Don is a 1978 Bollywood action film, produced by Nariman Irani and directed by Chandra Barot, with music by Kalyanji Anandji and lyrics by Anjaan. The film stars Amitabh Bachchan, Zeenat Aman, Pran, Iftekhar, Helen and Om Shivpuri, Satyen Kappu and Pinchoo Kapoor. It became a box office success. It has gained cult film status in India.
Don [Amitabh Bachchan] is the leader of an underworld gang until Police Officer DSilva [Iftekhar] tracks him down and in an attempt to catch him ends up killing him. But Dons death is only known to DSilva. So Officer DSilva tracks down a lookalike of Don named Vijay. Vijay impersonates Don to take down the rest of Dons gang while the DSP promises him that he will give a proper education to his wards who are actually the children of Jasjit [Pran].
Meanwhile, Jasjit comes out of prison after serving his jail term, only to find Officer DSilva having a red diary that would show Vijays true identity. Officer DSilva is killed by Malik who is introduced as the Interpol officer, but is in fact the real king of the underworld. Its now a race to retrieve the diary in which the DSP has documented the substitution of the real Don with the innocent Vijay.
One famous dialogue of movie is "Don ko pakadna mushkil hi nahin namumkin hai" [it is not just difficult to catch Don, but it is impossible]
Don begins, true to its title, as the story of one of the most powerful men in the business of crime, who in spite of being one of the most wanted on the list of Interpol, remains elusive to the police. Along with the police, Don makes a few other enemies through his merciless approach to running his organization, especially when he kills one of his own men, Ramesh, when Ramesh decides to leave the business. This introduces Don to two new enemies, Kamini [Helen], Ramesh''s fiancee, and Roma, [Zeenat Aman] Ramesh''s sister. When Kamini seduces Don and attempts to have the police arrest him, her plan backfires as Don outsmarts her and the police in his escape, and in the process Kamini loses her life.
A shattered, revenge-seeking Roma first trains in judo and karate, then enters Don''s gang after deceiving them into thinking that she too is on the wrong side of the law. Don is impressed with her fighting skills and allows her to work for him, without realizing her true intentions. Meanwhile, after a couple of unsuccessful attempts at nabbing Don, the police finally succeed, but Don dies during the pursuit, botching Officer D''Silva''s plan to reach the source of all crime-the man Don reported to-through capturing Don alive. D''Silva buries Don''s body, ensuring that people believe that he may still be alive. As luck would have it, D''Silva remembers his chance encounter with Vijay, a simpleton trying to survive in the hustle and bustle of Bombay in order to support two small foster children, who bears a striking resemblance to Don. D''Silva hatches a plan to transform Vijay into Don and place him back into the crime nexus, but this time as a police informer.
Around the time Vijay "returns" to Dons gang as Don under the guise of amnesia, Jasjit, just released from jail, begins his mission of revenge against D''Silva and his search for his children Deepu and Muni, who had been saved and taken care of by Vijay. Roma, hellbent on eliminating Don in order to avenge her brother''s death, is suddenly introduced to the fact that Don is dead and the man she is trying to kill is actually Vijay.
Meanwhile, as Vijay learns more and more about Don through his discovery of his diary and Roma''s help, he announces to his colleagues that his memory is back and meanwhile hands the diary over to D''Souza. Celebrations ensue, as Don announces his return to the world, but things take a drastic turn when the police raid the celebrations, and Vijay''s only witness to his true identity, D''Silva, dies in the crossfire.
Tangled in a web of confusion where the police refuse to believe that he is Vijay, whereas his underworld gang realizes that he is indeed not Don, Vijay becomes not only hated by the police, but also by Don''s right-hand man, Narang, and the rest of his gang. To add to Vijay''s woes, Don''s diary which he had handed over to D''Souza-his last hope of proving his innocence-is stolen by Jasjit in an attempt to track down his lost children, without realizing that Vijay is the one man who can reunite them. Vijay escapes the clutches of the police and the underworld with Roma''s help and returns to his old self though he struggles to prove his identity and innocence. The ending reveals a shocking twist in the tale where Vijay discovers who is truly on his side, and who is against him.
The Soundtrack is by the duo Kalyanji and Anandji Shah, and the lyrics were given by Anjan and Indivar. Accolades were presented to Kishore Kumar and Asha Bhosle at filmfare for the tracks Khaike Pan Banaraswala and Yeh mera Dil respectively. These two tracks were also used in a remake of the movie.
|Main hon Don
|Khaike Pan Banaraswala
||Kishore Kumar and Amitabh Bachchan
|Jiska mujhe tha intezar
||Kishore Kumar and Lata Mangeshkar
|Yeh mera Dil
* Amitabh Bachchan won a filmfare award for best actor. This movie became a milestone in Indian Cinema.
