If all had gone well, Deepika Padukone would have made her debut in Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Saawariya instead of Farah Khan’s Om Shanti Om.
But fate and the boxoffice had other plans. Bhansali had all but finalized one long-legged beauty(Deepika) when another(Sonam) walked into his film.The filmmaker was given the chance to launch Rishi Kapoor’s son and Anil Kapoor’s daughter together, a package deal that he couldn’t resist.
Without any warning Deepika was dropped from her purported debut. This setback could have ruined her career. But as luck would have it, Farah Khan and Shah Rukh Khan came forward to offer Deepika a double role on Om Shanti Om.She never looked back. Her career made a big chhapaak(splash).
And just look at the devilish dimensions of destiny! Om Shanti Om and Saawariya were both released on the same Friday 9 November 2007. While Om Shanti Om became a big hit catapulting Deepika to dizzying heights of glory, Saawariya was the biggest flop of Bhansali’s career,though Ranbir and Sonam became instant stars.
Besides Deepika, Om Shanti Om had another Saaawariya connection. Ranbir Kapoor’s dad Rishi Kapoor featured in the song of that title in Subhash Ghai’s Karz. In fact Rishi Kapoor singing the Kishore Kumar hit ‘Om Shanti Om’ in the film Karz was shown in Farah Khan’s film.
The friction between Deepika and Sonam continues to this day.