Shah Rukh Khan has always been a charismatic actor. Even those who aren’t particularly his biggest fans can’t deny that the films that Shah Rukh did in those early years in the Hindi film industry were some of his finest, and one of those movies was Kundan Shah’s Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa. In a 2015 interview with Rediff.com, Kundan noted that SRK was so charismatic on screen that sometimes, they would ask him for retakes, just to watch him perform again.
The director also recalled that they shot the film in Mumbai and Goa but were functioning on a very tight budget. “The budget was so small that we could not afford any lavishness. We took a flight to Mumbai in Economy class. Deven Verma was on the same flight, and he was flying Business class. Deven Verma had worked with Shah Rukh, so he came and asked Shah Rukh how come he was travelling Economy. But Shah Rukh was very nice. He politely said, ‘My ticket is for Economy,’” he said.
Kundan Shah further shared that the guest houses they stayed in were also very basic, but Shah Rukh Khan was very “adjusting” all along. “Even the rooms we stayed in were not very good. We stayed in Goa Tourism guest houses, where the room charge was Rs 160. He knew the film was different and the budget was very small, so he was very adjusting,” he said. The movie apparently took 12 years to recover its cost, even though it’s one of the most well-regarded films of SRK today.
Kundan recalled that while shooting, Shah Rukh had to perform a scene where he was required to trip and fall. After seven takes, SRK’s make-up man asked the director if more takes would be required. “I told him I would take a few more takes. Then, he told me that the skin from Shah Rukh’s hands had peeled off. But Shah Rukh had not even mentioned he was in pain,” the director said.
Kundan Shah also revealed that Shah Rukh Khan got Rs 5,000 as the signing amount of the film and was paid a total of Rs 25,000 for the film. The Darr actor was sure that this film would be special so he wanted to buy the rights, and he did it. The Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro director said that even though his movie was ready before Baazigar and Darr, he could not release it because no distributor was ready to take the film.
Apart from Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa, Kundan and Shah Rukh worked together on the television show Circus. The director passed away in 2017.