Meet 16 Famous Husband – Wife Director Jodi's Of Bollywood

Meet 16 Famous Husband – Wife Director Jodi's Of Bollywood View All Articles

Posted On: 16 Aug 2021 | Last Updated: 26 Oct 2021

A director is one who determines the creative vision of the film. Even though he or she may not appear in front of the camera, the director is the most important person on a film set. Earlier this industry was male dominant, a female director was rare to see. Females were usually confined to acting, wardrobe designing, and art direction or were seen co-producing the movies with their husbands. However, the trends have changed and today we see several talented females or woman directors in the Bollywood industry. Some of them followed their director husbands’ footsteps and were motivated to wield the megaphone and some inspired their husbands to try their luck in film direction. Let’s meet these 15 famous ‘Husband-Wife’ Jodi Directors of Bollywood.

1. Shirish Kunder – Farah Khan

Farah Khan and Shirish Kunder are one of the top Bollywood husband-wife directors jodi's, currently. Farah Khan, a dance choreographer turned film director, made her debut in film direction with Shahrukh Khan starrer Bollywood movie Main Hoon Na (2004). She is the recipient of several awards in the category of Best Choreographer and has choreographed dance routines for over 100 songs. Other movies directed by her are Om Shanti Om (2007), Tees Maar Khan (2010), and Happy New Year (2014). Farah Khan married Shirish Kunder in 2004. Inspired by his wife, Shirish tried his hand in film direction. He made his debut as a film director with the musical romance Jaan-E-Mann (2006) starring Salman Khan, Akshay Kumar and Preity Zinta. Other movies directed by Shirish are Joker (2012), the short movie Kriti (2016), and Mrs. Serial Killer (2020).

Shirish Kunder – Farah Khan

2. Kumar Sen Samarth – Shobhna Samarth

Kumar Sen Samarth and Shobhna Samarth are probably the first husband-wife pair of Bollywood directors. Kumar Sen and Shobhna Samarth were distant cousins, they married in 1935 and had 4 children including famous actresses Nutan and Tanuja. Kumar Sen belonged to a Marathi family and had directed several Marathi and Hindi films like Nal Damyanti and Rupaye Ki Kahani (1948). Shobhna Samarth who was already a famous actress and appeared in movies like Do Diwane (1936), Bharat Milap (1942), Ram Rajya (1943), Veer Kunal (1945), etc., continued her acting career and also became a film director after marriage. She made her debut in film direction with Hamari Beti (1950) which starred her daughters Nutan and Tanuja. The other movie she directed was Chhabili (1960) that also had both her daughters.

Kumar Sen Samarth – Shobhna Samarth

3. Ketan Mehta – Deepa Sahi

Ketan Mehta, an Indian film director and nephew of a freedom fighter – Usha Mehta, started his career as a Bollywood film director with movie coming-of-age drama film Holi (1984) and has directed critically acclaimed films like Mirch Masala (1987), Mangal Pandey: The Rising (2005), Rang Rasiya (2014) and Manjhi: The Mountain Man (2015). He married Bollywood actress, Deepa Sahi who appeared in movies like Maya Memsaab, Oh Darling! Yeh Hai India and Aar Ya Paar. Deepa Sahi too took to film direction and after directing a few animated movies, she finally directed the comedy-drama Tere Mere Phere (2011) starring Vinay Pathak and Riya Sen.

Ketan Mehta – Deepa Sahi

4. Aamir Khan – Kiran Rao

Aamir Khan, one of the most influential actors of Bollywood, is also a producer and director. In 2007, he directed and produced Taare Zameen Par, the film was critically acclaimed and well-received by the audience. After divorcing his first wife Reena Dutta, Aamir married Kiran Rao, whom he met on the sets of Lagaan: Once Upon a Time in India in 2001. Kiran started her career as an assistant director and later made her debut as a film director with Indian drama Dhobi Ghat (2011). The film was released internationally and was co-produced by Aamir Khan.

