Karisma Kapoor Opens Up About Almost Not Doing Dil To Pagal Hai. We Can’t Imagine The Movie Without Her
Sometimes, when we look at the past, we do so with a sense of superiority – much like how a latest android update would look at the previous versions. We think we have come a long way, and often ridicule the culture of the past. And there’s us – the hybrid generation which has their heart in the 90s and their minds already in the future. We love the fact that gratification is rather instant these days, while in the 90s the only thing instant was Maggi (however, I wonder if someone really can make it in 2 mins!). Food, entertainment or sex – almost everything is available sooner than you can even decide on what you really want. We have access to so much that when we look at the movies from the 90s, we’re stumped by the fashion of that time. Or what their idea of what romance was. Okay, some of the stuff was really bizarre but then maybe they just had a different idea of romance. How else do you explain the several dupatta flying, dancing around the trees, running aimlessly sequences in Dil To Pagal Hai? How do you explain the very evidently moonlit Valentine’s Day song with Shah Rukh Khan, Madhuri Dixit Nene and Karisma Kapoor looking all enchanted for no apparent reason? While that may sound ridiculous to a lot of us now, but hey, that’s just how everything was romanticised back then. And come on, we loved it.
Now, I can’t imagine this movie having the same charm with a different star cast. So when Karisma Kapoor recently revealed that she had second thoughts about doing the movie, I am really glad that she did go for it after all. “I can’t let one roadblock affect it. Even on the bad days I had to keep my head held high. So even when I was offered ‘Dil Toh Pagal Hai’, when no actress wanted to be cast against Madhuri Dixit. I didn’t want to shy away because ‘I thought I couldn’t do it’. I did the film & even won a National Award for it! (sic),” she told Humans of Bombay. Considering how good a dancer Madhuri is, it can make any actress nervous to have a dance-off with her. Madhuri was at the peak of her career at that point, and was the national crush of men and women alike. So I am glad that Karisma believed in herself and did the movie anyway.
Honestly, if you leave the slightly-hilarious and unrelatable things aside, I really did love the movie. It explored several themes that are relatable even today. Dil To Pagal Hai realistically portrayed Nisha’s (Karisma Kapoor) unrequited love for Rahul (Shah Rukh Khan) – unlike how Uday Chopra acts like it’s all okay in several movies. That was a the friendzone of that time. Nisha was jealous, and that is natural. She hated feeling replaced and also indulged in a dance face-off with Pooja (Madhuri Dixit), who was Rahul’s love interest in the film. Yet, she doesn’t let jealousy get the best of her and steps aside so that Rahul can go get the love of his life.
ALSO READ: Karisma Kapoor Talks About The Time She Got Criticised For Her Song ‘Sexy Sexy Mujhe Log Bole’. Her Mum’s Advice Is The Best
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“Growing up, I used to visit my granddad on set—& his talent would leave me mesmerised. Once I was there when he was directing ‘Ram Teri Ganga Maili’. I loved the sets, camera & lights! I knew I wanted to become an actor & contribute to the family legacy. When I told my granddad, he said, ‘It’s glamourous but it’s not a bed of roses—you will have to work very hard.’ That stayed with me. I wanted to act but my inner voice made me doubt myself. But what motivated me, was how grounded my mom kept me. Despite being from an ‘illustrious’ family, she made us live a simple life. My sister & I travelled by school bus & went to college by local trains. My mom taught me how to stick to my roots & still be confident. She knew about my passion for acting & about my hesitation. I didn’t want to falter & let anybody down. But she said that until I try, I’d never know. That’s when I signed my first film—a remake of a South Indian movie! While shooting, I gave my best. I had to ‘make it’ or ‘break it’. And the movie was a success! As my career progressed, there were highs & lows. I had done a song, ‘Sexy Sexy’—I’d worked hard & even hurt my knees for it. I was appreciated for my dance, but people thought the song was way ahead of its time—the word ‘Sexy’ wasn’t common back then. But that’s when my mom said that it’s an actors job to entertain. I can’t let one roadblock affect it. Even on the bad days I had to keep my head held high. So even when I was offered ‘Dil Toh Pagal Hai’, when no actress wanted to be cast against Madhuri Dixit. I didn’t want to shy away because ‘I thought I couldn’t do it’. I did the film & even won a National Award for it! From then on, whenever I’ve wondered if I was capable enough—be it in my choice of films, being a single mom or in my relationships with people, I’ve never let my doubts get the better of me. We live in a world where there will always be roadblocks, people to bog you down & things that may not work out. That’s why you have to be your biggest strength & not let your voice, at any point, become your weakness.” — HoB with POND'S encourages women to overcome their inhibitions & #SeeWhatHappens when they let go of their inner voices.
What is worth noticing is that, Akshay Kumar, who can carry off movies completely on his shoulders today, wasn’t even in the poster of the film. Neither was he in the trailer. It takes a lot of courage to be part of a movie, in which you know there is a star bigger than you or the fact that you won’t be the lead.
For all it’s worth, it seems like everybody was in the right place at the right time. And that pretty much resonates with Rahul’s philosophy in life, of soulmates and destiny.