"when she shows fear and determination you cheer for her."
With her bright smile, humour and distinct voice, Juhi Chawla is like a jewel in the crown of Bollywood.
After winning the 1984 Miss India beauty pageant, Juhi starred in many iconic Bollywood films.
From the late 80s through the 90s, she firmly established herself as a leading actress in Indian cinema.
Juhi’s career has seen her working with some of Bollywood’s most popular heroes like Rishi Kapoor, Anil Kapoor, Shah Rukh Khan and Aamir Khan.
Here are 20 top Juhi Chawla movies of varied genres you must watch.
Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak (1988)
Director: Mansoor Khan
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Aamir Khan, Dalip Tahil, Rajendranath Zutshi, Goga Kapoor, Alok Nath
Juhi Chawla made her acting debut in 1986 with Sultanat but her breakthrough role came in the hit and tragic romance Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak (QSQT).
QSQT is a Romeo and Juliet style romance film, focusing on Rajvir ‘Raj’ Singh (Aamir Khan) and Rashmi Khanna (Juhi Chawla) who come from rival families.
Their families are bitter enemies, with hatred for one another deep-seated. So, when the two fall in love no one is happy.
The fathers on both sides openly declare their opposition to Raj and Rashmi’s relationship, stating marriage is out of the question.
Since their families refuse to accept the relationship, the two young lovers elope. But their tale does not end happily ever after.
Premankur Biswas reviewing the film for Firstpost states how Rashmi’s character was different and brave:
“Juhi Chawla, with her flouncy ghagra and passive but assertive demeanour was an early predecessor to the sexually liberated Bollywood heroines of today.
“She wore what she wanted (which Delhi girl of the late 1980s wore ghagras to college?) and initiated a relationship with the man she desired.”
Sumera Jahinger*, a 28-year-old Pakistani in Birmingham appreciated the actress, describing the film as a golden oldie:
“I love Juhi Chawla in this movie, it’s an oldie but goodie.”
Juhi won ‘Lux New Face of the Year’ for this movie at the 34th Filmfare Awards in 1989.
Juhi and Aamir both shine in QSQT. Juhi’s bright eyes and energy draws the viewer in as the sparks between her character and Aamir’s fly.
Love Love Love (1989)
Director: Babbar Subhash
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Aamir Khan, Gulshan Grover, Dalip Tahil, Om Shivpuri
In Love Love Love, Juhi Chawla and Aamir Khan are once again the lead pair. Their onscreen chemistry ripples through each scene.
This forbidden love story focuses on Amit Verma (Aamir Khan), the son of a taxi driver, and Reema Goswami (Juhi Chawla), a rich businessman’s daughter.
Reema’s father, Mr Goswami (Om Shivpuri), wholeheartedly disapproves of his daughter marrying the poor Amit.
Instead, Reema’s father wishes her to marry Vikram ‘Vicky’ (Gulshan Grover), whose father is the biggest gangster in Mumbai.
Vicky is used to getting what he wants, with Reema being at the top of his agenda.
Amit is aware of the darker side of Vicky and his family. Nevertheless, Amit is determined to do all he can to protect Reema and their love.
Many fans from the past and present are often happy to watch this film due to the pairing of Juhi and Aamir.
Sonia Singh*, a 33-year-old Indian teacher from Leeds mentions:
“The plot isn’t brilliant but anything with Juhi and Aamir is on my permanent rewatch collection. The two together make the movie.”
The film, like those that came before and after, exhibits the wonderful charm Juhi embeds into the roles she plays.
Karz Chukana Hai (1991)
Director: Vimal Kumar
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Govinda, Kader Khan, Raj Kiran, Shoma Anand, Gulshan Grover
Karz Chukana Hai is a family drama film, featuring Juhi Chawla.
Atmaram (Kader Khan) has two sons, Vijay (Raj Kiran) and Ravi (Govinda) who are more than a little wary of their father.
Atmaram has dreams of grandeur but is lazy and dishonest. These negative traits mean he eventually loses his job and relies on the income of his eldest son Vijay.
Vijay works to the bone, dedicated to his father and family. Whilst, Ravi rebels against his father.
Ravi is furious with his father’s behaviour. He finds a sense of peace when he meets and falls in love with Radha (Juhi Chawla).
