Curated By: Shrishti Negi
Last Updated: October 25, 2023, 07:43 IST
Kareena Kapoor had once called Sanjay Leela Bhansali out for removing her from Devdas. Apparently, Kareena was supposed to play Paro, which was eventually played by Aishwarya Rai Bachchan in the movie. Kareena had revealed that she “was” hurt with Sanjay after he suddenly replaced her despite giving her a signing amount for the movie.
In a 2002 interview with Filmfare, Kareena was asked if she’d ever collaborate with Bhansali considering what happened between them. She said, “I’ll never. What he did to me was wrong. He screen-tested me for Devdas, gave me a signing amount, then took someone else. That was wrong, it hurt especially because I was at the start of my career. It’s okay, because the day he dropped me, I signed Yaadein. Sanjay hurt me. Even if I have no work, I’ll never work with him.”
Devdas was released in 2002. Based on the 1917 novel of the same name by Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay, the film narrates the story of Devdas Mukherjee, a wealthy man who returns from London to marry his childhood friend, Parvati. However, the rejection of their marriage by his own family sparks his descent into alcoholism.
However, Bhansali had later clarified that he never gave any kind of confirmation to Kareena regarding her role in Devdas. “She came to my house with Neeta Lulla and said she wanted to work with me… I told her that I hadn’t seen her work and that before casting her, I needed to see what she was capable of. We fixed up a photo shoot with the right costumes. Since Babitaji and Karisma Kapoor were also at the shoot, I made it clear to all of them that the shoot wasn’t a confirmation that I would cast Kareena. They were okay with that at the time. After going through the photographs, I told Kareena that I felt Aishwarya Rai was fabulous and perfect for Paro; she has the aristocratic looks I required. Kareena didn’t say a word then but some days later I found her lashing out at me in print. She accused me of backing out after having given her the signing amount and contract. Believe me, this is not true. She also said I didn’t know how to make films,” Bhansali was quoted as saying by Filmfare.