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10 Facts We Bet You Didn’t Know About the Classic Hindi Film of 1970s, Sholay

Sholay Movie
Written by Mansi Gupta

“Kitne Aadmi The”, “Tumhara Naam Kya Hai Basanti”, “Hum Angrezo ke Zamane Ke Jailer” – these are some of the iconic dialogues of Hindi Film industry’s one of the greatest movies of all time, Sholay – a film which has achieved a cult status now! From the iconic characters like Gabbar Singh to Jai-Veeru’s tale of friendship, the subtle love story of powerful dialogues, Ramesh Sippy’s Sholay had it all.

There has been so much said and written about this retro movie, Sholay, that people are fairly well versed with Sholay-lore. We look at some more interesting facts about this classic movie in 1970, which some of you might not know. So, here you go:

1. Did you know that Sholay was written off by the critics upon its release. The film was a dud at the box office. The film critics and box office pundits declared it a big flop. Over the times the words were eaten and we know how Sholay is now the biggest classic film ever made in the Hindi Film industry.

2. “Sholay” is a classic movie and we all know that. But did you know that the plot of the movie is heavily inspired by Akira Kurosawa’s action flick Seven Samurai, and John Sturges’ The Magnificent Seven.

3. It’s a very well known fact now that Amjad Khan was not the original choice to play Gabbar (The role was offered to Danny Denzongpa). But did you know how he prepared after bagging this role. He read Abhishapth Chambal, a book on Chambal dacoits written by none other than co-actress Jaya Bhaduri’s journalist father Taroon Kumar Bhaduri.

4. The movie that is classic today, was rejected by so many filmmakers and producers until Javed Akhtar and Salim Khan narrated this story to Ramesh Sippy, who instantly agreed to helm it.

5. We bet you didn’t know that Thakur’s role was originally offered to Pran but eventually went to Sanjeev Kumar.

6. We know that Jaya and Amitabh married just a few months before the shooting of Sholay began, what we didn’t know was that she became pregnant with their first child Shweta which led to several delays in the shooting.

7. Another interesting fact about Sholay is that before the shoot began, Sanjeev Kumar had proposed to Hema and she rejected the proposal. Apparently, it was during the shooting of this film, Dharmendra wooed Hema and they eventually got married.

8. Did you know that the famous song “Yeh Dosti Hum Nahi Todenge” featuring Amitabh Bachchan and Dharmendra took 21 days to shoot.

9. We all know how Sholay proved to be the path-breaking film of Amitabh’s career. But we didn’t know that he was not the original choice for Jai. Sippy wanted to cast Shatrughan Sinha for Jai, but decided against it as he didn’t want to take so many big names in the movie. Amitabh fit the bill and rest, as they say, is history.

10. Did you know that the fearful Gabbar Singh was actually there in reality. In 1950’s there used to be a dacoit named Gabbar Singh spreading terror in the Gwalior area. These are just fragment of big boulder of memoirs of one of the biggest classic old Bollywood movie. Sholay will live in our memories forever.

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About the author

Mansi Gupta

A passionate reader, an avid traveler, a day dreamer and a “self-proclaimed biggest fan” of Game of Thrones.

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