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Prince Charming

Friday, November 03, 2017
By Deepa Gahlot

At the time of writing this, the media is full of news of Shah Rukh Khan’s birthday celebrations. The star who lives his life kingsize, took the time off from partying with his industry buddies to meet the media and offer them full Khan style hospitality. It’s not surprising then that his stardom is as gleaming as ever, even as his last few films have disappointed.

Everyone knows of his big hits, the films that have been steps on his ladder to superstardom. To mark his 52nd birthday, a look at ten of the not so well known films from the early years of his career.

Dil Aashna Hai (1992)
This film directed by Hema Malini, was supposed to be the first film he signed when he came to Mumbai to become an actor, but Deewana released first. In this one about a young woman’s (Divya Bharti) search for her birth mother, he played the mandatory love interest, with the generic Bollywood name Karan, who helps her. Romance, of course, he could manage even then, with little effort.

Chamatkar (1992)
In Rajiv Mehra’s film, he played Sunder Shrivastav, a teacher, who encounters the ghost of a don (Naseeruddin Shah) who needs his help to avenge his murder. The comedy-crime film had him display his comic timing, stand up to an actor like Shah, and romance a gauche Urmila Matondkar.

Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa (1994)
In Kundan Shah’s cute romcom set in Goa, he played a struggling musician Sunil, who is in love with Anna (Suchitra Krishnamoorthi in her only lead role), who is in love with another (Deepak Tijori). So, Sunil does everything he can to cause a break-up, not in a wicked but cute way.

Anjaam (1994)
He played evil charcters in Baazigar and Darr, but the kind of stalker from hell he played in Anjaam, required guts for an actor just establishing himself. The unfortunate woman he traumatizes was played by Madhuri Dixit. Khan never seemed insecure about the leading lady getting her share of the spotlight.

Oh Darling Yeh Hai India (1995)
In Ketan Mehta’s film, Khan was cast opposite Deepa Sahi, and played an aspiring actor simply called ‘Hero’, in a whimsical romp through Mumbai, saving the country from the machinations of a crazy don.

Zamana Deewana (1995)
Ramesh Sippy directed what could be the worst film of his career, in which Khan was cast opposite Raveena Tandon in a silly plot about the cops who try to bring warring gangsters to halt by getting their children to fall in love.

Guddu (1995)
Not even Khan’s most ardent fans would remember this Prem Lalwani film in which he played a young man who wants to donate his eyes to the woman he loves (Manisha Koirala), whose blindness was caused by an accident for which he feels responsible.

Raam Jaane (1995)
In this Rajiv Mehra film, Khan played an orphan called Raam Jaane (God Knows), because no one knows his real name; he is a thief, hustler and gangster who is in love with Bela (Juhi Chawla), who prefers Murli (Vivek Mushran) over him. He formed a very successful on screen partnership with Juhi Chawla and also a production company with her.

Chaahat (1996)
In this forgettable Mahesh Bhatt film, he played a folk singer, with whom a gangster’s (Naseeruddin Shah) sister (Ramya Krishnan) gets obsessed, causing him and his beloved (Pooja Batt) much grief.

One 2 Ka 4 (2001)
This Shashilal Nair film was a misstep after he was crowned supertstar in which he played a cop who has to look after his dead partner’s kids, while investigating the killing. He was paired opposite Juhi Chawla.

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