Prem (Salman Khan) lost his parents at an early age. He lives with his elder brother Rajesh (Mohnish Bahl) and uncle Kailashnath (Alok Nath). Rajesh manages the family business and his family is on the look-out for a suitable bride for him. Professor Siddharth Chaudhary (Anupam Kher) and Mrs. Chaudhary (Reema Lagoo) have two daughters, Pooja (Renuka Shahane) and Nisha (Madhuri Dixit). The Chaudhary couple and Kailashnath are old friends who meet again after several years. They arrange a marriage between Rajesh and Pooja. From their first meeting, Nisha and Prem start bickering lightheartedly with each other, and the fun and mischief continues throughout Pooja and Rajesh's wedding.
Prem has an amicable relationship with his warm-hearted sister-in-law. In time, Pooja and Rajesh discover that they are expecting a child. Professor and Mrs. Chaudhary were unable to come to Kailashnath's house for the ceremony marking the impending arrival of the baby. They send Nisha instead, who is present at the birth. Meanwhile, Nisha and Prem fall in love with each other, but keep it a secret. Professor and Mrs. Chaudhary come over to Kailashnath's house to celebrate the birth of their grandchild. When the time comes to part, their hosts are dejected, especially Prem. He and Nisha promise each other that they will soon reunite for ever.
Pooja is invited to stay at her parents' house, and Prem takes her there. When they arrive, Pooja learns that Prem and Nisha are in love, and gives Nisha a necklace as a token, promising to get them married. Shortly afterwards, Pooja accidentally slips and falls down the stairs, and dies from a head injury. Everybody is shattered by the tragedy.
Nisha takes good care of her sister's son. Hence, her parents and Kailashnath feel that Nisha will be a great mother to the baby. They decide to have Nisha marry Rajesh. Nisha overhears her parents talking about her marrying into Kailashnath's family and thinks that they are discussing her marriage to Prem, to which she agrees. Later, at a pre-nuptial ceremony, she finds out that she is actually going to marry Rajesh.
Prem and Nisha vow to sacrifice their love for Rajesh and the baby. Moments before the wedding, Nisha asks Prem's dog Tuffy to give Prem the necklace that Pooja had given her, along with a letter. Tuffy exits Nisha's room and instead of taking the letter to Prem, delivers it to Rajesh. Rajesh reads the letter and realizes that Prem and Nisha love each other. Subsequently, he halts the wedding and confronts both Nisha and Prem. In the end, Nisha and Prem marry each other with the consent of their families. The film's title Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! appears and then rephrases to Hum Aapke Hain..! (English: I am yours!).Madhuri Dixit as Nisha ChoudhurySalman Khan as Prem NathMohnish Bahl as Rajesh NathRenuka Shahane as Pooja ChoudhuryAnupam Kher as Prof. Siddharth ChoudhuryReema Lagoo as Mrs. ChoudhuryAlok Nath as Kailash NathBindu as Bhagwanti a.k.a. MamiAjit Vachani as Professor a.k.a. MamaSatish Shah as DoctorHimani Shivpuri as Razia (Doctor's wife)Sahila Chadha as RitaDilip Joshi as Bhola PrasadLaxmikant Berde as Lalloo PrasadPriya Arun as ChameliRedo as Tuffy the dog
Director/writer Sooraj Barjatya devoted one year and nine months to the screenplay of Hum Aapke Hain Koun..!. He spent the first five months trying to write another Maine Pyar Kiya, but then started over after his father Rajkumar Barjatya suggested that he rework one of the family company Rajshri Productions earlier offerings. Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! then became a loose adaptation of their 1982 production Nadiya Ke Paar. Barjatya used musical numbers to avoid treating some situations in a cliché manner, which resulted in so many songs that there were complaints during initial screenings of the film concerning its length and number of songs. Barjayta's grandfather, company founder Tarachand Barjatya, loved the song "Dhiktana" so much that the film was nearly given that title.
