Most Watched Bollywood (Hindi) Movies of All Time (1940-2019) - Movies with Highest Footfall Ever

May 17, 2020

Most Watched Bollywood (Hindi) Movies of All Time (1940-2019) - Movies with Highest Footfall Ever

Every year hundreds of movies are released in theaters in India. Out of which most of them are unbearable. Whereas, few of them leave their footprint behind. Among these, few films remain in our hearts forever and emerge as a cult classic. Out of these only a selected one creates and smashes box office records and their records stay for an era or for decades.

So, which are those movies that are repeatedly watched by theater-going audiences? Which are the all-time most-watched movies of Bollywood (Hindi Cinema)? And how to compare these great films of each era with another great film of different eras?

It is very difficult to compare great Bollywood films of each era. For example, comparing a movie made in the 50s or 60s is much difficult with movies made in today's time. However, there is one parameter by which we can compare films of each era. That parameter is 'footfall' and it means the number of tickets sold.

Again, theater footfalls have decreased over the years. The reason, the boom of satellite channels over the years, and also now digital (OTT) medium joining the fun. Earlier there was only one source of entertainment as far as movies are concerned and that was to watch the film in the theaters. Because of that footfall, in general, was highest in the 50s, 60s, 70s, and till the early 80s. However, with the invention of VCR/VCD and cable operators, there was a gradual decrease in theater visiting footfalls.

Another point of discussion is that. Earlier in the 50s, 60s, 70s, and 80s people were habituated to watch a particular film in theaters multiple times. We have heard many stories that people go in groups to watch a particular film for 5-6 times or even more. It also led to an increase in footfall despite fewer people watching that film. Hence, even a footfall comparison is not foolproof.

Still, we are making a list of films, whose footfalls are 3 crores or more. These are the most-watched films of all time. We hope you like the article. However, it is totally unfair to compare a film of say 60s with post-2000s. 

Around 72 movies have (most certainly) touched or crossed 3 crore footfalls. Also, we have given honorable mention to another 22 films which are either very close to 3 crore footfalls or may have actually touched this magical landmark. 

Again, kindly note that these are all estimates, but we are sure that it is very close to the actuals.

List of Most Watched Bollywood (Hindi) Films (1940-2019) of All Time (in Footfalls only)

1. Sholay (1975) - 11-12 crores [15 crores or even more if we include re-runs] (Starring - Dharmendra, Amitabh Bachchan, Sanjeev Kumar, Amjad Khan, Hema Malini, Jaya Bachchan)

2. Hum Aapke Hain Koun (1994) - 7.4 crores (Starring - Salman Khan, Madhuri Dixit Nene)

3. Mughal-E-Azam (1960) - 7-7.5 crores (Starring - Dilip Kumar, Madhubala, Prithviraj Kapoor)

4. Mother India (1957) - 6-7 crores range (Starring - Nargis, Sunil Dutt, Rajendra Kumar, Raaj Kumar)

5. Baahubali 2 (Hindi) - 5.25 crores (Starring - Prabhas, Rana Daggubati, Anushka Shetty, Tamannaah)

6. Ganga Jamuna (1961) - 5-5.25 crores (Starring - Dilip Kumar, Vyjayanthimala)

7. Muqaddar Ka Sikandar (1978) - 5-5.25 crores (Starring - Amitabh Bachchan, Vinod Khanna, Amjad Khan, Raakhee, Rekha)

8. Gadar (2001) - 5.06 crores (Starring - Sunny Deol, Amisha Patel)

9. Sangam (1964) - 5 crores (Starring - Raj Kapoor, Rajendra Kumar, Vyjayanthimala)

10. Amar Akbar Anthony (1977) - 5 crores (Starring - Amitabh Bachchan, Vinod Khanna, Rishi Kapoor, Parveen Babi, Neetu Singh, Shabana Azmi)

11. Kranti (1981) - 5 crores (Starring - Manoj Kumar, Dilip Kumar, Shashi Kapoor, Hema Malini, Shatrughan Sinha, Parveen Babi)

