Born on 9th January 1974, Farhan Akhtar is an Indian filmmaker, script writer, actor, playback singer, lyricist, film producer, and television host. He works primarily in Hindi cinema. His directorial debut Dil Chahta Hai, was highly praised. He made his acting and singing debut with Rock On!! Farhan Akhtar was born in Mumbai to screenwriters, Javed Akhtar and Honey Irani. He was brought up as an Athiest. He did his schooling from Maneckji Cooper School, Juhu, and later joined H.R. College, for a degree in Commerce, though he left it, in the second year.
His stepmother is actress Shabana Azmi. He is also the grandson of Urdu poet Jan Nisar Akhtar and the cousin of Bollywood film director and dance choreographer Farah Khan. Farhan is married to Adhuna Bhabani Akhtar, a hairstylist who runs BeBlunt Salon with her brother. They have two daughters: Shakya and Akira.
Farhan Akhtar started his career by working as an apprentice with cinematographer-director, Manmohan Singh at age 17, for films like Lamhe (1991); before going on to assist director, Pankaj Parashar in film Himalayputra (1997), followed by working in a television production house for three years, doing various jobs.
He made his writing and directorial debut in Hindi cinema with the 2001-hit, Dil Chahta Hai, produced by Excel Entertainment Pvt. Ltd., a production company he co-established along with Ritesh Sidwani in 1999. The movie was a critical and commercial success, especially popular among the younger generation. It earned quite a few nominations at various award shows, including for Best Screenplay, Direction and Film. It won that year's National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Hindi.
Akhtar then moved onto his next project, Lakshya (2004), a movie about an aimless youngster finally setting a goal for himself, starring Hrithik Roshan and Preity Zinta. Though the movie did not do as well at the box-office, it won him much critical acclaim. The script of the movie was authored by his father Javed Akhtar. Meanwhile, he also wrote lyrics for Gurinder Chadha's 2004 Hollywood film, Bride and Prejudice.
He then directed a remake of the 1978 Amitabh Bachchan film, Don titled Don - The Chase Begins Again which starred Shahrukh Khan in the title role. The film released on 20 October 2006. Though the movie was critically hammered, it proved to be a great success at the box office, grossing over 50 crores, and being the fifth biggest hit of the year. In 2007 he produced the film Honeymoon Travels Pvt. Ltd. which performed fairly well at the box office.
In 2007, he directed, Positive, a 12-minute short film on HIV stigma and the need for family support for the patient. Shot in Mumbai, it was part of 'AIDS JaaGo' (AIDS Awake), a series of four short films, directed by Mira Nair, Santosh Sivan, Vishal Bhardwaj and Farhan Akhtar, in a joint initiative of Mira Nair's Mirabai Films and voluntary organisations Avahan and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The film stars, Boman Irani, Shabana Azmi and a debutant actor, Arjun Mathur.
Farhan later starred in films like Luck by Chance, Karthik Calling Karthik and Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara.