It was no secret: Rishi Kapoor had revealed many months ago that Neetu Singh and he were not playing biological parents to Ranbir Kapoor in Besharam, which has just released. It is another thing that some people are calling it a Kapoor family film just because all three of them are in it!Cast conflicts: Family break!
Last year, in Jab Tak Hai Jaan, Neetu Singh was shown as the estranged wife of Anupam Kher, who lives in with Rishi Kapoor (who plays a Muslim!) but does not marry him!
We have indeed come a long way from the time when an illustrious filmmaker had warned B.R. Chopra not to go ahead with his plans of making Waqt (1965) with Prithviraj Kapoor and his three sons Raj, Shammi and Shashi in the roles of a father and his three sons, because whenever some of them would be shown interacting midway in this lost-and-found drama, it would look absurd to the audience because of the strong physical resemblances!
Yes, Sunil Dutt and Nargis did play son and mother in Mother India, but they were not husband and wife when the film was shot! In fact, an accidental fire on the sets led to love blossoming between them as the actor had valiantly rescued Nargis at risk to himself.
Of course we have the classic cameos of Shammi Kapoor and Shashi Kapoor as fellow qawwals in the film Jabse Tumhe Dekha Hai's 'Tumhe husna deke jahaan mein'. And Shammi Kapoor played Johnny Braganza while Raj Kapoor was Govinda in Char Dil Char Raahein earlier. Another old case was the 1969 Sadhu Aur Shaitan, in which Kishore Kumar played a principal character while elder brother Ashok Kumar, who shared no frame with him, played himself - Ashok Kumar the star!
"If you can't change the girl, change the girl!" went a witty line in the recent film Chashme Baddoor. The same principle seemed to apply to casting in movies where it was often imperative to cast two artistes in specific roles that needed 'changes' from real-life relationships.
Amitabh Bachchan, for example, did not even share a frame or any reel bond with son Abhishek Bachchan in Shootout At Lokhandwala. And he was also not related to him in films as varied as Bunty Aur Babli and Jhoom Barabar Jhoom and in Abhishek's cameo in the senior Bachchan's Ek Ajnabee. What's more, Amitabh Bachchan skipped a generation and played Abhishek's grandfather in a cameo in Delhi-6, again not sharing a single scene with his real son!
And of course we have that classic case of their home production Paa, in which the real son played father and the real father his son in a brilliantly-conceived script! What a role reversal!
In the recent Enemmy, Mithun Chakraborty and his son Mahakshay never played their real relationship, though they were both army officers. Even after their marriage, Dharmendra was not cast romantically opposite Hema Malini in Krodhi, while he played a character unrelated to son Sunny Deol in Saveray Wali Gaadi in 1986. His sons Sunny Deol and Bobby Deol played two legendary but unrelated freedom fighters - Chandrashekhar Azad and Bhagat Singh respectively - in their home production 23 March 1931 - Shaheed.
The director of Saveray Wali Gaadi, famous South whiz kid Bharatiraaja, separated another son from father in Lovers - Rajendra Kumar played a Catholic priest while Kumar Gaurav, the hero, was shown as a Hindu lad!
In Rajkumar Santoshi's Khakee, real-life ma-in-law Tanuja played a Muslim, while her real-life son-in-law Ajay Devgn was a Maharashtrian police officer. Ram Gopal Varma's chilling Bhoot showed Ajay as married to Urmila, who is possessed by the spirit of Tanuja's deceased daughter! In Son Of Sardaar too, Ajay and Tanuja were nowhere near their real relationship.
And speaking of ma-in-laws, Dimple Kapadia played the affectionate mother of real-life son-in-law Akshay Kumar in the latter's home production Patiala House, co-produced by Twinkle Khanna, Dimple's daughter and Akshay's wife!
Back to Kapoors
Shashi Kapoor and Rishi Kapoor played unrelated characters who never shared a frame in Doosara Aadmi - in fact, Shashi's widow Raakhee develops a crush on the married Rishi because of their 'resemblance', making him the doosara aadmi of the film's title! The Yash Chopra banner actually exploited the familial face syndrome of this real life uncle-nephew pair even before - the two played father and son in Kabhi Kabhie, with both films written by Sagar Sarhadi, the well-known littÃ©rateur. In Duniya Meri Jeb Mein, the chacha-bhatija (paternal uncle and nephew) of real life played Karan and Vishal Khanna, shown as real brothers and even enacted a song whose hook was Tere jaisa bhai sab ko mile!
Shammi Kapoor and Randhir Kapoor tweaked their relationship from chacha bhatija to Mama Bhanja (maternal uncle and nephew) in the film of that name. Shashi Kapoor and Randhir Kapoor were comrades in conning people in Heeralal Pannalal. In the film Hum To Chale Pardes, Shashi Kapoor's daughter, played by Mandakini, loves Rajiv Kapoor, Shashi's real-life nephew, while in Ek Jaan Hain Hum, Rajiv is shown as the son of his other real-life uncle, Shammi Kapoor!
Finally, in the 2012 laugh-riot Housefull 2, Randhir Kapoor and Rishi Kapoor were hilariously superb as squabbling half-brothers sharing just one parent!
Khan, not Clan!
Salim Khan's sons have also been notorious for not playing siblings, except for Salman Khan and Arbaaz Khan in Dabangg and its sequel Dabangg 2. Salman and Arbaaz were unrelated cops in Garv, rivals in love in Hello Brother and Arbaaz played Kajol's over-protective brother who opposes her affair with Salman in Pyaar Kiya To Darna Kya.
Salman and Sohail Khan also played unrelated characters in Main Aur Mrs. Khanna and God Tussi Great Ho. The three brothers came together in Maine Pyar Kyun Kiya (Arbaaz did a cameo) but were shown without any ties of blood between them. All these films, except Garv, were their home productions!
Aamir Khan and Faisal Khan came together in Mela, but not as brothers. And among the senior Khans, Feroz Khan did two of his last films - Janasheen, which he also produced and directed, and Ek Khiladi Ek Haseena, with son Fardeen Khan, but in both he played good-hearted dons who was not connected to his real son in reel life.
Earlier in the film Nagin (1976), his brother Sanjay Khan and he were projected as friends and not brothers. And in Anjaan Raahen (1974) there was no connection between Feroz, playing a teacher, and his brother Akbar Khan, playing a spoilt brat son of a rich woman.
More Pages: Besharam Box Office Collection , Besharam Movie Review
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