Bollywood in Italy – Land of Pizza, Pasta & Dream Vacations

Talk about Italy in Bollywood films, and the song that instantly comes to the mind is ‘Do Lafzon Ki Hai Dil Ki Kahani’ from the movie ‘The Great Gambler’ starring (Amitabh Bachchan & Zeenat Aman). The entire song was shot on a Gondola boat in Venice.

Many more movies have been shot in Italy post that, the more recent one being the song from ‘kambakkht ishq’ featuring Kareena Kapoor and Akshay kumar dancing to the catchy tune ‘lakh lakh’, which was shot in venice (in and around st mark’s square).

If you’re an Italian, I’m sure you just can’t help wondering how come more and more Bollywood movies keep getting filmed in Italy at a time when fewer Italian movies are getting produced.

Well, that’s a fact and probably to do with ‘Supply & Demand’. Bollywood films are in demand and they also have huge budget nowadays. The good news for most foreign countries is that Bollywood filmmakers can now shoot abroad, which means more money for the local economy & more tourists from India. Definitely, a win-win situation!

Lauren Gottlieb shared pictures from here holidays in Italy.

Bollywood Movies Shot in Italy

In recent times, ‘Bachna Ae Haseeno’ (a major hit at the box-office) had prominent scenes shot in Gargano, Salento, Capri, Rome and Venice. The fact that ‘Apulia Film Commission’ (a regional organisation) provided all the support required to the film crew only paved the way for more hindi films to be shot here.

Since then, Kambakht Ishq (shot in Vicenza and Venice) and House Full (shot in Puglia and the Gargano coastline) have been filmed in Italy.

Popular Bollywood movies shot in Italy, include Bachna Ae Haseeno, Housefull, Jeans, Kambakkht Ishq, Rockstar, Sangam, Great Gambler, Shaadi No. 1.

Actress Rani Mukherjee got married to film-maker Aditya Chopra in an Italian countryside; the wedding ceremony was a very hush-hush affair and attended only by close family friends.

Khuda Jaane’, romantic song from ‘Bachna Ae Haseeno’ shot in Venice and other Italian locations

Here’s the song ‘Lakh Lakh’ from ‘Kambakkht Ishq’ shot near St Mark’s Square in Venice

Watch the song ‘Do Lafzon Ki Hai Dil Ki Kahani’ from the movie ‘The Great Gambler’ which was shot in Venice.

Italy Woos Bollywood Filmmakers

Most countries now firmly believe that Indian films are the best ambassadors to promote tourism to their respective countries. And Italy is no different!

The Italian Film Commission has been actively working with the Indian film industry since the shooting of ‘Bachna Ae Haseeno’ here. They’re aware that Indian filmmakers have big budgets now, they also know that film producers prefer European countries for shooting, especially during monsoons (in India) so that they can continue shooting.

They also know that the moment a movie, which is shot in Italy, is a hit, it will remain etched in the lives of Indians forever.

So getting Indian filmmakers is not just simply advertising, its actually an investment for a lifetime.

Did you know that Salvatore Ianniello, head of ENIT (the Italian State Tourist Board) promoted Italy’s fabulous locales to Bollywood filmmakers, including Sajid Nadiadwala, and that was one of the reasons why Sajid chose Italy as one of the locations for his movie Kambakkht Ishq.

The efforts of the Italian Tourism board seems to have paid off in a big way as the locales in Vicenza and Venice are now the hot spots for Indian tourists; after all its where Akshay Kumar and Kareena Kapoor romanced in Kambakkht Ishq.

Deepika Padukone at St Marks Square in Venice, Italy
italy venice st-marks square, bachna ae haseeno

Bollywood in Italy

Cross-cultural relations with Italy are working both ways. Several popular Bollywood films are being shown at local film festivals and also on television.

On a community level, more Italians now know a lot about Bollywood and India.

For instance, 23-year-old Italian Valentina Manducchi has started her own Bollywood dance group in Rome where she gets students of Italian, Bangladeshi, British and Chinese origins. She feels that Bollywood, with its mix of styles from traditional Indian dance to hip-hop, appeals to both east and west and so can be a meeting ground and a chance to start a dialogue and an understanding between communities.

‘Love ki Ghanti’ Similar To ‘Bella Ciao’?

This one probably didn’t become a huge issue because the movie ‘Besharam’ tanked at the box office.

But when the movie as about to release, there were reports that suggested that the song ‘Love ki Ghanti’ was similar to an Italian tune ‘Bella Ciao’.

Lalit Pandit, music composer, clarifies that the 1940s anti-fascist song was in the public domain and that was the reason they decided to use the song as it fit the bill perfectly.

Checkout these two songs for yourself.

Bella Ciao – ORIGINALE

‘Love ki Ghanti’ song from the movie Besharam

Italy Tourism

From north to the south, Italy has a variety of sightseeing options. Because of its culture, artistic treasure and its old civilization – from the Roman Empire to the Renaissance, one will have a different feeling & emotion in each corner of Italy.

Indian National Congress President Sonia Gandhi was born in Lusiana, Italy. In 1965 she met Rajiv Gandhi in England, who was enrolled in Trinity College at the University of Cambridge. Sonia and Rajiv Gandhi got married in 1968 following which they moved to India.

Rajeev & Sonia Gandhi

Tourism is one of Italy’s most profitable sectors, people visit Italy mainly for its rich art, history, fashion and culture, its beautiful coastline and beaches, its mountains, and priceless ancient monuments.

The best part about the country is that the landscape changes dramatically when you go up north from the south, but then it doesn’t take long at all to cover that distance.

Another thing to relish when in Italy is obviously its food; its popular all over the world. So don’t forget to indulge in pizzas, pastas and other Italian cuisine, when you’re in Italy.

The Colosseum of Rome, though partially ruined, continues to be a very popular tourist attraction in Rome.

Capital: Rome
Dialing code: 39
Currency: Euro
Official language: Italian Language

Checkout this video of Destination Italy.

Italy Denies Permit to Bollywood Film Crew, Seen As Retaliation
We really hope that this doesn’t blow into a full scale escalation. Some time back, two Italian sailors aboard an an Italian oil tanker opened fire on a small Indian fishing trawler near the Indian coast, believing it approached the Italian vessel in order to illegal board it. Two Indian fishermen were killed in that incident. The events that have unfolded since then remains a significant sore spot in relations between Italy and India. Read more here…