (2015), starred Ranbir Kapoor and Deepika Padukone in lead roles. Despite major hype, the film emerged as an mediocre commercial success, but received positive reviews with high praises for Kapoor's performance upon release;[41][42] however, it has gone on to achieve cult status for its subject and has also been recognised as one of Ali's best films.[43][44]

Career decline (2015–2020) edit

His next directorial, the romantic comedy Jab Harry Met Sejal starring Shah Rukh Khan and Anushka Sharma in lead roles, was released on 4 August 2017. The film released to mixed-to-negative reviews, and emerged as a commercial failure at the box office.[45][46]

He then wrote the screenplay for his brother Sajid Ali's romance film Laila Majnu (2018), starring newcomers Avinash Tiwary and Tripti Dimri in lead roles. The film received mixed reviews upon release, and emerged as a commercial disaster at the box office.[47][48]

After a gap of three years, his next directorial venture was the romantic drama Love Aaj Kal, starring Kartik Aaryan and Sara Ali Khan in lead roles. The film was the spiritual successor to Love Aaj Kal (2009), starring Saif Ali Khan and Deepika Padukone, also directed by Ali. The film, which released on 14 February 2020, received mixed-to-negative reviews from critics, and emerged as a commercial failure at the box office.[49][50]

Recent work (2020–present) edit

In his first film collaboration with Netflix, Ali is next set to direct Chamkila, a biopic on the assassinated Punjabi musician Amar Singh Chamkila, starring Diljit Dosanjh and Parineeti Chopra in lead roles.[51][52]

Filmography edit

Year Film Director Producer Writer Notes
2005 Socha Na Tha Yes Yes
2006 Ahista Ahista Yes
2007 Jab We Met Yes Yes
2009 Love Aaj Kal Yes Yes
2011 Rockstar Yes Yes
2012 Cocktail Yes
2014 Highway Yes Yes Yes
2015 Tamasha Yes Yes Yes
2017 Jab Harry Met Sejal Yes Yes Yes
2018 Laila Majnu Yes Yes
2020 Love Aaj Kal Yes Yes Yes
2020–2022 She Yes Yes Web series
2022 Dr. Arora Yes Web series
2024 Chamkila Yes Yes Yes Post-production

Collaborators edit

Collaborator Socha Na Tha
(2003)
Jab We Met
(2007)
Love Aaj Kal
(2009)
Rockstar
(2011)
Highway
(2014)
Tamasha
(2015)
Jab Harry Met Sejal
(2017)
Love Aaj Kal
(2020)
Ranbir Kapoor    
Deepika Padukone    
Randeep Hooda    
Irshad Kamil                
A. R. Rahman      
Pritam        
Mohit Chauhan            

Awards and nominations edit

List of awards and nominations received by Imtiaz Ali.

Filmfare Awards edit

The Filmfare Awards are presented annually by The Times Group to honour both artistic and technical excellence of professionals in the Hindi cinema.

Year Film Category Result Ref.
2008 Jab We Met Best Director Nominated [53][54]
Best Dialogue Won
2010 Love Aaj Kal Best Director Nominated [55]
Best Story Nominated
Best Screenplay Nominated
Best Dialogue Nominated
2012 Rockstar Best Director Nominated [56]
2015 Highway Best Story Nominated [57]

International Indian Film Academy Awards edit

The International Indian Film Academy Awards (shortened as IIFA) is an annual international event organised by the Wizcraft International Entertainment Pvt. Ltd. to honour excellence in the Hindi cinema.

Year Film Category Result Ref.
2008 Jab We Met Best Director Nominated [58][59]
Best Story Nominated
Best Dialogue Won
2010 Love Aaj Kal Best Director Nominated [60]
Best Story Nominated
2012 Rockstar Best Director Nominated [61]
Best Story Nominated
2015 Highway Best Film Nominated [62]
Best Director Nominated

Producers Guild Film Awards edit

The Producers Guild Film Awards (previously known as the Apsara Film & Television Producers Guild Awards) is an annual event organised by the Film Producers Guild of India.

Year Film Category Result Ref.
2008 Jab We Met Best Director Nominated [63][64]
Best Screenplay Nominated
Best Dialogues Won
2010 Love Aaj Kal Best Director Nominated [65][66]
Best Story Won
Best Screenplay Nominated
Best Dialogues Nominated
2012 Rockstar Best Director Nominated [67]
Best Screenplay Nominated
2015 Highway Best Director Nominated [68]
Best Story Nominated
Best Screenplay Nominated
Best Dialogues Nominated

Screen Awards edit

The Screen Awards are presented annually by Indian Express Limited to honour excellence in Hindi cinema.

Year Film Category Result Ref.
2008 Jab We Met Best Story Nominated [69]
Best Screenplay Nominated
Best Dialogue Nominated
2010 Love Aaj Kal Best Director Nominated [70][71]
Best Story Won
Best Screenplay Nominated
Best Dialogue Nominated
2015 Highway Best Director Nominated [72]

Other awards edit

Year Film Category Result Ref.
2017 Kenya Tourism Board – IIFTC Tourism Impact Awards Won [73]
2019 Jab Harry Met Sejal Portuguese Government – Portuguese Touristic Medal of Merit Won [74][75]

References edit

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External links edit