Gauahar Khan says she lost out on the Slumdog Millionaire role because she was ‘too good looking for it

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Published by Aakash Khuman on 01 Jul 2022

Gauahar Khan has appeared in films such as Rocket Singh: Salesman of the Year, in which she co-starred with Ranbir Kapoor, and Begum Jaan, in which she co-starred with Vidya Balan. However, when questioned in a new interview if she ever lost a part because of her appearance, Gauahar stated that one of the ‘best projects she lost’ was because she was ‘too good looking for it.’ She said Danny Boyle auditioned her several times for his 2008 film Slumdog Millionaire, which won eight Academy Awards, including best picture. Slumdog Millionaire stars Freida Pinto and Dev Patel.

Gauahar stated that there is “no formula” for landing excellent roles. She stated that being attractive does not ensure success. She also described her encounter with Danny Boyle, and how he was unable to ‘place her’ in a slum with her ‘face.’

“Slumdog Millionaire was one of the most important projects I ever lost because I was too skilled at looking for it.” I’ve met Danny Boyle and gone through five rounds of auditions for it. “You’re a fantastic actor. Are you sure you’re trained in India?” he asked after the sixth round. I had little experience at the time, so I replied, “I trained in India.” ‘You speak like an actor from outside of India, not from India, so how do you have this experience?’ he said. ‘I don’t know, sir, I simply try to do it every day,’ I said. ‘You are such a fantastic actor, but I won’t be able to cast you here because I have to match three age groups, and I can’t put you in a Slumdog Millionaire with your face,’ he explained. “I told myself, ‘I can live in a slum,'” Gauahar told Film Companion.

She stated that she had no regrets since she met Danny Boyle, who believed she was a “great actor.” Gauahar expressed her delight at being cast in parts where the filmmakers thought they ‘needed a performance.’

Gauahar also discussed her work on Rocket Singh: Salesman of the Year. She revealed that her part was supposed to be ‘not good-looking,’ and that the film’s director Shimit Amin and his team had to ensure she wore more ‘jarring’ make-up to suit the character.

The aim of Rocket Singh: Salesman of the Year was to make me appear less attractive. Shimit Sir would tell her to put more pink on her eyes and cheeks and more shocking lipstick on her, because that was the character’s appearance. She wasn’t supposed to be very attractive… Shimit Sir would still say, ‘she’s still too attractive. Do more make-up on her.'” Gauahar said.

Gauahar made her acting debut in the 2009 film Rocket Singh: Salesman of the Year alongside Ranbir Kapoor, and has since appeared in films like Begum Jaan, Badrinath Ki Dulhania, and others.

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