12. Dharamveer (1977) - 4.75-5 crores (Starring - Dharmendra, Jeetendra, Zeenat Aman, Neetu Singh)

13. Maine Pyar Kiya (1989) - 4.75-5 crores (Starring - Salman Khan, Bhagyashree)

14. Dilwale Duhania Le Jayenge (1995) - 4.8 crores (Starring - Shah Rukh Khan, Kajol)

15. Bobby (1973) - 4-4.25 crores (Starring - Rishi Kapoor, Dimple Kapadia)

16. Raja Hindustani (1996) - 4.1 crores (Starring - Aamir Khan, Karishma Kapoor)

17. Mere Mehboob (1963) - 4 crores (Starring - Rajendra Kumar, Sadhana, Ashok Kumar)

18. Jai Santoshi Maa (1975) - 4 crores

19. Ram Teri Ganga Maili (1985) - 4 crores (Starring - Rajiv Kapoor, Mandakini)

20. Naya Daur (1957) - 3.75-4 crores (Starring - Dilip Kumar, Vyjayanthimala)

21. Vidhaata (1982) - 3.75-4 crores (Starring - Dilip Kumar, Shammi Kapoor, Sanjeev Kumar, Sanjay Dutt, Padmini Kolhapure)

22. Coolie (1983) - 3.75-4 crores (Starring - Amitabh Bachchan, Rishi Kapoor, Rati Agnihotri)

23. Roti Kapada Aur Makaan (1974) - 3.75 crores (Starring - Manoj Kumar, Amitabh Bachchan, Shashi Kapoor, Zeenat Aman, Mousumi Chatterjee)

24. Shree 420 (1955) - 3.5-4 crores (Starring - Raj Kapoor, Nargis, Nadira)

25. Upkar (1967) - 3.75 crores (Starring - Manoj Kumar, Asha Parekh)

26. Aankhen (1993) - 3.75 crores (Starring - Govinda, Chunky Pandey)

27. Border (1997) - 3.75 crores (Starring - Sunny Deol, Suniel Shetty, Akshaye Khanna, Jackie Shroff)

28. Dangal (2016) - 3.7 crores (Starring - Aamir Khan, Fatima Sana Shaikh, Zaira Wasim, Sanya Malhotra)

29. Kismet (1943) - 3.5-3.75 crores (Starring - Ashok Kumar)

30. Naseeb (1981) - 3.5-3.75 crores (Starring - Amitabh Bachchan, Hema Malini, Rishi Kapoor, Shatrughan Sinha, Reena Roy)

31. Rattan (1944) - 3.5-3.6 crores

32. Kuch Kuch Hota Hai (1998) - 3.57 crores (Starring - Shah Rukh Khan, Kajol, Salman Khan, Rani Mukerji)

33. Bajrangi Bhaijaan (2015) - 3.54 crores (Starring - Salman Khan, Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Kareena Kapoor Khan, Harshaali Malhotra)

34. Waqt (1965) - 3.5 crores (Starring - Sunil Dutt, Raaj Kumar, Sashi Kapoor, Sadhana, Sharmila Tagore)

35. Beta (1992) - 3.5 crores (Starring - Anil Kapoor, Madhuri Dixit Nene)

36. Johny Mera Naam (1970) - 3.5 crores (Starring - Dev Anand, Hema Malini)

37. PK (2014) - 3.5 crores (Starring - Aamir Khan, Anushka Sharma, Sanjay Dutt, Sushant Singh Rajput)

38. Trishul (1978) - 3.25-3.5 crores (Starring - Amitabh Bachchan, Sanjeev Kumar, Sashi Kapoor, Hema Malini, Raakhee, Poonam Dhillon)

