It is a known fact that many hit Bollywood movies are remakes of pre-existing regional films from Kollywood, Tollywood and the like. It would be harsh to suggest that directors and scriptwriters are running out of ideas. It is possible that they might have found the film quite appealing and felt that it deserved to be remade. Calling it as “copying” may sound insulting, so let’s go with the explanation that they are merely representing or remaking the film in a different language for the benefit of a larger audience.
However, there are some films that are remade or shot simultaneously, possibly by the same director, casting the same actor or actors, since he/she might be fluent in both languages. Dubbing is a sad excuse for the language incapability of an actor, who then simply must not be cast.
Following are a list of movies that were remade in different languages by the same director:
Psychological thriller film Ghajini was first made in Tamil in the year 2005. It was then remade in Hindi in the year 2008, by the same director, A.R. Murugadoss. The film was also written by him. Much of the star cast was repeated, including Asin, Pradeep Rawat and Riyaz Khan. Inspired by Christopher Nolan’s Memento, it would be right to add that the Hindi version of the film is a “copy of a copy”, as Aristotle would call it. Both films won prestigious awards, but the Bollywood version was a bigger box office hit comparatively.
Written and directed by popular Indian film director and screenwriter Siddique, the Malayalam, Tamil (Kaavalan) and Hindi versions of the movie Bodyguard gained critical acclaim, and were all box office hits. The Malayalam version of the film is the original, which was released in 2010. The other two were released in 2011. The Bollywood remake, once again, earned the most. However, none of the star cast was repeated.
A Tamil political drama film released in 2004, Aaytha Ezhuthu was directed by Mani Ratnam, who also directed its Bollywood remake, Yuva. Ratnam was also the screenwriter and producer for both the versions. A.R. Rahman composed the music for both and Esha Deol was the only actor who was cast again. The Tamil version did poorly at the box office and the Bollywood remake did averagely.
The 1988 Malayalam drama film, Vellanakalude Nadu, was directed by Indian film director and producer Priyadarshan. He then remade the film in Hindi, which was titled Khatta Meetha, starring Akshay Kumar. However, the original version was a bigger commercial success than the Bollywood remake that was deemed an average grosser.
Raavanan (Tamil) and Raavan (Hindi) , two simultaneous directional ventures of Indian director Mani Ratnam, were also released together in the year 2010. He also produced and did the screenplay for both films. Aishwarya Rai Bachchan played the female lead in both, and actors Vikram and Priyamani were part of the repeated cast. Once again, A.R. Rahman composed the music for both films. The Tamil version, however, did better at the box office. The Bollywood remake was labelled as a flop.