While Shah Rukh Khan’s television and debut film appearance did make people sit up and take note of his talent, his road to super stardom only began with Abbas Mustan’s crime thriller ‘Baazigar.’ Producer Ratan Jain, who signed the then budding actor after intial deliberation, said that SRK had a spark like no other in Bollywood.
“When we started thinking of making Baazigar, we initially decided to make it with some established actors. I remember I tried a lot of people including Salman Khan and Anil Kapoor but nobody wanted to play a negative role as they were worried that it would hamper their image in their forthcoming films. I knew about Shah Rukh Khan’s film ‘Deewana’ because my company had the music right of it. I had seen a few rushes of the movie and I knew that this actor had the potential,” said Ratan Jain. (See Pics: SRK @ 50 – King Khan’s style file)
Narrating what made him sign Shah Rukh Khan for ‘Baazigar’, Jain said: “When I met and narrated the script to him, he sounded eager to do the role. But it is his confident answer that made me sign him. He told me that only he and no other actor could play the role. That answer impressed me. I was mesmerized by his confidence and ended up signing him within 30 minutes of meeting him. I told him then that you’ll be a star. He was very hard-working and talented. He had a different kind of fire in himself.” (SRK turns 50- Top 10 roles)
Baazigar released in 1993 and he as for the first time paired opposite Kajol. This was Shah Rukh Khan’s breakthrough role as the solo lead. It also marked the debut of actress Shilpa Shetty. It was the first time SRK played an anti-hero and his role also earned him his first Filmfare Award for Best Actor. (Pics – SRK’s family moments)