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Home / Bollywood / Crossover careers: Stars born in the back rows

Crossover careers: Stars born in the back rows

At look at some of those who started out 20 feet from stardom, and choreographers who began their careers in front of the camera!

bollywood Updated: Dec 01, 2018 21:16 IST
Madhusree Ghosh
Madhusree Ghosh
Hindustan Times

Shahid Kapoor 

He started out as a child model. As kids, he and Ayesha Takia were in a Complan ad together. Shahid Kapoor then joined Shiamak Davar’s dance academy and was placed behind Karisma Kapoor in the song ‘Mujhko hui na khabar’ from Dil To Pagal Hai (1997), after which he appeared in the sequence for ‘Kahin aag lage lag jaye’ in the Aishwarya Rai-starrer Taal (1999). He starred in Ishq Vishk in 2003 and has never danced in the background since.

Sushant Singh Rajput 


Also a product of the Shiamak Davar dance academies, he performed at events like the Filmfare Awards (2006), and was seen dancing behind Hrithik Roshan at the 2006 IIFA ceremony, and that year’s opening of the Commonwealth Games. He made his debut in Kai Po Che! in 2013 and has since featured in PK, and starred in Raabta and MS Dhoni: The Untold Story.

Dia Mirza


Before she was Miss Asia Pacific in 2000, she was a background dancer in films such as En Swasa Kaatre (Tamil, 1999), in the sequence for the song ‘Jumbalakka’. After winning the title, she made her Bollywood debut in Rehnaa Hai Terre Dil Mein in 2001 opposite R Madhavan, and most recently featured in Sanju (2018).

Remo D’Souza


If you look carefully, you can see Remo D’Souza dancing behind Shah Rukh Khan in ‘Zara tasveer se tu’ from the film Pardes (1997), and in the sequence for ‘Aflatoon’ from the film of the same name starring Akshay Kumar. D’Souza switched to choreography in 2000, judged popular dance reality shows on TV and finally turned filmmaker with F.A.L.T.U in 2011. He directed ABCD: Any Body Can Dance in 2013, Flying Jatt in 2016, and Race 3 this year.

Saroj Khan


Saroj Khan appeared as a background dancer in many song sequences in the late 1950s, including the classic ‘Aaiye meherbaan’ from the film Howrah Bridge (1958), starring Madhubala. Khan, then 10 years old, posed as a boy in that number. In later years she shifted to choreography and directed some of the biggest stars in dance sequences, ranging from Sridevi in Nagina (1986) to Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol in Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (1995), Salman Khan and Aishwarya Rai in Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam (1999) and Kangana Ranaut in Tanu Weds Manu Returns (2015).