5 Films That Showed How Organ Donation Can Make A Change

By: Hitesh & Chiara

Published On: January 18, 2021

At ImpactGuru, we have encountered many patients who need life-saving organ transplants. Such patients face twin challenges: finding the funds for the procedure, and finding a donor. Despite rising awareness, many Indians still face an agonising wait for finding a matching organ donor. Can films and TV series create awareness among people? Here are 5 films which touched upon organ donation:


Malayalam (2011): Sreenivasan, Kunchacko Boban, Rahman;

Tamil (2013): Prakash Raj, Ramanathan Sarathkumar, Cheran; 

Hindi (2016): Manoj Bajpayee, Jimmy Shergill, Prosenjit Chatterjee;

The original 2011 Malayalam film was widely acclaimed by both the people and the critics. Inspired by a real-life incident, it revolved around the story of how a green corridor was created for a heart transplant, and the very human people involved in making it successful. The reception was such that the film was remade in Tamil and Hindi. Suffice to say, more people were aware of organ donation and green corridors than before.

Bucket List

Marathi (2018): Madhuri Dixit, Sumeet Raghavan, Renuka Shahane

Madhuri Dixit’s maiden bow in Marathi films saw her portray a housewife who was lucky enough to receive a timely heart transplant. But what about the person who donated the heart? Who was this person, what happened to them, and how is their family coping?

This film had a simple message: no age is too old to enjoy life, and no age is too young to be an organ donor.

Ship Of Theseus

Hindi (2012): Neeraj Kabi, Sohum Shah

Ship Of Theseus made a quiet debut in India; globally though, it was a different reception altogether. Winning awards from Tokyo to Dubai to London, it dazzled many. The film revolves around 3 stories: a photographer whose vision is restored after a corneal transplant, a monk who needs a liver transplant, and a stockbroker who receives a kidney transplant. In three different ways, these three different people deal with the prospect, and the impact, of an organ transplant. In India, the film was backed by Kiran Rao as well.

“In fact, women usually come forward to take such a step (organ donation). They prefer to be considered as the first donor in the family for their son/ husband/ parents and if found clinically unfit, then only the next person (male) is considered, that too when other females are not available.”

Seven Pounds

English (2008): Will Smith, Rosario Dawson

The film has a rather fictional premise, but once you look past the bells and whistles, you develop a greater appreciation for it. Seven people, all held back in life because of their specific organ disorders. Each of them needs an organ transplant, but circumstances in life leave them helpless. From young Nicholas, to coach George, disease and sickness can happen to anyone, at any age. We healthier ones may not be able to donate our organs to all of them, but giving such patients even a bit of support and attention can go a long way.    


Hindi (2016): Salman Khan, Anushka Sharma

Blood donation is an integral part of the story. Sultan’s entire story arc, in a way, revolves around it, from looking for a donor with a matching blood type to setting up a blood camp. The film was mainstream fare without a doubt; it reportedly became the 4th highest-grossing Indian film of all time. But the fact that such a mainstream film talked about the importance of blood donation made it all the more crucial.      

Organ donation has been a plot point in innumerable films and television series, and across varied languages. Most depictions however are either metaphorical - such as Amar Akbar Anthony’s blood donation sequence - or used as negative plot points - films on organ smuggling rackets. Change however, is in the air; even a K-drama like Cross (2018) and a short film like Thank You (2015) are managing to make their audiences more aware. 

Have you come across any positive depictions of organ donation, in real-life or in the media?  What are your views on organ donation? Many patients have successfully used crowdfunding for organ transplant; what do you think about this option? Talk to us on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, and let us know!

Read more about celebrities who crowdfunded!