AR Rahman, basking in his Golden Globe nomination for the original music score of Slumdog Millionaire, shares a secret with us. He had originally composed the song titled Jai ho jai ho sung by Sukhwinder Singh, which plays over the end credits for Subhash Ghai’s Yuvvraj. “Subhashji didn’t want it,” shrugs Rahman. “Danny loved it…so I gave it to him.”
The Golden Globes will be held next month. Apart from the original sound track, Slumdog has also been nominated for Best Film-Drama, Best Director and Best Screenplay.
Rahman is up against Clint Eastwood (Changeling), James Newton Howard (Defiance), Alexander Desplat (Curious Case of Benjamin Button), and Hans Zimmer (Frost/Nixon). His chances are pretty strong after winning the Los Angeles Film Critics’ Association’s Best Music Award for Slumdog.
The composer said it was a chance encounter with director Danny Boyle that led to the collaboration. Actor Anil Kapoor, who has received glowing reviews for his role in the film, reveals, “We kept telling Danny that he must get in touch with Rahman in Chennai...but Danny said that he had heard Rahman didn’t agree to (immediate) projects and he needed someone who’d come into the project right away.”
Providentially, Rahman was in Mumbai for a music release and was spotted in a hotel lobby. A meeting with Boyle was quickly arranged and the rest is history.
Rahman began on the songs and the background music score in his studio in Chennai. The raunchy Choli ke peechhe from Khalnayak had been used by Boyle during a brothel scene. It was replaced by an original number Ring-a-ring-a.
Also Aaj ki raat from Don (the remake) was replaced with an original song. It took Rahman about a month to compose, record and finetune the score.
Characteristically, Rahman doesn’t overplay his chances at the Golden Globes. “Let’s just wait and see. How can I predict my own chances? Of course, I’d be over the moon if...” he trails off from Los Angeles.