When Devdas released on this very date in 2002, we got a glimpse of director Sanjay Leela Bhansali and his grandeur directing style! He went on to make more larger than life epics but one thing we can’t forget is Devdas’s visual appeal and brilliant story telling! As the movie completes 15 years, here are some facts you should know by now:
Damages on the shoot
Sanjay Leela Bhansali's Padmavati isn't the only film fallen to bad luck. Devdas, too suffered its fair share of misfortunes when crew members suffered accidents and even death in some cases. Even Aishwarya, playing the muse Paro bled from her ears wearing such heavy earrings but nonetheless, she carried on the shoot like a pro.
Interestingly, a lot of popular celebs passed on the lead roles in the film which then went on to Shah Rukh Khan and Madhuri Dixit. Only if they had known the film would go on to be a huge success.
The movie also saw the designers going the extra length to present the characters artistically. Abu Jani and Sandeep Khosla went all the way to London to create Dev's Oxford returned look.
Real life nightmare
The movie's plot also drew in a real life experience from the director. The scene when Paro's mother Sumitra is humiliated is inspired by a nightmare of a dream Bhansali saw involving his mother.
Grand scale sets
Even the sets on the film were larger than life. The sets were constructed near lakes, drew inspiration from Rajasthan havelis and were carefully constructed so as to preserve an old world touch. More specific attention was given to the design of the kotha where Chandramukhi lives.
Sanjay Leela Bhansali took the creative liberty to add a few scenes in his version of Devdas, which is based on popular Bengali literature by Sarat Chandra. Devdas was also remade in Bollywood which starred Bimal Roy and Vyjayantimala.
Curious case of the heavy lehenga
When it comes to the song, Madhuri's Lehenga which she can be seen wearing in the dance sequence weighed as much as 30 kilograms!
Devdas even found a mention in Hollywood! The song, Silsila Yeh Chahat Ka was covered by composer duo Chase and Status for their song, Eastern Jam. Popular rapper Snoop Dogg also covered it in his song Snoop Dogg Millionare.
Today, movies are leaving no budget unturned in the production department. Back in the day, Devdas had the highest budget allocation, somewhere close to INR 50 Crores,which was a massive amount at the time.
A long audition
Sanjay Leela Bhansali wanted his characters to be just perfect and according to many sources, Shah Rukh and Madhuri underwent rigorous training for upto 7 months to prepare for their roles as Devdas and Chandramukhi!
Making of Dola re Dola
Dola re Dola is regarded as a classic song in Bollywood but do you know some fun little trivia about the song? Apparently, Sanjay Leela Bhansali conceptualized the song after a long period because he wanted the Aishwarya-Madhuri sequence to be pure perfection.
Devdas was represented at Cannes Film Festival 2002 and in honour of the movie turning 15, Aishwarya, who is a regular at the festival presented the movie once again in 2017!
Birju Maharaj's special choreography
Legendary Kathak Dancer Pandit Birju Maharaj was the genius man directing Madhuri Dixit's many grooves in the song, Kahe Chedd Mohe. How beautifully choreographed!
Time Magazine honour
The film was also hugely appreciated in the international circles. It was included in Time Magazine's list of Top 10 movies of the millenium!
Zamindari Bahu, Aishwarya
Aishwarya's costumes, too were elaborately detailed. Designer Neeta Lulla and Sanjay Leela Bhansali spent considerable time researching and selecting around 600 saris from Kolkata and each sari took around 3 hours to drape in a particular way.