Deepak Tijori reveals he was rejected after auditions, before bagging his role in Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar

Updated on Feb 23, 2021 03:29 PM IST
  • Sharing details of being rejected for a film that eventually turned out to be one of the biggest ones in his career, Deepak Tijori talks about Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar.
Deepak Tijori opens up on filmmaking, acting and more.(Colors)
Deepak Tijori opens up on filmmaking, acting and more.(Colors)
BySweta Kaushal

Actor Deepak Tijori- has revealed that he was dejected when he did not get selected for Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar after the auditions. However, he added that the entire episode taught him to never lose hope. It is a known fact that Deepak was not the first choice for the antagonist's role in the 1992 film that featured Aamir Khan in the lead role.

Milind Soman had shot some parts of the film before Deepak was brought onboard. Speaking with Hindustan Times in an interview, Deepak said, "I will tell you something I learnt. This should go out to all actors, actors who are going to auditions. Actors who are rejected, and feel dejected and depressed. This was Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar. I was trying very hard for the film and I auditioned and got rejected."

Aamir Khan and Deepak Tijori in a still from Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar.
Aamir Khan and Deepak Tijori in a still from Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar.

He further said, "I kept reading the news that they left for shooting, they started shooting, so and so people are shooting. I was like 'I really wanted this'. Then one day, Bhatt saab (Mahesh Bhatt) calls me up and says 'I need you to do something'."

So, Aamir Khan had told Bhatt saab to ask me to go and talk to Mansoor Khan (writer-director). The film (Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar) was 75% done, 75%. I could not even imagine that this would be anything to do with Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar. Aamir was shooting Dil Hai Ki Manta Nahi at the time. I had no idea. And, then, I went to meet Mansoor saab and found Nasir Hussain (the film's writer). Can you imagine, I get to meet Nasir saab! when Nasir Hussain sits across the table and tells you 'beta, I want you to do this'. (you are overwhelmed). I was like, 'you have already shot the film'. He said 'I know what is happening but I need you to do this'. Then I said I will do whatever you ask me to do."

Elaborating on how it turned out to be his biggest life lesson, Deepak added, "What I did, what the film all happened and I felt that what is supposed to be in your kitty will always come back to you. You should never ever cry for something you lost. You do not lose anything. If it did not come back to you, it was never meant for you. Since then, no matter what I lost in life, I never went through depression and always took it in my stride."

Talking about switching roles between donning the director's hat and being an actor, in front of the camera, Deepak added, "One thing that I do not do is going back at the monitor to check how I looked in a particular shot. I have never done that, and when I worked with Sanju (Sanjay Dutt), we never did those kind of things. We left it to the director if he says okay, it is. If he wants another take, we give it."

"There are times, when we intuitively understand what doubts an actor may be facing on the sets. I once looked at an actor and told her ' are you stuck with what to do with your hands, try this' and she was taken aback. I think being an actor as well as a director makes us more like problem solver on sets . It also helps in becoming a better actor."

"The advantage I have, as someone who has directed films and is acting, is that subconsciously, I tend to edit my work as an actor while performing. In my mind, I often know which part of my take is good and which one is not so much. That benefit we have because we have been editing as directors. I would advice all actors to become directors, it helps in the craft," he added.

He also talked about his most recent project, an ad film for &Prive` HD's new offer of foreign films. "It was a little difficult for me as I did not know anyone on sets except Renuka Shahane. I just asked my makeup man where she is and barged into her van."

In the promotional video, Deepak is seen alongside Renuka and Rohit Saraf. Talking about the concept of bringing foreign films on TV, the actor-filmmaker said, "I have been watching foreign films for a long time, I believed this aspect that languages should not be a problem for cinema. I have watched so many of Rajinikanth sir's films and Telugu films, without subtitles, even when I did not understand the language. I just wanted to see how I understood the film. (For the ad), the difficult part was to memorise the lines as I never learnt a foreign language."

He also opened up on the changes that he has seen in the industry through the years. "When we started working, we used to go for dubbing and we had to wait. If there was one mistake in the dubbing, we had to get the loop back and re-dub the entire thing. Things have now changed. Now everything is easy, you can dub one word, punch it. People who had no voice have become singers, thanks to autotune! This is the best time to be a performer, technician or content creator. You just need to think of something and it can be done."

He also expressed his gratitude at being able to act at a time when there is so much to experiment. "About being back, I am doing things that are so much more now. Things I only envisioned when I was dancing around the trees."

He added jokingly, "My favourite actor was Sanjeev Kumar and now I really love my grey (hair) and I see RK Gupta of Trishul (Sanjeev Kumar's role in the Amitabh Bachchan-starrer film). I am really looking forward to a role like RK Gupta in my career."

"Fortunately now, content is the king. It is no more a restriction that you need to have one star to release or even get to make a film. Content is ruling."

Some of the most recent outings of Deepak include VOOT original series Illegal, ZEE5's Abhay and Saheb Biwi Aur Gangster 3.


    Sweta Kaushal has 13 years of experience covering Bollywood and regional movies, TV shows, national current affairs and social issues.

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