Race (2008 film)

Race is a 2008 Indian Hindi-language action crime film directed by Abbas–Mustan and written by Kiran Kotrial and Shiraz Ahmed. It is the first installment in the Race franchise and stars Saif Ali Khan, Bipasha Basu, Akshaye Khanna, Anil Kapoor, Katrina Kaif and Sameera Reddy. In the film, the professional and personal loyalties between brothers and businessmen Ranvir (Khan) and Rajiv Singh (Khanna).

Race (2008 film) poster.jpg
Theatrical releases of poster
Directed byAbbas–Mustan
Written byKiran Kotrial
Shiraz Ahmed
Produced byRamesh S. Taurani
Kumar S. Taurani
StarringSaif Ali Khan
Bipasha Basu
Akshaye Khanna
Anil Kapoor
Katrina Kaif
Sameera Reddy
Narrated byAnil Kapoor
CinematographyRavi Yadav
Edited byHussain A. Burmawala
Music bySongs:
Background Score:
Distributed byUTV Motion Pictures
Release date
  • 21 March 2008 (2008-03-21)
Running time
149 minutes
South Africa
Budget46 crore[1]
Box office₹103.45 crore[1]

Principal photography took place in Durban, Goa and Dubai, and was produced by Tips Industries. Race was theatrically released in India by UTV Motion Pictures on March 21, 2008. The film received well critical acclaim from critics, with praise for its editing, screenplay, cast performance and music. It was a commercial success, grossing 103 crore (US$13 million) worldwide, making it the sixth highest grossing Hindi film of 2008.[1][2] It was followed by the sequel film Race 2 (2013) and the spiritual successor Race 3 (2018).


A voice-over by Inspector Robert D'Costa "RD" (Anil Kapoor) introduces the four main characters. Ranvir "Ronny" Singh (Saif Ali Khan) is a successful and powerful businessman who runs a ranch house Stallions in Durban and fixed many horse races using finest breed of Horses. His younger brother Rajiv Singh (Akshaye Khanna) is an alcoholic. Ronny is dating an upcoming model Sonia Martin (Bipasha Basu), while his personal assistant Sophia (Katrina Kaif) appears to be secretly in love with him. Ronny is also involved in a competition with his business rival Kabir Ahuja (Dalip Tahil), who is also a horse race fixer.

The film opens with a murder plot involving a car accident that Ronny narrowly survives. Ronny later kills his unfaithful jockey, who had been bribed by Kabir, and destroys Kabir when the latter offers to buy his company, which is in debt.

Rajiv drunkenly confesses to Ronny that he likes Sonia and would quit drinking for her. Ronny stops dating her and Rajiv and Sonia begin dating until, in a twist, Rajiv reveals that he knows of Sonia's shady past and plans to use her. His father had secured huge life insurance policies on each of the sons and he wants to kill Ronny and inherit $100 million in insurance payments. Sonia agrees to help in exchange for $20 million.

They pretend to get married; as per Rajiv's instructions, Sonia seduces Ronny, who confesses he loved her all along. Rajiv's plan is to threaten suicide, in response to Sonia and Ronny's affair by leaping off a tall building and get Sonia to push Ronny off. It turns out Ronny was aware of the plan as Sonia had been keeping him updated, having always been in league with him. They scheme to kill Rajiv.

Sonia double-crosses Ronny and pushes him off instead, saying she loved him, but the money was more important. As RD investigates the death, Sophia reveals that she was married to Ronny, leaving Sonia shocked since Sophia is now the heir to the insurance money. In another twist, Sophia was in on the plan too and is Rajiv's secret collaborator. Rajiv plans to bump off Sonia after he and Sophia get the money. RD figures out that Sophia had faked her marriage with Ronny and he had been tricked into signing the marriage certificate. RD confronts Rajiv and agrees to remain silent in exchange for $25 million.

Rajiv hires the same hitman who had attempted to murder Ronny in the beginning to kill Sonia, revealing that he had been behind the first murder attempt too. However, Ronny reappears and rescues her, killing the hitman.

Ronny confronts Rajiv and Sophia. He had overheard Rajiv discussing the failed murder attempt with the hitman and had been playing along the whole time so he could get the insurance money from his own faked death along with the insurance money from Rajiv's death. He allows Rajiv one last chance to win by agreeing to a car race. Ronny and Sonia show up in a yellow Toyota Supra and Rajiv and Sophia in a blue Nissan Skyline. When Rajiv protests, he switches cars with Ronny. Rajiv anticipated the switch and had destroyed the Nissan's brakes. In the middle of the race, Ronny tells Rajiv that he planted a bomb in his car and it will detonate if Rajiv slows below 100 kmph.