Radha is working part-time at an advertisement agency. When Radha first sets her eyes on Ravi, she thinks he is the ideal model for an ad campaign.
Then fate delivers a cruel blow to the family. A blow that finally seems to shake some sense into Atmaram.
Thus, Atmaram decides to atone for his mistakes. This leads to a few key questions. Can his loved ones believe him? Are his actions a part of another ploy to fool them or not?
Juhi as Radha shows determination and strength, aiming to get what she wants. The songs in the film highlight Juhi’s dance skills and energy.
Bol Radha Bol (1992)
Director: David Dhawan
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Rishi Kapoor, Kader Khan, Mohnish Bahl
Hit movie Bol Radha Bol is a remake of the 1951 Hollywood film, The Man with My Face.
Kishen Malhotra (Rishi Kapoor) is a wealthy businessman. When he finds out his cousin Bhanu Prasad (Mohnish Bahl) has been cheating in business, he throws him out.
However, Kishen doesn’t realise the consequences of his decision, with more betrayal to come.
Kishen then heads for a village to expand his business. It is here that he meets the beautiful Radha/Rita (Juhi Chawla).
Kishen starts teaching English to Radha and slowly the two fall in love. After establishing his factory, Kishen leaves for the city, promising Radha to come back.
Though, keeping his promise is prevented by the death of his mother, a lookalike imposter and Kishen’s imprisonment.
Love-sick and missing Kishen, Radha travels to the city to find him. This is after not hearing from him.
When Radha arrives at Kishen’s home she sees his lookalike with women. Thinking it is Kishen, Radha feels heartbroken.
Luckily, Kishen arrives in time to prevent Radha from taking any drastic action. United, the two lovers work to find out the truth and regain all that has been stolen from Kishen.
Juhi as Radha, with her colourful outfits, bright smile and enthusiasm light up the screen.
This was another film showing the adaptability of Juhi as she shifts her reactions and tone, depending on each scene.
Raju Ban Gaya Gentleman (1992)
Director: Aziz Mirza
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Shah Rukh Khan, Nana Patekar, Amrita Singh
Raju Ban Gaya Gentleman was the first of many collaborations between Juhi Chawla and Shah Rukh Khan. The chemistry between the two sizzles and sparks throughout each scene of the film.
According to various press outlets, this movie “encapsulated the rise of India’s new aspirational middle class.”
The film focuses on fiercely ambitious graduate engineer, Raj ‘Raju’ Mathur (Shah Rukh Khan). He arrives in Bombay to become successful and wealthy.
With no connections and without experience, Raju finds it difficult to get a job. Though, his hardship is about to change after he meets the beautiful working-class Renu (Juhi Chawla).
Juhi as the loyal and steadfast Renu is endearing and relatable.
Renu helps him get a job as a trainee in the construction company where she works as a secretary. As they spend more time together, the two fall in love.
However, with time Raju loses his way in the rich and glamourous life, linking to work.
Also, as Raju succeeds, he gains the attention of his boss’s daughter, Sapna L. Chhabria (Amrita Singh). Sapna also falls in love with Raju.
Further trouble comes when Raju’s enemies conspire against him and set him up. All of which makes him realise what is important in life.
Juhi and Shah Rukh each depict their characters in a very realistic fashion. Those viewers working hard and striving for more can relate to the two characters.
Director: Yash Chopra
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Shah Rukh Khan, Sunny Deol, Dalip Tahil
Yash Chopra’s super-hit romantic thriller Darr remains a classic, with all three main stars shining in their roles.
The film starts with a beautiful melody, ‘Jadoo Teri Nazar.’ The gorgeous Kiran Awasthi (Juhi Chawla) runs to her classroom, thinking the singer is her boyfriend, Sunil Malhotra (Sunny Deol).
But soon the ominous feeling that all is not right starts to trickle into the minds of the audience.
Anyone who has seen Darr will remember the spin tingling creepiness as Rahul Mehra (Shah Rukh Khan) stutters out “Ki-Ki-Kiran.”
The story follows Rahul and his dangerous obsession with Kiran who went to the same college as him.
Never revealing his feelings to Kiran, Rahul always watches her from afar. He stalks her every step without anyone knowing.
