37 years of Don!

  • Amitabh Bachchan's iconic film 'Don' completed 37 years on 20th April. The film saw its release in the year 1978 when Amitabh Bachchan was at his prime. But no film-goer will believe the story that relates to the inception of the film. The birth of the film was rooted in desperation and acute penury of the film’s producer Nariman Irani.
    Amitabh Bachchan's iconic film 'Don' completed 37 years on 20th April. The film saw its release in the year 1978 when Amitabh Bachchan was at his prime. But no film-goer will believe the story that relates to the inception of the film. The birth of the film was rooted in desperation and acute penury of the film’s producer Nariman Irani.
  • Producer Nariman Irani's previous film was a disaster at the box office and thus had left him in a bad financial mess. It was on the sets of 'Roti Kapda aur Makaan' that director Chandra Barot, Amitabh Bachchan, Zeenat Aman and Pran took a joint decision to bail Nariman Irani out from his financial mess by supporting him for his next film. And thus 'Don' was born.
    Producer Nariman Irani's previous film was a disaster at the box office and thus had left him in a bad financial mess. It was on the sets of 'Roti Kapda aur Makaan' that director Chandra Barot, Amitabh Bachchan, Zeenat Aman and Pran took a joint decision to bail Nariman Irani out from his financial mess by supporting him for his next film. And thus 'Don' was born.
  • Salim-Javed were approached by Chandra Barot for a script and he was then handed over a script without any name. Earlier, the script was already rejected by stalwarts like Dev Anand and Prakash Mehra who thought that the script was without any merit and making any film on it would be a losing proposition.
    Salim-Javed were approached by Chandra Barot for a script and he was then handed over a script without any name. Earlier, the script was already rejected by stalwarts like Dev Anand and Prakash Mehra who thought that the script was without any merit and making any film on it would be a losing proposition.
  • The film was delayed due to monetary issues and it took close to three and half years for the film to see itself as a finished product. The period also saw Zeenat Aman waving off her remuneration for the film. The film was made at an unbelievable budget of just Rs 25 Lakh.
    The film was delayed due to monetary issues and it took close to three and half years for the film to see itself as a finished product. The period also saw Zeenat Aman waving off her remuneration for the film. The film was made at an unbelievable budget of just Rs 25 Lakh.
  • It was during the making of Don that the producer of the film met with an accident after a studio wall collapsed on him. The sad accident resulted in his death in 1977 and he was not present to see the mega success of the film. About the death of Nariman Irani, Amitabh Bachchan mentioned in his blog - 'Was shooting for a film at RajKamal Studios and saw a portion of the set begin to fall on a little kid playing below it. Ran to save the child. He did. But injured himself in the effort. Broke his femur, was hospitalised, went into surgery and came out well. Few days later complications set in and he passed away. Strange, and sudden'.
    It was during the making of Don that the producer of the film met with an accident after a studio wall collapsed on him. The sad accident resulted in his death in 1977 and he was not present to see the mega success of the film. About the death of Nariman Irani, Amitabh Bachchan mentioned in his blog - 'Was shooting for a film at RajKamal Studios and saw a portion of the set begin to fall on a little kid playing below it. Ran to save the child. He did. But injured himself in the effort. Broke his femur, was hospitalised, went into surgery and came out well. Few days later complications set in and he passed away. Strange, and sudden'.
  • A rough cut version was shown to actor Manoj Kumar. (Director Chandra Barot was assistant to the actor-filmmaker for many years). Manoj Kumar suggested a few changes and one of them was to include a song just after the interval. Soon shooting arrangements were made to film the song at Mehboob Studio on Amitabh Bachchan in the second shift. Mr Bachchan had injured his leg while doing an action sequence for another film in the morning shift and thus was in acute pain. He had to resort to painkillers to complete the song. The song was 'Khaike Paan Banaraswala'.
    A rough cut version was shown to actor Manoj Kumar. (Director Chandra Barot was assistant to the actor-filmmaker for many years). Manoj Kumar suggested a few changes and one of them was to include a song just after the interval. Soon shooting arrangements were made to film the song at Mehboob Studio on Amitabh Bachchan in the second shift. Mr Bachchan had injured his leg while doing an action sequence for another film in the morning shift and thus was in acute pain. He had to resort to painkillers to complete the song. The song was 'Khaike Paan Banaraswala'.
  • The film also boasted of a few chase scenes and a few pacy numbers. The ideas for these were suggested by the director himself as he was greatly influence by author James Hadley Chase and films of James Bond.
    The film also boasted of a few chase scenes and a few pacy numbers. The ideas for these were suggested by the director himself as he was greatly influence by author James Hadley Chase and films of James Bond.
  • The film was released in theatres with hardly any promotions and though it was declared a flop initially, the word of mouth grew so much that it ultimately turned out to be a blockbuster. The entire money that the film made was handed over to the widowed wife of the film's producer.
    The film was released in theatres with hardly any promotions and though it was declared a flop initially, the word of mouth grew so much that it ultimately turned out to be a blockbuster. The entire money that the film made was handed over to the widowed wife of the film's producer.
  • The juggernaut of the film continued even at the Filmfare awards. The film fetched Amitabh Bachchan his first Filmfare award in 1979. It was also a great gesture on Amitabh Bachchan's part to dedicate the trophy to the producer of the film whom he fondly called Baba. Mr Bachchan also requested the widowed wife of the producer to come up on the stage and receive the trophy as a mark of respect.
    The juggernaut of the film continued even at the Filmfare awards. The film fetched Amitabh Bachchan his first Filmfare award in 1979. It was also a great gesture on Amitabh Bachchan's part to dedicate the trophy to the producer of the film whom he fondly called Baba. Mr Bachchan also requested the widowed wife of the producer to come up on the stage and receive the trophy as a mark of respect.
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Amitabh Bachchan's iconic film 'Don' completed 37 years on 20th April. The film saw its release in the year 1978 when Amitabh Bachchan was at his prime. But no film-goer will believe the story that relates to the inception of the film. The birth of the film was rooted in desperation and acute penury of the film’s producer Nariman Irani.

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By Team Biscoot | Apr 21,2015,03:38 PM IST | Views 6196

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