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15 years of Chak De! India: Did you know the Shah Rukh starrer was originally offered to Salman Khan?

Chak De! India was released in 2007. Produced by Aditya Chopra, the SRK-starrer was written by Jaideep Sahni, and directed by Shimit Amin.

15 years of Chak De! India: Did you know the Shah Rukh starrer was originally offered to Salman Khan?
SRK in Chak De! India
  • Team OTTplay

Last Updated: 03.09 PM, Aug 10, 2022

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Chak De! India, directed by Shimit Amin, had a theatrical release 15 years ago, and the film went on to make a lot of money at the box office (Rs 108 crore worldwide gross) despite its relatively low budget of Rs 20 crore. This is still considered one of Shah Rukh Khan's best performances to date. But did you know that the Bollywood actor had reservations about Chak De's success? Speaking at the University of Edinburgh, the actor stated that after seeing it for the first time, he thought it was the 'worst film' the team had ever made.

"We had some of the brightest minds on the project, including Aditya Chopra, Jaideep Sahni, and Shimit Amin. We had some young girls who were learning to play hockey. We had Yash Chopra's support. But when I saw the film for the first time, we all thought it was the worst film we'd ever made in our lives," Shah Rukh Khan said.

Chak De! India poster
Chak De! India poster

Further, the actor added, "The girls had no idea because seeing themselves on screen for the first time was a big deal for them. So they were annoyingly screaming and dancing while the four of us sat there crying. We'd reached that point in failure where you start telling people, 'Listen, we did what we wanted to do. This is what we set out to create, and success and failure are fleeting, and we will return. It was quite sad'."

Another intriguing fact about Chak De! India is that it was originally offered to another superstar, Salman Khan. When asked this question during the release of Sultan, he had a funny response. "Yes, it was first offered to me, but I declined because I thought Shah Rukh Khan should be in a few great films!"

Salman Khan
Salman Khan

However, in an earlier interview, just after the film's release, Salman stated to CNN IBN that he had issues with the climax of Chak De! India. "Adi (producer Aditya Chopra) told me, 'I will make it the biggest hit, and you have no idea what you are missing out on'. I was fortunate that Partner performed well. Chak De! India did exceptionally well. I was wrong, and he (Aditya Chopra) made it exactly the way he narrated it to me, and I was like, 'how can this work dude, it can't work'!"

De Chak! India elicited a wide range of emotions, including patriotism, rage against sexism, and, of course, insight into the country's prevalent racism. Shah Rukh Khan's determination to make 11 women work and play together, erasing the concept of state and instilling the concept of one nation, warms your heart. This was the first film in a long time that focused on a sport other than cricket. Furthermore, it focused on a women's game, which is extremely rare in the country. At the same time, the film defied numerous stereotypes. It was a film that was far ahead of its time.

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