Barjatya later told India Abroad, "My attempt in this movie has been to reexpose the cinema-going public to the quintessential family life ... not to make people feel that they have come to see a movie, but make them feel as if they have come to visit a big joint family that is preparing for a wedding". The story was constructed differently than what was popular at the time. There were no villains, violence, or battles between good and evil. From conception to finished product, the film took four years. Madhuri Dixit was paid a salary of ₹27,540,000 for playing the role of Nisha.
The producers/distributors exercised a higher than normal level of control over their work. There was a limited release, a new form of television publicity, safeguards against video piracy, and a delay in the releasing of video tapes.
The soundtrack for Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! was composed by Raamlaxman (original name Vijay Patil) who had earlier given music for Rajshri's Maine Pyar Kiya, with lyrics penned by Ravinder Rawal and Dev Kohli. It was produced under the Sa Re Ga Ma label which at that time was known as HMV (short for His Master's Voice) and featured veteran playback singers such as Lata Mangeshkar, S. P. Balasubrahmanyam, Kumar Sanu, Udit Narayan, Shailendra Singh and Sharda Sinha. Raamlaxman had about 50 sessions with the director Barjatya during scripting. The finished soundtrack included an unusually large number of songs at 14 (15 if we count the sad version of the song Mujhse Juda Hokar which appears in the movie but not on the Music Album), plus the song "Hasta Hua Noorani Chehra" (from the film Parasmani), that was used when the characters play a game. The track "Didi Tera Devar Deewana" is said to be inspired by Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan's song "Saare Nabian". That song became one of the most popular film songs ever, and was on the charts for over a year. The soundtrack was very successful upon release, becoming the best selling Bollywood soundtrack of the year, and one of the top four sellers of the 1990s, with 10 million units sold. It was ranked the number 29 all-time best Hindi soundtrack by Planet Bollywood.
The songs of the film were recorded two years before its release. It took three months to record all the songs. It began in July 1992 and ended in October 1992. It was the last time Lata Mangeshkar sang with S. P. BalaBalasubrahmanyam. It was the last commercially successful Hindi Film album of Raamlaxman. Lata Mangeshkar was skeptical about singing the songs "Joote De Do" and "Didi Tera Devar Deewana". "Who will listen to these songs?", she said to have asked to which both the director and music director exclaimed, "If you will sing everybody will listen". Despite the super success of the album, the music director did not repeat Lata Mangeshkar, S. P. Balasubrahmanyam, Shailendra Singh and Sharda Sinha in his next score with Sooraj Barjatya Hum Saath Saath Hain.
The tune of opening lines of the song "Mausam Ka Jadoo" ("Thandi Thandi Purwaiya Mein Udti Hai Chunaria") were copied by Nadeem Shravan in the interlude chorus in the song "Jahan Piya Wahan Main" ("Chandi Ki Katori Sone Ka Pitara") from the movie Pardes. Similarly, part interlude music of the song "Didi Tera Devar Deewana" were copied by Jatin Lalit in the song "Ankhein Khuli Ho Ya Ho Band" from Mohabbatein.
The film was dubbed into Telugu Language with the title "Premaalayam", which gained positive reviews along with the sound tracks, the film became popular. The whole soundtrack was dubbed into Telugu and composed by Raamlaxamn. This track list included only 11 tracks, cutting away 3 tracks from the original. The vocalists included top & eminent singers of Telugu Film Industry- S.P.Balasubrahmanyam, K.S.Chitra & Mano.
Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! premiered at Liberty Cinema in southern Mumbai on 5 August 1994; it eventually ran there for over 100 weeks. The film initially saw a very limited release, also showing at the Regal and Eros theatres, with only 26 prints total. Eventually it started to appear in many more theatres. When initial viewers complained about the film's length, 2 of the 14 song sequences were removed. These were later restored when film goers were found to enjoy all of the songs. Early reviewers of Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! predicted that it would be a huge flop; hence the industry was stunned when it went on to become the most successful film of all time up to that point.
Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! is one of the biggest grossers ever in the history of Hindi cinema, and is said to have changed film business forever in the country. Made on a budget of around ₹42.5 million (US$660,000), it went on to collect ₹1.23 billion (US$19 million) in India and ₹1.35 billion (US$21 million) worldwide. It was the first Hindi film to gross over ₹1 billion. Adjusted for inflation, the film has grossed over ₹3.1 billion (US$48 million) at the domestic box office. Box Office India gave it the verdict "All Time Blockbuster", and described it as "the biggest blockbuster of the modern era." Much of the success was due to repeat business. For example, painter M. F. Husain was reported to have seen the film over 60 times. Adjusted for inflation, Hum Aapke Hain Kaun is believed to be among the top five highest grossing Hindi films. Its adjusted gross is approximately ₹3.09 billion (US$48 million).
Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! received generally positive reviews. India Abroad called it a "cloyingly familial and touchingly sad melodrama replete with typical Indian social situations".
Redo, an Indian Spitz, received favourable recognition as Tuffy the dog. He was included in the "Best pets in Hindi films" list compiled by Daily News and Analysis. After the film, Redo was reportedly adopted by actress Madhuri Dixit.
Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! won the National Film Award for Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment. The film was nominated for 12 Filmfare Awards, Including Best Film, Best Director, and Best Actress. The film went on to win five awards making it one of the biggest winners of the year. Lata Mangeshkar, who sang more than 10 songs in the movie, had long retired from accepting awards, but the public demand for the song "Didi Tera Devar Deewana" was such that she received the Filmfare Special Award that year.
The film also won major awards at the newly introduced 'Screen Awards', where it won six awards.
Author Kovid Gupta classified Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! as a film that bridges the gap between traditionalism and modernity. He discussed the songs of the films in particular, and the "manifestation of romance under the acceptance and blessings of the family, in specific, the elder sister-in-law". Patricia Uberoi called the film a family film in two ways; it is about family relationships, and it is suitable for the entire family to watch. She said that the film is not about the two leads, but about the family, an ideal family. Tejaswini Ganti has called the film a "paean to filial duty" for how the children are willing to sacrifice their love for the good of their families. The family relationships are also noted for being different from the normal cinematic families of the time due to their mutual civility. Rediff.com noted that "Though the film was initially dismissed as a wedding video, its success indicated that post-liberalisation, Indian audiences still clung to the comfort of the familiar." Jigna Desai said that the film's popularity was due to interactions of the families around the traditional folk wedding practices. In his study on the response to the film, academic Vamsee Juluri concluded that the celebration of the family is HAHK's "most useful contribution to history".
Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! is credited as being a defining moment in Hindi cinema's box office history, and the beginning of a revolution in the Indian film distribution system. When it was released, cinema was in decline in India due to improved cable television, home video, and film piracy. The film was originally released in only a small number of theatres that agreed to upgrade their facilities. Due to widespread demand for the film, many other theatres upgraded in order to get the film. Although ticket prices were raised, the upgraded theatres brought people back who had been lost to television. Also, the film's lack of vulgarity was a sign to middle-class family patrons that they could return to the theatre. This film, in addition to the following year's Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, contributed to an increase in Indian cinema attendance of 40% in just two years.
The film was so successful that it literally gave the term blockbuster new meaning in India. Box Office India said, "Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! [...] took business for films released afterwards to another level. To put into perspective how business changed [...] before Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! an all India share of 10 crore for a big film was regarded as blockbuster business but after Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! the blockbuster business figure went to 20 crore."
Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! influenced many subsequent Hindi films. The film was also a trendsetter for glamorous family dramas and NRI-related films, and started Bollywood's "big-fat-wedding-film" trend. In 1998 a theatre company in London, where the film had played for a year, staged a production based on the film titled Fourteen Songs, Two Weddings and a Funeral. Planet Bollywood has noted that no wedding is complete without some songs from this film, and it has been used as a script to design wedding plans. For years afterwards, women wanted to wear a purple sari like the one worn by Madhuri Dixit in the song "Didi Tera Devar Deewana".
Filmmaker Karan Johar named it as the one film that changed his life. He said, "After seeing Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! I realized Indian cinema is about values, tradition, subtlety, romance. There is so much soul in it. [...] I decided to go ahead and be a filmmaker only after watching this film." Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! belongs to a small collection of films, including Kismet (1943), Mother India (1957), Mughal-e-Azam (1960) and Sholay (1975), which are repeatedly watched throughout India and are viewed as definitive Hindi films with cultural significance.