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40 years of Saaransh EXCLUSIVE: Balasaheb Thackeray gave his blessings to the Rajshri Productions film before its release

en Bollywood News 40 years of Saaransh EXCLUSIVE: Balasaheb Thackeray gave his blessings to the Rajshri Productions film before its release

Saaransh saw Anupam Kher and Rohini Hattangadi play senior citizens when they both were under 30 in real life.

Rajshri Productions’ Mahesh Bhatt directorial Saaransh completes 40 years today. The film marked the debut of Anupam Kher and it also starred Rohini Hattangadi, Suhas Bhalekar, Soni Razdan, Madan Jain and Nilu Phule. It told the story of a senior citizen couple BV Pradhan (Kher) and Parvati (Hattangadi) who are trying to come to terms with the tragic loss of their son in a violent incident in the US. They get able support from Pradhan’s best friend Vishwanath (Bhalekar).

40 years of Saaransh EXCLUSIVE: Balasaheb Thackeray gave his blessings to the Rajshri Productions film before its release

Following the death of their son, the couple rents out his room to an aspiring actress Sujata (Razdan). She has an affair with Vilas (Jain), the son of a famous politician Gajanan Chitre (Phule), and gets pregnant. Pradhan and Parvati were contemplating suicide out of grief, but Sujata’s pregnancy motivates them to live, although for different reasons. Saaransh has stood the test of time for four decades as the film is still considered a classic.

On the film’s 40th anniversary, prominent people from the Rajshri Productions banner – Managing Director Kamal Kumar Barjatya, Director Ajit Kumar Barjatya and General Manager PK Gupta – sat down to have an exclusive chat regarding the film with this writer from Bollywood Hungama at their residence in Mumbai.

Kamal Kumar Barjatya said that they were sure with their end product before the release. “We were sure that the film would turn out to be memorable. There is always this uncertainty of how it would do commercially. But we were very sure of the film getting critical acclaim, which was later proved,” he said.

The film came out in the 80s when hero-centric action films were the norm. But despite that, the banner showed faith in Mahesh Bhatt’s subject. “We had liked the subject. At that time, the production used to be handled by Raj babu (late Raj Kumar Barjatya). He used to select these subjects. Saaransh was one of the selections made by him,” added Kamal Kumar Barjatya.

Gupta recalled how Bhatt narrated the film to the Raj Kumar Barjatya back then. “The meeting had taken place in Seth ji’s (late founder of Rajshri Films Tarachand Barjatya) room. In two and a half hours, Mahesh ji showed the whole film (while narrating). It was with such elaborate detailing that it will be shot in Shivaji Park, etc. There was complete clarity in his mind.”

Interestingly, Anupam Kher, in his debut film, was only 28 when he played a senior citizen. His casting happened through Bhatt. Talking about the banner’s relation with the actor following Saaransh, the three gentlemen said that he considers Rajshri as his home.

Rohini Hattangadi was also selected by Bhatt. She was also under 30 years of age when she played a senior citizen in the film. “Gandhi (in which she played Kasturba Gandhi) had already released. She had become known after that film. And we felt she would fit well in this role,” said Kamal Kumar Barjatya.

Interestingly, a number of trial shows of Saaransh took place at the preview theatre of Rajshri Productions. The screenings were attended by more than 100 prominent people from the film industry. Apart from them, Shiv Sena supremo Balasaheb Thackeray was also one of the guests to see the film before its release. “It’s a 17-seater theatre. Thackeray ji liked the film, and he gave his blessings. He praised everyone’s work. He met Seth ji too,” revealed Ajit Kumar Barjatya.

Not many would know that veteran filmmaker David Dhawan also had an important contribution in Saaransh as the film’s Editor. “It was a very good experience (working with Dhawan). He used to work day and night in our editing room. He used to be present 24 hours whenever we needed,” recalled Kamal Kumar Barjatya.

Also Read: EXCLUSIVE: “Sooraj Barjatya sir made us treat movie set as a temple,” reveals Dono actress Kanikka Kapur

More Pages: Saaransh Box Office Collection


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