Hrishikesh Mukherjee’s Guddi released on January 1, 1971 is most celebrated for discovering a phenomenal talent called Jaya Bhaduri.She played a fangirl of Dharmendra who wants to marry him. There are several interesting behind-the-scenes stories about this film.
1. Jaya Bhaduri was not the first choice to play Guddi.Moushumi Chatterjee was.She was a family friend of Hrishikesh Mukherjee’s friend singer-composer Hemant Mukherjee and had just played a child bride in the Bengali film Balika Badhu with resounding success.Hrishida felt she was ideal for the part.
2. Jaya , fresh out of the FTII , was the talk of the town. The minute he saw her Hrishida decided she was his Guddi. They subsequently collaborated on other classics Bawarchi, Abhimaan and Mili.
3. The then-unknown Amitabh Bachchan was signed to play a role opposite Jaya as her fiancé. But after shooting with AB, Hrishida realized he was looking at a very special talent,a talent too big to be squandered in such a small role. Overnight AB was replaced by Bengali actor Samit Bhanja .With AB , Hrishida decided to do Anand.
4. Jaya who was 22 when she signed Guddi carried off the 16-year old girl’s role with aplomb. She had a real-life crush on Dharmendra .And when Dharmendra who played himself entered the set of Guddi for the first time, Jaya hid behind the sofa, too nervous and excited to face her idol.
5. Hrishikesh Mukherjee signed the extremely talented Vasant Desai for the first time to do the music of Guddi. Vasant Desai got Vani Jairam to be the voice of Jaya Bhaduri. Two of the songs Bole re papihara and Humko mann ki shakti dena went on to become all-time hits.
6. The last song in the climax of Guddi was again sung by Vani Jairam. A Bhajan titled Hari bin kaise jiyun re. Hrishida found it to be a drag. He overnight replaced it with his favourite singer Lata Mangeshkar’s immortal Aaja re pardesi from Bimal Roy’s film Madhumati.
7. Since Guddi was set in the film industry, the film had a gallery of guest appearances by Bollywood stalwarts including Ashok Kumar, Dilip Kumar, Rajesh Khanna, Vinod Khanna, Shatrughan Sinha, and Pran . Hrishida once jokingly told me, “Guddi was my only multi-starrer film.”