Student of the Year

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Student of the Year is a 2012 Indian Hindi-language coming-of-age romantic comedy-drama film directed by Karan Johar, based on a story by Johar and a script by Rensil D'Silva and Niranjan Iyengar, and produced by Hiroo Yash Johar under the banner of Dharma Productions and Gauri Khan under Red Chillies Entertainment.[6] The film stars debutantes Sidharth Malhotra, Alia Bhatt and Varun Dhawan in the lead roles, and also features Rishi Kapoor, Sana Saeed, Ronit Roy, Sahil Anand, Ram Kapoor and Farida Jalal in major supporting roles, with Boman Irani, Kajol, Farah Khan and Vaibhavi Merchant in guest appearances. This was Johar's only feature film directorial venture without Shah Rukh Khan to date, as his next film, Ae Dil Hai Mushkil (2016) had Khan in a cameo appearance.

Student of the Year
Student of the Year Poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byKaran Johar
Produced byHiroo Yash Johar
Gauri Khan
Written byRensil D'Silva
Niranjan Iyengar
Story byKaran Johar
StarringSidharth Malhotra
Alia Bhatt
Varun Dhawan
Narrated bySahil Anand
Manasi Rachh
Sania Saeed
Kayoze Irani
Manjot Singh[1]
Music byVishal-Shekhar
CinematographyAyananka Bose
Edited byDeepa Bhatia
Distributed byIndia:
AA Films
Eros Entertainment[2]
Release date
  • 19 October 2012 (2012-10-19)
Running time
146 minutes[2]
Country India
Budget59 crore[3][better source needed] Note: Figure contains print and advertising costs
Box office109.10 crore[4][5]

Student of the Year was released on 19 October 2012 in over 1400 locations across India. It was one of the highest-grossing Bollywood films of 2012.[7]

A temporally unrelated sequel, Student of the Year 2, helmed by Johar's protege and I Hate Luv Storys (2010) & Gori Tere Pyaar Mein (2013) director Punit Malhotra, was released on 10 May 2019, as a quasi-sequel, starring Tiger Shroff alongside debutantes Tara Sutaria and Ananya Pandey. Bhatt made a special appearance in the music video of a song in the end credits.[8]


Former principal Dean Yogendra Vashisht of St. Teresa's High School, Dehradun, had aged and fallen ill. His last wish was to see the students from his last batch, who were part of the "Student of the Year" competition. Some former students arrive at the hospital to meet the Dean and talk about their regrets from ten years ago in high school. They hold themselves responsible for the lively Dean having fallen ill. The film then goes into a flashback set ten years back at the high school.

The richest and most popular guy in the high school, Rohan "Ro" Nanda, is the son of a huge business tycoon Ashok Nanda, who also is the chief trustee of the high school. His father wants him to be a businessman just like him and disagrees with his passion for music. Shanaya Singhania, a rich fashion addict and the most popular girl in the campus, is Rohan's girlfriend. She is dis-satisfied with her family, as her mother constantly divorces and marries rich men. Shanaya gets upset with Rohan's constant flirting with Tanya Israni, another student and Shanaya's arch-nemesis. Abhimanyu 'Abhi' Singh, a new student, arrives at the high school and becomes the classy new heart-throb. An orphan from a middle-class family, he lives with his aunt, uncle, and grandmother. His dream is to become a big business tycoon like Ashok. Rohan and Abhi initially don't get along but soon become best friends. Rohan introduces Shanaya to Abhi, warning Abhi not to get involved with her romantically, though Abhi convinces Rohan that Shanaya is poles apart from him and that she is better of with Rohan.

Abhi is invited to Rohan's elder brother's wedding, which Shanaya and other rich family friends are attending as well. At the wedding, Shanaya sees Tanya and Rohan flirting endlessly soon She realises that Rohan is Betraying her .

At the sangeet, Shanaya openly flirts with Abhi, attempting to make Rohan jealous. The plan works but Rohan discovers she did this to get him back on track.

