They first worked together back in the late ’80s, and in that period, delivered one of Bollywood’s most memorable dance numbers — ‘Ek do teen’ (Tezaab; 1988). Choreographer Saroj Khan and actor Madhuri Dixit delivered hits through the next 10 years or so, with dance numbers such as ‘Dhak Dhak’ (Beta; 1992).
They last worked together in Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Devdas (2002). Ten years since, they are coming together for a number called ‘Dheemi dheemi’ in producer Anubhav Sinha’s next, Gulaab Gang.
They will start shooting the song at Wai, Maharashtra, from January 7. About bringing the actor and choregrapher pair together again, Anubhav says, “Madhuri is going to dance to Sarojji’s choreography after a long time. I’m excited to see what the shoot will be like.”
Saroj Khan reckons Madhuri has remained as professional as ever, with her dancing ability not having waned in spite of her staying away from the big screen. “Dancing is like cycling or driving a car. Once you know it, you never forget it,” Khan says. Madhuri’s last film, Aaja Nachle (2007) was based on dance, and recently, she also judged the dance show, Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa, on TV. In an earlier interview, the actor had revealed that she practices Kathak for an hour every day.
Gulaab Gang is inspired by Sampat Pal Devi, a gang leader in Bundelkhand, Uttar Pradesh, and revolves around the struggle for women’s rights in the region. It will be directed by Soumik Sen. Producer Sinha also clarifies that the film won’t have an item number. “Madhuri will be seen fighting injustice against women, so she obviously can’t break into a sexy song,” he says.