We woke this Wednesday to the sad news that thespian Dilip Kumar Saab has passed away at 98. While the nation and even those across the borders remember and miss the talented actor, his family and close friends are getting ready for his funeral, which will be held later today. While we remember him and his amazing world in Bollywood, we bring you some trivia about the late star.
Did you know he was offered a chance to make his Hollywood debut in the ’60s but rejected it? Well, as per reports and the actor’s own confession, he was offered a role in David Lean’s Lawrence of Arabia (1962). The character he was being considered for was that of Sherif Ali ibn el Kharish – which Omar Sheriff finally essayed. Read on to know the reason behind why he rejected it.
During an interview with the Times Of India in 2012 – on the occasion of his 90th birthday, Dilip Kumar got candid about turning down the Hollywood film Lawrence of Arabia. The late veteran actor said, “I took a decision, which was appropriate at that time. In all humility, I would like to say that I judged the offer with the same parameters as all the offers that came to me at that time.”
To this, Dilip Kumar further added, “I felt I did not have to go to Hollywood to prove or satisfy myself.”
Talking about the film, director David Lean didn’t want a European star to play the part. He wanted a more authentic actor and, with whatever knowledge had from his personal experience in India, zeroed in chose Dilip Saab to play the role. As per reports, David even set up a meeting with Dilip Kumar and tried to convince him to join his film but to no avail. The character was then finally played by actor Omar Sheriff.
Talking about the success of David Lean Lawrence of Arabia, the film garnered 10 Oscar nominations at the 35th Academy Awards and emerged the winner in 7. The wins included Best Picture, Best Director, Best Art Direction – Color, Best Cinematography – Color, Best Film Editing, Best Music Score – Substantially Original and Best Sound. for David. Omar also received a nomination in the Best Actor in a Supporting Role category but lost it to Ed Begley (Sweet Bird of Youth as Tom Boss Finley).
You will be dearly missed, Dilip Kumar Saab.