Aamir Khan – Kiran Rao

5. Mahesh Bhatt – Soni Razdan

Mahesh Bhatt, one of the most successful film producers and directors started his career in Bollywood as a director with the controversial film Manzilein Aur Bhi Hain (1974). One of the best films of his earlier period in the industry was Saaransh (1984), other important movies directed by him are Aashiqui (1990), Dil Hai Ki Manta Nahin (1991), Sadak (1991), and Hum Hain Rahi Pyar Ke (1993). He married actress Soni Razdan in 1986 after divorcing his first wife Kiran Bhatt. They have two children together – actress Alia Bhatt and writer Shaheen Bhatt. Soni who has acted in films like Mandi (1983), Saaransh (1984), Trikal (1985), Kaal Chakra (1988), Sadak (1991), Sir (1993), Raazi (2018), etc., decided to wield the megaphone and made her debut as a film director with the 2005 psychological thriller Nazar, starring Meera, Ashmit Patel and Koel Purie. She also directed Love Affair starring Ali Fazal and Kalki Koechlin which remains unreleased.

Mahesh Bhatt – Soni Razdan

6. R. Balki – Gauri Shinde

Considered one of the top Bollywood husband-wife directors duo's is R. Balki and Gauri Shinde. R. Balki was an Ad film director before he directed the critically acclaimed Amitabh Bachchan and Tabu starrer Cheeni Kum (2007). He went on directing other successful films like Paa (2009), Shamitabh (2015), Ki & Ka (2016), and Pad Man (2018). In 2007, he married Ad-film director Gauri Shinde, who decided to try her luck in film direction with English Vinglish (2012) starring Sridevi. The movie was well-received by the audience and critics and earned her several awards, she soon directed her second film the coming-of-age drama film Dear Zindagi (2016) with Alia Bhatt and Shah Rukh Khan.

R. Balki – Gauri Shinde

7. Anthony D'Souza – Jasmine D'Souza

Anthony D'Souza and his wife Jasmine D’Souza also figure in the list of Bollywood’s husband-wife jodi’s. Anthony D’Souza who started his career as a film director with the action-romantic thriller Blue (2009) starring Sanjay Dutt, Akshay Kumar, Lara Dutta, and Katrina Kaif has also directed movies like Akshay Kumar starrer Boss (2013), and Azhar (2016) starring Emraan Hashmi. In 1998, he married former model and actress Jasmine D’Souza who appeared in the 2003 suspense thriller 88 Antop Hill. Jasmine D’Souza turned director with the Sunny Leone starrer erotic romantic drama One Night Stand in 2016.

Anthony D'Souza – Jasmine D'Souza

8. R.K. Nayyar – Sadhana

R.K. Nayyar was a famous writer, director, and producer who made his directorial debut with the romantic drama Love in Simla (1960) which starred Sadhana and Joy Mukherjee. During the making of the film, he fell in love with actress Sadhana whom he later got married to. Some other movies directed by him were Yeh Raaste Hain Pyar Ke (1963), Aao Pyar Karen (1964), Intaquam (1969) and Qatl (1986). Sadhana also took up film direction, after her acting career started to fade away, she directed the action-thriller Geetaa Mera Naam (1974) starring herself along with Sunil Dutt and Feroz Khan.

R.K. Nayyar – Sadhana

9. Anubhav Sinha – Ratnaa Sinha

One of Bollywood’s commendable director is Anubhav Sinha who has made films in all genres and touched upon sensitive issues which were well-received by the audience and praised for its everlasting music. His filmography boasts of films like Tum Bin (2001), Dus (2005), Ra.One (2011), Mulk (2018), Article 15 (2019), and Thappad (2020). He married TV director and writer Ratnaa Sinha, who made her debut as a Bollywood film director with the 2017 romantic drama Shaadi Mein Zaroor Aana starring Rajkummar Rao and Kriti Kharbanda which turned out to be an average earner at the box-office.

Anubhav Sinha – Ratnaa Sinha

10. Nitesh Tiwari – Ashwini Iyer

Nitesh Tiwari is rated among Bollywood’s top producers, writers, and directors who has delivered two blockbuster movies in the form of Dangal (2016) and Chhichhore (2019). He has also directed Chillar Party (2011) that earned National Film Award for Best Children’s Film and Best screenplay while his Bhoothnath Returns (2014) starring Amitabh Bachchan was quite successful at the box-office. He and his wife Ashwini Iyer are the filmmaker duo, who’ve grown together in the film industry. They met on the sets of an advertisement shoot and fell in love and got married. Ashwini started her career in film direction with the comedy-drama Nil Battey Sannata (2016) starring Swara Bhaskar which was followed by Bareilly Ki Barfi (2017) and Panga (2020).

