How Bajrangi Bhaijan Follows Pixar’s Rules of Story Telling – Strategy With RS

Saw ‪#‎BajrangiBhaijan‬ – (BB). Found it engrossing. ‪#‎SalmanKhan‬ has played the character & not himself. Other than that I realized that the film follows ‪#‎Pixar‬’s Rules for phenomenal story telling almost to the tee.
1.Pixar’s Rule 1: You admire a character for trying not for success.
BB: Throughout the film, Bajrangi is trying to unite the girl with her family. Success of the mission is shown in the last frame when he throws up the little girl in sheer joy!

2. Pixar’s Rule 2 : Once upon a time there was ________. Everyday, _________. One day _________, because of that _________until finally _______.
BB: Once upon a time there was an aam aadmi called Bajrangi. Everyday he lived a normal & predictable life until finally a little girl who is speech challenged & is separated from her family, enters his life because of that he gets a meaning in his life to unite the girl with her family & does not rest until finally he succeeds in uniting them against all odds.

3. Pixar’s Rule 3:What is your character good at, comfortable with? Throw the polar opposite at them & challenge them.
BB: Bajrangi is honest & straightforward. He is constantly thrown in situations where his honesty & straightforwardness will get him into severe trouble & prevent him from achieving his mission.

4. Pixar’s Rule 4: Give your character opinions. Passive & malleable might seem likable to you as a writer but is poison to the audience.
BB: Bajrangi has an opinion & is unmalleable on them – he will never tell a lie no matter how delicate the situation is, no matter what price he has to pay for it & no matter what the consequences will be..

5. Pixar’s Rule 5. What are the stakes? Give us reasons to root for the character. What happens if they don’t succeed? Stakes the odds against it.
BB: The stakes are high if the girl does not unite with her parent. And throughout the film it is heavily stacked against her uniting with her family.

Have you seen Bajrangi Bhaijan? What is your opinion on why is it so successful?

To see Pixar’s 22 Rules for phenomenal story telling click here




In this series, Rajesh Srivastava, Business Strategist and Visiting Faculty at IIM Indore gives you a regular dose of strategy case studies to help you think and keep you one step ahead as a professional as compared to your peers. Rajesh is an alumnus of IIM Bangalore and IIT Kanpur and has over 2 decades of experience in the FMCG industry. All previous  Strategy with RS posts can be found here



Rajesh Srivastava

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