Some hidden facts about Bollywood film Sholay that hasn’t seen the light of the day… so far at least!
1.The film Sholay was a blue print commissioned secretly by the Indian audience and prepared by Salim-Javed to completely oust Ram Gopal Varma from the Hindi film industry (remember RGV’s Aag?)
2. Dharmendra’s water tank scene was the foundation stone laying process for Kent Water Purifier which his wife Hema Malini would take up endorsing in the near future.
3. Dhanno the horse’s chase sequence was a last minute addition to the film at the behest of Mrs. Menaka Gandhi who felt the other scenes portrayed horses only as villains’ henchmen oops henchhorses.
4. Jagdeep’s character in the film that of Soorma Bhopali – the village wood seller / jester who entertains the crowd with his stories – was in fact modeled on the lines of some of our infamous politicians suffering from foot-in-mouth syndrome.
5. The Jai – Mausi marriage proposal scene was incorporated to benefit those optimistic parents who think their bigdi huii yet dood se dhula hua aulad will turn a new leaf after marriage.
6. No Hindi film is complete without the eternal Baa like omnipresence of Ramlal aka Ramu Kaka – a mandatory requirement under the house workers’ union act; further under the aegis of governmental reservation act 1882 awarded to menial task workers.
7. Thakur’s role was designed to prove that you can’t keep a good sportsman down for too long if he wears spiked shoes. Bata Shoes backed off at the last minute from in-film advertising as it was a family shoe company and abhorred violence of any kind.
8. ‘Mehbooba Mehbooba’ was an expensive proposal video (due to absence of Youtube) to the evergreen and graceful dancer Helen by her future husband Salim Khan who incidentally happens to be one of the writer duos of the film.
9. The opening scene establishes that India has a vast railway network and despite that, the police still use the goods train to transport petty criminals to save tax payers’ money.
10. Back to the water tank sequence, this was incorporated to reiterate India to the western world as being a land of snake charmers and mystic sadhus. How else can you explain water in the tank in a village sans electricity if not for some kala jaadu by a mystic sadhu.
11. The angrezon ke zaamane ka jailor was an ode to the German ke zaamane ka Chaplin who greatly influenced the writers of Sholay with his peppy and hard hitting dialogues in his first talkie ‘The Great Dictator’ errrr… whatever.
12. Poor Jaya, because she got to motor mouth endless dialogues before her marriage takes place in the film, the sound recordist ran out of audio spools and the dialogue writers were forced to cut down on her figure of speech in rest of the film leaving her speechless thereafter… almost!
13. “Itna sannatta kyon hai bhai” was just a metaphor for the village sans television/radio – ghabrao nahi, ab achche din aayenge!
14. ‘Tumhara Naam Kya Hai, Basanti’ was Amitabh at his pre-KBC rehearsal – with just one option for his contestant Basanti and one life line in the form of Veeru. This rehearsal/survey helped the KBC producers to package their quiz show much better in the first installment of KBC some 15 odd years later.
15. ‘Kitne Aadmi The’ was one of those rare Algebra equations to feature in a Hindi film. Remember “Woh do the aur tum teen…” Now do the math…
16. India being forever fairness conscious, there was a surrogate fairness cream advertising with Gabbar’s dialogue, “Tera Kya Hoga Kaalia” indicating dark is bad. Subsequently, Kaalia went on to promote Tata Salt brand with his reply, “Sardar, maine aapka namak khaya hai.” (thus saving his mooh mein naamak waali life). Today, we all know where Tata Salt and the fairness cream industry stand.
17. “Ab… goli kha…” was incorporated to state that iron in any form (bullet or Chawanprash) is good for health.
The producers ran out of funds at the fag end of the film shoot and hence couldn’t shoot any rice and wheat growing fields to establish Ramgarh ke vaasiyons as farmers… Fields did I say? Whatever!
If you guys know any more open hidden secrets related to Sholay, do share with your comments.