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30 Years of Beta EXCLUSIVE: “Aamir Khan didn’t attend award functions after the Filmfare episode. Mujhe bhi Beta ke liye award nahi mila, usme kya hai?” – Indra Kumar

The family entertainer, Beta, was released on April 3, 1992, and is remembered for its plot, the dramatic moments, Aruna Irani’s memorable performance, Anil Kapoor and Madhuri Dixit’s sizzling chemistry in the song ‘Dhak Dhak’ and a lot more. However, this film, which celebrated its 30th anniversary a few days ago, also reminds one of the controversy that broke out during the Filmfare Awards.

Beta won 5 Filmfare awards, including Best Actor for Anil Kapoor. As per reports, superstar Aamir Khan reportedly felt dejected as he expected to win for Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar (1992). Moreover, Dimple Kapadia announced Anil’s name as the winner without opening the envelope and this raised a lot of eyebrows. It is also said that this incident was one of the big reasons why Aamir Khan stopped attending award shows.

Bollywood Hungama recently spoke to Beta’s director Indra Kumar on the film’s 30th anniversary. Indra Kumar worked with Aamir on Dil (1990) and later on Ishq (1997) and Mann (1999). When we asked Indra Kumar if he ever talked to the star about this episode, the filmmaker replied, “I don’t know about this controversy and what was the issue that Aamir Khan had. Yes, he didn’t attend award functions after this incident. Mujhe bhi Beta ke liye award nahi mila, usme kya hai? It’s ok. That’s part of life. Mujhe nahi mila award to koi baat nahi. Main ghar jaa ke so gaya aur aage badhta raha aur kaam karta raha.”

During an in-depth interaction with Mid-Day as part of the promotions of Fanney Khan (2018), Anil Kapoor was asked to comment about this controversy. To which, Anil Kapoor explained in detail, “Let me be very honest. If you see my interviews from back then, when people asked me who will win Best Actor, I had always said Aamir Khan for Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar, because it was really a different kind of film, out-of-the-box, and I could make out that everyone had worked really hard. I saw the film at Gaiety and loved it. And then the Filmfare Awards happened, where I won the Best Actor award, and I was surprised. I won it because it was the biggest box-office success of that time. If you look back, it had earned more than any film that year. So, there was something special about that performance. I didn\’t respect that performance myself, but everybody else did. I was also riding so high that everyone wanted me to lose. I also found out from Dimple that it [me getting the award] was taken for granted. It is not that she had anything [else] in mind [while not opening the envelope]. Usne aise hi bol diya. Then I found out from an insider regarding the [Filmfare] poll that was taken, and why there was so much controversy. I was really innocent, and frankly, Beta aur Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar ka koi comparision nahi tha, in terms of vote shares. And I think the jury might have taken a decision to give Anil Kapoor the award. They had no axe to grind with anyone, and they didn\’t do me a favour either. They never gave me an award for Ram Lakhan, or Eeshwar, when I was nominated for both [in the same year]. They had given it to Jackie Shroff [for Parinda]. They said the poll had got divided between the two films. These, I guess, are just excuses. You can\’t take awards seriously. It\’s naseeb [destiny], also luck. And do you think I would have time to do all this for an award? Mil gaya toh mil gaya; nahi mila toh nahi mila. Among all my friends and colleagues I know, I don\’t see anybody taking awards so seriously.”

Anil Kapoor, in the same interview also said that “someone went and filled Aamir Khan’s ears. Kisi ne purposely nahi kiya tha.”

Like Indra Kumar, the evergreen actor also made it clear that he has never spoken to Aamir about this row. “We are great friends, and this is too small a thing,” said Anil.

Coming back to Indra, when we asked if he’ll be interested to make a sequel to Beta and depict what the lives of Raju and Saraswati are like 30 years later, he said, “If I get a subject, then I don’t mind making it.”

As for a remake of Beta, Indra Kumar stated, “I don’t want to remake either Beta or any other film of mine. Jo film ek honesty ke saath ban gayi hai, usko chhedna nahi chahiye.”

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