When it becomes clear Kiran is going to marry her very successful boyfriend and naval officer Sunil, Rahul slowly starts to creep out of the shadows.
As Kiran becomes aware of someone having an obsession with her, she finds herself increasingly fearful. Terrified that the man she loves will be killed, Kiran tries to leave.
However, Sunil persuades Kiran to stay. Despite being happy after marriage, Rahul is not done. In Rahul’s mind, Kiran belongs to him, and Sunil is the interloper to be removed.
Juhi as Kiran is wonderful in depicting how stalking can slowly make a person feel like they are unravelling.
With Kiran moving from happy to paranoid and fearful, everyone will be on the edge of their seats, hoping she has a happy end.
Juhi’s chemistry with both Sunny and Shah Rukh was electric.
Her style and beauty inspired many to copy her. For example, some leading actresses at the time tried to have a similar hairstyle but none of them quite managed to pull it off as Juhi did.
Director: Deepak Sareen
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Jackie Shroff, Amrita Singh
Aaina is a film about two sisters, Roma Mathur (Amrita Singh) and Reema Mathur (Juhi Chawla) who have very different personalities. Roma is self-absorbed, whilst Reema is gentle and kind.
For years Reema is forced to hide her beauty, with Roma craving to be the centre of attention.
The sisters are in love with the same man, Ravi Saxena (Jackie Shroff), but it is Roma who ensnares his attention.
The two get engaged but then Roma ditches Ravi on their wedding day to pursue her modelling career.
Everyone is shocked by Roma’s actions but rather than return home, Ravi persuades Reema to marry him.
However, the resilient and gently determined Reema maintains Ravi and she will live as good friends, despite marrying one another.
Just as things seem to be turning a corner for Reema and Ravi, Roma returns putting the marriage under threat.
At the onset of the movie, Reema is docile and accepting but when Roma returns, she is ready to defend her marriage.
Juhi effortlessly portrays Reema on screen, with her character being a lovely contrast to that of Amrita’s.
The movie never turns into a melodrama but creates a taut atmosphere that engages the audience.
Hum Hain Rahi Pyar Ke (1993)
Director: Mahesh Bhatt
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Aamir Khan, Master Sharokh, Kunal Khemu, Baby Ashrafa
Juhi and Aamir together give the audience another hit with Hum Hain Rahi Pyar Ke.
Following the sad passing of his sister, Rahul Malhotra (Aamir Khan) becomes the guardian of her three mischievous kids.
The three children are Sunny Chopra (Kunal Khemu), Vicky Chopra (Master Sharokh) and Munni Chopra (Baby Ashrafa).
He has his hands full looking after the kids and trying to make a success of the severely in debt family business.
Plus, he is struggling to bond with the kids who continuously scare away their nannies.
When he finds that the children have been hiding runway Vyjayanti Iyer (Juhi Chawla) at his home, he is shocked. But Vyjayanti and the kids persuade him to let her stay.
Vyayanti’s childlike enthusiasm, brightness and energy have the children immediately bonding with her.
Vaijayanti provides a gentle buffer between the kids and Rahul, getting each side to see the other’s point of view.
Thus, Vyjayanti helps Rahul and the children to connect, and in doing so, the two fall in love.
Though, to save a failing business Rahul is meant to marry an old college friend, Maya (Navneet Nishan).
Rich girl Maya has her eyes on Rahul, and what she wants daddy gets for her. But, what no one counts on is the kids and Vyjayanti ruining the engagement party.
This is one of the best Bollywood family films, with a lovely blend of humour, romance, action, and songs. It is a movie, which individuals of all ages can enjoy.
Juhi’s resolve, charm, childlike enthusiasm, well-timed humour makes this a classic movie, which no one should miss.
Ram Jaane (1995)
Director: Rajiv Mehra
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Shah Rukh Khan, Vivek Mushran, Pankaj Kapur
Two childhood best-friends take two drastically different paths in life. Their bond is strong, but their love for the same woman and a connection with criminality means not all will live happily.
Abandoned at a very young age, an unnamed youth faces taunts about his name and faith. He asks a priest what his name is.
The priest answers, ‘Ram Jaane’ (God knows), which the youth (Shah Rukh Khan) accepts as his name.
