Celebrating 33 years of Salman Khan: ‘The pied piper of Bollywood’, say SK’s producers and directors

Updated on Aug 27, 2021 07:14 AM IST  |  421.9K
   
Celebrating 33 years of Salman Khan: ‘The pied piper of Bollywood’, say SK’s producers and directors
Celebrating 33 years of Salman Khan: ‘The pied piper of Bollywood’, say SK’s producers and directors
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On August 26, 1988, Salman Khan made his foray into acting with a rather short role in the Rekha and Farooq Shaikh fronted, Biwi Ho Toh Aisi. This was followed by the All Time Blockbuster, Maine Pyar Kiya directed by Sooraj Barjatya in December 1989. His 33-year journey has been a roller coaster ride and very few in the history of Bollywood have seen the kind of success that Salman has – ranging from delivering a blockbuster in every genre, to having the maximum number of highest grossing films of the year - he has almost all major records under his name. 

One director that he has worked with the most is the comedy king, David Dhawan. The duo have teamed up on successful films like Judwaa, Biwi No. 1, Dulhan Hum Le Jayenge, Mujhse Shaadi Karogi and Partner among others. David says, “Before actor and superstar comes Salman Khan, the human. He is a great guy, very honest, clean hearted and doesn’t like someone trying to flatter him.”

David’s writing partner, Rumy Jafry, who went ahead to direct Salman in God Tussi Great Ho can’t stop raving about the humane side of the superstar. “He has been doing all the good deeds since the 90s', and used to get angry when anyone spoke about it. I remember, there was an accident of an actor in town that he spotted while travelling. When no one was helping, he stopped there, carried the person to the hospital, did all the paperwork to get him admitted, figured out his family members went to their home and got them to the hospital,” Rumy shares. He also has another anecdote from the sets of Devdas, which not many are aware about. “There was an accident on the sets of Devdas when a fan wing fell down on a spot boy. It was Bhansali’s shoot, but Salman reached the set, took the spot boy to the hospital. The boy was in coma for months, but Salman got the treatment done and took care of everything,” Rumy recalls.

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He became a superstar, but he has given so many good performances. He can do good work when he wants to do it. Today, he is a genuine superstar, whom the audience love. I have heard so many people say, ‘Bhai Ki Picture Aa Rahi Hai… Dekhni Padegi’ and he is one of those Jiski Entry Mein Log Pagal Ho Jaate Hai,
David Dhawan

Salman’s life has been full of ups and downs. Rumy reveals that even in the difficult times of his career, he never took the stress. He recalls an incident from the days when Salman had to spend some nights in the Jodhpur jail. “Katrina (Kaif), Bina Kak ji and I were going to the jail with the bail order and on the way, I told Katrina that Salman will come out with a list in his hand to help the people in the jail. And that’s exactly what happened. He came out and said, ‘Rumy bhai, bahut badi list leke aaya hoon main. Can you believe it, a person is in jail because he doesn’t have Rs 10,000 to bail himself out. Uske ghar wale bhuke mar rahe hai. Ek aur bande ki maa bimar hai. Yeh sab ki madat karni hai’. Katrina and I laughed listening to this because we knew he would do this. It’s only him who can think this way. He is a true Dabangg.”

Trade analyst, Taran Adarsh believes that his good-hearted nature is one of the reasons for him to command such a terrific fan following. “There are a lot of actors who do things for publicity, but he is one man who shies away from it. There have been instances with me as well. I wouldn’t get into the details because it’s something very personal. He didn’t do it for publicity, but he did it,” Taran informs. 

David believes that Salman is an excellent actor with good comic timing. “He became a superstar, but he has given so many good performances. He can do good work when he wants to do it. Today, he is a genuine superstar, whom the audience love. I have heard so many people say, ‘Bhai Ki Picture Aa Rahi Hai… Dekhni Padegi’ and he is one of those Jiski Entry Mein Log Pagal Ho Jaate Hai,” David shares, adding further that it’s difficult to stay relevant for 33 years. “His acting has become huge with experience. The masses are his yaar, but if you look, he has done amazing films for classes too. 300 crore toh kitni baar touch kar liya hai isne.”

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There was an accident on the sets of Devdas when a fan wing fell down on a spot boy. It was Bhansali’s shoot, but Salman reached the set, took the spot boy to the hospital. The boy was in coma for months, but Salman got the treatment done and took care of everything
Rumy Jafry

Director Anees Bazmee, who directed Salman in two comic capers, No Entry and Ready, hopes for Salman to continue with his entertainment for more 33 years. “He will continue to be a huge star for 33 years. According to me, his name should be Dil Khan. He is a bindass person, and it is fun to work with him. He is such a huge star, but an easy person to work with. He has a tough body and look, but a soft heart. He is a complete actor – a huge star, great at action, drama, romance, dance and comedy. A lot of actors in the industry are respected, but Salman Khan is someone who is loved by the audience. And there is a massive difference between love and respect,” Bazmee says. The filmmaker further reveals that his daughter is a huge fan of Salman Khan. “We speak at regular intervals. My daughter, Sara is a huge fan of his and wanted to meet him once. He loves kids and spent time with her for 3 hours. For Sara, there is just one hero and that’s Salman Khan. It has been 10 years since that incident, and she has never missed any of his films.” 

