Two Articles on The darker side of Rajesh Khanna

A Real Story of a conflict between A Super Star Actor- Rajesh Khanna and Cheten Anand a Super Star Director

Sorab Irani is a veteran producer & Director. 

Sorab Irani

So much is said about Rajesh Khanna post his sad demise in all media, I am reminded on this occasion of a interesting real life story which I would like to share.

A little known fact is that Chetan Anand’s debut film, Neecha Nagar bagged the Palme d’Ore (Best Film) award, at the first ever Cannes Film Festival in 1946.

It was my honor and privilege to have worked and observed and to have learned so much about cinema from this great truly Indian cinematic genius

Chetan Anand was the first director to cast Rajaesh Khann is his film ‘Aakhri Khat’. Latter when his career started flagging a bit, Rajesh Khanna thought he needed a great director to make a film with him and he approached Chetan Anand. I was at that time general manager of Chetan Anand’s production company – Himalaya Films. In those days films were produced largely on star-power, and if a project was initiated by a Star it was good news. However Chetan Anand was in financial trouble and in a meeting with Rajesh Khanna confessed to him that he had the right subject but no money. Chetan Anand always had ready stories in his head, he thrived on the creative process that resulted in a film idea and at any given time had a great oeuvre of film stories. In that meeting where I was also present he narrated the story of ‘Kudrat’ to Rajesh Khanna and Rajesh Khanna loved it.

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The darker side of Rajesh Khanna…

Gautam Kaul is a film historian.

Gautam Kaul

It is considered discourteous to write in negative tones after any person’s demise. Never speak ill of the dead, the saying goes. Journalists and writers, however, must remain faithful to their calling and document the truth about Rajesh Khanna before it is drowned in a crescendo of blandishments from publicity-hungry cronies.

Rajesh Khanna’s worst enemies were the sycophants in his lifetime. They created the destructive genie which lurks within but is kept in leash by most of us. Not so with ‘Kaka’, as the actor was popularly known. He allowed his ego full play and, at a later date, even rued his lifestyle; but, by then, it was too late. He had alienated his well-meaning lady friends, his old schoolmates, his aides, servants and relatives.

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