This page uses content from Wikipedia and is licensed under CC BY-SA.
|Kal Ho Naa Ho|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Nikkhil Advani|
|Produced by||Yash Johar
|Written by||Karan Johar|
Shah Rukh Khan
Saif Ali Khan
|Narrated by||Preity Zinta|
|Edited by||Sanjay Sankla|
|Distributed by||Yash Raj Films|
|Box office||₹860.9 million[a]|
Kal Ho Naa Ho (English: Tomorrow may never come), also known as KHNH, is a 2003 Indian romantic drama film directed by Nikkhil Advani. The film features Jaya Bachchan, Shah Rukh Khan, Saif Ali Khan, and Preity Zinta as the lead characters, with Sushma Seth, Reema Lagoo, Lilette Dubey and Delnaaz Paul in supporting roles.
The film narrates the story of Naina Catherine Kapur, a pessimistic and uptight MBA student. She falls in love with her neighbour Aman Mathur, a terminally ill heart patient who, in turn, tries to get Naina and her friend, Rohit Patel to fall in love with each other as he does not wish to bring her pain with his death by reciprocating her feelings.
The film was written by Karan Johar, who co-produced it with his father Yash Johar under their Dharma Productions banner on a budget of ₹280 million. The dialogues were written by Niranjan Iyengar while Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy composed the musical score. Anil Mehta, Sharmishta Roy undertook responsibility for the film's cinematography and art direction, respectively. The film was shot in India, Toronto and United States, from January 2003 to October 2003.
Kal Ho Naa Ho was released on 27 November 2003 with a promotional tagline "A Story of a Lifetime... In a Heartbeat". The film was released on 27 November 2003 to positive reviews from critics. It became a commercially successful venture, earning ₹860.9 million, and emerging as the highest-grossing film of that year. The following year, the film won two National Film Awards, eight Filmfare Awards, thirteen International Indian Film Academy Awards, six Producers Guild Film Awards, three Screen Awards, and two Zee Cine Awards. The German Embassy in India paid homage to the film by releasing a short eight minute video based on it named Lebe jetzt.
Naina Catherine Kapur is a pessimistic and uptight MBA student who lives in New York City with her widowed mother, Jennifer Kapur, her biological brother Shiv and adopted sister Gia. Jennifer runs an unsuccessful restaurant along with her neighbour Jaswinder 'Jazz' Kapoor. Jennifer's mother-in-law, Lajjo, is cold towards both Jennifer and Gia, as she believes Gia's adoption led her son, Jennifer's husband, to commit suicide.
Naina has two best friends; her classmate Rohit Patel and Jaspreet 'Sweetu' Kapoor, Jazz's sister. Despite their presence, her life is dull and shadowed by her father's loss. This is until Aman Mathur and his family move in next door. Aman's cheerful attitude gradually win over Naina's family as he slowly starts to solve their problems, which includes changing the cafe into an Indian restaurant. Its success alleviates their financial burdens. Aman also encourages Naina to be happy and live life to the fullest. His efforts result in Naina falling in love with him.
Meanwhile, Rohit too falls in love with Naina and asks for Aman's help in confessing his true feelings. Naina informs Rohit that there is something she must say to him, leading Rohit to misinterpret that Naina reciprocates his feelings. Naina instead reveals that she is in love with Aman. A shaken Rohit calls Aman to tell him what had transpired. Naina arrives at Aman's house and is shocked when she sees a wedding photograph of Aman and his wife Priya on their wedding day. Heartbroken, Naina leaves without confessing her feelings.
Aman's mother confronts him about what has happened. Aman says that he too is in love with Naina but has decided to hide it as he is a terminally ill heart patient and will eventually bring Naina pain. He is also not married at all and Priya is, in fact, his childhood friend and doctor. Aman vows to bring Naina and Rohit together as he believes Rohit will be able to provide for her better than him. Aman embarks on a plan to transform Naina and Rohit's bond, and their friendship blossoms into love. Naina, however, discovers their plans and chides Aman for attempting to ruin her friendship with Rohit. Aman then takes out Rohit's diary and confesses his true feelings for Naina claiming they are Rohit's. Naina forgives both Aman and Rohit.
