Abdullah (film)

Abdullah is a 1980 Indian Bollywood film that was directed by Sanjay Khan. The film starred Raj Kapoor, Abbas Khan, Zeenat Aman and Danny Denzongpa, with Sanjeev Kumar and Farida Jalal in minor roles. The story was written by George Marzbetuny, and Kader Khan wrote the dialogues. It was one of the most expensive Indian films at the time.[2]

Film poster
Directed byAbbas Khan
Produced byAsghar Ali
Abbas Khan
Zarine Khan
Written byKader Khan
George Marzbetuny
StarringRaj Kapoor
Abbas Khan
Zeenat Aman
Danny Denzongpa
Music byR.D. Burman
CinematographyV. Gopi Krishna
Edited byM. S. Shinde
Zafo Films Private Limited Productions[1]
Release date
  • 26 September 1980 (1980-09-26)
Box office14.79 crore ($15.6 million)


In an unspecified Arab country, Khaleel (Danny Denzongpa) is a dangerous outlaw bringing terror to the land. Sheikh Mohammed Al-Kamal (Abbas Khan) is a man of honour, who helps to protect people from harm and is asked by the government to help search for Khaleel. The quest to bring Khaleel to justice becomes a personal one for the Sheikh when his wife Zainab (Zeenat Aman) is injured during a bungled kidnap attempt by Khaleel.

Abdullah (Raj Kapoor) is a devout Muslim who lives in a small hut in the middle of the desert, and looks after a well which provides water to thirsty travelers. One day a friend, Ameer(Sanjeev Kumar), informs him that Khaleel had raided a settlement nearby, killing everyone except for Yashoda (Farida Jalal), a pregnant woman. Shortly thereafter, Ameer himself is killed, a mortally wounded Yashoda gives birth to a boy, names him Krishna, asks Abdullah to care for him, and passes away. Abdullah overcomes his fears of bringing up a Hindu boy, and looks after Krishna as his own son.

One day Khaleel's magician (Bob Christo) informs him that he is going to die at the hands of Krishna. Just as the Hindu deity Krishna once slew Kansa, his maternal uncle, so also will Khaleel's life end at this Krishna's hands. Angered by this, Khaleel sets out to kill Krishna. He attacks Abdullah, abducts Krishna and readies to kill the boy to get rid of any threat against him. In response, Abdullah and the Sheikh set out to stop this and to deal with Khaleel once and for all.



Lyrics written by Anand Bakshi.

1."Ae Khuda Har Faisla"Kishore Kumar2:23
2."Bheega Badan Jalne Laga"Asha Bhonsle3:37
3."Dance Music (Instrumental)"Rahul Dev Burman2:29
4."Jashne Baharaan Mehfile Yaaraan"Asha Bhonsle4:41
5."Allah Tera Nighebaan"Manna Dey5:19
6."Maine Poochha Chand Se"Mohammed Rafi5:09
7."Om Jai Jagdish Hare"Lata Mangeshkar4:52

Box office

Abdullah grossed 3.4 crore at the domestic Indian box office, making it 1980's 17th highest-grossing film in India. However, the film's performance at the domestic box office was deemed below average.[3] Its domestic Indian gross is equivalent to US$4.32 million in 1980, or US$13 million (87 crore) in 2016.[n 2] in 1980 (US$13 million (87 crore)[4] in 2016)

  • Soviet Union: 7.975 million SUR[n 3] (US$11.28 million,[n 4] 11.39 crore)[n 5] in 1983[5] (US$28 million or 181 crore[4] in 2016)


Despite under-performing at the domestic Indian box office, the film became an overseas blockbuster at the Soviet box office, due to Raj Kapoor's popularity in the Soviet Union. It drew an audience of 31.9 million Soviet viewers in 1983, the highest for an Indian film that year, making it one of the top 30 most popular Indian films in the Soviet Union.[5] The film's Soviet gross amounted to 7.975 million SUR, equivalent to US$11.28 million (11.39 crore) in 1983, or US$28 million (181 crore) in 2016.[n 2]

Worldwide, Abdullah grossed US$15.6 million (14.79 crore) by 1983, equivalent to US$40 million (268 crore) in 2016.[n 2]


  1. 7.8629 Indian rupees per US dollar in 1980<ref name='sauder'>http://fx.sauder.ubc.ca/etc/USDpages.pdf#page=3
  2. Abdullah: 14.79 crore or US$15.6 million by 1983 (268 crore or US$40 million in 2016)
    • India: 3.4 crore[3] (US$4.32 million)[n 1]
  3. 31.9 million Soviet tickets sold,[5] average ticket price of 25 kopecks[6]
  4. 0.707 Soviet rubles per US dollar in 1983[7]
  5. 10.0989 Indian rupees per US dollar in 1983[8]


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