Nitesh Tiwari – Ashwini Iyer

11. Asrani – Manju Asrani

Govardhan Asrani, or commonly known as Asrani, is a famous comedian actor, and director who has been in Bollywood for over five decades, he has been seen in supporting roles in several movies like Guddi, Bawarchi, Abhimaan, Namak Haraam, Chupke Chupke, Sholay, Tapasya, Nikaah, Hoshiyar, and Bol Bachchan. He has also directed movies like Chala Murari Hero Banne (1977), Salaam Memsaab (1979), Dil Hi To Hai (1992) and Udaan (1997). He fell in love with his co-star actress Manju Bansal-Asrani on the sets of Aaj Ki Taaza Khabar, and soon married her. Manju who had acted in films like Namak Haraam, Tapasya, Kabeela, Chandi Sona, and Jurmana, also tried her luck in film direction in the 1995 movie Maa Ki Mamta which starred Rajni Bala, Rita Bhaduri and Kulbhushan Kharbanda.

Asrani – Manju Asrani

12. Vikas Desai – Aruna Raje

One of the top Bollywood directors jodi's was that of Aruna Raje and Vikas Desai. Aruna Raje who is a famous Indian film director and editor married actor-director, Vikas Desai. They have co-directed three Bollywood movies together – Shaque (1976), Gehrayee (1980), and Situm (1982). Later, they got divorced but continued directing films independently. Aruna Raje has written and directed several movies like Rihaee (1988), Bhairavi (1996), and Tum – A Dangerous Alert (2004).

Vikas Desai – Aruna Raje

13. Bedabrata Pain – Shonali Bose

Bedabrata Pain is an Indian scientist turned director who married film director and writer Shonali Bose. Bedabrata had directed the critically acclaimed Manoj Bajpayee starrer Chittagong (2012), in which he used digital imaging technology that he invented along with other NASA scientists. He had co-produced his wife Shonali’s directorial debut film Amu (2005) starring Konkona Sen which was based on Shonali’s own novel by the same name. Shonali Bose has also independently directed critically acclaimed movies like Margarita with a Straw (2015) and The Sky Is Pink (2019).

Bedabrata Pain – Shonali Bose

14. Nachiket Patwardhan – Jayoo Patwardhan

This lesser-known husband-wife jodi of Jayoo Patwardhan and Nachiket Patwardhan are film directors and writers. Though they had a short-lived yet noteworthy career in Bollywood, together they have art directed as well as designed costumes for Utsav and directed Marathi and Hindi films like 22 June 1897 (1979) and Anantyatra (1985) starring Naseeruddin Shah, Anuradha Patel, Sudhir Joshi, and Rohini Hattangadi.

Nachiket Patwardhan – Jayoo Patwardhan

15. Siddharth Singh - Garima Wahal

Siddharth - Garima is an Indian Bollywood scriptwriter duo, comprising of husband and wife – Siddharth Singh and Garima Wahal. They are known for their story, screenplay, dialogues, and lyrics work in Goliyon Ki Rasleela Ram-Leela (2013), Toilet: Ek Prem Katha (2017), Raabta (2017), Batti Gul Meter Chalu (2018) and Kabir Singh (2019). They are growing in the industry with their brilliant and unconventional stories and soon they’ll make their debut as film directors with the 2022 movie Dukaan starring Monika Panwar that follows the story of a surrogate mother.

Siddharth Singh - Garima Wahal

16. Tapan Sinha - Arundhati Devi

Director Tapan Sinha who made films in Bengali, Hindi, and Oriya was married to Indian actress, director, writer, and singer Arundhati Devi who predominantly was known for her work in Bengali cinema than Hindi. Tapan Sinha who was also a producer, writer, composer, and cameraman had directed a few movies in Bollywood namely – Zindagi Zindagi (1972) starring Sunil Dutt and Waheeda Rehman, Sagina (1974) starring Dilip Kumar and Saira Banu, Safed Haathi (1977) and Ek Doctor Ki Maut (1990) starring Pankaj Kapoor and Shabana Azmi. Arundhati Devi had directed a solo Hindi film by the name of Gokul (1985) starring Tanuja, Dipendra Acharya, and Manoj Mitra.

Tapan Sinha - Arundhati Devi