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Nikkhil Advani (born 28 April 1971) is an Indian film producer, director and screenwriter.[2] He is one of the co-founders of Emmay Entertainment, a motion picture production company.[3] Nikkhil has worked with famed ecologist Bittu Sehgal and he serves on the advisory board of Save The Tiger’s cause.[4]

Nikkhil Advani
Nikhil Advani.jpg
Nikkhil Suresh Advani

(1971-04-28) 28 April 1971 (age 48)[1]
OccupationProducer, Film director, screenwriter


Early life and backgroundEdit

Advani was born in Mumbai. His father is a retired professional who worked in senior management positions with multinationals in the chemical and pharmaceuticals industry and his mother is an advertising professional. His father is Sindhi and mother Maharashtrian.

He studied at Green Lawns High School, Breach Candy,[5] and later did his Masters in chemistry at St. Xavier's College, Mumbai.[6] He married his college sweetheart Suparna Gupta with whom he has a daughter Keya.[7] Advani is the grand nephew of late producer N. N. Sippy and second cousin of actor Tusshar Kapoor and producer Ekta Kapoor.


Assistant DirectorEdit

Assistant director, with Sudhir Mishra's Is Raat Ki Subah Nahin (1996), for which he also co-wrote the screenplay.[8] Subsequently, he worked under Dharma Productions, the production house of the late Yash Johar, father of Karan Johar.

Advani started his career by assisting Saeed and Aziz Mirza in directing Naya Nukkad.[9] Then, he was an assistant director, and assisted Karan Johar in his first two directorial projects, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai (1998) and Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham. Advani also had an acting guest appearance in Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, along with Farah Khan during the Neelam Show sequence. . Similarly, he assisted Aditya Chopra on Mohabbatein.[10]

In his final release of 2004, Khan starred as a NASA scientist who patriotically returns to India to rekindle his roots in Ashutosh Gowariker's social drama Swades (meaning "Homeland"), which became the first Indian picture to be shot inside the NASA research centre at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.[123] Film scholar Stephen Teo refers to the picture as an example of "Bollywoodised realism", displaying a transcendence in conventional narrative and audience expectation in Hindi cinema.[124] In December 2013, The Times of India reported that Khan found filming the picture such an emotionally overwhelming and life-changing experience that he had still not viewed the film.[125] Derek Elley of Variety found Khan's performance "unsettling" as "a self-satisfied expatriate determined to bring Western values to poor Indian peasants",[126] but several film critics, including Jitesh Pillai, believed it to have been his finest acting to date.[127][128] He was nominated for the Filmfare Best Actor Award for all three of his 2004 releases and eventually won the award for Swades.[59][64] Filmfare later included his performance in the 2010 issue of Bollywood's "Top 80 Iconic Performances".[129]

In 2005, Khan starred in Amol Palekar's fantasy drama, Paheli. The film was India's submission for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 79th Academy Awards.[130] He later collaborated with Karan Johar for the third time in the musical romantic drama Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna (2006), the story of two unhappily married people in New York City who begin extramarital affairs. The film, which featured an ensemble cast including Amitabh Bachchan, Preity Zinta, Abhishek Bachchan, Rani Mukerji and Kirron Kher, emerged as India's highest-grossing film in the overseas market,[109] earning more than ₹1.13 billion (US$16 million) worldwide.[74] Both his roles in Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna and the action film Don, a remake of the 1978 film of the same name, earned Khan Best Actor nominations at the Filmfare Awards,[131] despite his performance as the titular character in Don being negatively compared to that of Amitabh Bachchan in the original film.[132][133]

