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Ashoka the Great (2001)

Asoka (original title)
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1:42 | Trailer

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The epic tale of King Asoka's life is recounted here.

Director:

Santosh Sivan

Writers:

Saket Chaudhary (screenplay), Santosh Sivan (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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2 wins & 17 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Shah Rukh Khan ... Asoka
Kareena Kapoor ... Kaurwaki (as Karriena Kapoor)
Danny Denzongpa ... Virat
Rahul Dev ... Bheema
Hrishitaa Bhatt ... Devi
Gerson Da Cunha Gerson Da Cunha ... King Bindusara (as Gerson da' Cunha)
Subhashini Ali Subhashini Ali ... Dharma (as Subhashini)
Umesh Mehra Umesh Mehra ... Emperor Chadragupta
Sooraj Balaji Sooraj Balaji ... Prince Aryan
Johnny Lever ... Magadha Soldier
Raghuvir Yadav ... Magadha Soldier
Suresh Menon ... Magadha Soldier
Ajith Kumar ... Susima
Shilpa Mehta Shilpa Mehta ... Queen - Susima's Mother (as Shilpa A. Mehta)
Rajlaxmi R. Roy ... Bar Girl (Aa Tayar Ho Ja)
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Storyline

Prince Ashoke (Shahrukh Khan), heir to the Magadha Kingdom, bowing to his mother's (Shilpa Mehta) demand forsakes his princely status and goes to live in the wild for awhile. There he meets and falls in love with Kaurwaki (Kareena Kapoor). He identifies himself as Pawan, not wanting to disclose his identity yet. Ashoke has to return to Magadha, but when he returns to find and wed Kaurwaki, he is told by Bheema (Rahul Dev) that Kaurwaki and her brother Arya have been killed. Devastated Ashoke returns home. On the way home he is attacked and Devi (Hrishitaa Bhatt), of the Buddhist faith rescues him and tends to him till he gets well. As a result, Devi's marriage to her groom is cancelled. Ashoke weds her and brings her to Magadha, only to be told by his father that since Devi is not of the same race as he, she cannot be welcomed. Ashoke leaves with Devi and lives in Ujjaini. Soon Devi gets pregnant, and this arouses jealously and hatred amongst Ashoke's step-brothers. As a result they ... Written by rAjOo (gunwanti@hotmail.com)

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Only the dead have seen the end of war.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

India

Language:

Hindi

Release Date:

26 October 2001 (India) See more »

Also Known As:

Ashoka the Great See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

INR 130,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$337,464, 28 October 2001, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$702,777, 11 November 2001
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(International) | (uncut) | (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Sandeep Chowta was the guest composer for the instrumental piece "Asoka theme"; he also composed the background score of the film. See more »

Alternate Versions

The version referred on the US DVD released by First Look Pictures Home Entertainment, also known as the Director's Cut, is listed at 152 minutes but actually runs 169 minutes. Several features distinguish this from the uncut version. First, it is a 24 fps print running at 25 fps. Second, several cuts are present that interrupt the flow of the narrative in the uncut version, particularly in several exchanges between characters in the time between the first and second songs, and in the time between the fourth and fifth songs. Furthermore, the shot of Virat's actual death is completely missing in this version. See more »

Connections

Featured in The Story of India: The Power of Ideas (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Raat Ka Nasha - II
Written by Gulzar
Composed by Anu Malik
Performed by K.S. Chitra and Abhijeet
Courtesy of Sony Music India
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Terrific legend; very well made film
16 August 2004 | by lochnessmummySee all my reviews

It's really hard for me to evaluate Indian films. Although they appeal to me, I live in a world totally alien to theirs. What I see as a film being interrupted by unnecessary music videos, they might see as the marriage of two vibrant, vital aspects of their culture.

That said, Asoka is a film that I enjoyed very much. The story is epic, complex, and deeply layered, and it almost had me crying in the end (VERY few films can do this). The cast is fantastic, and they did an excellent job. The costumes and the sets were equally great. It's runtime is at 2 hours 45 minutes, but I was left hoping it was going to go a little bit longer. I wanted to know what happened to Davi, and I wanted to learn a few things from Asoka's latter days --when he embarked on his journey towards peace.

This film is great, and I'm looking forward to seeing it again.


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