Salman, Madhuri and Shah Rukh Khan: A casting coup that could have been 'Pardes' | Bollywood Bubble

Salman, Madhuri and Shah Rukh Khan: A casting coup that could have been ‘Pardes’

Salman, Madhuri and Shah Rukh Khan: A casting coup that could have been ‘Pardes’

Shah Rukh Khan, Salman Khan and Madhuri Dixit Nene in Pardes movie?

In the period of 90s, filmmaker Subhash Ghai had already become a recognised name, and was one of the most bankable directors in Bollywood, after delivering successful films like ‘Karz’, ‘Hero’, ‘Karma’, ‘Ram Lakhan’, ‘Saudagar’ and ‘Khalnayak’. Sadly, there came a rough time when many thought his career to be finished after the debacle of his production venture ‘Trimurti’ (1995). But, the filmmaker bounced back with yet another successful film ‘Pardes’ (1997) and silenced his haters. Recently, the movie completed 20 years of its release, and on the occasion, we found an interesting unknown fact. The fact finds its roots during the casting of this film.

We all know that movie featured Shah Rukh Khan and two newcomers, Mahima Chaudhary and Apurva Agnihotri. Recently, Subhash Ghai had hosted a special screening of the movie where during the media interaction he revealed that he was first suggested to cast Salman Khan and Madhuri Dixit along with Shah Rukh Khan. Yes! You read that right.

It was during the event, when Subhash Ghai was asked as to what challenges did he face while making this film. To which he replied, “As a director I had to face two challenges while making ‘Pardes’. First as a producer I was facing a challenge as our banner Mukta Arts’ last film ‘Trimurti’ didn’t do well at the box office. So, after delivering so many hit films, if you give a flop film then somewhere the attitude of the film industry, stars, media slightly changes towards you a bit. So, I was receiving a lot of flak at that time that my banner is finished, I am finished, I am now past. There were some who were even happy due to this. But, I didn’t want to let them have the satisfaction. I decided to make a film, and wrote the story of ‘Pardes’. Then, as a producer I faced a challenge, when after writing the story, the discussion about the casting of the film began. That was a very big problem. So, at that time our manager Gupta ji  of Mukta Arts, used to discuss about the casting, setup, about the budget, at what price it might be sold, how the distributors will behave for this film, what would be their reaction, etc. So, he suggested me there would be a casting of Shah Rukh Khan and the role of NRI boy could be done by Salman (Khan), and Madhuri (Dixit) would be perfect to play the central character. Initially, I had even told the idea of Ganga (the Heroine‘s character name in ‘Pardes’) to Madhuri while we were shooting for ‘Khalnayak’ and she had liked it. But, I thought of a setup where there should have been a new girl, a new boy for NRI’s role and Shah Rukh Khan.” [sic] (Also Read: Did you know? Shah Rukh Khan’s train dance in ‘Chaiyya Chaiyya’ was never the original plan)

“I was in a dilemma as Gupta ji and my office wanted me to make the film with Salman, Madhuri and Shah Rukh so that it would have been a big film which would have helped in covering the loss of ‘Trimurti’. They were right from a producer’s point of view but the director within me was not agreeing upon this casting and to make this film with a big starcast like this. My character Ganga demanded a new girl only and the other role of NRI also demanded to be someone who looked like he had come from abroad. He shouldn’t look Indian, his traits; how he sits, walks, style, talking in not so perfect Hindi, should all be there. So, it was a huge challenge for me to convince everybody that I want to make this film like this only. I was hellbent on this particular thing and then I did the casting with the newcomers. We took Mahima ji and Apurva (Agnihotri) and Shah Rukh Khan,” added the filmmaker. [sic]

And the rest as they say is history.

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When an old wish of Anushka's mother was fulfilled, in an unbelievable turn of events

There’s no doubt that actress Anushka Sharma had a dream debut when she was cast opposite superstar Shah Rukh Khan in her first film ‘Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi’. Following this, it was her third release ‘Band Baaja Baaraat’ (2010) that proved to be a turning point in her career. And since then there has been no looking back for this gorgeous powerhouse performer. Time and again, she has proved her mettle as an actor, and even as a producer with films like ‘NH10’. Throughout this nine year long journey, Anushka’s family has indeed been her constant motivation and support that have always kept her going ahead.