Soon after, Rohit proposes to Naina, which she accepts. One day, Lajjo and Jennifer argue about Gia, who calls Aman for help. He reveals to Lajjo, despite Jennifer's objections, that her husband had an affair and fathered Gia. When Gia's biological mother refused to accept her, Jennifer adopted her. Unable to deal with the guilt, Jennifer's husband took his own life. Lajjo realises her mistake and reconciles with both Jennifer and Gia.
During Naina and Rohit's engagement, Aman has a heart attack and, unknown to anyone besides his mother, is admitted to a hospital. Meanwhile, while shopping with Rohit, Naina encounters Priya, who she recognises as Aman's wife. After introducing herself and her husband Abhay, the latter reveals the truth about Aman. Shocked, Naina realises that Aman has sacrificed his love for her. She leaves the mall in an emotional frenzy. Priya informs Aman about what happened. Aman leaves the hospital urgently and meets with a frustrated Rohit, who questions why he should marry Naina and not Aman. On hearing this, Aman urges Rohit to marry Naina as a sign of respecting his dying wish to see Naina happy. Aman then meets Naina and they embrace as he tries to persuade Naina that he does not love her. Rohit and Naina's wedding, in which Aman participates, takes place soon after.
Sometime after the marriage, Aman is on his death bed and bids goodbye to everyone. He is left alone with Rohit after Naina leaves the room in tears. Before dying, Aman makes Rohit promise that while Naina belongs to him in this lifetime, Aman will be the one who gets Naina in the next. Twenty years later, Naina recalls how Aman impacted every aspect of their lives to a now grown-up Gia. They are joined by her daughter Rhea and Rohit, who reminds Naina that he loves her as they embrace.
After the release of Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham... (2001), its director and writer, Karan Johar, felt depressed after receiving polarising reviews for Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham..., despite becoming the second highest grosser of 2001 after Gadar: Ek Prem Katha. Johar then decided to make what he perceived as "a cool film" with "a different energy" from his previous films and began drafting the script for Kal Ho Naa Ho. The film was initially titled Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna, but Johar decided to keep the title as Kal Ho Naa Ho after hearing the song "Aisa Milan Kal Ho Naa Ho" from the 1997 film Hameshaa; he used the former for his 2006 film. Johar preferred not to direct the film himself to prevent from committing what was, according to his perception, mistakes he had made in Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham....[b]
Around the same time, Nikkhil Advani, who served as an assistant director for Is Raat Ki Subah Nahin (1996), Kuch Kuch Hota Hai (1998), Mohabbatein (2000), and Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham..., had planned to direct a spy thriller set in Kashmir featuring Shah Rukh Khan. Advani sent an initial draft to Johar and his father, Yash Johar, both of whom deemed it too be a controversial theme, and did not want Advani to take such a risky subject for his debut film. At this point, Johar narrated to him his script for Kal Ho Naa Ho. Advani agreed to direct on the condition that he would be allowed to make the film his way; Johar agreed. In an interview with Sukanya Verma of Rediff.com, Advani described Kal Ho Naa Ho as "the story of a family which is bogged down with a lot of problems", and how one man enters their lives "and solves all their problems and makes them realise how their problems are not as big as they are perceived to be."
In addition to Shah Rukh Khan, Jaya Bachchan, Saif Ali Khan and Preity Zinta were cast in the lead roles in December 2002. The first name of Shah Rukh Khan's character, Aman, was a departure from his previous collaborations with Johar as his first name in both Kuch Kuch Hota Hai and Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham... was Rahul. Salman Khan and Kareena Kapoor were initially offered the role of Rohit and Naina. While the former declined the offer for not wanting to play second fiddle, Kareena refused the role due to differences with Johar over her remuneration. The roles then went to Saif Ali Khan and Zinta respectively.
Neetu Singh was approached for the role of Naina's mother, Jennifer, but on her refusal, the role went to Bachchan, who was at first reluctant to play it. After Advani told her he would be making the film in the style of Hrishikesh Mukherjee and Gulzar, Bachchan immediately accepted the role as she considered both of them to be her favourite directors. Kajol and Rani Mukherji made special appearances in the song "Maahi Ve". Anaita Shroff Adajania, the fashion director of Vogue India magazine, featured in a cameo as Geeta, Naina and Rohit's classmate in their MBA course.
