The Real Reason Why Bollywood Directors Love English In Their Titles

Asha Bajaj
5 min readNov 24, 2023
RRR. Photo Credit: www.instagram.com

by TUSHAR UNADKAT

We’ve seen them even if we haven’t really noticed them. The long-running trend of titling a Bollywood film with some English language flavour. You know what we mean, Jab We Met, 3 Idiots, Once Upon A Time In Mumbai, Goa Goa Gone and more. What’s the reasoning behind this trend of Hinglish-influenced film titles? Our contributor Tushar Unadkat cracks the filmi code.

[About the contributor: Internationally celebrated, award-winning media personality and author of several lifestyle articles, Tushar Unadkat, is the CEO, Creative Director of MUKTA Advertising, Founder, and Executive Director of Nouveau iDEA, Canada. He holds a Master of Design from the University of Dundee, Scotland, and BA Honors in Photography from the University of Wolverhampton, England.]

The term “Bollywood” is commonly used to refer to the Hindi-language film industry based in Mumbai, India. While the term is widely recognized and used internationally, it can evoke mixed feelings among Indians.

On one hand, Bollywood has become a globally recognized brand, and many Indians take pride in the success and popularity of Indian cinema on the international stage. The term itself is a portmanteau of Bombay (the former name for Mumbai) and Hollywood, reflecting the influence of the Western film industry on the Indian film industry.

On the other hand, some people within India’s film industry and cultural circles feel that the term “Bollywood” can be reductive and oversimplify the diversity of Indian cinema. It tends to be associated primarily with mainstream Hindi-language films, often overlooking the rich and varied regional film industries in different parts of the country. Critics argue that the term reinforces a narrow and stereotypical view of Indian cinema.

This backdrop sets the stage for the evolving trends in Bollywood, particularly the significant transformation in the titling of its movies marked by a surge in Hindi films adopting English titles.

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Asha Bajaj

I write on national and international Health, Politics, Business, Education, Environment, Biodiversity, Science, First Nations, Humanitarian, gender, women