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Bollywood's youngest blockbuster directors

By Joginder Tuteja
Last updated on: November 09, 2015 16:10 IST
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Some of Bollywood's top directors started very young.
Some of Bollywood's finest films have been made by very young directors.

From Sooraj Barjatya to Mohit Suri, directors -- barely in their 20s -- have managed to showcase their vision brilliantly on the big screen.

Here's looking at some of the youngest blockbuster directors.

Sooraj Barjatya
Debuted with Maine Pyar Kiya at 25

Image: Salman Khan and Bhagyashree in Maine Pyaar Kiya

Sooraj Barjatya changed the face of Bollywood romantic dramas with the Salman Khan and Bhagyashree-starrer Maine Pyaar Kiya.

His subsequent films -- the monster hit Hum Aapke Hain Koun...!, Hum Saath Saath Hain, and Vivaah reflected Barjatya's strong familial values.

He has reunited with his favourite leading man Salman Khan for Prem Ratan Dhan Payo.

Ramesh Sippy
Debuted with Andaz at 24 

Ramesh SippyRamesh Sippy made a beautiful mature romance with Shammi Kapoor, Hema Malini and Rajesh Khanna in Andaz.

He went on to make many more cult movies like Sholay and Shaan, as well as hits like Seeta Aur Geeta, Shakti and Saagar.


Mohit Suri
Debuted with Zeher at 23

Image: Movie poster of Zeher

One of the youngest directors at 23, Suri also holds the enviable record of having had as many as nine releases in nine years.

He has also tackled an impressive variety of genres too, be it crime thriller (Ek Villain), romantic musical (Aashiqui 2), horror (Raaz - The Mystery Continues), drama (Awarapan) and adultery (Zeher).

How about a comedy now, Mohit?

Aditya Chopra
Debuted with Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge at 24

Image: Kajol and Shah Rukh Khan in Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge 

Even though he has directed only three films in 20 years, Aditya Chopra is widely considered to be one of the best directors in Bollywood.

Most of this steady stream of adulation comes from his debut Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge that has famously stood the test of time.


Ayan Mukherjee  
Debuted with Wake Up Sid at 26

Image: Ranbir Kapoor and Konkona Sen Sharma in Wake Up Sid

Ayan Mukherjee's Wake Up Sid, starring his close pal Ranbir Kapoor, is widely hailed as a well-made coming-of-age story.

His second film, the multi-starrer Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani, went on to become the biggest blockbuster of Ranbir Kapoor's career so far.

Ayan is reportedly set to bring out his third film in the winter of 2016. 


Farhan Akhtar
Debuted with Dil Chahta Hai at 27

Image: Akshaye Khanna, Aamir Khan and Saif Ali Khan in Dil Chahta Hai

Farhan redefined buddy comedies in Hindi with his stylishly urban debut, starring Aamir Khan, Saif Ali Khan, Akshay Khanna, Preity Zinta, Dimple Kapadia and Sonali Kulkarni.

Though the film was successful mainly in cities on its release in the pre-multiplex era, it has grown as a cult amongst all age groups.

Farhan followed up his debut success with Lakshya and the Don films.



Ram Gopal Varma 
Debuted with Siva at 27 

Image: Nagarjuna in Shiva

With over 45 films to his credit as a director, not many know that Ram Gopal Varma started out very young.

He made Siva with Nagarjuna in Telugu, which was later released in Hindi as Shiva.

A non-conformist to the core, RGV went on to make quite a few cult films like Rangeela, Company, Satya, Sarkar, Bhoot and many more in years that followed.

Siddharth Anand 
Debuted with Salaam Namaste at 27 

Image: Saif Ali Khan and Preity Zinta in Salaam Namaste

Aditya Chopra was so impressed with a young Siddharth Anand that he signed him on for a three-film contract with Yash Raj Films.

Anand started with the hip and refreshing rom-com Salaam Namaste, starring Saif Ali Khan and Preity Zinta.

After a series of feel-good films, Siddharth tackled action with one of the most expensive films of all times, the Hrithik Roshan and Katrina Kaif starrer Bang Bang, and entered the Rs 100 crore club last year.


Punit Malhotra
Debuted with I Hate Luv Storys at 28 

Image: Imran Khan and Sonam Kapoor in I Hate Luv Storys

Karan Johar has mentored many talents in Bollywood, one of them being Punit Malhotra.

Malhotra's debut film I Hate Luv Storys was a decent success and helped Sonam Kapoor's career too.

His follow-up Gori Tere Pyar Mein failed to replicate his debut success though.


Rohit Shetty
Debuted with Zameen at 30  

Image: Movie poster of Zameen

Rohit Shetty took his time to turn to direction but is one of the most successful directors in Bollywood today.

With 10 films in 11 years, his films have made more money than any of his contemporaries.

Shetty also holds the record of helming as many as five Rs 100-crore films!

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Joginder Tuteja in Mumbai