As the race continues, the two cars dodge obstacles (a boat hitched to a car, a group of cyclists, two trucks in a line, etc.). As they reach a parking lot, Rajiv attempts to cross a ramp, in order to overtake Ronny. This causes the Supra to crash into a caravan, topple over and knock into a petroleum tank, killing Rajiv and Sophia. After Ronny and Sonia narrowly escape death, Ronny confesses to Sonia that there was no bomb in the car and Rajiv killed himself. He also expresses his grief in realising to what extent did Rajiv go, even destroying the brakes, to deceive and kill the former.

In the end, Ronny collects the insurance money from Rajiv and Sophia's death, along with the money from his own 'death'. He attempts to flee the city with Sonia but RD stops them. The two are revealed to be childhood friends, and RD was working with Ronny all along, in exchange for more money. Ronny gives RD a briefcase with a bomb. The bomb does not detonate, and Ronny explains that it was to prevent RD from killing Ronny and taking all the money.



Saif Ali Khan originally wished to play the role of Rajiv Singh. He was offered a choice between playing Ranvir or Rajiv. The producers informed him that if he played Rajiv, then Akshay Kumar would be offered the role of Ranvir. Khan finally opted to play Ranvir. Fardeen Khan was then signed for the role of Rajiv, but he later withdrew from the film, as he was committed to Heyy Babyy (2007). At one point, Abhishek Bachchan was approached for the role of Ranvir, but things did not work out.[3]


The soundtrack of Race was released by Tips Music on 1 March 2008.[4] Composed by Pritam with lyrics by Sameer, Race had 7 original songs, 9 remixes and an instrumental theme. The song "Khwab Dekhe (Sexy Lady)" sung by Monali Thakur and Neeraj Shridhar was recorded after the release of the soundtrack, replacing the original song "Mujh Pe Toh Jadoo" in the film. Tips then re-distributed the soundtrack, adding "Khwab Dekhe (Sexy Lady)" after the release of the film. All the remix versions were produced by DJ Suketu feat. Aks.

Track listingEdit

1."Zara Zara Touch Me"Monali Thakur, Earl Edgar, Pritam04:25
2."Pehli Nazar Mein"Atif Aslam, Clinton Cerejo05:10
3."Khwab Dekhe (Sexy Lady)"Pritam, Neeraj Shridhar, Monali Thakur04:37
4."Race Saanson Ki"Sunidhi Chauhan, Neeraj Shridhar04:44
5."Race Is on My Mind"Sunidhi Chauhan, Neeraj Shridhar04:54
6."Mujh Pe Toh Jadoo"Sunidhi Chauhan, Apache Indian, Taz04:36
7."Dekho Nashe Mein"Sunidhi Chauhan, KK, Shaan04:17
8."Race Theme"Instrumental02:12
9."Pehli Nazar Mein" (Club Mix)Atif Aslam04:08
10."Pehli Nazar Mein" (Lounge Mix)Atif Aslam04:22
11."Zara Zara Touch Me" (Asain RnB Mix)Monali Thakur, Earl Edgar, Pritam03:55
12."Zara Zara Touch Me" (Remix)Monali Thakur, Earl Edgar, Pritam04:46
13."Dekho Nashe Mein" (Asain RnB Mix)Sunidhi Chauhan, KK, Shaan04:19
14."Dekho Nashe Mein" (Latin Fiesta Mix)Sunidhi Chauhan, KK, Shaan04:05
15."Mujh Pe To Jadoo" (Remix)Sunidhi Chauhan, Apache Indian, Taz04:20
16."Race Is on My Mind" (Remix)Sunidhi Chauhan, Neeraj Shridhar04:26
17."Race Saanson Ki" (Remix)Sunidhi Chauhan, Neeraj Shridhar04:27
Total length:1:08:59


Professional ratings
Review scores
Bollywood Hungama     [5]
Planet Bollywood          [6]
Planet Bollywood          [7]

Race got favourable reviews with the song "Pehli Nazar Mein" sung by Atif Aslam as the biggest hit of the album along with "Zara Zara Touch Me" sung by Monali Thakur.[8] Aakash Gandhi Noted "Pritam gives us a fairly solid soundtrack, reminiscent of a lot of his 2006 works. However, he doesn't quite live up to the expectations he'd set for himself last year. Although, one thing is for sure – he always manages to come up with at least one really great composition in each of his outings. This time it's Pehli Nazar Mein." while Atta Khan wrote, "the soundtrack of Race turns out to be a typical Pritam offering for a bigger profile movie; a few solid tracks that will make the intended impact on screen (especially for the promos) and could well elevate sales for the soundtrack as well. But in all other respects, it is unspectacular, unoriginal, and uninspiring, and apart from 'Pehli Nazar Mein' and a few nice remixes by DJ Suketu, it provides little scope for repeated listening". According to the Indian trade website Box Office India, with around 1,700,000 units sold, this film's soundtrack album was the year's fifth highest-selling.[9] "Race Sanson Ki" is copied from Just Like That by Tarkaan, a favourite of Pritam.

