Farah Khan Kunder is an Indian film director, film producer, writer, dancer, actress, and choreographer who predominantly works in Hindi films. She is known for her film direction of Hindi films like ‘Main Hoon Na’ (2004), ‘Om Shanti Om’ (2007), and ‘Tees Maar Khan’ (2010).
Farah Khan Kunder was born as ‘Farahdeeba Khan’ on Saturday, 9 January 1965 (age 58 years, as of 2023) in Bombay (now Mumbai), India. Her zodiac sign is Capricorn. She attended the St. Teresa’s Convent School, in Mumbai and later pursued sociology at the St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai. Farah is settled in Mumbai, India.
Height (approx.): 5′ 3″
Weight (approx.): 65 kg
Hair Colour: Natural Black
Eye Colour: Dark Brown
Parents & Siblings
Farah Khan’s father, Kamran Khan, was a stuntman turned B-grade filmmaker and producer in Bollywood, and he passed away due to alcoholism when Farah was just 18 years old. Farah’s mother, Menka Irani, is an Indian actress.
She has a younger brother named Sajid Kamran Khan, who is a comedian, actor, and film director.
Farah Khan Kunder is the niece of Indian actresses Daisy Irani, and screenwriter Honey Irani.
Farah is also related to the Indian screenplay writer K.K. Shukla (Daisy Irani’s husband), and screenwriter, lyricist and poet Javed Akhtar (Honey Irani’s ex-husband)
Husband & Children
Farah Khan got married to her boyfriend and filmmaker Shirish Kunder on 9 December 2004.
In 2008, the couple was blessed with triplets, a boy named Czar, and two daughters Diva and Anya.
Farah Khan and Shirish Kunder started dating each other in 2004.
According to Farah Khan Kunder, she follows Islam, Hinduism and Zoroastrianism as her father was a Muslim, her husband is a Hindu, and her mother is a Parsi, respectively.
In 1992, Farah Khan Kunder made her Bollywood choreography debut with the Hindi sports film ‘Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikander’ in which she choreographed the romantic song ‘Pehla Nasha.’ In 1995, she choreographed the song ‘Ruk Ja O Dil Deewane’ from the Hindi musical romance film ‘Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge.’
In 1998, she choreographed the song ‘Chaiyya Chaiyya’ from the Hindi romantic thriller film ‘Dil Se..’ In the same year, Farah Khan was the dance choreographer of the Hindi musical romance film ‘Kuch Kuch Hota Hai. In 2010, Farah choreographed the song ‘Munni Badnaam Hui’ from the Hindi action comedy film ‘Dabangg.’ In 2012, she choreographed the songs “Ishq Wala Love” and “Radha” from the Hindi romantic comedy film ‘Student of the Year.’
In 2004, Farah Khan Kunder made her Bollywood directorial and scriptwriting debut with the Hindi masala film ‘Main Hoon Na.’ She also made a special appearance in the song “Yeh Fizaein” during the end credits.
In 2007, she wrote and directed the Hindi masala film ‘Om Shanti Om.’
In 2010, Farah Khan directed the Hindi heist comedy film ‘Tees Maar Khan.’
In 2014, she wrote and directed the Hindi dance heist comedy film ‘Happy New Year.’
In 2012, Farah Khan Kunder made her Bollywood acting debut with the Hindi romantic comedy film ‘Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi’ in which she played the role of Shirin Fuggawala.
In 2004, Farah Khan became the judge for season 1 of the Hindi singing reality show ‘Indian Idol’ which was aired on Sony TV. She also judged seasons 4 and 7 in the years 2005-2006, and 2016-2017.
She judged seasons 4 and 7 in the years 2008, and 2015, of the Hindi celebrity dance reality TV series ‘Nach Baliye’ which was aired on StarPlus.
In 2012, Farah became the judge for season 4 of the Hindi talent show series ‘India’s Got Talent’ which aired on Colors TV.