"Such great things have happened to such a normal guy like me. I am a nobody who shouldn't have been able to do all this but I have done it. I tell everyone that there's this myth I work for; there is this myth called Shahrukh Khan and I am his employee. I have to live up to that ... I'll do it, I am an actor. But I can't start believing in this myth." —Khan reflecting in 2007 on his position as the Hindi film industry's top star[134] In 2007, Khan portrayed a disgraced hockey player who coaches the Indian women's national hockey team to World Cup success in Yash Raj Films' semi-fictional Chak De! India. Bhaichand Patel notes that Khan, who had a background in the sport playing for his university's hockey team,[135] essentially portrayed himself as a "cosmopolitan, liberal, Indian Muslim".[136] Faring well in both India and abroad,[74][137] Khan garnered another Filmfare Award for Best Actor for his performance,[59] which Rajeev Masand of CNN-IBN considers to have been "without any of his typical trappings, without any of his trademark quirks", portraying Kabir Khan "like a real flesh-and-blood human being".[138] Filmfare included his performance in their 2010 issue of the "Top 80 Iconic Performances".[139] In the same year, Khan starred alongside Arjun Rampal, Deepika Padukone and Shreyas Talpade in Farah Khan's reincarnation melodrama Om Shanti Om, portraying a 1970s junior artiste who is reborn as a 2000s era superstar. The film became the highest grossing Indian motion picture of 2007, both domestically and abroad.[109][140] Om Shanti Om earned Khan his second nomination of the year for Best Actor at Filmfare.[141] Khalid Mohammed from Hindustan Times wrote, "the enterprise belongs to Shah Rukh Khan, who tackles comedy, high drama and action with his signature style—spontaneous and intuitively intelligent".[142]

Khan collaborated for the third time with Aditya Chopra on the romantic drama Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi (2008) opposite Anushka Sharma, at that time a newcomer. He played Surinder Sahni, a shy man with low self-esteem, whose love for his young arranged wife (Sharma) causes him to transform himself into Raj, a boisterous alter-ego. Rachel Saltz of The New York Times believed the dual role to have been "tailor-made" for Khan, giving him the opportunity to display his talents,[143] although Deep Contractor from Epilogue thought Khan displayed greater strength in the role of Surinder and weakness in the role of monologue-prone Raj.[144] In December 2008, Khan suffered a shoulder injury while filming a small role in Mudassar Aziz's Dulha Mil Gaya. He underwent extensive physiotherapy sessions at the time but the pain left him almost immobile and he had arthroscopic surgery in February 2009.[145][146] He performed an extended, special appearance in the 2009 film Billu, playing Bollywood superstar Sahir Khan—a fictionalised version of himself, wherein he performed musical item numbers with actresses Kareena Kapoor, Priyanka Chopra, and Deepika Padukone.[147] As head of the film's production company, Red Chillies, Khan made the call to change the title of the film from Billu Barber to Billu after hairdressers across the country complained that the word "barber" was derogatory. The company covered up the offending word on billboards that had already been installed with the original title.[148]


After the release of Patiala House in 2011, Nikkhil Advani has partnered with Monisha Advani and Madhu Bhojwani to form Emmay Entertainment, a motion picture production company. Emmay Entertainment first production was D-Day, a film directed by Nikkhil, in association with DAR Motion Pictures, which was released on 19 July 2013.[11]

Nikkhil Advani’s recently released film was Hero, the official remake of Subhash Ghai's directed 1983 film of the same name. It went on floors on 18 February 2014. Hero is Emmay Entertainment’s co-production with Salman Khan Ventures. The film launches Sooraj Pancholi and Athiya Shetty. It also stars Tigmanshu Dhulia, Aditya Pancholi, Sharad Kelkar and Vivaan Bathena. It is released on 11 September 2015.[12] and the recent production release was Katti Batti starring Kangana Ranaut and Imran Khan, a co-production with Disney UTV and being directed by Nikkhil Advani that released on 18 September 2015 (Ganesh Chaturthi weekend).[13]

Emmay Entertainment & Crouching Tiger’s next is Airlift, starring Akshay Kumar and Nimrat Kaur, based on true-life events of the evacuation of 170,000 Indians from Kuwait during the first Gulf War. Airlift is produced by T Series, Cape of Good, Emmay Entertainment and Abundantia Entertainment. Principal photography starts on 21 February 2015 and the film is scheduled to release on 22 January 2016.[14]

Nikkhil Advani's Emmay Entertainment is also producing a new feature film Lucknow Central[15] which is directed by Ranjit Tiwari who has assisted as an associate director to Nikkhil Advani on D-Day, Hero, Katti Batti, Guddu Engineer and P.O.W.- Bandi Yuddh Ke. Lucknow Central is said to star Farhan Akhtar as the lead actor.


