When Sanjay Leela Bhansali replaced Kareena Kapoor in Devdas after a look test, left her ‘hurt’

Actor Kareena Kapoor Khan has never worked with filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali, but she came close several times. She dropped out of Goliyon Ki Raas Leela – Ram Leela a mere 10 days before shooting was supposed to begin, leaving Bhansali ‘shocked’. But this was after they’d fallen out and patched up after she was replaced in Devdas.

Kareena had done a look test for the sweeping romance film, which eventually starred Aishwarya Rai and Madhuri Dixit opposite Shah Rukh Khan. And she was certainly not pleased after she was left out. In an angry interview with Filmfare at the time, Kareena called Bhansali a ‘confused director’ and vowed to never work with him again, even if her career was down in the dumps and he’d become the ‘next Raj Kapoor or Guru Dutt’.

The two patched up at Sikander Kher’s birthday party after Kirron Kher played mediator. Kareena told Filmfare in 2002, “She dragged me to him. We hugged and became friends. I told him I was hurt because he screen-tested me for Devdas and then replaced me without my knowledge. But I’ve never ever said that he’s a bad director or that I’ll never work with him. The media just blew our differences out of proportion. You know I was like a child who wanted to be in his film. He was the first filmmaker I ever called. Anyway, Devdas is certainly not the last film he’ll make. He owes me a solo-heroine film.”

Things have turned out well for both Kareena and Bhansali since Devdas, which was released in 2002. Kareena is now among the highest-paid female stars in the industry, while Bhansali recently delivered one of the biggest Hindi hits of the year, Alia Bhatt-starrer Gangubai Kathiawadi.

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