Taran believes that no one can tower over the superstardom of Salman Khan. “Salman Khan is the pied piper of Bollywood. There is a long queue in cinema halls for his films and he is the one who brought mass cinema back. He is loved by millions from all strata of society. He towers above all. There is no one who is actually as charismatic and as big a crowd puller as Salman Khan. His audience pull is unbelievable, though his last few films have not done as well as expected,” Taran explains. He further adds, “Even the start of his career, he delivered hits after his. Maine Pyar Kiya was followed by hits like Baaghi, Sanam Bewafaa, Kurbaan, Saajan and Patthar Ke Phool. His career was just wow at this point of time. Then something happened and it went down, but he kept working and kept getting movies. He has also been a constant in introducing new talents.”

Ramesh Taurani, who has worked with Salman in Auzaar and Jab Pyaar Kisi Se Hota Hai, calls the actor his 2 am friend. “You have any trouble and he is there for you. We have bonded well from the start. He was a huge star in the 90s, is a huge star today and will always be a huge star. But he hasn’t changed with stardom. His price has gone up 1000 times, but his behavior remains the same,” he laughs. His Sajaan director, Lawrence D’Souza, informs that he and his producer had signed Salman even before the release of Maine Pyar Kiya. “I had seen the trail at Rajshri office and that was my first meeting with Salman Khan. He was signed with a token of Rs 5000 and then the proposal of Sajaan was made. It’s so much fun to shoot with Salman. He has so much love and respect for me and the family. In the industry, there is just one real hero for me and that’s Salman Khan. In terms of stardom, down south, it’s Rajinikanth and in Mumbai, it is Salman Khan. He is the man of masses with a heart of gold. It feels great to know that my hero, my friend, my family member is the biggest star,” Lawrence shares.

Garv director, Puneet Issar ranks Salman as one of the best actors of the industry. “He is a director’s actor, opposite to the image that he carries. If he believes in a director, he is like a raw clay which you can mold the way you want. He just needs to trust the director. Very few know that the cross sign in Garv was Salman’s idea. He has a photoshop memory. He has seen me do this a couple of times and decided to include it in the film,” Puneet recalls, adding further that Garv was the starting point of Salman’s journey as an on-screen cop. Speaking about the stardom, Puneet says, “Salman means stardom. There was Mr. Bachchan, Dharmendra and now Salman Khan. Everyone identifies with him – be it a 6-year-old, 18-year-old or 60-year-old. Salman’s connection with the audience is just too high.” 

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Salman Khan is the pied piper of Bollywood. There is a long queue in cinema halls for his films and he is the one who brought mass cinema back. He is loved by millions from all strata of society. He towers above all. There is no one who is actually as charismatic and as big a crowd puller as Salman Khan
Taran Adarsh

Vijay Galani, who produced two period films in Salman’s career – Suryavanshi and Veer – calls him a friend. “We had a one-to-one friendship. I had signed him for a film much before the release of his debut and he became a huge star right after the release of Maine Pyar Kiya. We have worked together on two films, and both of them were the biggest productions at that point of time for Salman. We continue to be good friends,” he concludes.

Taran Adarsh recalls Mr. Tarachand Barjatya’s prediction of Salman being a huge star much before the release of Maine Pyar Kiya. “After a screening of Maine Pyaar Kiya, Seth Ji (Tarachand Barjatya) had clearly told me that ‘Yeh Ladka Aur Ladki Bahut Bade Star Banenge’. He saw a spark in them. And that’s what happened. Maine Pyar Kiya rewrote all records at the box-office at that point of time, and Salman got the limelight from the first film. The film also revolutionized the sound system in India. This was the revival of cinema’s, in-fact a turning point as post Maine Pyar Kiya came Aditya Chopra, Karan Johar and Dharmesh Darshan.” 

Taran signs off sharing a very personal interaction with Salman. “I had watched Dil Ne Jise Apna Kaha, directed by his brother in law, Atul Agnihotri, at a special screening. After that, Atul called me for feedback and I said that it didn’t really work for me. He passed on the phone to Salman, and I told him the same thing. And then he said something that stays with me even today. ‘Agar Yeh Picture Chal Gai, Toh Saara Credit Atul Ko Milna Chahiye. Agar Nahin Chali, Toh I will take the credit of failure.’ It’s a big thing,” he says, adding further, “People often speak about the casting choices of Salman, which even I may have pointed out at times. But the helpful nature crosses over to movies as well as he likes to bail people out – be it behind the camera or in front of it. That’s how he is.”

Also Read| After 32 years, Salman Khan gears up for the first biopic of his career with Rajkumar Gupta's next

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Anonymous : Aishwarya Rai still hating him for everything.
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Anonymous : Salman had X factor from .. those who saw that are still his fans and love to death
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Anonymous : Even Akshay (Akki) and Akshay Khanna, Ajay, Sunil, were in some amazing movies and so was SRK and Amir but SRK was over rated. 90's movies and era was the best!!!!
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Anonymous : Salman was super good looking in the 90's, no one was near him in terms of looks but he didn't get his due as an actor even when he was phenomenal for this very reason. Some of those movies were the best, loved movies back in those days.
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Anonymous : He is so old
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