Why is Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol's DDLJ back in the cinemas?

The romantic drama is the longest-running film in Indian history

Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol in Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge. Photo: Yash Raj Films
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Almost 27 years after its release, the Bollywood film Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge is back in cinemas, including in the UAE, for a week-long run timed for Valentine's Day.

DDLJ, as it's popularly known, is considered one of the greatest romantic Bollywood films. It is also the longest-running Indian film of all time, as it has been shown at Mumbai theatre Maratha Mandir since its release in October 1995.

Starring Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol in career-defining roles and directed by filmmaker Aditya Chopra, DDLJ changed the format of Bollywood romances forever. It ushered in a new era of exotic foreign locales and put the Indian diaspora front and centre of the story — a hitherto untapped market for Bollywood.

The film's music, by the duo Jatin-Lalit, was also a hit, and continues to be played at weddings and events today.

What is Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge about?

Not the most original of storylines, DDLJ centres around Raj Malhotra and Simran Singh, both from London, who meet while on a train journey across Europe and fall in love. But as fate would have it, Simran is already bequeathed, against her wishes, to the son of her father's childhood friend in India.

The rest of the film focuses on Raj attempting to prove his worth to Simran's father, even as his liberal upbringing clashes head-on with Simran's family's traditional values. But he refuses to elope with Simran, despite her eagerness, and is determined to only marry her after earning her family's approval — one of the many themes in the movie that struck a chord with audiences around the world.

DDLJ is showing in cinemas until Wednesday

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Updated: February 13, 2023, 1:18 PM