39. Aradhana (1969) - 3.25-3.5 crores (Starring - Rajesh Khanna, Sharmila Tagore)

40. Anmol Ghadi (1946) - 3.25 crores (Starring - Surendra, Suraiya, Noor Jehan)

41. Aankhen (1968) - 3.25 crores (Starring - Dharmendra, Mala Sinha)

42. Sanyasi (1975) - 3.25 crores (Starring - Manoj Kumar, Hema Malini)

43. Qurbani (1980) - 3.25 crores (Starring - Feroz Khan, Vinod Khanna, Zeenat Aman, Amjad Khan)

44. Meri Awaaz Suno (1981) - 3.25 crores (Starring - Jeetendra, Hema Malini, Parveen Babi)

45. Madhumati (1958) - 3-3.25 crores (Starring - Dilip Kumar, Vyjayanthimala)

46. Jab Jab Phool Khile (1965) - 3-3.25 crores (Starring - Sashi Kapoor, Nanda)

47. Sultan (2016) - 3.2 crores (Starring - Salman Khan, Anushka Sharma, Randeep Hooda)

48. 3 Idiots (2009) - 3.18 crores (Starring - Aamir Khan, Kareena Kapoor Khan, Madhavan, Sharman Joshi)

49. Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham (2001) - 3.12 crores (Starring - Shah Rukh Khan, Hrithik Roshan, Amitabh Bachchan, Kajol, Kareena Kapoor Khan, Jaya Bachchan)

50. Tiger Zinda Hai (2017) - 3.09 crores (Starring - Salman Khan, Katrina Kaif)

51. Kaho Naa Pyaar Hai (2000) - 3.07 crores (Starring - Hrithik Roshan, Amisha Patel)

52. Khazanchi (1941) - 3 crores

53. Basant (1942) - 3 crores

54. Barsaat (1949) - 3 crores (Starring - Raj Kapoor, Nargis, Nimmi)

55. Awaara (1951) - 3 crores (Starring - Raj Kapoor, Nargis)

56. Aan (1952) - 3 crores (Starring - Dilip Kumar, Nimmi, Nadira)

57. Nagin (1954) - 3 crores (Starring - Pradeep Kumar, Vyjayanthimala)

58. Junglee (1961) - 3 crores (Starring - Shammi Kapoor, Saira Banu)

59. Phool Aur Patthar (1966) - 3 crores (Starring - Dharmendra, Meena Kumari)

60. Do Raaste (1969) - 3 crores (Starring - Rajesh Khanna, Mumtaz)

61. Haathi Mere Saathi (1971) - 3 crores (Starring - Rajesh Khanna, Tanuja)

62. Deewar (1975) - 3 crores (Starring - Amitabh Bachchan, Sashi Kapoor, Parveen Babi, Neetu Singh)

63. Dus Numbri (1976) - 3 crores (Starring - Manoj Kumar, Hema Malini)

64. Lawaaris (1981) - 3 crores (Starring - Amitabh Bachchan, Zeenat Aman)

65. Prem Rog (1982) - 3 crores (Starring - Rishi Kapoor, Padmini Kolhapure, Shammi Kapoor)

66. Betaab (1983) - 3 crores (Starring - Sunny Deol, Amrita Singh, Shammi Kapoor)

67. Mard (1985) - 3 crores (Starring - Amitabh Bachchan, Amrita Singh)

68. Ram Lakhan (1989) - 3 crores (Starring - Anil Kapoor, Jackie Shroff, Dimple Kapadia, Madhuri Dixit Nene)

69. Tridev (1989) - 3 crores (Starring - Sunny Deol, Jackie Shroff, Naseeruddin Shah, Madhuri Dixit Nene, Sangeeta Bijlani, Sonam)

70. Dil (1990) - 3 crores (Starring - Aamir Khan, Madhuri Dixit Nene)

71. Ghayal (1990) - 3 crores (Starring - Sunny Deol, Meenakshi Seshadri, Raj Babbar, Mousumi Chatterjee)

72. Khalnayak (1993) - 3 crores (Starring - Sanjay Dutt, Jackie Shroff, Madhuri Dixit Nene)


Honorable mentions - The list of Films that have closely missed the 3 crore footfalls (or may have actually touched this magical mark)

