‘I feel 25,’ says Shah Rukh on 44th birthday
Growing up in the bylanes surrounding house no. F-442 Rajinder Nagar, Shah Rukh attended St. Columba’s School and graduated with a degree in Economics from Hansraj College. Dropping out of the masters course in Mass Communication at Jamia Millia Islamia he moved to Mumbai to try his luck in the films.
On 25 October 1991, Shah Rukh married his long time girlfriend Gauri. Gauri’s parents initially opposed the marriage. Then in the style and charisma that the world would later see in ‘Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge’, SRK slowly but surely won everyone’s hearts over. Though for most of their wedded life Gauri has remained media shy, of late, she has been making dazzling public appearances with her husband.
Shah Rukh was active in dramatics during his school and college days and also trained under theatre director Barry John. The firm grounding in acting did the young hopeful in the big bad world of films and television much good. His role in ‘Fauji’ earned him instant popularity and even his subsequent television venture ‘Circus’ was a success.
SRK’s big break came in the 1992 film ‘Deewana’ where he starred opposite Divya Bharti. Shah Rukh won the Filmfare Best Debut Award for the film. The music of the film was a big hit and the film was also a commercial success.
SRK debut year in Bollywood saw a number of his films releasing on the silver screen. In ‘Chamatkar’, a film inspired by the Hollywood flick ‘Blackbeard’s Ghost’ Shah Rukh shared screen space with Naseeruddin Shah, who had by then ventured fulltime into mainstream cinema. The tale of a coach’s ghost and a cricket match didn’t do too well at the box office.
‘Raju Ban Gaya Gentleman’ was a film that was well appreciated both for its music and the loveable Chaplinesque character that Shah Rukh played in the film. This was the beginning of SRK’s successful pairing with Juhi Chawla.
A controversial film that SRK acted in early in his career was Ketan Mehta’s Indian adaptation of Gustave Flaubert’s ‘Madame Bovary’ – ‘Maya Memsaab’. Deepa Sahi played the title role and Shah Rukh a boy toy. The passionate scenes between SRK and Deepa Sahi is still a big hit on the internet.
‘Baazigar’ was the milestone film in SRK’s career. Shah Rukh went on to define the anti-hero in modern Bollywood. The film was a runaway hit. The role also earned him the Filmfare Best Actor Award.
Continuing with the anti-hero streak, Shah Rukh’s next release was Yash Chopra’s ‘Darr’. The role that SRK played in the film was rejected by many other leading actors. The film also starred Juhi Chawla and Sunny Deol.
After a brief affair with the anti-hero SRK returned to the role of the loveable loverboy in ‘Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa’. With its lilting music the film won over hearts but failed to make much of an impact at the box office.
High on the success of the anti-hero roles in ‘Baazigar’ and ‘Darr’ SRK went quite a few shades greyer with ‘Anjaam’. The film also starred Madhuri Dixit but could not match the success of SRK earlier releases. Incidentally, the role earned SRK his first Filmfare Best Villain Award.
But SRK’s dream run at the box office hit a speedbreaker when a number of his movies, ‘Zamana Deewana’, ‘Guddu’, ‘Oh Darling! Yeh Hai India’, ‘Ram Jaane’ and ‘Trimurti’, disappointed the fans.
In 1995 came ‘Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge’, the film that SRK says has strong parallels with his real love life. The film is one of the biggest Bollywood hits ever and has been voted the best romantic film of all time. The Shah Rukh-Kajol pair also went on to become the most loveable of on-screen Bollywood couples
SRK was not able to replicate the success of ‘Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge’ with his first venture with Mahesh Bhatt, ‘Chaahat’.
While SRK’s first venture with showman Subhash Ghai, ‘Trimurti’ was a big dud, ‘Pardes’ with its melodious music by Nadeem-Shravan, did average business.
Shah Rukh again teamed up with Madhuri Dixit for Rakesh Roshan’s ‘Koyla’. The film shot in picturesque Arunachal Pradesh failed to do well.
In ‘Yes Boss’ SRK again joined hands with Juhi Chawla and director Aziz Mirza, after ‘Raju Ban Gaya Gentleman’, to deliver the loveable romcom.
The Yash Chopra film ‘Dil To Pagal Hai’ was a cocktail of music, dance and romance. The love triangle starred Shah Rukh Khan, Madhuri Dixit and Karisma Kapoor. It went on to become a major hit.
Shah Rukh starred in a double role in the comedy ‘Duplicate’ and played a journalist who loves a terrorist in Mani Ratnam’s ‘Dil Se’. But the film that made the producers happy was the Yash Chopra’s love triangle ‘Kuch Kuch Hota Hai’ that starred Shah Rukh with Kajol and Rani Mukerji. SRK got the Filmfare Best Actor Award for his role in the film.
Returning to comedy Shah Rukh played the role of ‘Baadshah’, a detective. Opposite SRK was Twinkle Khanna.
By then Shah Rukh was one of the reigning superstars of Bollywood, but his superstar status didn’t prevent SRK from playing a secondary role in Kamal Haasan’s ‘Hey Ram’.