In addition to Johar writing the story and screenplay, he co-produced Kal Ho Naa Ho with Yash Johar under their home banner, Dharma Productions. The film was the last to be produced by Yash Johar before his death on 26 June 2004. The dialogue was handled by Niranjan Iyengar while Anil Mehta and Sanjay Sankla were hired as the cinematographer and editor respectively. Mehta also appeared briefly as Naina's father at the start of the film. Sharmishta Roy was in charge of the film's production design and Farah Khan choreographed the song sequences in addition to appearing as a customer in the Jennifer's cafe. Actor Arjun Kapoor worked as an assistant director in this film.
The costumes for the film were designed by Manish Malhotra. In an interview with Subhash K. Jha, Zinta preferred to have what she described as "a very 'preppy' look" similar to that of Ali MacGraw in Love Story (1970). She wore glasses to reflect Naina's initial serious nature. Zinta wore jeans and T-shirts to give the feeling of her character being a NRI.
Johar wanted Bachchan to wear trousers as he believed "it would be nice to see her in something unusual", and that visualising her in them "would be fresh for her." Bachchan accepted without hesitation, telling Johar: "If you are making it, I'll do it". Zinta personally sewed and designed the clothes for the dolls Gia, played by Jhanak Shukla, keeps just a day before scenes featuring them were filmed.
Johar and Advani wanted to have New York City as the setting for the film as both were fascinated by the city's environment. Johar went to New York while working on the film's script and stayed there for a month-and-a-half to three months,[c] studying the people, their culture, how they commute and the lifestyle of both Americans and NRIs there. According to him, he "sat in Central Park, stared at people, wrote the film, came back to Mumbai, narrated it to everybody, selected the cast."
Advani found New York City appealing to him as he believed it mirrored Naina's personality. He summarised the similarity between Naina and New York City by saying: "You can be surrounded by millions of people right in the middle of Grand Central station. And you can be extremely lonely." He had never been to New York City before and used the films of Woody Allen, Martin Scorsese, Rob Reiner and Nora Ephron as a source of inspiration for life in the city. Like Johar, Advani analysed everything about the city. He recalled:
When I went to scout for locations, I lived there for a month. I tried to imbibe everything there was in NY. I would just go and stand on the streets for an hour, observe people talking, make mental notes about how they walk, talk, how they don't look people in the eye. They are constantly on the move. I find that incredible.
Kal Ho Naa Ho was shot on a budget of ₹280 million. Filming commenced on 20 January 2003 in Mumbai. After the first four days of shooting, Shah Rukh Khan fell ill and told Johar he wouldn't be able to participate in the project. Advani, however, requested Johar to wait for Shah Rukh Khan to recover from his illness. It took Shah Rukh Khan six months to do so, during which scenes featuring Saif Ali Khan and Zinta were shot at Toronto in March-April 2003 for eight days, including the song "Kuch To Hua Hai". In an interview with Jha, Johar said he tried to finish the film in Toronto itself, believing it would "pass of" as New York City, to avoid budget problems, but felt the idea wouldn't work out as it wouldn't be original.
The production unit, consisting of eighty people, then moved to New York City for the next schedule in July 2003, with Shah Rukh Khan joining them. Advani and Mehta wanted to capture the change of seasons in New York City from winter to summer beforehand to show the transformation of Naina's personality in a better way. They were however unable to do so due to Shah Rukh Khan's illness. As a result, they filmed the portions in New York City during the summer season itself.
The shooting in New York City began on 15 July, covering areas in and around the Boroughs of New York City as well as Long Island. The street where Aman and Naina live was filmed in Brooklyn, where the unit camped for two weeks at the local suburban houses that were loaned to them by the residents. During the opening credits of the film, which show Naina jogging, Zinta had actually injured herself during filming of the scene leading to Advani getting a model to act as a jogging body double for her instead. The introduction sequence of Rohit in his office was shot on 2 August. The Northeast blackout of 2003 lead to the unit cancelling filming for two-three days. At one point, the cast and crew members bereft of food and water supplies. Overall, the schedule lasted for fifty two days. The final stage of the principal photography took place on 30 August 2003 at Mumbai where some of the song sequences were filmed at Filmistan Studios. The schedule took fifty days to film. Shooting was completed in October 2003 with "Maahi Ve" being the last sequence filmed.