1. Tansen (1943) - (Starring - K.L Saigal)

2. Andaz (1949) - (Starring - Dilip Kumar, Raj Kapoor, Nargis)

3. Baazi (1951) - (Starring - Dev Anand, Geeta Bali, Kalpana Kartik)

4. Baiju Bawra (1952) - (Starring - Bharat Bhushan, Meena Kumari)

5. Anarkali (1953) - (Starring - Pradeep Kumar, Bina Rai)

6. Azaad (1955) - (Starring - Dilip Kumar, Meena Kumari)

7. Barsaat Ki Raat (1960) - (Starring - Bharat Bhushan, Madhubala)

8. Ayee Milan Ki Bela (1964) - (Starring - Rajendra Kumar, Saira Banu, Dharmendra)

9. Ram Aur Shyam (1967) - (Starring - Dilip Kumar, Waheeda Rahman, Mumtaz)

10. Seeta Aur Geeta (1972) - (Starring - Dharmendra, Hema Malini, Sanjeev Kumar)

11. Jugnu (1973) - (Starring - Dharmendra, Hema Malini)

12. Laila Majnu (1976) - (Starring - Rishi Kapoor, Ranjeeta Kaur)

13. Suhaag (1979) - (Starring - Amitabh Bachchan, Sashi Kapoor, Rekha, Parveen Babi)

14. Aasha (1980) - (Starring - Jeetendra, Reena Roy, Rameshwari)

15. Love Story (1981) - (Starring - Kumar Gaurav, Vijayta Pandit, Rajendra Kumar)

16. Hero (1983) - (Starring - Jackie Shroff, Meenakshi Seshadri, Shammi Kapoor, Sanjeev Kumar)

17. Tezaab (1988) - (Starring - Anil Kapoor, Madhuri Dixit Nene, Chunky Pandey)

18. Saajan (1991) - (Starring - Sanjay Dutt, Salman Khan, Madhuri Dixit Nene)

19. Karan Arjun (1995) - (Starring - Salman Khan, Shah Rukh Khan, Kajol, Mamta Kulkarni)

20. Dil Toh Pagal Hai (1997) - (Starring - Shah Rukh Khan, Madhuri Dixit Nene, Karishma Kapoor)

21. Dhoom 3 (2013) - (Starring - Aamir Khan, Abhishek Bachchan, Katrina Kaif, Uday Chopra)

22. Sanju (2018) - (Starring - Ranbir Kapoor, Vicky Kaushal, Anushka Sharma, Sonam Kapoor)

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5 comments:

  1. Another great article, very entertaining to go through the list and seeing the stars associated with the films.

    It would be interesting but possibly difficult to do, to adjust the collection to see had the movie rates been the same for each and every film, what the collections would be with the footfalls?
    Example, apply the most recent year (2019) average ticket price to all the movies on the list, just to see the figures in crores? Sholay would still be top, but would be interesting to see a figure in crores with the 2019 average ticket rate applying to the movie footfalls.

    Because in todays time, it is all about collection. How far would today's modern movies fall behind those high footfall movies.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Footfalls of some films are way higher than your estimates

    Mother India- 9-11 c
    Sholay- 15- 18 c
    Muqaddar ka Sikandar- 5.5-6 c
    Sangam- 6-6.5 c
    Bobby- 5.5-6 c
    Coolie- 6.5-7c
    Naseeb- 4.5-5 c
    Betaab- 4-4.5 c
    Mard- 4-4.5 c
    Don- 3.5 c

    Some of the films like Rattan, Kismet and some more old films have way higher footfalls but we have to wait for the updation


    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Tom Cruise,

      We have given bit conservative figures of old films. Yes, it is also true that actuals footfalls may be higher than our estimates. But we have tried to go close. Hope you liked the article. Thanks for the necessary suggestions. Cheers!

      Delete
  3. Also add purana mandir ( 1980 s morvie ) footfalls. It is 3 cr +

    ReplyDelete
  4. Amitabh Bachchan is leading the list.

    ReplyDelete

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