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Slumdog Millionaire Dance

Tamara Warta

The Slumdog Millionaire dance that is performed during the movie's credits instantly became almost as popular as the Oscar winning movie itself. Its peppy, upbeat song has classic Bollywood dance moves that hold a certain novelty in the United States; the dance moves have been replicated by many but never quite seem to be equally matched. So what exactly are the moves for Slumdog Millionaire? ...And how can one learn to do it?

What is the Slumdog Millionaire Dance?

Found during the credits reel, the Slumdog Millionaire dance features the actors from the movie dancing in an urban street scene, wearing traditional Indian clothing and performing Bollywood dance steps. Freida Pinto, Dev Patel, and an entire ensemble of others dance both energetically and playfully, showing both romance and enthusiasm that cannot be rivaled. The dance was so successful that the song used, called Jai Ho, became catchy enough to win an Oscar for Best Musical Score in 2008. The Hindi song was written by Gulzar and performed in other films before Slumdog Millionaire made it famous. An English version of the song, complete with more dancing, was released by the Pussycat Dolls shortly after the movie reached its pinnacle of success.

The Setting

The choreographed music video premiered in March of 2009. The video, following on the success of the film, recreates the final Slumdog Millionaire scene in a train museum in Austria. Between the music video and the original footage shown at the end of the movie, much of America has witnessed the dance from Slumdog Millionaire and many are dreaming of their own street scene in which to tap their feet.


After the dance became popular, counterfeit versions began to pop up on video streaming sites such as YouTube. One example is this couple performing a close resemblance to the Jai Ho dance steps. As this couple prove, anyone can learn the dance, even if you don't have extensive training in Eastern dance styles; the dance is fun and easy to perform. The dance was even replicated by a large group of prisoners overseas, and actually performed quite well. This particular video is ajnother piece of evidence that Slumdog Millionaire's dance reached people in all corners of the world. The dance somehow appeals to a world-wide audience.

See the Dance For Yourself

If you have not seen the original version of the dance, you can do so by renting or purchasing a copy of Slumdog Millionaire. The dance is at the very end of the film. Various websites also show the dance, however these are routinely removed from cyberspace as they violate movie studio copyright laws.

A Celebration of Cultures

Perhaps what makes the dance so special is the unique blending of several folk dance cultures - the Hindi language and Bollywood steps combined with westernized cinematography and locations. It is truly a crossover hit, continuing to be enjoyed by audiences today.


Slumdog Millionaire Dance