Teachers’ Day: Ten memorable Bollywood teacher characters

From Shammi Kapoor in ‘Professor’ to Boman Irani in ‘3 Idiots’, here are ten memorable teacher characters from Bollywood


Shimit Amin’s sports film saw Shah Rukh Khan play coach to the Indian women’s hockey team and take them to glory, inspired by the team’s real-life win at the 2002 Commonwealth Games.
Shimit Amin’s sports film saw Shah Rukh Khan play coach to the Indian women’s hockey team and take them to glory, inspired by the team’s real-life win at the 2002 Commonwealth Games.

New Delhi: From strict disciplinarians to friendly mentors, Bollywood has always managed to create some compelling teacher characters on screen. Here’s a look at the ten most memorable ones this Teacher’s Day.

Shammi Kapoor (Professor): Desperate for a job, Shammi Kapoor pretends to be an ageing professor in the Lekh Tandon-comedy. Also starring Kalpana and Lalita Pawar in pivotal roles, the film made about Rs.1 crore at the box-office.

Simi Garewal (Mera Naam Joker): The nearly five-hour film is played out in chapters and begins with the adolescent’s (Rishi Kapoor) infatuation with his young teacher, played by Garewal. Panned for its length and plot, the film was a critical and commercial failure for director Raj Kapoor at the time of its release, but has achieved cult status over the years.

Naseeruddin Shah (Sir): Battling the loss of a child, Shah played mentor to young Pooja Bhatt in the Mahesh Bhatt-directed film. The film which also starred Atul Agnihotri and Paresh Rawal netted Rs.4 crore at the box-office.

Shah Rukh Khan (Mohabbatein): Khan’s Raj Aryan was a kind music teacher goading his young students to fall in love under the watchful eye of their strict principal (Amitabh Bachchan). The Aditya Chopra-directed film earned Rs.25 crore in box-office collections.

Sushmita Sen (Main Hoon Na): Sen was the much-loved chemistry teacher in the boarding school that army officer Shah Rukh Khan is out to protect. The Farah Khan-directed film earned Rs.13 crore at the box-office.

Amitabh Bachchan (Black): Bachchan plays Debraj Sahai to Rani Mukerji, who plays blind and deaf Michelle McNally. The Sanjay Leela Bhansali film is played out in a flashback after the teacher develops Alzheimer’s disease. The film won Bachchan a national award for best actor and made Rs.8 crore at the box-office.

Aamir Khan (Taare Zameen Par): Aamir Khan plays a benevolent art teacher to a young dyslexic child (Darsheel Safary) in the film he directed himself. A winner of the National Award for Best Film on Family Welfare, it made Rs.37 crore in box-office collections.

Shah Rukh Khan (Chak De! India): Shimit Amin’s sports film saw Shah Rukh Khan play coach to the Indian women’s hockey team and take them to glory, inspired by the team’s real-life win at the 2002 Commonwealth Games. The film netted Rs.35 crore at the box-office.

Boman Irani (3 Idiots): Irani’s Viru Sahastrabuddhe or ‘Virus’ was the strict disciplinarian college director in the Aamir Khan-led comedy. The Rajkumar Hirani film netted more than Rs.200 crore in India alone.

Shahid Kapoor (Paathshaala): The Milind Ukey-directed drama was a comment on the Indian education system and its shortcomings in which Kapoor played a zealous music teacher. Also starring Ayesha Takia, the film earned Rs.21 crore at the box-office.

All figures have been sourced from movie websites Bollywood Hungama and IBOS Network

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