With ‘Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani’ SRK turned producer, alongwith Aziz Mirza and Juhi Chawla. The film was a critique on the media wars fought in the newsrooms.
‘Josh’ saw an unusual pairing with Shah Rukh Khan and Aishwarya Rai playing twins. Inspired by the Hollywood hit ‘West Side Story’, the film was a flop.
‘Mohabbatein’ saw two superstars coming face to face – Amitabh Bachchan and Shah Rukh Khan, with Aishwarya Rai in a ‘spirited’ role. The film was a multi-starrer and also a major hit.
After ‘Hey Ram’ SRK again delved into history with Santosh Sivan’s brilliantly shot ‘Asoka’. Opposite SRK was Kareena Kapoor. The film failed to do well at the box office and also ignited a controversy regarding the depiction of historical characters.
SRK and Big B returned to the big screen again in Karan Johar’s ‘Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham’. The star cast of the film also included Jaya Bachchan, Kajol, Hrithik Roshan and Kareena Kapoor. The film was a blockbuster.
Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s take on Sharat Chandra Chattopadhyay’s ‘Devdas’ had Shah Rukh Khan in the lead role, with Madhuri Dixit, and Aishwarya Rai playing the love interests. The film, as well as its music, was a major success.
Three superstars Shah Rukh Khan, Salman Khan and Madhuri Dixit came together for ‘Hum Tumhare Hain Sanam’ but the big names could not draw people into the theatres and the film bombed.
SRK returned as a producer with ‘Chalte Chalte’ . Rani Mukerji played the leading lady in the film directed by Aziz Mirza.
Nikhil Advani’s ‘Kal Ho Naa Ho’ was seen by many as a modern-day ‘Anand’. The film starring Jaya Bachchan, Shahrukh Khan, Preity Zinta, and Saif Ali Khan had lilting music and did well at the box office.
Choreographer Farah Khan made her directorial debut with ‘Main Hoon Na’. The film was procuded by Gauri Khan and Shahrukh Khan.
Yash Chopra’s ‘Veer Zara’ was a love story across the borders with Shah Rukh and Preity Zinta playing the protagonists.
With Ashutosh Gowariker’s ‘Swades’ SRK swerved a little off the mainstream. The film received critical acclaim but did not match upto SRK’s earlier successes at the box office.
Amol Palekar’s ‘Paheli’ was also produced by Gauri Khan and Shahrukh Khan. The Rajasthani folk tale received mixed response from the fans.
Karan Johar’s ‘Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna’ again saw SRK and Big B sharing screen space but this time they had Abhishek Bachchan for company.
After co-starring with Amitabh Bachchan in a number of films, it was time for SRK to do a Big B. He played lead role in ‘Don – The Chase Begins Again’, Farhan Akhtar’s remake of the 1978 hit ‘Don’, starring Amitabh Bachchan.
In what was perhaps one of his most non-conventional role, Shah Rukh Khan played a disgraced hockey-player-turned-coach in ‘Chak De! India’. The film, without any other major star, was a surprise hit at the box office.
Farah Khan made her return to the director’s chair with ‘Om Shanti Om’ and the film, of course, starred Shah Rukh Khan. A remake of the 1980 hit ‘Karz’, the film went on to become a major box office hit.
Aditya Chopra’s ‘Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi’ saw SRK playing two characters, but it wasn’t in a double role. Though critically the film received a mix response, it reportedly did well at the box office.
Though ‘Billu’ doesn’t have SRK in the lead role, but it is an SRK film. Produced by Gauri Khan the film was directed by Priyadarshan. The film, in spite of several item numbers, failed to generate much excitement at the box office.
The SRK and Kajol pair makes a comeback with Karan Johar’s ‘My Name Is Khan’. The film is slated for a February 2010 release.
Shah Rukh and Salman Khan’s dosti turned into dushmani in 2008. It was Katrina’s birthday party and Shah Rukh and Gauri were both invited. What started like a war of words apparently ended up in a physical fight between the two.
In 2008, Shah Rukh also became the owner of one of the eight Indian Premier League teams, Kolkata Knight Riders. He appointed Saurav Ganguly as the captain of his team. Sadly, KKR has had a very poor track record in the past two IPL series. There were speculations that SRK might sell off his team.
When it comes to stage shows, no one can beat Shah Rukh’s charisma. His shows have always been house full in India as well as abroad. His last tour was ‘Temptations: Reloaded’ in 2008. Many strongly believe that it was in response to the Bachchans’ ‘Unforgettable Tour’ in the same year.
After Big B decided to call it quits as a host of the hugely successful game show ‘Kaun Banega Crorepati’, no one knew who would replace him. Then SRK stepped into his shoes. Shah Rukh had also hosted another game show ‘Kya Aap Panchvi Paas Se Tez Hain’.
Not perhaps satisfied with cinema, TV and cricket, Shah Rukh is also taking his status as a style icon very seriously. He has of late made several appearances at fashion shows, even walking the ramp with his arm in a sling. His latest appearance was with wife Gauri at the HDIL India Couture Week in Mumbai where he showed off clothes designed by close friend Karan Johar.