When in 1996 I first thought of writing about Yash Chopra, many people in India asked why him when there were other equally interesting figures working in the film industry. What prompted the question was that Yash Chopra’s career spanned several phases, with quite distinct breaks between them. At this stage, the new type of ‘Bollywood’ cinema that he pioneered was just emerging and its earlier history had been largely forgotten. Yashji’s life and work followed the arc of development of Hindi cinema from the 1950s to the new globalising India of today. His films offer wonderful insights into the imagining of India and its society through these six decades.