On the wedding day, Rohan apologizes to her and is easily forgiven while Abhi realizes that he is in love with Shanaya. They head back to school, where the "Student of the Year" competition, which determines the best student intellectually and also the best sportsperson, commences. The first round is the quiz in which Rohan, Abhi, Shanaya and most of their friends win. The second round is the treasure hunt. Abhi and Shanaya's team wins the hunt, though Rohan's team also qualifies. Abhi's grandmother falls sick and eventually dies. Shanaya stands by him during this difficult time. Upset with his grandmother's death, Abhi tries to send Shanaya away, but she feels attracted to him, stays back and they happen to share a kiss. Rohan sees this and is heartbroken, which leads to a heated argument and fight between him and Abhi, resulting in them becoming enemies again.

In the third round, the Prom, a confused Shanaya picks Rohan's friend Jeet Khurana as her partner as she can't choose between Abhi and Rohan. Ending his friendship with Jeet over the issue, Rohan goes with Tanya and Abhi goes with Shanaya's former best friend Shruti Pathak after she had a split with Shanaya, who is disqualified for leaving the dance before it ends. The last round of the competition is a triathlon. Abhi is winning but slows down and Rohan wins. At the award ceremony, Rohan declines to accept the award citing personal reasons. Yogi is abused by a drunken friend of theirs, Kaizad "Sudo" Sodabottleopenerwala, due to which he eventually retires. Later Shanaya and Abhi get married.

In the present day, Rohan and Abhi run into each other when they come to visit Yogi, but end up fighting during a confrontation while talking about their past and happen to release everything they were holding back for the last ten years. Rohan comes to terms with his anger over the entire drama when he discovers the truth about the triathlon -- Abhi saw Ashok happy when Rohan was losing, and so he intentionally allowed Rohan to win stating he couldn't afford to be heartless like Ashok and that it was his way of surpassing Ashok in stature. Both of them realize how important friendship is, and reconcile. The film ends with both having a friendly running race.


  • Sidharth Malhotra as Abhimanyu "Abhi" Singh, Shanaya's husband and Ro's friend-come-former-enemy
  • Alia Bhatt as Shanaya Singhania (later Shanaya Abhimanyu Singh), Abhi's wife and Rohan's ex-girlfriend
  • Varun Dhawan as Rohan 'Ro' Nanda, Shanaya's ex-boyfriend and Abhi's friend-cum-former-enemy



Sidharth Malhotra, Varun Dhawan and Alia Bhatt, the first three debutantes ever to star in a Karan Johar directorial

On 5 January 2011, Karan Johar and Shah Rukh Khan both uploaded the first look poster of the new film on the microblogging website Twitter.[9] Student of the Year marks the debuts of Alia Bhatt, the daughter of filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt, Varun Dhawan, the son of director David Dhawan, Sidharth Malhotra, Boman Irani's son Kayoze Irani and Kuch Kuch Hota Hai fame Sana Saeed (role of "Anjali" as the daughter of Shah Rukh Khan and Rani Mukerji).

Malhotra and Dhawan had previously worked as assistant directors under Johar during the making of the 2010 film My Name Is Khan.[10] Rishi Kapoor played a gay dean.

The first official trailer was released on 2 August 2012. Karan Johar later tweeted saying that the film will be released on 19 October 2012.[11]


On 16 August 2011, director Karan Johar took the Mahurat shot and Mumbai socialite Parmeshwar Godrej rolled the cameras.[12] Some parts of the film were shot in Kashmir and Dehradun (Forest Research Institute, Dehradun).[13] The external view of the school was taken from Kasiga School, Dehradun,[14] whose name was changed to St. Teresa. The hospital scenes were filmed outside Convent of Jesus and Mary, Shimla. The film was also shot in Thailand.[15] Rob Miller of ReelSports, who had worked with Shah Rukh Khan on Chak De! India, was hired to direct the sports sequences in Student of the Year.


The film targeted viewers with contest-based marketing. Stressing 'competition' which would make up for a significant part of the film, contests such as the 'Nano Student of the Year', 'The Buddy of the Year' and 'FedEx International Student of the Year' were launched targeting students across the country.

Tata Motors, the on-ground promotion partner for the film, launched the 'Nano Student of the Year' contest for all high-school students in India.[16] In the first round students were judged on 4 parameters; namely, academics, culture, sports, and social life. The top 8 finalists would compete for the 'Nano Student of the Year' title.[17] The contest was held across India in mid-September 2012.

The makers partnered with FedEx Express announcing a special 'FedEx Student Offer' and launch of 'FedEx International Student of the Year' campaign. It was aimed at individuals in India applying for higher education abroad. Student of the Year was promoted across non-fiction properties such as Kaun Banega Crorepati on Sony Entertainment Television and Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa and Bigg Boss on Colors. Radio stations such as Red FM, Radio City, Big FM were used for the promotion of the film and its music.[18]

Pre-Release BusinessEdit

The satellite rights of Student of the Year were sold with Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani for 500 million (US$7.0 million) together to Sony Entertainment Television.[19] The music rights were sold to Sony Music for a sum of 70 million (US$980,000).[20]

Post-Release Box-OfficeEdit

Critics were apprehensive of the success of the film as several hugely-hyped films have flopped over the years. Additionally, the film starred debutantes in the lead roles, and had a high price tag.[21] However, the film took a thunderous start at the box office, becoming the biggest non-star cast opener ever in Bollywood,[22] and surpassed trade expectations to profit both makers and distributors in the first week itself. It remained the highest-grossing non-star cast film in Bollywood until its record was broken by Aashiqui 2.[23]


Student of the Year had a good opening at multiplexes while little lower at single screens due to limited release where it had collected 74.8 million (US$1.0 million) on its opening day.[24][25] The film showed good growth on its second day and collected 85.0 million (US$1.2 million) nett.[26] Student of the Year collected a good figure of around 253 million (US$3.5 million) at the end of its first weekend.[27] It did very well and collected 431 million (US$6.0 million) nett in its first week.[28] The film had a moderate second weekend where it earned around 80 million (US$1.1 million) nett.[29] Student of the Year had a drop in its second and third week where it had collected 140 million (US$2.0 million) and 32.5 million (US$460,000) respectively to make a total of 633 million (US$8.9 million) in three weeks.[30][31]

As per the latest updates, Student of the Year stands at an all India collection of 700 million (US$9.8 million) after a 4-week run at the box office.[32]


Student of the Year collected about US$1.25 million, which Box Office India thought was a poor showing for having been released on 300 screens.[33] It collected around $1.85 million in 10 days. The film fell in the second week in most markets.[34] Student of the Year closed at around $3 million in overseas markets.[35]

Critical receptionEdit

Student of the Year received mixed-to-positive reviews from critics. Taran Adarsh of Bollywood Hungama gave 4/5 stars, saying, "Student of the Year is a love story that traverses the trodden path. But KJo is an artisan with intellect and taste and he ensures that the script is spruced up and modernized with such elan that it doesn't offend the spectator's wisdom or intelligence. The accomplished director takes on familiar material and gives it an entirely new twirl. This is an escapist cinema at its best! On the whole, Student of the Year is amongst Karan Johar's most accomplished works. The youth brigade would love it and those who have already passed that age would want to revisit those days. This one's entertainment, entertainment, and entertainment at its best. KJo has a winner on hands, yet again!"[36] Komal Nahta also gave it 4/5 calling it a "supremely-entertaining" film.[37] Raita Tandon of Filmfare gave it 4/5 stars stating "All in all, Karan’s SOTY world is surreal and spectacular yet it has moments that will bring you back to reality and warm the cockles of your heart. This is escapism at its best."[38] Joginder Tuteja of Indiaglitz gave the movie 4/5 stars and commented, "With a fun outing like Student of the Year, Karan Johar has proven once again that he can fluctuate between making a relatively serious film like My Name Is Khan (2010) and come back to candy floss youth entertainer in the mode of Kuch Kuch Hota Hai (1998). With an eye on some lavish entertainment translating on-screen and bringing new talent to the industry, Student of the Year is a winner." Madhureeta Mukherjee of The Times of India gave the film 3.5/5 stars, stating that "Student of the Year takes you back to your books and sinks you in true-blue Bollywood syllabus, following the 'formula' – 2 boys, 1 girl, 1 glorious trophy and lots of testosterone. It is larger-than-life, colorful, lavish, beautifully shot and directed. With medleys, dance, drama, and everything good-looking (from cast to couches, dorms to discos)."[39] Indicine gave it 3.5/5 stars, commenting "Overall, there isn’t a dull moment in Student of the Year. It has something in it for everyone – romance, action, entertainment, good performances, and catchy music. Go for it."[40] The social movie rating site MOZVO gave it a score of 3.7/5 putting it in the recommended category.[41]

