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8 Popular Movies You Didn’t Know Were Shot In Lucknow

Do you know about the city of Nawabs unrolling the mystical Oudh, where everything has a love and magic essence in everything it has?

Yes, I am talking about Lucknow, which is well known as the city of nawabs. Also, been recognized in the pages of history as one of the richest deposits of the cultural heritage of the Oudh. 

Well, today I won’t be talking about Lucknow, its history, or its heritage. I am here to talk about something that is associated with both Lucknow and Bollywood.

Oh yes, I will be talking about the famous Bollywood Hindi movies that were shot in Lucknow.

Lucknow has long been considered the most famous town for its delights, rich cultural heritage, and hospitality, or ‘Mehmaan Nawazi’ as it is called.

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In keeping with its reputation, it recently hosted a series of Bollywood films. From the perpetual Umrao Jaan to the most recent Daawat-e-Ishq, Bollywood’s affair with the city of Nawabs is hard to ignore.

Below is a list of such popular Hindi films that capture the essence of the city, Lucknow, in its entirety:

Let’s unwind the mystical movies that were shot in its lanes.

1. Gulabo Sitabo

Gulabo Sitabo

Have you seen the movie Gulabo Sitabo? 

Set in Lucknow, it tells the story of two men (Amitabh Bachchan and Ayushmann Khurrana) bickering over a ruined manor house.

Mirza Nawab (Bachchan) wants to get rid of Baanke (Khurrana) and her family to have Fatima Mahal’s ordinance for himself, once his wife (who’s the real owner) passes away.

A feisty Baanke has no plans to oblige and matches Mirza barb-for-Lucknowi-barb. If and how the two reconcile their differences form the follow-up to the story.

Watch now on Amazon Prime Video.

2. Youngistaan

Have you seen the Romantic drama Youngistaan? 

This movie starred Jackky Bhagnani and Neha Sharma in the lead roles. And even if you haven’t watched this movie, I’m sure you must have heard this song, ‘Suno Na Sangmarmar’ by Arijit Singh.

It’s shot in Ambedkar Park in Lucknow which was built by the former Chief Minister of UP Mayawati and is located in Gomti Nagar.

Watch now on Amazon Prime Video.

3. Tanu Weds Manu

Tanu Weds Manu - Shooting in Lucknow

Okay okay, I’m sure you already know this one but just in case you don’t, Tanu Weds Manu was also shot in Lucknow.

Tanu Weds Manu swayed people with its desi Uttar Pradesh vibes. Shot predominantly in Lucknow, this romantic drama flick showcases a few stills from Safed Baradari in Lucknow.

With Kangana Ranaut, R Madhavan, and Jimmy Sheirgill playing key roles, Tanu Weds Manu presented the streets and alleyways of Lucknow. 

A scene showed Jimmy’s character asking Manu to take Tanu to a shop for her wedding. This was filmed in the main lobby of Baradari, which is located in the Kaiserbagh region. This landmark was built during the Nawabi era and has been preserved as one of the city’s heritage sites. Baradari is beautifully ornate with chandeliers and iconic interior pieces. 

Btw, this is totally out of context but the way Mr. Sharma looks at Tanu in the movie… just aww.

Watch now on Netflix.

4. Ishaqzaade

Ishaqzaade

All the Ishaqzaade fans out there, did you know that this movie was also shot in Lucknow?

This romantic debut movie of Arjun Kapoor received a lot of good critique and love from the audience.

If you watch it properly, you’ll realize it didn’t only show the essence of political drama and love but also the great representation of Lucknow and its heritage. 

Watch now on Amazon Prime Video.

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5. Lucknow Central

Lucknow Central
Source: Netflix

“What’s in a name?”

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Well, a lot.

As clear from the name already, this Farhan Akhtar movie was also shot in Lucknow.

This movie has some really interesting moments and a gripping plot to hold your attention. And apart from a few scenes, it has enough thrills to keep you invested.

Farhan has been shown as a guy from a small town with big dreams of becoming a musician. As the movie progresses, he lands up in jail but what happens eventually leads to the interesting part. And I don’t know if you know this already but it’s based upon real events.

Watch now on Netflix.


Don’t Miss: Life in Lucknow – What is it like to live in the ‘City of Nawabs’?


6. Gadar

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Well, I am sure everyone has watched Gadar here. If not, at least accept that you have watched your parents watching it on Zee Cinema when you were in school, no?

And, you know what? I can totally predict your favorite scene from the movie. The hand pump scene it is, right?

Well, did you know that the “Hand Pump” sequence of the movie Gadar was shot in Lucknow? I know I know.

“Hindustan Zindabad”

Watch now on Zee5.

If you’re interested in reading about Hindustan’s development, then don’t miss out on: 9 Mega Projects In India Underway In 2021

7. Always Kabhi Kabhi

This Red Chilies Production with Ali Fazal among others was shot almost at the famous College La Martinière de Lucknow.

Set against the background of a high school, the movie contained shots of this premier Educational institute of the city.

La Martinière College for Boys was founded in 1845 and is the only college in the world to receive Royal War honors. The College played a major role in the Mutiny of 1857 for which it has received worldwide acclaim.

Watch now on Amazon Prime Video.

8. Shatranj Ke Khiladi

Shatranj Ke Khiladi
Source: Hotstar

Set against the backdrop of the Oudh (Avadh) annexation, this Satyajit Ray classic, captured stills of the exquisite Bara Imambara.

The minarets and domes of the Imambara served as the perfect backdrop for the film and gave it the authenticity of a project as requested.

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Built by the fourth Nawab of Avadh, Nawab Asaf-Ud- Daula the Bada Imambara is one of the main tourist attractions of Lucknow. It is an extremely unique structure in the sense that its design was obtained through competition and the tomb of the winner, Kifayatullah adorns the main hall of the building to date.

Built during the time of the Great Famine, the main aim of building the Imambara was to generate employment.

Watch now on Hotstar.


Bollywood’s tryst with Lucknow is not only limited to the above-mentioned movies alone. Movies like Bullett Raja, Ladies vs Ricky Bahl, and Omkara amongst have also featured several locations in and around Lucknow, distinctly.

Mention in the comments what you like the most about Lucknow city.

What do you think?

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