Padmavati, Begum Jaan, Noor, Simran and more: We love the new trend of naming films after the female lead

Begum Jaan, Noor, Padmavati etc, Bollywood filmmakers are not shying away from telling a story from a woman's perspective with female names as their titles

The title of any Hindi film does two things: (a) it generates curiosity and enough interest around the film and (b) it tells a part of the story that the film is catering. In Hindi cinema, the title of a film holds utmost importance. Probably that’s why we have the title of Shah Rukh Khan and Anushka Sharma’s next still lingering to be finalised. Or why an entire buzz was created around the title PINK before the release of the Amitabh Bachchan and Taapsee Pannu starrer. Filmmakers like R Balki and Anurag Kashyap always make sure that their films are known for their stupendously strange titles like Cheeni Kum, Shamitabh, Ki & Ka, Raman Raghav 2.0, Dev. D and Bombay Velvet among others.

There is, however, an interesting development to be seen in the selection of Hindi film titles these days. Most of these are female-oriented. Maybe because the filmmakers are now making more and more films to tell the story from a female point of view. Or maybe because the names of women are anyways so enticing that it give the film a lot of weightage before its release. This, though, is not a new phenomenon. Using the names of the female protagonists as the title of Hindi films have been rooted in Bollywood since 70s. The usage has increased today. Not many films were made during the 70s and 80s with the female lead taking the front seat. We had titles like Guddi (1971), Seeta Aur Geeta (1972), Bobby (1973), Milli (1975), Umrao Jaan (1981), Chandni (1989), Damini (1993) and not many others.

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Today, however, filmmakers do not shy away from letting the titles of their films speak of a strong woman character. Take a look at a few films with the name of a female character as their titles:


Noor is an upcoming Indian drama film directed by Sunhil Sippy that features Sonakshi Sinha in the lead role. The film is based on Pakistani author Saba Imtiaz’s novel Karachi, You’re Killing Me! The film is about a journalist who juggles her work, love and personal life on a day-to-day basis. One day, Noor’s life takes a dramatic turn when she comes across an eye-opening investigative news story.

Begum Jaan

The protagonist of this film is a sex worker and a completely unabashed personality. Vidya Balan in and as Begum Jaan once again brings a character which is strong, fierce and is totally confident in being herself. Directed by Srijit Mukherjee, the film shows a different story of partition and the one which doesn’t ride on the heavy doses of patriotism but on the real struggle of common people.

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Naam Shabana

Naam Shabana is an Indian action spy-thriller film directed by Shivam Nair and produced by Neeraj Pandey and Shital Bhatia. This Spin-off from Baby (2015) provides the back-story of intelligence agent Shabana and chronicles how she becomes a spy. Other cast includes Akshay Kumar, Manoj Bajpayee, Anupam Kher and Prithviraj Sukumaran play important supporting roles in the film. The film is dubbed into Tamil and Telugu languages and was released worldwide.


Deepika Padukone

Deepika Padukone
(Courtesy: Instagram)

Though a controversial title, the film is centralized around a historic character. The film, directed by Sanjay Leela Bhansali and featuring Deepika Padukone in the lead shows the story of a princess whose extraordinary valour is worshiped by women in India.

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Akira is a 2016 Indian action drama film co-written, directed, and produced by AR Murugadoss. It is a remake of the 2011 Tamil film Mouna Guru and features Sonakshi Sinha in the titular role. A gripping action thriller about a college girl Akira, who has grown up with the ideals of being self-reliant. Her life spirals out of control when she becomes unwittingly involved in a crime involving four corrupt police officers.

Tumhari Sulu

Vidya Balan Tumhari Sulu

Tumhari Sulu is an upcoming Bollywood comedy drama genre film soon to start its shoot in April 2017. Tumhari Sulu is directed by Suresh Triveni. The film is produced by Atul Kasbekar under the banner of T-series. The film revolves around an RJ who is happy go lucky person and work for the late night shows. The RJ goes by the name Sulochana or Sulu on Air, who hosts a semi-adult show. She was one of the most known Radio Jockey in 2015 Indian Pakistan World Cup.

Also read: Begum Jaan making video: ‘There’s a Begum Jaan in every woman’, says Vidya Balan



Kangana Ranaut
(Courtesy: IANS)

Simran is an upcoming Bollywood biopic film. It is directed by Hansal Mehta. The film features B-town queen Kangana Ranaut in lead role. Simran will be shot entirely in the US. The film is reportedly based on an Indian-origin nurse who was called as the Bombshell Bandit after the robberies in the USA last year. As per the sources, Kangana plays a Gujarati NRI nurse, who gets involved in a situation of crime. The story is inspired by the life of a real-life US nurse Sandeep Kaur, who was sent to prison for robbing a bank to pay off certain debts.


Deepika Padukone

Amitabh Bachchan and Deepika Padukone
(Courtesy: Twitter/ @PikuTheFilm)

Piku is a 2015 Indian comedy-drama film directed by Shoojit Sircar and produced by N.P. Singh, Ronnie Lahiri and Sneha Rajani. It stars Deepika Padukone as the titular protagonist, Amitabh Bachchan, and Irrfan Khan, with Moushumi Chatterjee and Jisshu Sengupta portraying supporting roles. It tells the story of the short-tempered Piku Banerjee (Deepika Padukone), her grumpy, aging father Bhashkor (Amitabh Bachchan) and Rana Chaudhary (Irrfan Khan), who is stuck between the father-daughter duo, as they embark on a journey from Delhi to Kolkata. A quirky comedy about the relationship between a daughter and her aging father, whose eccentricities drive everyone crazy.

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Jia Aur Jia

Kalki Koechlin InUth photo

Kalki Koechlin (Courtesy:

It’s a story about two starkly different women that share the same name. Together, they embark on a life-changing journey heading towards the same fate. Richa Chadha and Kalki Koechlin essay the role of Jia in the movie. The film is directed by Howard Rosemeyer and written by Mudassar Aziz, Jia Aur Jia slated to release in 2017.

Love Sonia

Freida Pinto Love Sonia still

Love Sonia is an upcoming 2017 Indian film directed by Tabrez Noorani and produced by David Womark. The film features newcomer Mrunal Thakur as the title character along with Richa Chadda, Freida Pinto, Demi Moore, Manoj Bajpayee, Anupam Kher, Rajkummar Rao and Sai Tamhankar. Love Sonia tells the heartfelt and brave story of Sonia, a young Indian village girl whose life irrevocably changes when she is entrapped into the vicious global sex trade network. The film is slated to release in 2017.

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