Juhi Chawla calls herself ‘pig-headed’ for rejecting Raja Hindustani: ‘I am responsible for Karisma Kapoor’s stardom’

Juhi Chawla said that when she was at the peak of her career, she let go of a lot of great films because of her “ego”.
Actor Juhi Chawla, who burst on the Bollywood scene with Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak in 1988, opened up about getting complacent when she was at the peak of her career and letting go of films that went on to become huge hits because of her “ego”.

In an interview with Rajeev Masand, Juhi said, “I became pig-headed. I suddenly thought the industry will stop if I don’t work. I got some amazing chances to work in films, but my ego came in the way. I didn’t do some films, which I could have done, which may have been harder work and more competitive. I just didn’t do them because I wanted the easy stuff and I wanted to work with people I was comfortable with. I didn’t break barriers.”

Juhi mentioned two films she turned down – Dil To Pagal Hai and Raja Hindustani – which went on to become blockbusters. “I made stars out of everybody else,” she said.

Karisma Kapoor eventually went on to do Dil To Pagal Hai and even won a National Award for her performance in the film. Raja Hindustani also went down as one of the biggest hits in her filmography. When Juhi was told about how the two films rejected by her went on to “make Karisma’s career”, she joked, “Absolutely. I am responsible for her stardom.”
After winning Miss India in 1984, Juhi made her Bollywood debut in 1986 with Sultanat, which boasted of an ensemble cast including Dharmendra, Sunny Deol, Sridevi and Amrish Puri. The film bombed at the box office. She rose to fame in 1988 with Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak, in which she was paired opposite Aamir Khan.

Juhi has starred in a number of hits, including Hum Hain Rahi Pyaar Ke, Darr, Yes Boss and Ishq. She will be seen next in Sharmaji Namkeen, which marks Rishi Kapoor’s first project after his cancer diagnosis.

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