The Past Blast: When Dilip Kumar was to direct Amitabh Bachchan in Baba Jaani…
Dilip Kumar and Amitabh Bachchan are by far not just two of the biggest superstars of Indian cinema, but also phenomenal actors, who could ace any character with utmost conviction. The two have worked together on the classic, Shakti, a high-octane drama wherein they were pitted against each other. Years later, Dilip Saab was supposed to act with Amitabh Bachchan’s son, Abhishek in his debut film, titled Akhri Mughal, however, it ended up being a distant dream as the project was shelved.
This isn’t the only project that failed to take off. A veteran from the industry informs us that back in the 1990s, Dilip Kumar was planning to make a swift switch to direction. In the 90s, he planned to direct a film titled Kalinga, with him, and Sunny Deol in lead. While Dilip saab was to play the role of Justice Kalinga, Sunny’s character traits were kept under wraps. The iconic duo of Kalyanji Anandji had come on board music composers. While Sunny Deol walked out of the film after shooting for less than a week as he was not in sync with Dilip Saab’s style of filmmaking, he was replaced with a new face eventually. However, after canning nearly 70% of Kalinga, it was shelved as the project was taking too long to reach the closing point leading to a spike in budget.
While the reports of Kalinga was widely spoken about in the 90s, very few know that this isn’t the only unfulfilled dream of the Thespian of Indian cinema. The legendary actor at one point of time was planning to direct a film titled Baba Jaani, with Amitabh Bachchan in lead. Apart from direction, even the script was written by Dilip Saab. It was his dream to make it with Amitabh Bachchan, who was to play the role of a Kashmiri Pandit.
The entire premise was essentially a drama set in the Kashmir Valley, and according to the insider, the makers had also designed an announcement poster for the same. But alas, it never made it to the magazines back then and the film was shelved without making any noise. Well… Wouldn’t it have been a treat to watch Big B directed by the Thespian? As they say, unfulfilled dreams…For more such trivia’s, stay tuned to the Past Blast column, every Monday on Pinkvilla.