Shah Rukh Khan has seen astronomical heights of stardom and received nigh unparalleled love from the masses. However, it's not always been sugar and spice and everything nice. Today, on SRK's 5th birthday, we'll take you for a stroll down memory land when the superstar began receiving threating calls from gangsters Abu Salem and Chota Shakeel during the shoot of Dil To Pagal Hai back in 1997 as they wanted him to sign a particular film of a producer close to them. Shah Rukh Khan though, being Shah Rukh Khan, handled it with all his legendary with and charm to diffuse the situation, but that's not to say that he wasn't concerned where the threats would lead.
In an excerpt from Anupama Chopra's book, The ‘King of Bollywood: Shah Rukh Khan and the Seductive World of Indian Cinema, the renowned film journalist and movie critics, details how SRK had first received a call from Salem while shooting for Dil To Pagal Hai. Upon asking, “Who’s this?” Abu Salem let out a volley of the choicest Hindi swear words. However, Shah Rukh maintained his composure realising who he was conversing with and continued in chaste English to create a clear demarcation between his and Salem's worlds.
Apparently, the dreaded mob boss wanted Shah Rukh Khan to work in a film being produced by someone from the Muslim community, and questioned why he doesn't support his own community, to which the latter politely explained that he's been working with the likes of Aziz Mirza, Abbas-Mustan and Mansoor Khan, but firmly maintained his stance that he'd only sign those projects that interest him. Afterward, upon consulting with the Mumbai Police, the cops advised him to be polite if he receives further calls and not to exchange any information or ask any questions. When he again received a call for Abu Salem for the same, Shah Rukh politely yet firmly told him, “I don’t tell you who to shoot so don’t tell me which film to do.”
Later, Salem told him that he wouldn't harm his life as he likes him as an actor and even his mother and sister were his fans. However, the police continued providing him protection as they weren't taking any chances. Shah Rukh Khan went on to describe the particular episode in his life as “depressing and scary”.
Stay tuned to BollywoodLife for the latest scoops and updates from Bollywood, Hollywood, South, TV and Web-Series.
Click to join us on Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and Instagram. Also follow us on Facebook Messenger for latest updates.