Nadia Jamil was offered Rani’s role in ‘Veer Zaara’, here’s why she turned it down

Shah Rukh Khan, riding high on the critical acclaim that he received for his stupendous performance as a dwarf in Zero, is one of the biggest superstars in the world. Especially his popularity and his fan base is mammoth in the subcontinent, actresses and actors dream of working with him.

Mahira Khan managed an unprecedented feat by being the first Pakistani actress to pair opposite Shah Rukh Khan as a solo leading lady in the 100 crore grosser movie, Raees. Mahira garnered acclaim for her role of Asia in the film and her song Zaalima became an instant chartbuster. However, she is not the first Pakistani actress to be offered a leading role opposite King Khan.

Mahira Khan not the first Pakistani actress to be offered a role with Shahrukh Khan

Nadia Jamil is a force to be reckoned with in the entertainment industry, a very instrumental person in the revival of contemporary theatre in Pakistan. Nadia has conquered the Television screens with her performance in successful dramas such as Raat Chali Hai Jhoom Ke, Meri Jaan and her Blockbuster Telefilm Behadd opposite Fawad Khan.

Turns out the legendary Yash Chopra, director of classics such as Silsila and Dil Toh Pagal Hai offered Nadia Jamil, Rani Mukherji’s role in the cult film Veer Zaara. The film was originally planned with Shah Rukh, Aishwarya Rai and Nadia Jamil as the lead trio. However, Nadia Jamil was pregnant with her first child Raaqay at that time. 

Nadia refused this once in a lifetime opportunity and prioritized motherhood which is commendable and very brave of her. Yash Chopra and Nadia also met very often to discuss the film and the possibilities of Nadia venturing into the project.

Nadia stands by her decision

Nadia revealed on Rewind With Samina Peerzada that she was in talks for the film with Yash Chopra but couldn’t do the film as she had to take care of her child. The talks even went on till her son became 2 months of age.

Nadia says that she still stands by her decision of not doing the film despite the role being very pivotal and strong in the narrative. The role was that of a Pakistani lawyer who helps the protagonist with his case.  Although, she lost out on the film but made lifelong friendship with Yash Chopra and his family. She holds them very dear to herself.

The film released on Diwali 2004 with a stellar star-cast of Shah Rukh, Preity Zinta and Rani Mukherjee and was a record success.

You can watch the full interview here: