Born as Jatin Khanna, Kaka (his nick name) made his debut in the film Aakhri Khat directed by Chetan Anand in 1966 which was selected as an Indian entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 40th Oscar Academy Awards in 1967. However his second film Raaz in 1967 brought him fame. He was casted against Babita by director Ravindra Dave. In 1967 his third film Baharon ke Sapne also won critics appreciation and in 1969 Do Raste also did well in Box Office.
But the magic moment was still to come. It was 1969 when director Shakti Samnata casted him in “Aradhana” against Sharmila Tagore. The film created history. It not only gave birth to the First Super Star of India called Rajesh Khanna but also Kishore era started bringing an end to the Rafi Period. SD Burman gambled with Kishore Kumar and won the game. The chemistry worked so well that Kishore Kumar and Rajesh Khanna became complementary to each other.
That was time when there was a trend of making Hindi Versions of popular Bengali Film and Rajesh Khanna was casted in most of those. Dip Jwele Jai was made in Hindi as Khamoshi, Nishipoddo as Amar Prem, Surjotopa as Kati Patang ,Chalchal as Safar, Deya Neya as Anurodh and Golpo Holeo Shotti as Baburchi. Each of these films we block busters and
There is saying that Rajesh Khanna was such a perfectionist that he watched Nishipoddo 29 times to imitate the way Uttam Kumar called by the name of the heroine.
It was 1972 when Hrishikesh Mukherjee started a film called “Anand” where he casted Kishore Kumar in the lead role of a Cancer Patient who knows that he will die within 6 months. The day when the shooting was supposed to start, Kishore Kumar came to studio with a bald head. Hrishikesh Mukherjee was obviously more surprised than angry and even after repeated requests Kishore could not give a logical answer behind becoming bald headed. Later on he said that he was uncomfortable to act in the role of a cancer patient and he cannot tell that to Hrishikesh Mukherjee. So he decided to do something by which the director himself will discard him. It happened likewise. Hrishikesh Mukherjee offered the role to Rajesh Khanna and the rest is history. Its still counted one of the best acting of him and the film showed the entrance of the next superman Amitabh Bachchan.
Namak Haram was next where again Amitabh was casted along with Rajesh Khanna but that was most probably the beginning of the downfall of his reign and start of Amitabh era. After that he gave few hits like Ap Ki Kasaam, Roti , Mehebooba but somehow the magic faded with time and Angry Young Man Amitabh Bachchan took the place of Romantic Super Hero Rajesh Khanna.Rajesh Khanna’s romantic image was such that many girls got themselves married to his pictures, left impression of lips painted with lipstick in his car. He made the whole country dance with his unique steps and his style of moving the hand and head in rhythm of the song.
He won filmfare award three times for his Sachcha Jhuta (1970), Anand (1972) and Avishkar (1974)
Rajesh Khanna will live in our heart as evergreen romantic hero. Death cannot take him away from us as “Anand mare nahi.. Anand marta nahi…”Tweet