10 Bollywood Flicks That Inspired Us To Take Up Boxing As A Sport

10 Bollywood Flicks That Inspired Us To Take Up Boxing As A Sport View All Articles

Posted On: 16 Feb 2020 | Last Updated: 13 Sep 2021


Bollywood has produced quite a few sports-based films of which cricket has been one such sport, which has drawn the most attention by our audiences for obvious reasons. With a volley of sport’s biopics hitting the marquee off late one wonders why a sport like boxing that requires a lot of skill, discipline, and focus has not received its due yet in India. Though boxing is a sport that has been popular for many years but only a handful of our filmmakers have gone ahead to make a film based or revolve around it. If we look back at our Bollywood films, we could figure out only a handful of flicks, which were based on boxing. Here, we check out the top 10 popular films other than the lesser-known movies like 'First Love' (1961), 'Bandu Boxer' (2006), 'Narayan' (2017), 'Medal Pet Nahi Bharta' (2018), and 'V For Victor' (2019), which inspired us to take up the sport.


1. Boxer (1965)

Probably the first Bollywood flick to have the sport of boxing as its central theme, which starred Dara Singh in the titular role with Mumtaz as his love interest. Yesteryear director Radhakant Sharma who along with Dara Singh made many action thrillers like Toofan, Rakhi Aur Rifle, Ganga Maang Rahi Balidan, etc had directed this sports drama. This action flick never got the attention it deserved compared to Dara Singh’s other action dramas.

Boxer (1965)

2. Main Intaquam Loonga (1982)

Dharmendra’s action drama where he played a boxer who despite his mother's warning pursues the sport only to realize later that his father was killed by the villain in an unfair fight in the boxing ring. Dharmendra avenges his father’s death by knocking out the villain and his men in the ring. T. Rama Rao directed the film while Reena Roy played the romantic lead opposite Dharmendra and Amrish Puri played the main villain.

Main Intaquam Loonga (1982)

3. Boxer (1984)

Boxer was director Raj N. Sippy’s Bollywood remake of Sylvester Stallone’s Rocky, which has become a cult sports drama over the years. The film’s storyline was somewhat altered to suit the desi audiences where Mithun Chakraborty plays a small-time thief before he takes up boxing as a sport, a sport which had snatched everything away from his drunkard father, Danny. The film was received well at the box-office as Mithun had just started to cast his magical spell among the audiences. Rati Agnihotri played his love interest while Sharat Saxena was his opponent in the ring.

Boxer (1984)

4. Aryan: Unbreakable (2006)

This sports drama film written and directed by Abhishek Kapoor had boxing as its central theme where Sohail Khan played a boxer who aims to win the National Boxing championship defeating his close rival, Inder Kumar. However, Aryan was an honest effort to bring out the portrayal of what a sportsman goes through in his life for his family but it failed to generate enough interest among the audiences. The Aishwarya Rai lookalike Sneha Ullal who made her debut opposite Salman Khan in Lucky: No Time For Love, played Sohail Khan’s wife in this sport action drama.

Aryan: Unbreakable (2006)

5. Apne (2007)

Talk about the top 10 Bollywood movies based on boxing and you are soon reminded of Apne which was released in 2007 and promoted the spirit of boxing. The film saw the coming of all three Deol’s together for the first time in a frame – Dharmendra, Sunny Deol, and Bobby Deol. Apne had all the ingredients that a typical action masala film should have while the bonding was evident between the father and sons. Katrina Kaif, Shilpa Shetty, and Kirron Kher played the female leads while director Anil Sharma tasted success at the box office with this sports revenge drama.

Apne (2007)

6. Mary Kom (2014)

Talk about the top 10 Bollywood sports entertainers and boxing legend Mary Kom does not get a mention would be unfair. The sports biopic Mary Kom was the awe-inspiring story of India’s world champion woman boxer Mary Kom who was portrayed by Priyanka Chopra on the silver screen while Omung Kumar directed it. Mary Kom remains the most popular woman’s sports biopic on boxing to date which also performed very well at the ticket counters.

Mary Kom (2014)

7. Saala Khadoos (2016)

Saala Khadoos was another action sports drama that revolved around boxing starring R. Madhavan and Ritika Singh and directed by Sudha Kongara. This Tamil - Hindi bilingual portrayed how a boxing coach picks a girl fighter from the streets and trains her in the sport who goes on to win accolades in the discipline. Boxing yet again proved to be the winner in this engaging tale. The film was later remade in Telugu as Guru with Venkatesh replacing Madhavan as the coach while Ritika was retained.

Saala Khadoos (2016)

8. Mukkabaaz (2018)

Anurag Kashyap’s Mukkabaaz had an uncanny resemblance to the storyline of Medal Pet Nahin Bharta which showcases the life of sportsmen after retirement. The sports action drama, which received critical acclaim, had Vineet Kumar Singh playing the titular role while Jimmy Sheirgill was pitted against him. Mukkabaaz was a realistic portrayal of a small-town state-level boxing champion who despite against all odds and the weird sporting system in our country comes out triumphant.

Mukkabaaz (2018)

9. Toofaan (2021)

The pair of Farhan Akhtar and Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra returns with yet another sports drama after the successful Bhaag Milkha Bhaag (2013) in 2021. Titled Toofaan, this film which had to release in 2020 got delayed due to the pandemic, revolves around the sport of boxing where Farhan Akhtar plays a national-level boxer who fights his way up to triumph against all odds. Also starring Paresh Rawal, Mrunal Thakur and Isha Talwar, the film is directed by Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra and produced by Farhan Akhtar, Ritesh Sidhwani, P.S. Bharathi and Rajiv Tandon.

Toofaan (2021)

10. Hawa Singh (2020)

Hawa Singh is a biopic of Indian ace boxer Hawa Singh Sheoran from Haryana state who had won the National Championships for 11 consecutive years from 1961 to 1972. He also won gold at the 1966 and 1970 Asian Games and was awarded the Dronacharya Award in 1999. Sooraj Pancholi will be seen portraying the role of the late boxing champion in the movie while Salman Khan produces it and Prakash Nambiar directs it.

Hawa Singh (2020)