Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge aka DDLJ, the film that became the benchmark of every Bollywood romantic film ever. Raj and Simran became forever etched in our hearts and minds. The iconic romance directed by Aditya Chopra turned 25 years old today. While movie critics and current movie lovers may find many things wrong with this classic, there is an inexplicable charm and nostalgia attached to this film.
Not to mention it’s been running in the Mumbai’s Maratha Mandir ever since its release. As you can imagine it has shattered all records becoming the longest-running Hindi film of all time. Today on its 25th Anniversary the leading lady of DDLJ, Simran aka Kajol Devgn opens up about why the movie became what it is today.
Talking about it, Kajol said:
I think DDLJ is timeless because everybody identifies somewhere down the line with Simran and with Raj. I think they just like these characters a lot! They have liked them for years and years now and it’s one of those things that you always like and probably will always like.
Kajol’s Simran redefined the portrayal of women on screen. She was brought up in a traditional home with traditional values but was modern in her outlook and was super relatable to girls back then.
But turns out, Kajal didn’t find Simran so interesting in the beginning.
I thought Simran was a little boring to be honest, but I recognized her. I realized there is a lot of Simran in almost everybody we know, there is always that wanting to do the right thing in someone. Lot of people don’t do the right thing but we always want to do that. You want to get that approval, you want to get that feeling of you are approved of and that you are doing something right in the world. So, yes Simran was like that. I thought she was just cool, a little old-fashioned but cool.
On her equation with her director Aditya Chopra and working with him, she said:
I think what sets Adi apart is probably his conviction. He is very, very convinced of what he is making and doesn’t take on a project if he isn’t absolutely convinced about it. That really is what sets him apart. He is not willing to let go off that basic core conviction that he has in his characters and he knows them best.
She also talked about how none of them knew that the film would be so iconic when they were shooting for it.
We were shooting for DDLJ and we never thought that we were making this! We just thought we were going to make a really cool film together and hopefully, it will be a hit film and we were all crossing our fingers that the music will do well etc but I don’t think anyone of us ever realized the kind of impact DDLJ would have on people when they saw it!
The film was made on an Rs. 4 crore budget back in 1995 and it collected 89 crore in India, 13.50 crore in overseas markets. Thus, total collections stood at 102.50 crore worldwide in 1995! In today’s inflation-adjusted value, DDLJ’s collection stands at a staggering 455 crore in India and 69 crore in overseas territories, taking the total worldwide collections to a phenomenal 524 crore!