Salim-Javed is a name that gave not just respectability to the film writers in the industry but also won for themselves a star status as the duo charged a remuneration that was at par with the top stars of that era!
||SALIM KHAN AND JAVED AKHTAR
In an interview Javed Akhtar said, ''We had confidence in our writing and we wrote with conviction. We knew it will hit the bull's eye hence we demanded huge amount.''
Recalling his early days, Javed said, ''Prior to ZANJEER's release we wrote the screenplay for HAATHI MERE SAATHI. Actually the movie was a remake of a south film and Rajesh Khanna was not satisfied with its screenplay. Hence he invited us and promised to pay handsome amount. The movie was a hit. Overwhelmed with our writing style Khanna recommended our names to many filmmakers praising our quality writing.''
''One day we got a call from filmmaker Yash Chopra. He asked us to narrate a script. We did but no sooner we finished narrating the script Yash Chopra was so excited that he immediately approved the script and asked us our fee. But the moment he heard our fees his excitement ceased and he kicked us out,'' informs Akhtar.
Readers would be wondering what was the amount quoted by Salim-Javed? Well, the duo had demanded Rs. 1 Lakh, when in those days story writers were paid a paltry sum of Rs. 10,000 to Rs 15,000.
However, Salim-Javed were not disappointed. Two years later ZANJEER was released and the movie not only made Amitabh Bachchan, a superstar but it changed the fortunes of Salim-Javed too. The movie fetched them the prestigious Filmfare ‘Best story' and ‘Best Screenplay' award.
Impressed by the movie's tremendous success Yash Chopra realized the strength of the duo and again called them into his office.
When the duo reached office, without wasting time Yash Chopra handing them a cheque of Rs. 1 Lakh said, ''Start work on the script you narrated me before.'' But to the utter astonishment of Yash Chopra, the duo returned the cheque and said, ''Chopra Sahab Rs 1 Lakh was our fees before ZANJEER, now our fees is Rs 5 Lakh!''
Yash Chopra smiled and paid them the said amount. Any guesses which was the movie? Well, you have guessed it right- the movie was DEEWAAR!
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