In 2015, Farah started her own Indian television cookery show named ‘Farah Ki Dawat’ which aired on Colors TV. In the same year, she replaced Salman Khan and became the host of the reality show ‘Bigg Boss Halla Bol.’
In 2022, she hosted season 3 of the Indian comedy game show series ‘The Khatra’ (now known as ‘The Khatra Khatra Show’) which aired on Colors TV and on the online streaming website ‘Voot.’
Trolled for hanging out with Vikas Bahl
In 2019, Farah Khan hosted a grand lunch at her house for some of her friends from the film fraternity like Hrithik Roshan, Sania Mirza, Kriti Sanon, Aditi Rao Hydari, and Diana Penty. The guest list also included the filmmaker Vikas Bahl, who was accused of sexual assault during the #MeToo movement. Farah posted a picture with all the guests on Instagram which didn’t receive a positive response from the netizens.
— NDTV Movies (@moviesndtv) July 15, 2019
Her followers on Instagram and Twitter started slamming her for hanging out with Vikas Bahl despite the charges against him. Some comments were very hurtful like “After everything Vikas did, how could this bunch of people stand next to him?.” It was also said that Farah Khan supports Vikas Bahl because her brother Sajid Khan was also accused of sexual harassment.
Ha Aap To Meeto Wale Ko Support KAROGE hi. Aapka bhai bi jo hai uss me.
— Filmy Cricket Fan (@RRP61670553) July 11, 2019
Filmfare Award For Best Choreography
- In 1998, Farah won the Filmfare Award For Best Choreography for the song ‘Dhol Bajne Laga’ from the film ‘Virasat’ (1997).
- In 1999, she won the ‘Best Choreography Award’ for the song ‘Chaiyya Chaiyya’ from the film ‘Dil Se..’ (1998).
- In 2001, she won the award for the song ‘Ek Pal Ka Jeena’ from the film ‘Kaho Naa… Pyaar Hai’ (2000).
- In 2002, she won the award for the song ‘Woh Ladki Hai Kahaan’ from the film ‘Dil Chahta Hai’ (2001).
- In 2004, Farah won the award for the song ‘Idhar Chala Main Udhar Chala’ from the film ‘Koi… Mil Gaya’ (2003).
- In 2011, Farah won the award for the song ‘Sheila Ki Jawani’ from the film ‘Tees Maar Khan’ (2010).
- In 2021, Farah won the award for the song ‘Dil Bechara’ from the film ‘Dil Bechara’ (2020).
National Film Award
- In 2003, Farah received the National Film Award at the 51st National Film Awards for Best Choreography for the song ‘Idhar Chala Main Udhar Chala’ from the Hindi film ‘Koi… Mil Gaya’ (2003).
- In 2004, Farah won the Best Choreography Award for the film ‘Kal Ho Naa Ho’ (2003).
- In 2005, she won the Best Debut Director Award for the film ‘Main Hoon Na’ (2004).
- In 2003, she won the Best Choreography Award for the film ‘Mujhse Shaadi Karogi’ (2004).
- In 2009, she won the Best Choreography Award for the film ‘Dostana’ (2008).
- In 2011, Farah won the Best Choreography Award for the film ‘Dabangg’ (2010).
- In 2013, Farah Khan received the ‘Stardust Searchlight Award for Best Actress’ for the film ‘Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi’ (2012).
- In 2015, Farah Khan received an award at the 21st Lions Gold Awards.
- In 2017, Farah received the ‘Popular Film Personality On TV Award’ at the Indian Television Academy Awards.
- In 2022, she received the ‘Pride of India’ Honour for her achievements and contribution towards Indian entertainment at the Society Achievers Award 2022.
- In 2022, she received the award for her contribution towards Indian cinema at the 5th Urja Awards presented by the Gravittus Foundation.
Farah Khan owns a BMW 730Ld, a Mercedes-Benz GL 350, and a Mercedes-Benz S 350.