Kal Ho Naa Ho continues the trend started by Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge where Indian family values are always upheld irrespective of the country of residence. Gayatri Gopinath, author of Impossible Desires: Queer Diasporas and South Asian Public Cultures, commented on how the film, like Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge asserted "the essential Indianness" of its characters, pointing out the entry of Aman Mathur gives them a sense of pride in their identity as Indians. Gopinath calls Aman "a patriarchal purveyor of the newly globalised India" and that his character represents how through globalisation, the people of India and its diaspora "smoothly function together in the interests of transnational capital." Gopinath states her statement is proved when Aman saves Jennifer Kapur's cafe by transforming it into an Indian restaurant, and replacing the American flag with the Indian tricolour.
Aman is compared by many critics to be similar to that of Rajesh Khanna's character, Anand Saigal, in Hrishikesh Mukherjee's Anand (1971). In both the films, the protagonist is diagnosed with terminal illness and believes in love and living life to the fullest.
|Kal Ho Naa Ho|
|Soundtrack album by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy|
|Released||27 September 2003|
|Genre||Feature film soundtrack|
Johar decided to end his association with the composer duo Jatin-Lalit after the duo publicly stated that they were displeased with his decision to use other music directors for Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham.... The soundtrack for Kal Ho Naa Ho was composed by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy,[d] marking their first collaboration with Johar, while the lyrics for the songs were written by Javed Akhtar.
Unlike previous Bollywood films, Johar complied complied with international copyright laws and obtained the license to use Roy Orbison's 1964 song "Oh, Pretty Woman" for the film, with the reused song titled "Pretty Woman". The tune of the title song "Kal Ho Naa Ho" was composed by Loy Mendonsa while he and Advani were sitting at the German Bakery in Pune. Advani wanted a song thematically similar to that of Celine Dion's 1997 recording of "My Heart Will Go On", which he was humming at that time. On hearing this, Mendonsa came up with the tune that he recorded on his phone. After Shankar Mahadevan and Ehsaan Noorani listened to it, the trio then composed the entire song.
The soundtrack was released on 27 September 2003 under the label of Sony Music. The audio launch ceremony was conducted two days later at the Taj Lands End in Mumbai. The album was met with positive critical feedback. The title song, "It's The Time To Disco", "Kuch To Hua Hai" and "Pretty Woman" became popular. A critic from Bollywood Hungama called it "a fabulous amalgamation of Indian melodies and contemporary sound." Conversely, another reviewer from the same website felt that apart from "Kal Ho Naa Ho" and "Kuch To Hua Hai", the rest of the songs were in the "'average' to 'very average' category". Vipin Nair of Film Companion rated the soundtrack at number 66 in his list of "100 Bollywood Albums". Nair noted that while the album "had a fairly diverse set of songs", he chose the title song as the pick of the album, terming it to be "among the most moving songs produced since the start of the century". It went on to become the third highest-selling album of that year with sales of over 2.3 million copies.
|1.||"Kal Ho Naa Ho"||Sonu Nigam||5:21|
|2.||"Maahi Ve"||Madhushree, Sadhana Sargam, Shankar Mahadevan, Sonu Nigam, Udit Narayan||6:06|
|3.||"It's The Time To Disco"||KK, Loy Mendonsa, Shaan, Vasundhara Das||5:33|
|4.||"Kuch To Hua Hai"||Alka Yagnik, Shaan||5:19|
|5.||"Kal Ho Naa Ho (Sad)"||Alka Yagnik, Richa Sharma, Sonu Nigam||5:35|
|6.||"Pretty Woman"||Ravi Khote, Shankar Mahadevan||5:53|
Kal Ho Naa Ho was released on 27 November 2003 and was promoted with the tagline, "A Story of a Lifetime... In a Heartbeat". The film was distributed by Yash Raj Films worldwide. The film won the Prix Du Public award at the Valenciennes Film Festival in 2004, where it was screened. The film was also shown at the Marrakech International Film Festival in 2005.
Johar had planned to show the film's climax in a different way at first, but Yash Johar persuaded him to show a scene where Aman dies, pointing out that the level of emotion among the audiences watching would be higher, especially with Shah Rukh Khan's screen persona. In September 2015, Shah Rukh Khan revealed that Johar "made a special edit" of the film for his children as a favour to him. In this version, the film ends before his character dies.
