Like Gabbar in Sholay, it's impossible to imagine MUNNABHAI MBBS without Sanjay Dutt.
If you believed that Shah Rukh Khan was the first choice for Rajkumar Hirani and Vidhu Vinod Chopra's cult then hold on. The Bollywood uncrowned king of jhakaas on screen tapori act - Anil Kapoor was in Rajkumar Hirani's mind when he was approached Vidhu Vinod Chopra.
The fresh, funny, sly incursions on medical systems - MUNNABHAI MBBS initiated Hirani's magnificent journey of providing sublime on screen experience went through some interesting casting juggles.
Hirani who has partnered with actor R. Madhavan as a producer, for the upcoming sports drama SAALA KHADOOS starring Madhavan and real life boxer Ritika Singh, takes a dip in nostalgia and shares this amazing journey.
Hirani says, “I grew up in Nagpur and from Nagpur I went to the Film Institute in Pune, came to Mumbai and did editing for quite some years. I thought who will do a film with me. The only reason for a person be an actor, producer to do a film with me is when I have a great script. Everybody works for selfish reasons and sees his/her interest in the script. So I started channelizing my energies in writing a good script and I wrote many stories during those times. Finally when I completed MUNNABHAI MBBS, I sensed the potential in it and when I narrated it, people wanted to be a part”.
But Vinod Chopra wasn,t the first one approached for the film. in fact the script got approved by someone earlier, shares Hirani without giving the name of the producer who wanted to make MUNNABHAI MBBS before Vinod, he says, “ Before Vinod had read the script, the movie got approved but they wanted it to be a bilingual and I was not ready to take such a risk with my first project, so it didn,t worked out”.
Interestingly, Hirani didn,t approach Vinod Chopra as a producer. He went to Vinod Chopra for some help and this is how MUNNABHAI MBBS finally happened, Rajkumar Hirani recollects, “ I went to Vinod Chopra to ask for his help in getting Anil Kapoor. I wanted a slightly matured actor for the role and Anil Kapoor has done TEZAAB, AWARGI and all those ‘Bhai' roles. On this Vinod Chopra said if I recommend you, he will take it seriously and I don,t know what you have written. It can be rubbish. I want to read the script before recommending anyone. It took time but finally Vinod read my script and enquired about the status. On knowing nothing has being finalized, he joined in as the producer and this is how it happened.”.
Well.. All well that ends well. after MUNNABHAI Rajkumar Hirani and Vidhu Vinod Chopra's tour de force redefined the sense and sensibility in their Bollywood on screen feel good inspirations like 3 IDIOTS, PK. Hirani has now turned a producer with R. Madhavan and we hope SAALA KHADOOS too is able to create a league on its own.
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