Rajeev Masand of IBNLive gave it 3/5 stars and wrote, "Nitpickings aside, this is a breezy, enjoyable film by a director who knows his craft." He remarked, "If fun is what you’re seeking, you won't be disappointed."[42] Giving the film 3/5 stars, Anupama Chopra of Hindustan Times wrote, "Karan Johar's forte is excess. He creates fantastical worlds brimming with beautiful people and expensive things and yet anchors them in high emotion. His films work as both designer-porn and soap-opera." She also praised the performance of the cast.[43] Sukanya Verma of Rediff gave 3/5 stars, commenting that "Student of the Year is no Kuch Kuch Hota Hai but Karan Johar makes it look good."[44] Rubina A. Khan of The First Post gave the film 3/5 stars, stating that "Student of the Year is not KJo's finest work. Sure, it’s got all the elements of finesse and expansive production values that his films are known for, but he has also been very pivotal in directing and producing films with engaging stories in the past."[45] Nabanita of Oneindia gave it 3/5 commenting "Student of the Year is a youthful and interesting film that deserves a thumbs up. 3 cheers for this."[46] India Today also gave the film a rating of 3/5.[47] Sify awarded it 3/5 stars saying, "So there you have it – a fun, frothy film that won't insult your intelligence and sensibility. Worth a watch!"[48]

Roshni Devi of Koimoi gave it 2.5/5 stars, praising the performances. Kanika Sikka of DNA India gave 2.5/5 stars, concluding that "Student of the Year is not something you would want to miss if the surreal setting with bubble-gum romance is your calling. The performances make this film a great watch."[49] Saibal Chatterjee of NDTV gave the film 2.5/5 stars, commenting that "Student of the Year definitely isn't the film of the year. But if you like your entertainment to be served up with glitzy but pulpy garnishing, pirouette your way to the nearest screen by all means."[50] Ananya Bhattacharya of Zee News gave the film 2/5 stars, saying that "Student of the Year is worth a watch only for the debutantes. They have pulled off a tough task of playing praiseworthy roles in a film which suffers from the lack-of-a-story syndrome."[51]

Home MediaEdit

A 2-disc DVD set was released on 24 December 2012 which contains the making of the film, song, and deleted scenes. Bollywood Hungama gave the DVD 4/5 stars.[52]


Student of the Year
Soundtrack album by
Released31 August 2012
GenreFeature film soundtrack
LabelSony Music India
ProducerKaran Johar
Vishal-Shekhar chronology
Student of the Year

The soundtrack was composed by Vishal-Shekhar with the lyrics penned by Anvita Dutt Guptan. "The Disco Song" is a revamped cover version of "Disco Deewane" (1981) by Pakistani pop singer Nazia Hassan,[53] incorporating her vocals along with those of Sunidhi Chauhan and Benny Dayal.[54]

