Kabir Khan says he knew Shah Rukh Khan as Gauri Khan's boyfriend: 'Was my senior in Jamia'
Kabir Khan revealed how he met Shah Rukh Khan through his wife Gauri Khan. Despite studying at the same university, he knew him as Gauri's boyfriend.
Before joining Bollywood, Kabir Khan worked as a cameraman and documentary filmmaker. The director shared that when he first landed in Mumbai, he only knew one person, Shah Rukh Khan. However, their connection goes back to their college when Shah Rukh was Kabir's senior at Jamia Millia Islamia university. Kabir only knew the actor as Gauri Khan's boyfriend at the time. He and Shah Rukh's wife Gauri were both dancers in a musical play, West Side Story. (Also read: Kabir Khan on how he feels when trolls ask him to go to Pakistan: 'One couldn’t say to you in person. It does feel bad')
Kabir made his directorial debut with the documentary The Forgotten Army (1999) which revolves around the Indian National Army founded by Subhas Chandra Bose. He made his feature film debut with Yash Raj Films' Kabul Express (2006) starring John Abraham and Arshad Warsi. The writer-director had earlier said that when he came to Mumbai looking for work, he did not know anyone and didn't think Shah Rukh would ever agree to be in a project of his as he was already a big star.
In an interview with Humans of Bombay, Kabir shared how he knows Shah Rukh Khan and Gauri for decades from their Delhi days. He said, "Shah Rukh was my senior in Jamia but I did not know him as that. I met Shah Rukh more as Gauri's boyfriend. Gauri and I did a production of the musical West Side Story where we were both dancers. West Side Story is the story of the two gangs, the Sharks and the Jets. We were both in the Sharks. Gauri is a fabulous dancer. I was probably not too bad. We practiced for six months and Shah Rukh would come and meet her. That's how I got to meet [him]."
He continued, "At that point in time, he was in Jamia. I had not yet decided to join Jamia. I was doing economics and if I remember correctly, Shah Rukh was also doing economics. Later, when I decided to join Jamia, he gave me his notes because he was a brilliant student. I studied a lot from his notes. They were very valuable notes. That's how I got to know Shah Rukh. The one person when I landed in Bombay, I've often said that I knew nobody in the film industry, needs a slight correction. The only person I knew was Shah Rukh Khan."
Kabir's last film was the sports drama 83 (2021) which brought to life the events of the 1983 Cricket World Cup when India won its maiden title. Starring Ranveer Singh, Deepika Padukone, Jiiva, Pankaj Tripathi, Tahir Raj Bhasin and Saqib Saleem, the film was more of a success internationally than at the Indian box office.