Image Source - Pinterest

Recently, we stumbled upon an old interview of Anushka Sharma where the actress revealed an interesting incident. Anushka revealed when she got to know that her mother Ashima Sharma always wanted her to be an actress.

It was during Anushka’s conversation on show ‘India’s Most Desirable’ when after listening to her mother Ashima Sharma’s message that had been recorded for her, the actress asked host Simi Garewal if she can say something about her mum. And then the actress went on to share this incident from the time when she had got the news of been signed on for ‘Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi’. (Also Read: Did you know? Little Abhishek Bachchan found his mother’s films very depressing)

She said, “There was this one time I was driving back from Yash Raj Studios and I got the news, Adi (Aditya Chopra) told me. And I was driving back and I couldn’t drive anymore because I was crying. I was so happy.. I was crying. So I stopped… I stopped the car and I pulled over and I called my mother and I told her that I got this film. And you know what my mum told me? There’s this turtle that used to be there in my living room. It was I think some Feng Shui thing. You just open the turtle and you put something like a wish inside that turtle and you shut it. And when your wish comes true you take it out. So she never never told me about this. But then she came down after she heard that I have got the film she opened that and showed it to me. She’d written it there ‘I hope my daughter stars in a Yash Raj film’. I swear… it’s unbelievable. So I think somewhere she always wanted me to be an actress.”

Image Source - YouTube

Upon hearing this, Simi reacted, “What are you saying?” Anushka added, “She said that she’d written this long ago, one thing for my brother and one thing for me.” Simi immediately asked if what was written for her brother came true as well, to which, Anushka nodded her head in agreement. And then when Simi asked Anushka if she (Simi) could write something in this magical, wish-fulfilling turtle, Anushka smiled and said, “You have to meet my mom right (smiles) she has some direct contact with God.”

Indeed, every parent wishes the best for his/her children and this incident is something that showcases this perfectly. Unbelievable, unforgettable, and totally lovable.

Check out the full interview of Anushka Sharma below:

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When a little Shahid found his mother Neelima Azeem crying and became her strength

For a young kid, it is really hard to believe and understand that his/her parents are getting divorced. This difficult time was hit on actor Shahid Kapoor, who was just three years old when his parents Pankaj Kapur and Neelima Azeem got separated from each other. In his first growing years, Shahid lived and spent much more time with his mother in Delhi at that time. The actor mother believes that as a single divorced woman bringing up a child would have been hard for his mother but nobody can understand this better than her. But, as a mother, for Neelima Azeem her son Shahid turned her strength when he was just four years old.

Image Source - MTV India

Recently, we stumbled upon an old interview of Shahid Kapoor. The actor had appeared as the celebrity guest on host Simi Garewal’s talk show ‘India’s Most Desirable’. And it was his mother Neelima herself who shared (through a special message) a heart touching incident between her and little Shahid. It was during the actor’s conversation when the host asked him that did his mother ever tell him about what she was going through, her kind of personal turmoil or did she not. To which, Shahid replied, “We were friends, so I mean we kind of spoke about everything. I spoke about how I felt, she spoke about how she felt.” (Also Read: Shahid Kapoor’s first heartbreak: Two most painful minutes of his life)

As he finished saying this, it was Neelima Azeem’s voice that was heard then. Her message recorded for him was played on a LED TV screen where she said, “Something so personal I want to share here with you is that when he was only four years old I mean obviously there were moments when at night I used to you know sometimes let go of the pain and the fears that come along with the divorce especially when you are as young as that. And I remember that I was… he found me crying maybe at some late hour at night and he took me on his chest at four years and he said ‘Mumma why you crying you know Main Hoon Na.’ I mean literally that film came (later on) and he said ‘Main Hoon Na’. And I don’t know from there onwards it just.. it just hit me that he is there with me you know and there is nothing to worry.”

Image Source - YouTube

On hearing this, Simi immediately asked, “Even now! You’re still there for her.” Shahid took a slight pause and replied, “I hope I am. But, when you become an adult and when you start working around the clock I always live with the guilt that I don’t give enough time to my family. So I hope I’m there for her.”

Shahid even mentioned in the show that his mother Neelima had never made him feel a hard time and her pain, being she was very good with that to hide.

Indeed, it is such a heart touching incident to remember shared by Shahid’s mother.

Check out the full interview of Shahid Kapoor below:

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