Kal Ho Naa Ho received positive reviews from critics, with praise directed towards the direction, story, screenplay, cinematography and performances of the cast members. Film critic and author Anupama Chopra, in her review for India Today, appreciated Advani's direction, noting that he "emerges as a distinctive voice". She further praised its technical aspects but found the sub-plots and pre-intermission portions to be the film's negative aspects. Mayank Shekhar of Mid Day called the film "a carefully constructed compendium of moments" that helps us "to feel lighter and to lighten up" and concluded that "it works and is worth your entertainment bucks." Writing for Outlook magazine, Komal Nahta praised the direction, screenplay and performances of the lead cast, particularly Shah Rukh Khan, terming his character, Aman, as "one of the best roles of his career." Film journalist and critic Ram Kamal Mukherjee from Stardust, termed Zinta's performance as "astounding", elaborating that she "skillfully handled the hues of the complex character" and "walked through the character with elan." Mukherjee eulogised Advani's and Johar's treatment of the story, finding it "unique", while admiring the film's technical aspects and topic of homosexuality being dealt "with a dash of humor, and thankfully by not degrading it’s social connection."
Jitesh Pillai of The Times of India described Johar's screenplay as "endearing" and that it "pinwheels with abandon from the bachelor with a heart of gold to the obdurate female lead." Pillai also spoke highly of the performances of Shah Rukh Khan and Saif Ali Khan, in particular their on-screen relationship and comic timing. He called the former "wonderful", referring to him as "the soul" of the film while stating the latter's "joie de vivre makes it one of the most delectable performances seen in recent times." Rama Sharma from The Tribune opined that while Shah Rukh Khan "infuses enough spark and affection", Sharma found him to be "overcharged" at times. Sharma commended Mehta's cinematography, pointing out that he "captured the right nuances heightening the emotion."
Writing for The Hindu, Ziya Us Salam, like Nahta, believed the film belonged to Shah Rukh Khan, who Salam found to be "in form". She felt that even though Shah Rukh Khan "does the same thing over and over again", he performs his role "with such panache that all you can do is sit back and wait for that master artiste to unfold his magic again." Another critic from the same newspaper, Paresh C. Palicha, appreciated Iyengar's "witty and crispy" dialogues but criticised the Indian accent the characters speak in the film despite them being immigrants. A third review from The Hindu by Chitra Mahesh called Kal Ho Naa Ho "a smartly-made film", and praised Saif Ali Khan's performance by saying that "he has proved yet again what a wonderfully natural actor he is." She was critical of Shah Rukh Khan, however, stating that the actor "tries too hard to impress".
Rohini Iyer of Rediff.com complimented the film's "fresh" storytelling and "spicy humour", while opining that Zinta "captures the spirit" of her character. She concluded her review by saying Kal Ho Naa Ho "will carry you with its exuberance." Archana Vohra from NDTV said that Advani "seems to have come up with an innovative way to present a done-to-death plot", later adding that "irrespective of the frills, fancy clothes and well-dressed stars, the film does strike a chord". Vohra, while finding Bachchan to be "extremely well cast" as Jennifer and Saif Ali Khan's screen presence as "electrifying", disapproved of Shah Rukh Khan "playing the same kind of roles" that he did in Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (1995), Kuch Kuch Hota Hai and Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham..., but noted that he "isn't too bad. Just needs to go easy on the histrionics."
Kal Ho Naa Ho received a rating of 71% on the review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, based on seven reviews, with an average rating of 7.2/10. Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, has given the film a score of 54 from four reviews, indicating "mixed or average reviews".
In a positive review, Dave Kehr of The New York Times described it as "a vigorous Bollywood blend of romantic comedy and family melodrama." He concluded that the film served as "a rich meal that may best be reserved for stomachs accustomed to such bountiful fare." Writing for Variety, Derek Elley called the film a "slam-dunk" effort from Johar, finding it to have "a lightness of touch that sets it apart from the previous hits." Elley praised Saif Ali Khan and Zinta, noting the two "more than hold" their own performances "against a huge cast". Manish Gajjar of BBC found the script to be "fresh and appealing" while stating Advani proves "he has the natural ability to handle both the lighter and serious moments in the film." Gajjar then summarised his review by saying Kal Ho Naa Ho is a "well crafted product".
David Parkinson of the magazine Radio Times commented positively on how the film "retains a distinctive Bollywood flavour" despite being inspired by "Hollywood romantic comedies" but criticised the film's length, opining that "the pace slackens as plot demands take precedence over set pieces." Conversely, Jami Bernard from Daily News wrote, "Bollywood musicals, those big, loud, colorful extravaganzas from India, are an acquired taste and much of "Kal Ho Naa Ho" doesn't translate easily" though he further noted, "All three leads grow on you."