Farah Khan’s net worth is estimated to be around Rs. 75 crores; as of 2022.
- Movie: ‘Main Hoon Na’ (2004)
- Travel Destination: London
- Book: ‘The Things You Can See Only When You Slow Down’ by Haemin Sunim
- Farah’s father was a Muslim, and her mother is a Parsi. Her parents parted ways when she was just 13 years old.
- In 2008, at the age of 43, she gave birth to her triplets through In vitro fertilization (IVF) treatment.
- Farah met Shirish Kunder in 2004, during the shoot of Farah’s film ‘Main Hoon Na’ (2004). Shirish was the editor of the film, and that is how they started to know each other. However, after their marriage, Farah wanted to run away as it was very difficult for her to adjust in the first year of their marriage. Shirish is eight years younger than Farah.
- In 1970, she was offered to play a child role in the film ‘Andaz’ (1971); however, her father denied the offer and decided that she would never act in the films.
- In 1990, Farah Khan was assisting the Indian film director Mansoor Khan who had started filming the song ‘Pehla Nasha’ from the film ‘Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar’ (1992) in Ooty, India. Saroj Khan was the choreographer of the song; however, she didn’t show up for the shoot. Mansoor Khan knew that Farah also dances and choreographs TV ads so he asked Farah to choreograph the entire song as he couldn’t afford to wait for Saroj Khan and waste his time and money.
- She always wanted to attend the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) in Pune but she couldn’t as she and her family couldn’t afford to do so.
- In 2004, for the film ‘Main Hoon Na,’ Farah became the second female director after Mira Nair to be nominated for the ‘Filmfare Best Director Award.’
- In 2007, Farah and her husband Shirish Kunder launched their own production company named Three’s Company Productions Private Limited. The company is named after their three children, Czar, Anya, and Diva.
- In 2006, MTV Video Music Awards (VMAs) invited Farah to New York to choreograph the Colombian singer Shakira on the Indian version of her song ‘Hips Don’t Lie.’
- In 2012, Farah Khan and Shah Rukh Khan stopped talking to each other after Shah Rukh slapped Farah’s husband, Shirish Kunder, at a party hosted by Sanjay Dutt. However, they both patched up later on, and Farah also revealed how Shah Rukh left his shoot in the middle to be with Farah when she was having a tough time emotionally.
- In 2014, Shah Rukh Khan gifted Farah Khan a Mercedes-Benz GL 350 as a pre-release gift for her film ‘Happy New Year.’
- In 2016, she performed a cameo of herself in the Indian trilingual comedy horror film ‘Devi.’
- Her father invested all his savings into a Bollywood film ‘Aisa Bhi Hota Hai’ (1971) which turned out to be a major flop, which caused bankruptcy in the family. Due to the failure, Farah’s father started drinking alcohol which caused major health issues resulting in his death. Farah Khan, her brother Sajid, and her mother struggled so much that they only had Rs. 30 when Kamran Khan passed away. Indian film producer and screenwriter Salim Khan gave some money to Farah and her family to perform her father’s last rites. They also lived in a storeroom for six years, at their relative’s house until they could afford to get a house for themselves.
- Farah loved dancing and used to dance a lot in her childhood days, and one day she heard her father telling his close friend Dara Singh that he would allow Farah to dance once she grew old. She had to stop dancing for a few years because her father didn’t allow her; however, she continued to pursue her passion after her father passed away.
- She enrolled for a Major in sociology at St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai; however, she was detained because of low attendance. Later, Farah had to complete her college in a sociology correspondence course.
- Farah didn’t like her birthname ‘Farahdeeba’ because her classmates used to tease her by calling her ‘dibba’ (a box), and that’s why she changed her name to just ‘Farah.’
- She didn’t have any formal training in dancing as she couldn’t afford it, and it was all self-learnt by just watching dance videos of Michael Jackson. She considers him her biggest inspiration for dance.