Track listing
1."The Disco Song"Benny Dayal, Nazia Hassan, Sunidhi Chauhan5:42
2."Ishq Wala Love"Shekhar Ravjiani, Salim Merchant, Neeti Mohan4:18
3."Radha"Shreya Ghoshal, Udit Narayan, Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani5:41
4."Ratta Maar"Vishal Dadlani, Shefali Alvares3:30
5."Kukkad"Shahid Mallya, Nisha Mascarenhas4:22
6."Vele"Shekhar Ravjiani, Vishal Dadlani3:50
Total length:27:22

The soundtrack received positive reviews from music critics. Joginder Tuteja of Bollywood Hungama gave the album 4/5 stars, saying that "Student of the Year is a winner with Vishal Shekhar (yet again!) justifying their stance of doing a few films but lending quality sound to it. They create the kind of score which totally compliments [sic] the mood of the campus setting without straying even once."[55] IANS of CNN-IBN gave the album 4/5 stars, concluding that "The soundtrack of Student of the Year is a good mix with very minor flaws that can surely be ignored to enjoy the music that perfectly describes the mood of the movie."[56] Satyajit of Yahoo! gave the album 3.5/5 stars, stating that "Student of the Year is complete youthful musical entertainment, an album that brings all the positive elements of a typical Karan Johar entertainer. Vishal Shekhar delivers a potential winner this time."[57]

The romantic track "Ishq Wala Love" became the biggest hit of the album followed by "Radha" and "The Disco Song".[58] On 26 September 2012, The Times of India reported that the soundtrack was "appealing to people of all tastes and there's something for everyone in it".[59]

Awards and nominationsEdit

Student of the Year won several awards, particularly for its direction, performances of the lead actors, and music.

List of awards and nominations
Ceremony Category Recipient Result
8th Apsara Film & Television Producers Guild Award[60] President's Honour Karan Johar Won
Best Actor in a Comic Role Rishi Kapoor Nominated
Best Female Debut Alia Bhatt Nominated
Best Male Debut Sidharth Malhotra Nominated
Best Male Debut Varun Dhawan Nominated
Best Choreographer Farah Khan (for the song "Radha") Nominated
Best Female Playback Singer Neeti Mohan (for the song "Ishq Wala Love") Nominated
58th Filmfare Awards[61][62] Best Music Director Vishal-Shekhar Nominated
Best Debutant – Male Sidharth Malhotra Nominated
Best Debutant – Male Varun Dhawan Nominated
Best Debutant – Female Alia Bhatt Nominated
RD Burman Award Neeti Mohan (for the song "Ishq Wala Love") Won
Lions Gold Awards[63] Favourite Debut-Male Varun Dhawan Won
Favourite Debut-Female Alia Bhatt Won
5th Mirchi Music Awards[64][65] Song of The Year "Radha" Nominated
Album of the Year Student of the Year Nominated
Listener's Choice Album of the Year Student of the Year Won
Listener's choice Song of the Year "Radha" Won
Stardust Awards[66][67] Dream Director Karan Johar Won
Film of The Year Student of the Year Nominated
Superstar of Tomorrow – Female Alia Bhatt Nominated
Superstar of Tomorrow – Male Sidharth Malhotra Nominated
Superstar of Tomorrow – Male Varun Dhawan Nominated
Best Male Debut Sidharth Malhotra and Varun Dhawan Won
New Musical Sensation Singer – Female Neeti Mohan (for the song "Ishq Wala Love") Nominated
Times of India Film Awards[68][69][70] Best Debut Female Alia Bhatt Nominated
Best Debut Male Sidharth Malhotra Nominated
Best Debut Male Varun Dhawan Nominated
Best Music Director Vishal-Shekhar Nominated
South Africa India Film And Television Awards[71] Most Promising Newcomer- Female Alia Bhatt Nominated
Most Promising Newcomer- Male Sidharth Malhotra Won
Most Promising Newcomer- Male Varun Dhawan Nominated
Film of the Year Student of the Year Nominated
Most Popular Song Radha Nominated
Supporting Actor of the Year Rishi Kapoor Nominated


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External linksEdit