Plagiarism allegationsEdit

According to a Network 18 report, "Pehli Nazar Mein" and "Zara Zara Touch Me" were directly copied from the Korean song "Sa Rang Haeo" of Korean series Sassy Girl and Leehom Wang's "Deep Within a Bamboo Grove".[10] Sony BMG Taiwan has issued a legal letter to Tips Industries claiming damages for the song "Zara Zara Touch Me".[11][12]


Critical receptionEdit

Raja Sen gave the film 4.5 out of 5 stars, saying it was a "carnival of twists".[13] However, Taran Adarsh gave the film 4 out of 5 stars, stating that "Race is a superb entertainer all the way", and that it "has not just style, but a lot of substance too".[14]

Box officeEdit

Race released worldwide on 21st March, 2008, coinciding with the Holi festival weekend. It collected around ₹6.20 crore on its first day, followed by ₹6.80 crore on its second day and ₹7.50 crore on the third day, taking the three-day total to ₹20.50 crore.

At the end of its theatrical run, the film had grossed ₹60.64 crore domestically, and ₹103.45 crore worldwide, leading the film to be declared a "HIT" by Box Office India.

Awards and nominationsEdit

Award Category Recipients and Nomninees Results
Producers Guild Film Awards Best Actress Bipasha Basu Nominated
Best Supporting Actress Katrina Kaif
Best Music Director Pritam
International Indian Film Academy Awards Best Villain Akshaye Khanna Won
Best Sound Recording Leslie Fernandes
Best Film Ramesh S. Taurani, Kumar S. Taurani, Tips Films Pvt. Ltd. Nominated
Best Actress Bipasha Basu
Best Comedian Anil Kapoor
Best Music Director Pritam
Best Lyricist Sameer Anjaan for "Pehli Nazar Mein"
Best Male Playback Singer Atif Aslam for "Pehli Nazar Mein"
Best Female Playback Singer Monali Thakur for "Zara Zara Touch Me"
Filmfare Awards Best Music Director Pritam Nominated
Best Screenplay Shiraz Ahmed Nominated
Screen Awards Best Villain Akshaye Khanna Won


The original production team had announced plans to make a sequel called Race 2 : Betrayal Is Survival. Saif Ali Khan and Anil Kapoor returned to reprise their roles while John Abraham, Deepika Padukone, Jacqueline Fernandez and Ameesha Patel were new additions to the cast. Bipasha Basu was the only other returning member and appeared in a cameo role as Sonia.[15][16][17] The filming for Race 2 started on 5 October 2011.[18] It was released on 25 January 2013, and was another success, grossing over 1 billion (US$13 million) domestically.[19]


  1. ^ a b c "Race – Movie – Box Office India". Box Office India.
  2. ^ "Top Earners 2008". Box Office India.
  3. ^ "4 Years of Race EXCLUSIVE: Ramesh Taurani reveals that Fardeen Khan was originally signed for Akshaye Khanna's role; Shah Rukh and Aamir Khan were never approached for the protagonist's part".
  4. ^ "Race (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) by Pritam on iTunes". iTunes. 21 March 2008. Retrieved 7 April 2016.
  5. ^ "Race Music Review By Joginder Tuteja". Bollywood Hungama. Retrieved 27 June 2011.
  6. ^ "Race – Music Review by: Atta Khan". Planet Bollywood. Retrieved 27 June 2011.
  7. ^ "Race – Music Review by: Aakash Gandhi". Planet Bollywood. Retrieved 27 June 2011.
  8. ^ Joginder Tuteja (29 January 2008). "Race Music Review by Joginder Tuteja". entertainment.oneindia.in.
  9. ^ "Music Hits 2000–2009 (Figures in Units)". Box Office India. Archived from the original on 24 June 2010.
  10. ^ Sobhan, Usha. "Plagiarism: Chord that strings Pritam's music". CNN-IBN. Archived from the original on 18 December 2008. Retrieved 20 May 2011.
  11. ^ "Pritam or Plagiarism". interstellaroverdrive.
  12. ^ "Pritam in trouble for copying Race song". Entertainment.OneIndia.in. 29 August 2008.
  13. ^ Raja Sen. "Too many twists spoil this Race". Rediff.com.
  14. ^ Taran Adarsh. "Race Movie Review By Taran Adarsh". bollywoodhungama.com.
  15. ^ "Sonakshi in Race 2". calcuttatube.com.
  16. ^ Adarsh, Taran (22 February 2011). "'Race 2' ready to take-off". Bollywood Hungama. Retrieved 27 February 2011.
  17. ^ Joshi, Tushar (11 August 2011). "Ameesha Patel in Race 2". The Times of India. Retrieved 11 August 2010.
  18. ^ "Ameesha Patel signed opposite Anil Kapoor in Race 2". Bollywood Hungama. 11 August 2011. Retrieved 11 August 2011.
  19. ^ "'Race 2' Box Office Collection: Saif Starrer Surpasses ₹100 Crore Mark in India". International Business Times. 8 February 2013.

External linksEdit