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Thursday, September 16, 2021

When Deepika Padukone thought she would ‘never be good enough to be Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s muse’

As Sanjay Leela Bhansali completes 25 years in Bollywood, Deepika Padukone recalls how collaborating with the filmmaker changed her as a person.

By: Entertainment Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: August 10, 2021 10:08:03 am
deepika padukone on sanjay leela bhansaliDeepika Padukone has featured in Sanjay Leela Bhansali's Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-Leela, Bajirao Mastani and Padmavat. (Photo: Bhansali Productions/YouTube)

Deepika Padukone and Sanjay Leela Bhansali have created unforgettable characters through their collaborations on the silver screen. The actor-director duo came together for Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-Leela, Bajirao Mastani and Padmavat. But did you know there was a time when Deepika thought that she would never be “good enough” to star in a classic Sanjay Leela Bhansali film? As the director completes 25 years in Bollywood, Deepika penned an emotional note tracing her journey with the filmmaker. She recalled how her debut film Om Shanti Om was competing with Bhansali’s Sawariya, which marked Sonam Kapoor and Ranbir Kapoor’s debut in the film industry.

The comments came at a time when speculation claimed Deepika walked out of Bhansali’s Baiju Bawra. While neither the actor nor the filmmaker commented on the rumours, Deepika’s gushing post is expected to put an end to it now.

Deepika Padukone on Sanjay Leela Bhansali Deepika Padukone wished Sanjay Leela Bhansali as he completed 25 years in Bollywood. (Photo: Deepika Padukone/Instagram)

“9th November 2007. My debut film Om Shanti Om was pitted against Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Saawariya. And as grateful as I was (And I still am… I cannot think of another female actor who has been launched in the same manner as I was), I also remember thinking to myself at the time, that I would never be good enough… to be a Sanjay Leela Bhansali muse,” she wrote. But tables turned for Deepika in 2012 when the director offered her a film.

“Fast forward to 2012. I was extremely unwell and laid up in bed. I received a call from my management saying, “Sanjay Leela Bhansali wants to meet you.” I said, “What?!”. They said, “Yes! He is doing a film and would really like to meet you.” “I would do cartwheels to go and see him right away, but I can’t get out of bed right now!” I said. The next thing I know, he was on his way to see me! What ensued in the years that followed was nothing short of an ‘iconic partnership’ I believe. And together, we have created ‘iconic characters.’ Characters that have been etched in minds and hearts of people forever,” Deepika expressed.

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On a concluding note, Deepika wrote that her collaboration with the filmmaker had a great influence on her personality. “I say this without a shadow of a doubt that I wouldn’t be half the person I am today if it wasn’t for Sanjay Leela Bhansali.”

“As he embarks on the next phase of this most incredible journey, I look forward to creating many more memorable and iconic characters together, but more importantly, I wish him good health, peace of mind, and happiness… always!” she ended the note.

Apart from Deepika, Ajay Devgn and Alia Bhatt also congratulated the filmmaker on completing 25 glorious years in Bollywood. “Congratulations on your silver jubilee. Your contribution to films is unparalleled. And, I love working with you because your passion & dedication is infectious. Will keenly await several more milestones that are meant for you,” Ajay tweeted, while Alia mentioned via Twitter, “25 years of magic, moments and memories.” On the work front, Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Gangubai Kathiawadi, starring Alia, is all set for a release. The team wrapped up the film earlier this year.

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