‘Truth is often stranger than fiction’ – a concept that has inspired several Bollywood filmmakers to explore the genre of biopics of late. The heart touching tale of a common man turning into a hero and the fact that it has been for real, triggers curiousity as audiences flock around multiplexes to see these stories come to life on the big screen.
Azhar was one such film which presented the tale of controversial former Indian cricket captain Mohammad Azharuddin and was based on some of his true life events. But there was one aspect that the makers decided to do away with. That of superstar Salman Khan. Similarly, yet another film that did not include the link of Salman Khan in its story was Sarbjit. Reasons? Well, there can be only one major reason – personal life debacles.
To be honest, the track of Sangeeta Bijlani entering Azharuddin’s life had a major twist around it. The actress was at the time said to be dating Salman Khan. In fact, the superstar has more than once spoken about his link-up with the actress. Readers may be aware that Sangeeta was planning to marry Salman Khan but the two decided to part ways during the time period. However, the film not only did not incorporate the Salman Khan angle but did not even mention the superstar’s name. A fleeting mention of a certain celebrity beau however was included in the film as Nargis (playing Sangeeta) in Azhar is hounded by the media over her alleged fiancé breaking up with her. All in all, Azhar managed to portray a hunky dory love story of an actress and a cricketer in a much simpler manner but we hear that it was much more complicated than that. Despite, Sangeeta finding love with Azharuddin, reports claim that Salman Khan was still in love with her and even persuaded her to return to him. But these complications were not included in the Azhar story. Interestingly, in reality, the former 90s diva Sangeeta Bijlani (who has now divorced Azhar) is still spotted with the Khan family and shares a good rapport with the superstar Salman’s sister Alvira.
On the other hand, following the footsteps of Azhar was Sarbjit, which starred Aishwarya Rai Bachchan in the lead. May be we do not need mention why the part of Salman Khan struggling for getting justice to Sarabjit Singh was left out from the film. The cold war between Aishwarya Rai and Salman Khan had become a media spectacle ever since their breakup in 2002. The two have never seen eye-to-eye since, forget working in a film together. They have often been spotted avoiding each other even if they happen to be at the same venue. While Aishwarya’s husband Abhishek Bachchan and Salman Khan have started bonding with each other of late, Ash and Salman still do not interact or acknowledge each other’s presence. However, the fact cannot be ignored that the reason why Sarabjit’s case became a war of the nation seeking justice for one man in Pakistan was because Salman Khan decided to keep up his promise with Dalbir Kaur who met him on the sets of Dabangg to seek his help. Dalbir Kaur was the character played by Aishwarya Rai Bachchan in Sarbjit and in reality, Dalbir who is a huge fan of Salman Khan had met the superstar on the sets of his film who had gladly agreed to help her. Salman Khan not only promoted Sarabjit issue on social media but even became a part of the initiatives and signed petitions for the release of Sarabjit. He had even used his contacts in politics to seek their help for the same. But these efforts by the superstar were conveniently ignored from the film, courtesy, the presence of Aishwarya Rai Bachchan.
Considering his stardom status, even the mere mention of the superstar could change the fate of the film but we guess that these films had their reasons – fair or unfair but definitely it hasn’t come as a surprise.