Kal Ho Naa Ho achieved a highly positive response at the box office, especially overseas for its setting in New York City. The film was released across 400 screens in India, and grossed ₹21.7 million on its opening day,[a] which was the fourth-highest first day collection of 2003. It earned ₹67.1 million by the end of its opening weekend,[a] surpassing the record set by Koi... Mil Gaya for the highest opening weekend of that year in India. At the end of the first week of its theatrical run, the film made ₹124.5 million.[a] Kal Ho Naa Ho collected ₹581.8 million throughout India and became the second highest-grossing Indian film of 2003,[a] only behind Koi... Mil Gaya, which earned ₹724.9 million.[a]
Outside India, Kal Ho Naa Ho was released in 37 theatres in the United Kingdom. It debuted at sixth place and grossed ₹29.41 million in its first weekend,[a] a record only exceeded by Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham..., which collected ₹31.96 million.[e] In the United States, where it was premiered in 52 screens, the film earned ₹45.03 million by the end of its four-day first weekend.[a] By the end of its first week's theatrical run, the film grossed ₹84.64 million,[a] thereby achieving the highest-grossing first week collections for an Indian film overseas that year. A month after its release, Kal Ho Naa Ho earned approximately ₹180 million in both the United Kingdom and United States alone,[a] staying in the top ten box office grossers of the former during that period. The film went on to collect ₹279.1 million overseas and became the highest-grossing Indian film of 2003.[a] Overall, it earned ₹860.9 million and achieved the status of being the most profitable Indian film of that year.[a]
At the 51st National Film Awards, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy won for Best Music Direction and the Best Male Playback Singer award was given to Sonu Nigam. It received eleven nominations at the 49th Filmfare Awards and won eight; the most for any film at the ceremony, including Best Actress for Zinta, Best Supporting Actor for Saif Ali Khan and Best Supporting Actress for Bachchan. The film won thirteen out of the sixteen nominations it received at the 5th IIFA Awards. Among the awards it won were Best Movie, Best Actress for Zinta, Best Supporting Actor for Saif Ali Khan and Best Supporting Actress for Bachchan.
Kal Ho Naa Ho proved to be a landmark film in the film careers of Advani, Johar, Bachchan, Shah Rukh Khan, Saif Ali Khan and Zinta. It is now considered as one of Bollywood's modern cult classics. A portion in the film, now famously dubbed "The Diary Scene". where Aman confesses his true love for Naina by reading from blank pages of Rohit's diary claiming his feelings to be Rohit's became very popular. Another scene which features Aman helping Rohit win Naina's heart with the former's "Che Din Ladki In" ("Get the girl in six days") technique too was well received.
The film was paid a homage in 2015 by the German Embassy in India with an eight minute video focussing on the title track titled Lebe Jetzt, which translated to Kal Ho Naa Ho in the German language. The short featured Michael Steiner, the German Ambassador to India, his wife Elisse Steiner and the former Ministry of External Affairs, Salman Khurshid, in the roles of Shah Rukh Khan, Saif Ali Khan and Zinta respectively.
Since its release, Kal Ho Naa Ho's costumes and hairstyles received considerable attention. The costumes worn by Shah Rukh Khan, Saif Ali Khan and Zinta were auctioned in December 2003 by Fame Adlabs in Mumbai. The glasses worn by Zinta became popular among teenage people. In 2008, he correspondent from The Hindu included Zinta's straightened hair in the film as part of the "What worked" list of hairstyles.
Rahul Gangwani from Filmfare ranked it the fourth stylish Indian film of all time in 2013. In June 2015, Akshay Kaushal of CNN-News18 selected the blue lehenga worn by Zinta in the song "Maahi Ve" among the top ten outfits by Malhotra, terming it as "bedazzling". The same year in September, Surabhi Nijhawan, writing for Indiatimes, noted the same lehenga to have "worked very well with PZ's complexion, and matched with basic jewelry". Nijhawan included it in her list of "13 Lehengas From Bollywood Every Girl Wants In Her Wardrobe". On the 14th anniversary of Kal Ho Naa Ho in November 2017, Mimansa Shekhar, writing for The Indian Express, included Zinta's red dress which she wore in her list of "14 unforgettable things about the Shah Rukh Khan, Saif Ali Khan, Preity Zinta film".