Filmmaker Karan Johar made his debut as a director with Kuch Kuch Hota Hai in 1998. The movie went on to become one of the classic millennial romantic movies of Bollywood. However, when Karan was looking to cast the actress for the role of Tina Malhotra, he had to face quite a difficulty.
Before Rani Mukerji played the role of Tina, the college heartthrob, Karan had offered the role to his childhood friend, Twinkle Khanna. Karan had also revealed that Tina’s character was inspired by Twinkle. However, Twinkle rejected the role, after which the filmmaker offered it to Raveena Tandon, and Karisma Kapoor. Karan had also discussed the role with Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, who at the time was quite new to Bollywood. The actress declined the role, but a year later after its release, she revealed why she did not accept to play Tina.
In an interview to Filmfare a year after Kuch Kuch Hota Hai was released, Aishwarya said that she was in a catch-22 situation. The actress said that even though she was a newcomer, she was compared with all the senior actresses in the film industry. At the time, Aishwarya was looking for roles that did not restrict her to her good looks but also added substance to her character.
Speaking with Filmfare, Aishwarya had said, “I’m in a catch-22 situation, really. Though I’m a newcomer, I’m compared with all the senior actresses.” She added, “If I’d done the film, it would have been tittered that, ‘Look, Aishwarya Rai is back to doing what she did in her modelling days—leaving her hair straight, wearing minis, and pouting glamorously into the camera.’ Ultimately, the hero goes back to the more real person. I know if I’d done Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, I would have been lynched.”
Source: News 18