Kahaani (IPA: [kəˈɦaːni]; English: Story) is a 2012 Indian thriller film directed, co-written and co-produced by Sujoy Ghosh. The film features Vidya Balan,Parambrata Chatterjee and Nawazuddin Siddiqui in lead roles. Balan portrays the role of Vidya Bagchi, a pregnant woman in search of her missing husband in the city of Kolkata during the Durga Puja festivities, who is helped in her quest by Satyaki "Rana" Sinha (Chatterjee) and Khan (Siddiqui).
Made on a shoestring budget of 8 crore (US$1.46 million), Kahaani was developed by writer Advaita Kala, based on the initial idea from Ghosh. The film explores themes of feminism and motherhood in a male-dominated Indian society. Filming took place on the streets of Kolkata with Ghosh employing the art ofguerrilla filmmaking to avoid unwanted attention. Ghosh admitted to using several allusions to Satyajit Ray's films such as Charulata (1964) and Aranyer Dinratri(1970). Additionally, critics compared the twist ending of the plot to the Hollywood film Taking Lives (2004). The film was noted for a deft portrayal of Kolkata and use of a significant number of crew and cast members from the city.
Kahaani released worldwide on 9 March 2012 to major critical acclaim. Critics praised the screenplay, the cinematography and the performances of the lead actors. Word-of-mouth publicity and good critical response paved the way for Kahaani's commercial success at the box office, with a 50-day worldwide gross of 104 crore (US$18.93 million), and it became an unexpected sleeper hit. The film resulted in renewed interest in Kolkata as a filming location, and the character of contract killer Bob Biswas became an internet phenomenon in India. At the 58th Filmfare Awards, Kahaani won five awards, including Best Director for Ghosh, and Best Actress for Balan.