Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge is no longer a movie. It’s an emotion now. Raj, Simran, cow bell, Switzerland, Tujhe dekha to ye jaana sanam, or Palat for that matter evokes a sensation in us that’s too difficult to express. In India, it is almost a sin if you haven’t watched the movie and yet call yourself a movie buff. The even bigger crime is if you aren’t fond of the movie. It’s as if a rule to come…fall in love with DDLJ. That by the way was the tagline of this movie which created history and ran for over 1000 weeks since its release on October 20, 1995. Shah Rukh Khan, Kajol’s DDLJ Started the ‘Behind-The-Scene’ Trend in Bollywood, Says Uday Chopra
Now a lot of things happened before the story on paper reached the movie sets. There were cast reshuffles, a change of ideas, and even a few scuffles. There were a lot of things that were supposed to happen but didn’t and today, as we wait for the film to finish 25 years tomorrow, we decided to tell you a few of them.
#Tom Cruise As Kajol’s Raj
Kajol was always Aditya Chopra’s first choice while Shah Rukh Khan happened later. Chopra wanted Tom Cruise for the protagonist’s role as he intended it to be an Indo-American love story. Imagine Cruise singing ‘Tujhe dekha to ye jaana sanam‘! Nayyyyy
#A movie with newcomers
In an interview with Filmfare, Aditya Chopra had revealed he wanted newcomers for the film and he had a solid reason for that. “The original intention was to do a love story as an English language film. I wanted to show the international audience that India isn’t a country of snake charmers. Rather I wanted to acquaint them with how we Indians live, love, think and react today. Maybe I could still do this kind of international project someday,” Chopra had said.
#Saif Ali Khan as Raj and not Shah Rukh Khan
Chopra did go to SRK with the film after the Cruise plan went bust. His father Yash Chopra was strictly against that, apparently. The actor however wasn’t too keen since he had become quite famous playing anti-hero roles in films like Darr and Baazigar. Chopra then went to Saif who declined the offer for unknown reasons. Aamir too did the same and so, Chopra went back to SRK. After saying no to it four times, the superstar conceded when Chopra told him that to be a superstar he needs to be the man of every woman’s dream and a son every mother wants.
#Armaan Kohli as Kuljeet
We all love to hate Kuljeet. Chopra tried to dispel the theory that NRIs who grow up out of India are mannerless. Although Raj was a brat in the film initially when he fakes a headache to snatch a beer cartel, he didn’t want to elope with Simran as he wanted to marry her with her dad’s permission. Kuljeet was shown as a desi guy with negative attributes. Armaan Kholi was finalised for the role but Parmeet Sethi begged Chopra. Speaking with Rediff, Sethi had said, “Armaan Kohli had been signed up for Kuljeet Singh’s role. But I forced Adi (Aditya Chopra) to take my screen test. Adi wanted somebody with a negative and tough image. He told me I didn’t have that image. At that time, people had appreciated my positive role in the television series Dastaan. I had to beg Adi to give me a chance so that I could prove that I was his Kuljeet. When he said yes, I prepared really hard for my character.”
Himani Shivpuri played Kajol’s bua in the film, one character which symbolised the fact that a woman can live without a man too. She was supposed to be part of the climax scene as well when nearly everyone from Simran’s side gathers at the train station after the big reveal. She couldn’t make it because of her husband’s sudden demise.
(The above story first appeared on Onhike on Oct 19, 2020 03:11 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website onhike.com).