Sharmila Tagore shares she signed a Satyajit Ray film while working on Aradhana | Bollywood

Veteran actor Sharmila Tagore is one of the most revered actors of Indian cinema, who balanced working in both parallel cinema and mainstream commercial cinema. In a new interview with Quorum YouTube channel, the actor talked about how she had to make a big ‘compromise’ in order to manage various projects, a decision that ‘would have been sued in today’s time.’ (Also read: Sara Ali Khan, Sharmila Tagore recreate Chanda Hai Tu with a beautiful twist. Watch)

Sharmila Tagore in a still from Aradhana and Aranyer Din Ratri.
Sharmila Tagore in a still from Aradhana and Aranyer Din Ratri.

What Sharmila said

In a new interview posted in Quorum YouTube channel, Sharmila revealed that she was offered Aranyer Din Ratri by Satyajit Ray at a time when she was already committed to Aradhana. Directed by Shakti Samanta, Aradhana starred the biggest star of that time, Rajesh Khanna. She said, “When I was working in Aradhana – it was taking a couple of years to be made – Manik da (Satyajit Ray) called me and offered me the role in Aranyer Din Ratri. It required one month at a stretch, and that was clashing with ‘Sapno Ki Rani’ being shot in Darjeeling. Rajesh Khanna’s dates were impossible to get, because he was working with 12 producers who had introduced him.”

A huge compromise

Sharmila further added how this information caused distress to Shakti Samanta, and caused shooting issues. It so happened that the scenes in the film featuring Rajesh Khanna and Sujit Kumar were filmed in Darjeeling, meanwhile Sharmila’s scenes were shot in the studios, using rear projection. “That was a huge compromise, and I think I would have been sued in today’s time. But because Aradhana became such a huge success, everything was forgiven, and I was repeated in his (Shakti Samanta’s) later films,” she concluded.

Sharmila returned to screens after over a decade with Gulmohar, a family drama on Disney+ Hotstar also starring Manoj Bajpayee. The film directed by Rahul V Chittella, Gulmohar also featured Amol Palekar, Suraj Sharma, Simran, and Kaveri Seth. Gulmohar revolves around the multi-generation Batra family who are set to move out of their 34-year-old family home and how this triggers a re-discovery of the bonds for each one of them, while grappling with personal secrets and insecurities.

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