- Farah Khan and Shirish Kunder had three wedding ceremonies. They first had a registered court marriage followed by a Muslim nikah (Muslim wedding) and a Hindu wedding as per South Indian rituals. Indian actor Shah Rukh Khan and his wife Gauri Khan performed Farah’s Kanyadaan (giving away the bride) in the Hindu wedding ceremony. Shah Rukh is also Farah’s best friend.
- She never received any formal training in film direction, and she used to read and study books on the making of the film ‘Sholay’ (1975) in order to learn the technicalities of filmmaking. She considers the film ‘Sholay’ her biggest inspiration in film direction and also gives tribute to ‘Sholay’ in every film she directs.
- Farah would’ve been an architect or an interior designer if she wasn’t in the film industry.
- The inspiration for characters in the film ‘Main Hoon Na’ (2004) was taken from the Nehru Nagar Housing Society in Mumbai where Farah grew up. The traits were derived from Farah’s neighbours in society and were later portrayed by the actors in the film.
- Farah loves cooking at home and often shares pictures of her cooking on social media.
- She loves dogs and often shares pictures of playing with her dog on social media.
- Farah has worked in choreographing many international projects like ‘Marigold: An Adventure in India’ (2007), ‘Monsoon Wedding’ (2001), ‘Bombay Dreams’ (2002) and Chinese films like ‘Perhaps Love’ (2005), and ‘Kung Fu Yoga’ (2017).
- She is the second person to hold 7 Filmfare Awards for best choreography after Saroj Khan.
- Farah was the background dancer in many Bollywood film songs. Her first appearance was in the title song of the film ‘Kahan Kahan Se Guzar Gaya’ (1981).
- Farah Khan has made special appearances and done cameos in many famous Hindi films like ‘Kuch Kuch Hota Hai’ (1998), ‘Kal Ho Naa Ho’ (2003), ‘Om Shanti Om’ (2007), ‘Khichdi: The Movie’ (2010), and ‘Student of the Year 2’ (2019).
- She earned Rs. 300 per day for being the background dancer in the film ‘Jalwa’ (1987).
- Farah is close friends with many famous personalities like Karan Johar, Rajkummar Rao, Geeta Kapur, Tabu, Sania Mirza, Abhishek Bachchan, and Rohit Shetty.
- She consumes alcohol and is often spotted drinking alcoholic beverages with friends at parties and outings.
- Farah Khan is often known for her anger at the sets while shooting; however, in 2023, Indian actor Zayed Khan claimed that Farah abused and even threw her slipper at him during the shoot of ‘Main Hoon Na’ (2004).
- She is a travel enthusiast and often shares photos of her travel destination on social media.
- In 2021, she received the UAE Golden Visa for her contribution to Indian cinema and her achievements in films.
- In 2021, Farah Khan raised Rs. 16 crores for Ayansh Madan, a child suffering from a rare genetic disorder called Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA).
- In 2023, Farah Khan visited the Lalbaugcha Raja pandal in Mumbai to seek the blessings of the Ganpati idol on the occasion of Ganesh Chaturthi and later posted a video of the occasion on her Instagram handle. However, the filmmaker was trolled as some of the netizens objected to her visit and commented “I thought she was Muslim” on her post. Farah responded to the troller with one word and said “So?.” Another video of her struggling to walk and being guided through the crowd by her friends after seeking blessings of lord Ganesha surfaced on the internet, leading to her getting brutally trolled. Reacting to this, Farah made an Instagram post about explaining the situation.
- Farah Khan is a non vegetarian.
I’m sorry but I like being a non vegetarian. There are animals that eat meat and there are animals that eat plants. To co exist you need both. So I’m happy you are vegetarian and I’m happy to be non vegetarian. We balance each other out. 😊
— Farah Khan (@FarahKhanAli) August 1, 2020