Ram Jaane grows up to be a quick-witted criminal, and ultimately a rather feared gangster. Whilst, his best friend Murli (Vivek Mushran) becomes a social worker.
Murli’s orphanage, ‘Apna Ghar’ (My/Your Home), becomes a safe haven for street kids much like Ram Jaane.
Ram Jaane is in love with his childhood obsession, Bela (Juhi Chawla). Once out of prison, Ram Jaane does all he can to impress her but she only has eyes for Murli.
Bela finds Ram Jaane’s antics very unimpressive. When Ram Jaane seems to be steering the young boys Murli cares for, towards a life of crime, further conflict ensues.
Murli persuades Bela about being with Ram Jaane to use his emotions in turning him away from a life of crime.
Many viewers will find this outrageous, disgusted by Murli and wishing Bela had not conceded.
Despite this unpalatable event, the three main performers stand out in the film. Juhi with her co-stars creates energy on screen that draws the audience in.
The character of Shah Rukh here is an anti-hero one, with which many cannot sympathise to. The ending is tragic but not a surprise.
Directors: Mustan Burmawalla and Abbas Burmawalla
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Rishi Kapoor, Arbaaz Khan
In this remake of the Hollywood movie, Sleeping with the Enemy (1991), Juhi gives a brilliant performance.
Raj Malhotra (Rishi Kapoor) is a wealthy artist who falls for Priya Bhatia (Juhi Chawla) at first sight. Though, Priya ignores him as she is a little wary and holding a secret.
Priya has run away from her abusive and crazily obsessive husband, Vikram Bhatia (Arbaaz Khan), by faking her death.
Finally able to live a peaceful life where she is not suffocated by fear, Priya feels she can be with no one.
However, Priya’s mother, Nirmal Bhatia (Sulbha Arya), persuades her in giving Raj a chance, to be happy and forget about the past.
After a misunderstanding, Raj and Priya finally get together, plan their marriage and future.
But a dark cloud gathers, bringing danger. Priya is about to confront the terrifying man once again.
Slowly Vikram realises Priya is still alive. Determined to find Priya and bring her home, he is even willing to kill. When he sees her with Raj, Vikram’s rage knows no bounds.
Iram Mahdood, a 30-year-old Pakistani shop worker in Birmingham sheds light on the climax and applauds the actress:
“I’m not entirely happy with the ending where Vikram seems to seek forgiveness. But I love Juhi Chawla in the movie. She is a seriously good actress.
“In Daraar her laughter is infectious and when she shows fear and determination you cheer for her.
“I’ve seen the movie so many times and always cheer her on.”
Daraar is another movie where Juhi shows her range as an actress.
Director: David Dhawan
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Anil Kapoor, Shakti Kapoor, Kulbushan Kharbanda, Gulshan Grover, Farida Jalal, Mukesh Rishi
Loafer was a remake of the superhit Telugu film titled, Assembly Rowdy (1991). The latter itself was a remake of the 1990 hit Tamil film, Velai Kidaichuduchu.
The film focuses on Ravi Kumar (Anil Kapoor) who is somewhat of a black sheep in his family. Very quick to get into fights, Ravi is also a man willing to fight against injustice.
When Ravi is framed for a gangster’s murder, he finds himself facing the challenge of legally proving his innocence and getting justice.
All the witnesses in the murder do not come forward to provide testimony of Ravi’s innocence. Juhi plays Kiran Mathur, the woman Ravi falls in love with.
Interestingly, Juhi was not the first choice for the role. She came on board after the late Sridevi turned down the role.
The comedic timing of Juhi and Anil as well as their ability to act in a serious tone well ensures an entertaining and stimulating watch.
The great chemistry between Juhi and Anil made this film another box office success.
The two also feature in the famous song, ‘Teri Tirchi Nazar Mein Hai Jadoo.’
Director: Indra Kumar
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Aamir Khan, Kajol, Ajay Devgn, Sadashiv Amrapurkar, Dalip Tahil
Ishq revolves around four young people, their romance and the challenges they face due to disapproval from their parents
Ranjit Rai (Sadashiv Amrapurkar) is the father of Ajay Rai (Ajay Devgn). Despite being extremely wealthy, Ranjit despises the poor.
Thus, he is aghast that Ajay against his wishes hangs out with his childhood best friend, Raja Ahlawat (Aamir Khan), a poor mechanic.
