"Nobody will know", said Bollywood while shooting these 5 films in Lucknow
Making films is an art and we say art because there is plenty of room for creative freedom. Be it the age of actors, the narration of historic (at times scientific) facts and a whole lot of screenplay con- cinema alters reality and that is what makes it magic!
And its spell is so strong, it sometimes makes it difficult to even notice that the fictitious representation is too close to home, yaa - we mean it literally. From hidden mysteries, attention to detail and easter eggs, here are 5 times that our own Bollywood decided to be notorious and not tell us that these movies were actually shot in Lucknow:
A soul-stirring movie, Article 15 grabbed many eyeballs with its grim and girt screenplay and a story that sent chills down our spine. And while we are so lost in the social injustices and class-hierarchy prevalent in Badaun, a small district in UP- this film very smartly hid the fact that it was actually shot in the outskirts of Lucknow and parts of the old city.
From vehicle number plates to camera shots, everything was crafted in a way that had the audience convinced that the production set was actually in Badaun and not the state capital!
Shaadi Mei Zaroor Aana
Shaadi Mei Zaroor Aana, followed a rather engaging love-revenge-love theme to had the movie-watcher completely entrapped in its simply storytelling. You were probably munching on a tub of popcorn when you saw the typical boy meets girls, they fall in love, yada-yada to miss out that the story was not moving in Allahabad as the makers claimed it was.
Parts of this Rajkumar Rao and Kriti Kharabanda fiction feature were actually shot in Lucknow cafes, the Gomti Nagar Area, the River Front and at a set in the city which was made to look like Allahabad.
Bareilly Ki Barfi
Bareilly Ki Barfi, quite obviously should have been shot in Bareilly but it did not happen. The makers of this movie themselves stated that the principal photography of the film took place in Lucknow because Bareilly did not have an airport. This made the location a little out of the reach for the entire production team that flew from Mumbai to create this film.
And yes, while certain parts of the screenplay included Lucknow in the narrative with beautiful camera shots at Patrakar Puram and outside Riverfront, the entire Bareilly was set in the Narhi locale of the city!
A Suitable Boy
This BBC adaptation of Vikram Seth's book by the same name explores the alleys and streets of Lucknow to narrate a monumental account of love, family and political tensions in the partition-struck India in 1947. Important scenes of this drama were also shot at KGMU, all the while calling it a fictional Barhanpur University.
Several other city mosques, minarets and the La Martiniere College grounds were also used as a backdrop, which added their own authenticity to this tale.
Gadar, Ek Prem Katha
How can we ever talk about the films shot in Lucknow and not include this masterpiece? Gadar Ek Prem Katha was a national blockbuster hit but Lucknowite's love for this movie is unparalleled! The most iconic takeaways from this movie, be it that echoing 'Ashraf Ali' dialogue or the hand-pump pulling scene were actually shot at Lucknow's La Martiniere Colege Grounds. Yes, that was not Lahore. It was Lucknow. Before we move on, did you know that the second installment of Gadar is also filmed in Lucknow? Well, wait for the theatrical release, to spot Lucknow on the big screen once again!
If you've ever felt to hum along 'Tera Mujhse Hai Pehle Ka Nata Koi', and felt you were home after watching these movies, this is the reason! So do get your popcorn ready and binge on these movies, this time to spot Lucknow.