Dil Hi Dil Mein (2000) aka Kadhalar Dhinam, My first hybrid dubbing experience.

When I saw Dil Hi Dil Mein (2000), I felt like a genius, or an idiot, or both.  I kept thinking that since this was originally a Tamil movie titled Kadhalar Dhinam (1999), that is was probably dubbed into Hindi.  But then I’d see scenes where the lips were completely synching up with the Hindi, and Bollywood actors like Anupan Kher and Johnny Lever.  These guys don’t do Tamil movies, right? I felt like I did when I was a kid seeing dubbing for the first time in some Godzilla film on TV some Saturday afternoon.  As a 5 year old watching that, I knew there was something off with the voices; adult women pretending to talk like kids for the children’s parts, and lips not matching up with the voices.  Well here’s the genius part, when doing my post movie internet research I read this:

The film’s success prompted Hindi Distributors to dub the film in Hindi as “Dil Hi Dil Mein”. However, director Kathir had actually reshot scenes in Hindi featuring actor Kunal and Anupam Kher [Replacing the Kunal-Manivannan tracks] conversing in Hindi while Johnny Lever’s scenes replaced the Goundamani Tracks [Even though he appeared briefly for the Chand Aaya Haisong] with the same Titanic hairdo. Even the tracks dubbed from the Tamil version were re shot with Hindi synchronization sans for the first line of Roja Roja. Actor Nasser, though dubbed in Hindi, had given his Hindi synching in the song “Sawar Gayee”. Though actors Kunal and Sonali Bendre had synched their dialogues in Hindi, the rest of the film was dubbed and became a flop at box office. (wikipedia)

So there!  It’s not completely dubbed over, since some portions were actually re shot in Hindi, so those no-dubbing lips were completely synchronized, since they were speaking Hindi after all.  So this is what I will now term a hybrid dubbing film, since I don’t know what else to call it. Do you?  Here’s a bit about the film:

Kadhalar Dhinam meaning Lover’s Day (English) is a 1999 Tamil film directed by Kathir. This film is based upon love which started upon an internet chatroom and how it developed. The movie stars Kunal, Sonali Bendre, Nassar, Manivannan, Goundamani, Rambha, Visu and Chinni Jayanth. This film was also known as the transition film between the 20th Century and the 21st Century.Produced by A.M. Rathnam and the music was composed by A.R. Rahman. The film was released April 1999 and was a box-office record breaker.(wikipedia)

What I enjoyed most in this movie is the story of how Rosa’s wealthy, accomplished father, played by the very handsome Nassar, once was an orphan. Who doesn’t love a good orphan story? With his orphan background, he’s naturally drawn to help out Raja, who he has no idea is in love with his very own daughter!

Orphans unite! Here are some images to show the rough start Roja’s daddy had before winning his hard earned success. 

Well one of the things wrong with begging in this case was that they didn’t give the little girl milk, so she’d cry with passion and get more money from begging.  But they went too far and she died.

As an young orphan boy, Roja’s dad, aka son of the eclipse, was blamed for his sister’s death, since her begging money went to pay his tuition and satisfy his lust for education.

Well it sounds to me like his mom was projecting her guilt over her beti’s death onto her son. I hope he eventually grew to understand this. I do love these neglected orphan tales though.  All the suffering!

I found the Dorthy Hammil hair of the lead star, Kunal, distracting.  For those who aren’t old enough to recall, Dorthy Hammil was the gold medel winning figure skating darling of the 1975 Olympics, who stormed the world with her sassy hairdo.

Even Johnny Lever’s character wore the Dorthy Hammil hair:

“…and your tresses look like those of Dorthy Hammil.”

When I tried to find out more about Kunal, I was saddened to see that he committed suicide on Feburary 7, 2008, which is incidentally my birthday.  I heard Dorthy Hammil interviewed on the radio recently and she spoke of her struggles with depression, which must have been what Kunul suffered from, since untreated depression is the cause of suicide.  So sad.  But we have this nice movie to remember him by.

Now on a lighter note, who doesn’t like dancing with sticks? Do you know if there’s an official name for this style of stick dancing? You can see it here in “Daandiya Aattam,” from DHDM, with music by A.R. Rahman:

Thanks to memsaab for coming through with the answer to my question.  The dancing with sticks is called dandiya raas which has an interesting history you can read about at Dandiya: The Great Indian Social Dance. Look! The type of dance is right there in the title of the song, “Daandiya Aattam.