One day, Ranjit meets his good friend and Madhu Lal’s (Juhi Chawla) father, Harbans Lal (Dalip Tahil), by chance.
Harbans is as wealthy as Ranjit and both of them share a strong aversion to the poor. They decide to get their children Ajay and Madu married to each other.
They manage to get the signatures of Ajay and Madhu on a marriage certificate by deceit. However, nothing works out as expected by Ranjit and Harbans.
Madhu and Ajay are not in love with each other. They fall in love with each other’s best friends.
Ajay from the get-go is entranced by the poor but sweet Kajal Jindal (Kajol). Whereas Raja (Aamir Khan) and Madhu after hilariously clashing from the onset also fall deeply in love.
Both loving couples are determined to be together. Consequently, both fathers pretend to accept the relationships, whilst doing all they can to break the bonds of friendship and love.
Juhi’s comic timing in Ishq is spot on. Her acting combined with that of the other three stars ensures the audience will have an enjoyable watch.
Angel Begum*, a 25-year-old Bangladeshi undergraduate student in Birmingham maintains:
“Juhi Chawla is bubbly, gorgeous, and awesomely funny. She sparkles in all her scenes.”
“She seamlessly moves from serious to funny. Juhi and the other actors in Ishq mean the film is a firm favourite in my house.”
Ishq is one of those Juhi Chawla movies that will entertain all ages. It’s wholesome, with a great blend of humour, romance, action and drama.
Thus, it’s no surprise that Ishq was the third highest-grossing Bollywood film of 1997.
Yes Boss (1997)
Director: Aziz Mirza
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Shah Rukh Khan, Aditya Pancholi, Kashmera Shah
Yes Boss was the third film of Shah Rukh Khan and Juhi Chawla together. The two stars have gone on to feature in a total of eleven movies together.
The film focuses on Rahul Joshi (Shah Rukh Khan) who wants to be a successful businessman, Hence, he works hard for his boss Siddharth Chaudhry (Aditya Pancholi).
The title of the film is reflected, with Rahul always saying “yes” to anything his boss wants.
Hence, it is no surprise that his boss makes unreasonable demands. Siddharth is a married womaniser who wants up and coming model Seema Kapoor (Juhi Chawla).
The problem is that he expects Rahul to get her for him.
To make matters worse, Rahul finds himself falling for Seema. Thus, Rahul and Seema both find themselves having to choose between wealth and love.
Again Juhi and Shah Rukh are a perfect onscreen match in this romcom. As a Times of India review notes:
“The two stars lit up every scene of the film with their on-screen presence.
“Shah Rukh’s charisma complemented with Juhi’s innocence and delightful smile just added that perfect touch to the film’s central theme.”
The desires and aspirations of both middle-class Rahul and Seema are relatable.
Mr. & Mrs. Khiladi (1997)
Director: David Dhawan
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Akshay Kumar, Kader Khan, Paresh Rawal
Mr. & Mrs. Khiladi is a remake of the 1992 Telugu comedy film, Aa Okkati Adakku.
When his astrologer uncle (Satish Kaushik) predicts a favourable future for Raja (Akshay Kumar), he decides to do nothing until the prediction comes true.
When he meets and falls in love with Shalu Prasad (Juhi Chawla), Raja decides his predicted future has arrived.
However, Shalu’s father, Badri Prasad (Kader Khan), is a millionaire and wants his daughter to marry a hard-working and capable man.
When Badri meets Raja, he is less than impressed. Thus, Badri puts a condition on Raja marrying Shalu. Raja can only marry her after he accumulates Rs. one lakh.
If Raja is unsuccessful, Shalu will have to tie the knot with someone else. As a result, Raja is forced to change his ways or give up Shalu.
This is another film where Juhi’s ability to charm and amuse the audience is on point.
She infuses her character with energy and colour.
Deewana Mastana (1997)
Director: David Dhawan
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Anil Kapoor, Govinda
Deewana Mastana is an in and out Bollywood comedy film, with Juhi Chawla being a core focal point.
Raj Kumar Sharma ‘Raja’ (Anil Kapoor) who is a thief, and wealthy man Ghafoor (Govinda) both fall in love with a beautiful psychiatrist, Dr Neha Sharma (Juhi Chawla).
