Had it not been for the roles turned down by Bollywood actors, some of the iconic roles and classic movies of Bollywood would have been different. Not every actor who played a character on screen was the first choice for the character. For the greeted good or not, let us have a look at some of the roles turned down by Bollywood actors:
1. Chak De India, Salman Khan
“Sattar Minute” ends with “Do whatever you want to do man.” or coach Kabir Khan beating up all the goons by himself in the restaurant. Things would have been different if Salman Khan had agreed to do Chak De India.
2. Bajrangi Bhaijaan, Hrithik Roshan
KV Vijayendra Prasad, the writer of Bajrangi Bhaijaan, had initially thought of Rakesh Roshan as the producer of the movie and the Greek God of Bollywood playing the innocent Pawan Kumar Chaturvedi. But Rakesh Roshan had a disagreement with Prasad about the amount he asked for his script. Later on, Prasad went to Salman Khan with the story, who Salman immediately agreed to pay the signing amount.
3. Ramleela, Kareena Kapoor
Bhansali initially offered the role of Leela to Kareena, but Bebo turned down the role. Although Kareena could not become a part of the movie, giving credits to her mood swings, she admitted that she has no regrets about leaving the film. This is one of the golden roles turned down by Bollywood actors.
4. Swades, Hrithik Roshan
Before Hrithik Roshan translated Ashutosh Gowariker’s vision of Akbar on the big screen, the actor was approached to essay Mohan Bhargav in Swades, but things didn’t go ahead. When asked about the same, Hrithik revealed that he had read the script of Swades, but his vision didn’t match Gowariker’s, and he felt that he wouldn’t be able to do justice to the part.
5. Bajirao Mastani, Katrina Kaif
Sanjay Leela Bhansali had planned to cast Katrina Kaif as Mastani in his epic period war drama. But, since Katrina wasn’t in favour of romancing with a younger actor, the role was handed over to Deepika, who created magic on screen.
6. Munna Bhai MBBS, Shah Rukh Khan
The makers wanted to cast SRK for the titular role of Munna Bhai, and the actor had even agreed to it. Ironically, the man supposed to play a doctor (fake hi sahi) didn’t take the project due to an injury.
7. Hum Aapke Hain Koun, Aamir Khan
Another of the legendary roles turned down by Bollywood actors include the role of Prem. Had Aamir Khan found the script interesting enough, he would’ve also featured in the ‘Hall of Prem’ of Rajshri Productions. But it didn’t happen, and we missed out on the sight of Mr Perfectionist grooving to the tunes of Didi Tera Dewar Deewana.
8. Prem Ratan Dhan Payo, Deepika Padukone
Another of the famous roles turned down by Bollywood actors is of Maithili Devi. The title song of Prem Ratan Dhan Payo with 730 million+ views on YouTube could have Deepika’s face on it. But, she turned down the offer, and Sonam Kapoor was roped for essaying Maithili Devi.
9. Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, Akshay Kumar
Being the fitness icon, Akshay Kumar would’ve totally done justice to Milkha Singh’s role. But the actor didn’t find the script interesting enough. The makers went ahead with Farhan Akhtar, who received many praises for the movie. Oh, BTW, Boss was also released in the same year as Bhaag Milkha Bhaag.
10. Saaho, Alia Bhatt:
After becoming a huge sensation with the massive global success of the Bahubali series, Saaho was the next big project for Prabhas. Alia Bhatt was the first choice of the makers of Saaho for the female lead, but she opted out of the project because of less screen time.
And that’s the exciting part about the roles turned down by Bollywood actors. They make us feel grateful for a particular actor bringing a character to life on the big screen. At the same time, they leave us curious about the end result if the first choice for the character had agreed to do the film.
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Every coin has two sides, and I am interested in both when it comes to cinema. Having a constant affair with memes and curious about a lot of things ranging from the age-old folk tales to the browsing history of the class toppers. If Tsundoku is an art, I am one of the artists.