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17 thoughts on “Dil Hi Dil Mein (2000) aka Kadhalar Dhinam, My first hybrid dubbing experience.

  1. Sita-ji,

    Interesting about the dubbing issue! I’ve never seen a Tamil movie, or heard about this one in Hindi, but I’m intrigued…some of the scenes look cool! Love that eclipse.

    Yikes, though, that Dorothy Hamil hairdo looks horrid on Johnny Lever!

  2. Hey, I know this song very well. It’s on my A R Rahman Introduction CD, but I didn’t know the film it came from. It’s lovely to see it here. What a beautiful dance scene! The colours are … more co-ordinated than often in big numbers like this. Even on the tiny YouTube screen I can see that it is a work of art. Thanks for sharing.

  3. I never saw this movie or knew it was dub until you told me last time. All I can remember about the movie is that is said to be like the Hollywood movie “You Got Mail.” I hate dubbing too. I used to watch so many martial arts movies when I was a kid and dubbed in English. I hate that. Even the Indian movies dub in Hmong, I hated, lol. I think Sonali is beautiful and miss her. She was never the best actress but I miss seeing her on screen.

  4. I love the music from this film although I haven’t seen it…the dancing is called dandiya raas and I think it may be Gujurati in origin, although I wouldn’t put money on that.

    I had a Dorothy Hamill haircut in high school when it was big. One of the best haircuts I ever had! But not so great on men in general.

  5. Nida,
    Yes the partial/hybrid dubbing was weirder that full dubbing. I also thought that maybe that played a part in that in Hindi the movie was a flop (according to the wikipedia info.) and in Tamil it was a blockbuster. And yes, that Dorthy Hamill cut is better suited to women and maybe only good for young boys.

    Thanks for your visit. I have an “Intorducing AR Rahman” CD which is great and I eventually end up seeing a movie where I recognize the tune from the CD, which is fun. You’re right about the color coordination of the big number being well done.

    Yes the dubbing is so distracting! I’ll take subtitles anyday over dubbing. Thougth dubbing can be funny for a short time. I saw a dubber of American movies in Mexico on TV a while back and he said how they will use the same voices over and over for dubbing the same actors for continuity. I do like Homer Simpson dubbed in other languages though. :) Oh, btw, I think it’s another movie that’s got its inspiration from “You’ve Got Mail,” but this one does have nuances of that film, but they aren’t enemies that fall in love via email, just young people who meet first through a chat room, and then through email encounters. Now I need to know the other Hindi movie that’s a closer version of “You’ve got Mail.”

    THANKS! I’ve ammended the post to add the information you provided about the dandiya raas dance form. I appreciate it. You are correct about the Dorthy Hamill, best for women and girls. I definately was a super cute hair cute. Maybe it will return!

  6. Hey what a great website! I was looking for more info on this film …as I was in it!! Yes, I was only an extra in it and was only on set for one day. I was the white guy with blonde hair playing the bongos in a big dance scene starring Ramba. I can tell you that it was a Tamil film and on my day of filming was done in Madras. I only knew the english name of the film ‘Lover’s day’. Ah, good memories! Does anyone know of any websites selling the original Tamil cut of the film – or even the Hindi version?

  7. James!
    WOW! I think you’re the first movie star to post here! Welcome! Of course I remember you from the movie and that scene, since I ALWAYS check out my gori/gora (white) people with extra envy and scrutiny. I think “what’s their story? How did they get in the film? Who do they know? I could do that!”
    (In this post I talk a bit about some of the white actors in Namastay London) :)

    So James tell us your story. Did you get the gig because you’re a professional musician? Did you talk to the stars? Was the catered set food good? How long did the shoot take. Did they pay you in cash or did you volunteer? What studio was this filmed in? Do tell!

    I checked out where the film can be purchased and found a couple sources for you:



    Thanks for your visit!

  8. Pingback: Websites tagged "chatroom" on Postsaver

  9. I am lookig for dil hi dil mein english subtitle. I will translate turkish if I find EN subtitle. Please help me to find EN sub. e-mail:ceka39@hotmail.com

    • ceka39-ji,
      I got my copy of the movie from the library. I went into the data base and it said the following:

      Title When hearts collide [videorecording] / director, Kathir ; produced by A.M. Rathnam.

      Imprint Chatsworth, CA : Image Entertainment, 2007.

      Edition [English subtitled, widescreen version].

      That’s about the only help I can give you about the copy I saw that had the English subtitles. I hope someone out there reading this may be able to help you more. All the best and thanks for that translation offering.

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