Ghafoor pretends to be a psychiatric patient, whilst Raja takes on the name Raj Kumar and befriends her. Raj tells her he has just returned from the USA.
When Raja and Ghafoor initially meet, they become friends, encouraging one another.
Things become hilariously complicated when both discover they are rivals, trying to outdo each other. They both aim to win over Neha in love.
At one point the two also try to kill one another. However, the tone of the movie ensures the audience does not take anything too seriously.
The story reaches a climax when Neha asks both of them to accompany her to the Registrar’s office for a Court Marriage.
There are some rather amusing moments in this film, especially in the first half. The ending has a nice surprise, with Neha revealing her chosen husband.
Juhi alongside Anil and Govinda tickle the funny bone. The songs and dance numbers are colourful and show Juhi’s versatile skills.
Director: Mahesh Bhatt
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Shah Rukh Khan, Gulshan Grover, Sonali Bendre, Farida Jalal
In Duplicate, Shah Rukh Khan plays a double role, and Juhi is the leading lady. The film has gathered a bit of a cult following over the years.
Bablu Chaudhary (Shah Rukh Khan), an aspiring chef, works in a hotel where Sonia Kapoor (Juhi Chawla) is the banquet manager.
When Bablu’s look-alike Manu Dada (Shah Rukh Khan), a gangster, comes out of prison and discovers that his cohort has double-crossed him, trouble ensues.
Manu kills his partner and escapes from the scene of the crime but without the money.
Manu takes shelter in Bablu’s house and realises that he can use their resemblance to his advantage. He plans to take over Manu’s life, thus escaping the police.
All of this makes the life of Bablu very complicated since he needs to be permanently gone for Manu’s plan to work.
Additionally, with the police continuously mistaking Bablu for Manu, the former finds his life turning upside down.
The comedic tug-of-war between Sonia and Lily (Sonali Bendre) over a bewildered and slightly drunk Bablu in ‘Mere Mehboob Mere Sanam’ still entertains.
Juhi in an interview with Hindustan Times reveals she was initially uncertain of taking on the role:
“I was in two minds because my character was not really doing anything substantial in the film.
“It was a sweet role but there was nothing to make me jump at.”
“I remember I was working with Shah Rukh in Yes Boss (1997) at that time and after the shooting, we were at some bungalow in Mumbai when he sat me down and gave me a whole lecture for more than an hour on why I should be doing the film [Duplicate].”
Juhi goes on to state about how she eventually took on the character:
“After sitting and listening to him for so long, I was like ‘okay, fine, maybe it’s not so bad and I am not looking at it correctly’, so that’s how I agreed to then do the film.”
Overall, the audience will be glad Juhi was persuaded to act in this film.
Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani (2000)
Director: Aziz Mirza
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Shah Rukh Khan, Paresh Rawal, Satish Shah, Dalip Tahil
Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani is a satirical film, with a very nationalistic title.
Ajay Bakshi (Shah Rukh Khan) and Ria Banerji (Juhi Chawla) are two rival TV reporters who will stop at nothing to beat each other.
Determined and focused, the two have comical interactions, drawing out more than one smile from viewers.
Through these two characters, we also see the underhanded tactics that can be used to get the story and be the best.
Thus, one can say this film also shows a satirical form of reporting. It highlights media manipulation, consumerism, along with the conflict between ethics and ratings.
However, things take a serious turn when Ajay and Ria realise an innocent man is to be hanged. Their clinical ambition slowly has a replacement by something more soulful.
The two are thrust into a battle for their lives as they try to save an innocent life. This sparks a momentous chain of events that test the character and integrity of all involved.
Juhi and Shah Rukh complement each other, with their respective characters.
The pairing is great for both the comedic and serious moments in the film. The shift from comedy to serious was a surprise, nevertheless, it is a job well done.
Juhi gives her character the right amount of charisma and sophistication. And Shah Rukh’s role and his growth are believable.
In an era of remakes, Juhi says this is one of her movies where she would welcome a remake:
“[…] When we made the film, the media was just beginning to explode, it was too early to talk about channel wars, TRPs, etc.
“There was so much behind-the-scenes politics, about politicians etc, that probably people didn’t get the nuances at that time.
