It's a tough task for the directors to narrow down the perfect actor for significant roles in the movies. The problem intensifies when they have to sign different actors for two, equally important roles.
Something similar happened with Karan Johar when he was signing actors for his first movie Kuch Kuch Hota Hai. While Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol graciously accepted the lead roles, the problem began when Karan began his search for the role of Tina and Aman.
For the role of Tina, he had Twinkle Khanna in mind although she blatantly rejected the role. After that, he approached Raveena Tandon, Tabu, Aishwarya Rai, Karisma Kapoor and Urmila Matondkar for the role of Tina, before finally signing Rani Mukherjee. But the problems had just begun as Karan was yet to find the perfect match for the role of Aman Mehra.
'Salman the Saviour'
The search for a cool and hip Aman Mehra who could sweep of ladies off their feet with his suave and charm led KJo to Saif Ali Khan and Chandrachur Singh, but both of them declined the role citing it to be too 'western' and insignificant. Being a first-time filmmaker, the inability to find a perfect hero for his movie left Karan devastated.
In his own words, Karan said 'I was depressed at that point of time'. Depressed and in desperate search of Aman Mehra, Karan Johar happened to be present at a party thrown by Chunky Pandey. As the guests went about discussing their business, frustrated KJo opened up about his directorial debut and the search of a hero for the above-mentioned role, as fate would have it among the many guest present at the party that day, one of them was Alvira Khan Agnihotri who pitched the offer to her brother Salman Khan.
They both got in a brief discussion and then the Dabbang khan told to Karan, "No hero will want to do this role. There's only one idiot in the industry who'll do it, and that's me. You know, my sister says you're a nice guy. Come and narrate it to me tomorrow."
'Salman, A Man with the golden heart'
The original most eligible bachelor of b-town, 'Bhaijaan' to his fans, Salman had been a big star since the early days of his career. Casting such a big superstar in a single frame with King Khan himself is a dream come true for many filmmakers even today.
Not only Karan but also his father late Yash Johar was amazed by the fact that Salman Khan was interested in playing the role. Keeping up with the promises made, Karan narrated the movie to Salman, in his bedroom, where the one and a half-hour long theatrically elucidated narration left Salman impressed with the young johar's skill.
Without even listening to the half of the script, Salman said yes. Karan was astonished to see that without even knowing about his role in the movie, Salman said yes to Kuch Kuch Hota Hai.
The actor also made it clear to Karan that he'll be doing the part for him and more so for his father, whom he called "the nicest guy in the industry."
'Meri Salary tumhari 'Anjali' se kam nahi ho sakti'
Everything seemed to be falling in place with Salman now on board to play the role of the second lead. But the most 'wanted' superstar did not want to be the second to any in terms of his cash value and hence demanded to be paid equal to Kajol for the movie.
However, an agreement was finally made and the rest, as they say, is history.
Salman Khan received loads of praises for his role in Kuch Kuch Hota Hai from the media and moviegoers alike and even today is fondly remembered for it despite his lesser screen time.
Salman Khan won the award for the Best Supporting Actor at 44th Filmfare Awards the defeating Manoj Bajpayee, who had stunned everyone with his character of Bhiku Mhatre, in Satya. It was also the last time that Salman won the black lady of Filmfare.