Here are some interesting, little-known tidbits, anecdotes, trivia from the world of Hindi cinema you may not have heard of!
1. A pathbreaking film in Hindi cinema, Om Dar-B-Dar (1988) never actually released commercially until 26 years of being made. The Kamal Swaroop-directorial did the rounds at film festivals outside and garnered much appreciation. A cult classic and an inspiration for filmmakers today, it won the Filmfare Critics Award for Best Film in 1989.
2. Anurag Kashyap wrote on his website that Emotional Atyachaar from DevD was actually inspired from the song meri jaan AAA… of ‘Om Dar-B-Dar.’ If you listen closely, you’ll also find a tune of a popular Madhuri Dixit song in meri jaan AAA. For the ones, who couldn’t figure it out, the song is ‘nazarein mili… from Raja (1995).
3. The song Emotional Atyachaar features a prolific actor from the industry, who wasn’t quite a name then – Nawazuddin Sidiqqui. There is a contention on the second guy in the song. Can anyone confirm if it’s Sunil Grover or Nitin Chainpuri?
4. Director Vidhu Vinod Chopra has won over 20 international awards. He was nominated for an Oscar for his short documentary film An Encounter with Faces (1978) at 23. That makes him the youngest Indian to have been nominated for an Academy Award.
5. Naseeruddin Shah was the highest paid actor in the cult classic Jaane Bhi Do Yaron (1983). Can you guess how much he was paid? Rs. 15000!
6. Sridevi played Rajinikanth’s step mother in a Tamil film. She was all 13!
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7. Satyajit Ray holds the record for winning the maximum number of National Awards. 32! 6 of these 32 times were for the ‘Best Director.’
8. One of the only films in the history of hindi cinema to star a single actor was Yaadein (Duration: 113 minutes). Helmed by Sunil Dutt (his début as a director), it featured only him as the actor. The 1964-classic found a spot in the Guinness Book of World Records for ‘fewest actors in a narrative film.’
9. India’s nightingale Lata Mangeshkar tried her luck in acting before she entered the singing world. The 86-year old singer acted in over 8 films between 1942-1948. Her first song was for a Marathi film Kiti Hasaal (1942). Unfortunately, the song never released. It was taken off the film.
10. Shahrukh Khan’s part in the classic Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge was first offered to Saif Ali Khan. He turned it down.
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11. Iconic actor Dharmendra started his film career in 1960 with Arjun Hingorani’s Dil Bhi Tera Hum Bhi Tere. The signing amount was Rs 51 and breakfast at a Grant Road (Bombay) restaurant.
12. Do you know which film (Hindi) has won the maximum number of awards in the history of Indian cinema? It won 92 awards(!) and made it to the Guinness Book of World Records in 2002 for the same. Kaho Naa Pyar Hai (2000).
13. Veteran director Yash Chopra, who popularized Europe, particularly Switzerland, as a holiday destination among Indians, has a lake in the country (in Alpenrausch) named after him. He shot so many of his films there that it is now called the ‘Yash Chopra Lake.’
14. Meena Kumari charged only Re 1 for her role in the Kamal Amrohi-classic Pakeezah. (Source: Pakeezah by Meghnad Desai). The film took 15 years to get made.
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The tune used in the Om-Dar-Ba-Dar song is the theme music from “Come September”. This tune has been copied multiple times in bollywood which include movies like Raja and Baazi.
15000! No wonder Naseeruddin Shah is so frustrated with actors of this day and age :p
Jaane Bhi Do Yaro is one of my all time favourites.