“But it makes so much sense today, I think that film ought to be worked upon now.”
Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani is a well-paced film, with many of its ideas and messages still being relevant.
3 Deewarein (2003)
Director: Nagesh Kukunoor
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Jackie Shroff, Nagesh Kukunoor, Naseeruddin Shah
In 3 Deewarein, Juhi Chawla plays Chandrika, a sombre film documentary maker who captures the reformation story of three hardened criminals within the prison walls.
These three prisoners are on death row. The trio includes Jagdish ‘Jaggu’ Prasad (Jackie Shroff), a lawyer who seeks solace in the verses of his poetry.
The other two are Naagya (Nagesh Kukunoor), a man aggrieved with the world, and Ishaan Miraz (Naseeruddin Shah), a natural charmer.
As the documentary progresses, a bond begins to develop between Chandrika and the three men.
The three individuals begin to trust her and reveal their stories, and in doing so, they become more than prisoners for Chandrika’s documentary.
Furthermore, through her interactions with the three men, Chandrika finds redemption in her own life and marriage.
This movie gives the audience a bittersweet tale about friendship, redemption, hope and survival.
The performances by all the main cast complement one another, attracting viewers into the tale unfolding.
This is another film that shows Juhi’s success in breaking away from the bubbly and vivacious persona of her characters from the late 80s and 90s.
The film won ‘Best Story’ at the 49th Filmfare Awards in 2004.
Director: Vivek Sharma
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Shah Rukh Khan, Amitabh Bachchan, Aman Siddiqui, Rajpal Yadav
Bhoothnath is a family film that will entertain, with its pure escapism.
The wealthy Aditya Sharma (Shah Rukh Khan), his wife Anjali (Juhi Chawla), and young son Aman ‘Banku’ Sharma (Aman Siddiqui) relocate to Goa.
In Goa they rent a home, ‘Nath Villa’, that was built in 1964. Happy with their new home, they have no worries.
So, when Aditya and Anjali are told that the villa is haunted, they dismiss such words as nonsense.
Whilst Aditya returns to work, Aman is enrolled in St. Francis High School. Anjali hires a drunken thief, Anthony (Rajpal Yadav), as a helper to clean the house.
Shortly after this, Aman starts getting in trouble at school and begins telling tales of his new friend Bhoothnath.
Bhoothnath is the former owner of the villa, Kailash Nath (Amitabh Bachchan) – a ghost.
Initially, Anjali believes her son is making up tales but when she and her husband realise the truth they’re in for a surprise.
As the film progresses, a surprising friendship develops between the little boy and the ghost.
It was great seeing Juhi and Shah Rukh team up again after some years. Decades since their first time on screen together, their chemistry still had that spark.
Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga (2019)
Director: Shelly Chopra Dhar
Stars: Juhi Chawla, Sonam Kapoor Ahuja, Anil Kapoor, Rajkummar Rao
Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga was Juhi Chawla’s first role in a Bollywood film since Chalk n Duster (2016). This is a movie that shines a light on India’s LGBTQ+ community.
This film also allowed us to see Judi reunite with Anil Kapoor after nearly two decades. Juhi and Anil were last onscreen together in the movie, Karobaar: The Business of Love (2000).
They are a duo whose onscreen chemistry remains strong.
The film tells the story of Sweety Chaudhary (Sonam Kapoor Ahuja), a closeted lesbian, and her attempts to come out to her conservative and traditional Punjabi family.
Sweety’s father, Balbir Chaudhary, is played by the charming Anil Kapoor.
Sweety’s family start to discuss her marrying, meaning she has to make a decision. She has to open up or go with the flow, the norm, and marry a man.
Juhi plays the secondary character of Chatro, with grace. Juhi’s character is wonderful, with The Guardian describing it as a “radiant beacon of liberalism.”
Moreover, her elegance and presence ensure the audience won’t forget her character.
But even as she turned away from such opportunities, Juhi also gave us some amazing performances. Such performances have stamped her authority as one of the leading ladies of Bollywood.
Looking at her films, it is clear why Juhi was one of the reigning queens of Bollywood during the late 80s and 90s.
Juhi Chawla, through the decades, has shown her versatility as an actress. Her ability to charm the audience remains strong as ever.