Hindi cinema has witnessed countless blockbuster films that not only shattered records at the box office but also etched themselves into the hearts of viewers. One such timeless gem is the 1991 hit film Saajan, starring the iconic trio of Sanjay Dutt, Madhuri Dixit, and Salman Khan. While the movie itself was among the highest-grossing films of its time, its songs, particularly the title track Dekha Hai Pehli Baar, continue to grace playlists and win over listeners even today. But did you ever wonder how this chartbuster was created? Let’s delve into the fascinating story behind its making.
As per reports, the creation of the film’s title track was a whirlwind affair, completed in just one day. With the shooting of Saajan wrapped up, the post-production work was in full swing, and the film’s producer-director was brimming with confidence about its success. What added to this confidence was the unbeatable trio behind the film’s music – lyricist Sameer, composer duo Nadeem-Shravan, and the melodious Kumar Sanu. However, an unexpected twist was about to unfold.
Lyricist Sameer, feeling that something was missing in the film, suggested the need for a title song. This idea came as a surprise, as the shooting was completed, and the film’s release was looming. Nevertheless, the matter was discussed and eventually set aside. That is until one day when Sameer and Nadeem were having breakfast at a restaurant. Out of the blue, Sameer shared the opening line of the song he had in mind.
Nadeem was intrigued and began tapping out a beat on the table. Shravan joined in, providing the rhythm, and Nadeem spontaneously composed the tune for Sameer’s lyrics. The result was an enchanting melody that resonated with everyone present. Nadeem wasted no time in contacting the film’s director, Lawrence D’Souza, and proposed the addition of a new song to the film. Lawrence was taken aback, wondering how this song would be incorporated when the shooting had concluded. However, Nadeem’s conviction was unwavering.
Nadeem-Shravan promptly recorded the song in the voices of SP Balasubramaniam and Alka Yagnik. The following day, the song was presented to Salman Khan and Madhuri Dixit, the film’s lead actors. They were captivated by the composition and expressed their desire to include it in the film immediately. Shooting commenced in Ooty the very next morning, and by evening, the iconic song was successfully filmed.
When Saajan hit theatres in 1991, it enjoyed an extraordinary run, remaining on the box office charts for over 75 weeks and celebrating a Diamond Jubilee. With a budget of Rs 1.58 crore, the film turned into a blockbuster, raking in a staggering Rs 18 crore worldwide. It secured a spot among the top 5 highest-grossing films of the 1990s and remains a cherished classic in the annals of Bollywood history. The tale of the last-minute addition of its title track only adds to the film’s legendary status, making Saajan an unforgettable cinematic experience.