* Asha Bhosle won a Filmfare award, for the song "Yeh Mera Dil".
* Kishore Kumar won a Filmfare award, for the song "Khaike Paan Banaraswala."
Don has elements of Shakti Samantas film China Town  and is apparently inspired by it. The movie had Shammi Kapoor playing the double roles of both a gangster and his lookalike - a common man turned informer.
Don was itself later remade several times in several different languages:
*Don was first remade in 1979 in Telugu as Yugandhar, starring N.T. Rama Rao and Jayasudha. In 2009, a second Telugu remake Billa was released, with Jayasudha in a guest role.
*Another remake was made in Tamil titled Billa , starring Rajnikanth. The film was then remade in Hindi starring Shahrukh Khan, titled Don - The Chase Begins Again. The latter film was also inspired by the Tamil directors and made Billa,Don - The Chase Begins Again emerged as one of the biggest blockbusters.
*In 1986, the movie was remade in Malayalam as Sobharaj , starring Mohanlal.
*The first Hindi remake was titled Dav Pech , starring Jeetendra. It was unsuccessful.
*Duplicate , directed by Mahesh Bhatt and starring Shahrukh Khan and Juhi Chawla, is partly a parody of Don.
*A second Hindi remake made by Farhan Akhtar [son of Javed Akhtar who co-wrote the original film, and is also credited for contributing to the plot of this remake], Don - The Chase Begins Again , starred Shahrukh Khan, Priyanka Chopra, Boman Irani, Arjun Rampal, Isha Koppikar, Om Puri and Kareena Kapoor. The movie incorporated several plot changes with respect to the originals plotline.
*Following the mammoth success of Don - The Chase Begins Again, Farhan Akhtar has decided to launch a Don franchise. The second & third films in the series are, Don 2 - The Chase Continues & Don 3 - The Chase Ends respectively, which will be shot in January 2010 and released in early 2011 or late 2010. The starcast of its prequel will return.
*The 2007 Hollywood movie The Death and Life of Bobby Z had a similar premise to this movie, i.e. a lookalike of a gang leader is asked to masquerade as him by law enforcement officer[s], though the remainder of the plot was largely different. The movie received negative critical and commercial reactions.
*A film with the similar plot line was made starring Bollywood actress Rekha. The film was named Madam X. The plot was similar that the look-a-like of a Don replaces him after the Don was actually caught/died. The look-alike was used to catch the whole gang which has international network in drugs and smuggling. The film Madam X also has the same plot but the lead character is a female [done by rekha] as in Original it was male. This film has the plot that the female gangster is caught and replaced in the gang by her look-alike who was a road singer. This film was not a big hit but shown the acting prowess of Rekha who was on her top in the industry when the film was released.
A sample from the song "Ye Mera Dil Pyaar Ka Diwana" was also used by the Black Eyed Peas for their hit 2005 song "Dont Phunk with My Heart". The song won the Black Eyed Peas their first Grammy Award for Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group, while the composers for "Ye Mera Dil Pyaar Ka Diwana", Kalyanji Anandji, were awarded the BMI Award for being the originators of the melodies used in "Dont Phunk with My Heart".
Behind the scenes
Producer and cinematographer Nariman Irani was in a financial mess when his film Zindagi Zindagi  starring Sunil Dutt flopped. He was in debt for Rs12 lakhs and couldnt pay it off on a cinematographers salary. When he was doing the cinematography for Manoj Kumars major hit Roti Kapada Aur Makaan , the films cast [Amitabh Bachchan, Zeenat Aman, Pran] and crew [assistant director Chandra Barot] decided to help him out. They all recommended that he produce another film and that they will participate in the film. They all approached scriptwriting duo Salim-Javed, who gave them an untitled script that had already been rejected by the entire industry. The script had a character named Don. Bachchan would play Don, and Barot would direct the film. Aman and Pran would play key roles in the film.. The film took three-and-a-half years to complete. Before filming was completed, producer Irani had an accident on the set of another film he was working on, and died as a result. Barot faced budget restraints but he got help.. Aman did not take any money for her work in the film.. Barot showed it to his mentor Manoj Kumar, who felt that the film was too tight and needed a song in the midst of the action-filled film, and so "Khaike Paan Banaraswala" was recorded. The film was released without any promotion on 12 May 1978 and was declared a flop the first week. Within a week, the song "Khaike Paan Banaraswala" became a big hit, and word of mouth spread, so by the second week, the film was also declared a big hit. The profits from the film were given to Iranis widow to settle her husbands debts.
Source : Don Wiki Page