A TV Film called Shaadi Vaadi And All That, an hour-long film for MTV, produced by Nikkhil Advani is a love triangle with a twist. The show is Kaashvi Nair's directorial debut who worked with Nikkhil as an assistant director.

Nikkhil Advani is also directing a finite TV Series P.O.W.- Bandi Yuddh Ke for Star Plus. The show is an official adaption of an Israeli TV series Hatufim. The series was premieres from 7 November 2016. Several bollywood celebrities have praised the trailer.[16] The show was premiered at MAMI film fest followed by a talk with Gideon Raff.[17]



Year Film Director Writer Producer Associate Director
1998 Kuch Kuch Hota Hai Yes
2000 Mohabbatein Yes
2001 Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham... Yes
2003 Kal Ho Naa Ho Yes
2007 Salaam-e-Ishq: A Tribute to Love Yes Yes
2009 Chandni Chowk to China Yes
2010 Jaane Kahan Se Aayi Hai Yes
2011 Patiala House Yes Yes
2012 Delhi Safari Yes Yes
2013 D-Day Yes Yes Yes
2015 Hero Yes Yes
2015 Katti Batti Yes Yes Yes
2016 Airlift Yes
2016 Guddu Engiineer Yes
2017 Lucknow Central Yes
2018 Satyameva Jayate Yes
2018 Baazaar Yes Yes
2019 Batla House Yes Yes Yes


Year Film/Series Channel Director Producer
2015 Shaadi Vaadi & All That[18] MTV India Yes
2016 P.O.W. - Bandi Yuddh Ke[19] Star Plus Yes


  1. ^ "Nikhil Advani". Retrieved 5 September 2016.
  2. ^ "Extra k in name". The Times of India.
  3. ^ "Akshay Kumar's next is Airlift". The Indian Express. 29 August 2014. Retrieved 20 February 2015.
  4. ^ "Launch of Delhi Safari's "Fight for us Write for us" Campaign!". Bolly Spice. 11 August 2012. Retrieved 20 February 2015.
  5. ^ Director’s Special Indian Express, 5 December 2003.
  6. ^ Advani,
  7. ^ "I was extremely confused after leaving Dharma: Nikkhil Advani". The Times Of India. 22 July 2013. Retrieved 20 February 2015.
  8. ^ Presenting Nikhil Advani Movies, 26 November 2003.
  9. ^ "Presenting Nikhil Advani". 26 November 2003. Retrieved 20 February 2015.
  10. ^ "Presenting Nikhil Advani". 26 November 2003. Retrieved 20 February 2015.
  11. ^ "What's the movie about". Bollywood Hungama. Retrieved 21 February 2015.
  12. ^ "Hero (2015) film, release date, cast, upcoming bollywood film". Mazale. 10 September 2014. Retrieved 21 February 2015.
  13. ^ "Katti Batti Cast & Crew:". Bollywood Hungama. Retrieved 21 February 2015.
  14. ^ "Airlift: Akshay Kumar's next a thriller of the biggest human evacuation". The Times Of India. 19 August 2014. Retrieved 21 February 2015.
  15. ^ "Shooting starts for 'Lucknow Central'". Business Standard India. 10 January 2017.
  16. ^ "B-Town: Nikkhil Advani raising the bar on TV". The Times of India. Retrieved 24 September 2016.
  17. ^ "Purab Kohli's tv series became first show to be priemered at MAMI". International Business Times.
  18. ^ Nair, Kaashvi (24 August 2014). "Shaadi Vaadi And All That". IMDb.
  19. ^ "How Nikkhil Advani Hopes To Disrupt Indian Television With 'P.O.W. - Bandi Yuddh Ke'". Huffington Post India.

External linksEdit