Shah Rukh Khan and Yash Chopra enjoyed an on-screen collaboration and a real-life relationship that few in the industry can claim to have with each other. But the beginning of this comparison can be attributed to Shah Rukh’s contemporary, Aamir Khan. In a 2013 interview with Notch magazine, costume designer and producer Shabina Khan recounted how Aamir had suggested SRK call on Yash while he was casting for the 1993 thriller Darr.
Shabina said that Aamir strongly believed that Shah Rukh would be perfect for the role of Rahul, a young man who becomes violent after the woman (Juhi Chawla) he loves does not reciprocate his feelings.
In the interview, Shabina Khan said: “I would like to share a strange, career-defining incident that has happened. This happened at Salman’s annual Eid celebration and everyone was in attendance – from Aamir to Shah Rukh to the top heroines of the ’90s. The party was coming to an end and I was one of the last to leave.”
The costume designer who later became a producer continued: ‘Aamir Khan, SRK, Gauri and I were standing in Salman’s property when Aamir Shah told Rukh about a story he had heard the previous day. Though he declined the film, he strongly believed that Shah Rukh was perfect for the role and urged him to call Yash Chopra for the same. The movie was Darr, and in that one casual conversation, Aamir literally handed the Yash Chopra and Yash Raj banners to Shah Rukh. Darr made a hero out of a villain, history was made for Shah Rukh Khan when he became Yash Raj’s favorite actor and Yash’s eternal ‘Rahul’ uncle.”
Two years after Darr, Yash Chopra produced Shah Rukh Khan starrer Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (1995), which marked the directorial debut of his son Aditya Chopra. Shah Rukh went on to work with both Yash and Aditya for their banner Yash Raj Films in films like Dil To Pagal Hai (1997), Mohabattein (2000), Veer Zara (2004), Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi (2008) and Jab Tak Hai Jan (2012).