The memories of late superstar Rajesh Khanna, brings back faint echoes of numerous films, songs and dialogues of him that are legendary, the most popular and loved one being, “Pushpa, I hate tears” from his classic film ‘Amar Prem’ (1972). Everything, from his style to his demeanour, and the dialogue went viral and still is. However, did you know that Rajesh Khanna was not the original choice to play this character? Yes, we are as shocked as you.
We did some digging and found out that Rajesh Khanna was not the first choice for the character of Anand Babu, in this masterpiece by late veteran filmmaker Shakti Samanta. The director originally had actor Raaj Kumar in mind for the role. But, as soon as Rajesh got to know about this, he made his way to Samanta’s office.
The actor and filmmaker had previously collaborated on films ‘Aradhana’ and ‘Kati Patang’ which shot Rajesh Khanna to the stardom he was known for. Hence, the actor was slightly miffed with the filmmaker as to why did the latter not offer him the role. (Also Check: Throwback: Check these vintage pictures of Rajesh Khanna and Twinkle Khanna)
Shakti Samanta calmly replied that the only reason he did not consider Rajesh for the project was because the actor had his dates full with other projects. It indeed was true as Khanna had his hands full with movies, which came as an add-on with with his super stardom. However, Rajesh did not want to let go of the film, so, he came up with a unique idea.
Rajesh committed to Samanta, that he would dedicate four hours everyday, post his busy shoot schedules and commitments. Hence, every day, after he wrapped up the shoot for his other movies, the actor used to go on the sets of ‘Amar Prem’ and shoot for the same.
Well, aren’t we glad that he did this? For not only the movie went on to become a superhit, but we now cannot imagine anyone in the legendary role of Anand Babu which Rajesh Khanna immortalised with his impeccable dialogue delivery and sheer dedication as an actor.