I was on some other topic, but then Yves brought out another factor. The previous one was basically statistical. After graduating I went into statistical training, and from then I have fallen in love with it. Whenever I look at data, even only as a pastime, try to analyse the mathematics, look at pattern, relations.
Part 1 post was basically an offshoot of that excel file. Frankly speaking as a statistician I am doing the cardinal sin. A statistician should be objective and should never be biased, and am I when she is concerned ?
Does the statistics include the vital? Likely that too. But when one looks at her, the vital doesn’t come in mind. How many had really observed that she had an excellent figure? The eyes, the thoughts of at least mine never went down, leaving the face, where everything worth watching was going on. Of course she was de-facto Miss India, so she was to have a good shapely figure. But at that time she was a straight line, at least almost, so I wonder how she managed to win over the title. After the 40 pounds (this figure can’t be doubted, since it is from her mouth) addition in Europe, she did have that.
She naturally had a starved figure in initial movies, it was her growing period, before the body rests and starts filling up. But by around 1952-53, it has started taking shape. Aagosh (1953) I have observed she had a good shape. Of course whether that was due to the tight belt (Scarlett O’hara type) or natural, we won’t know.
However due to her type of dressing, even back then, one would have to have a lot of imagination, and also the intention to leave the face and look down, to record the statistics.
First time I had observed it in Seema. It wasn’t of course my first movie, it was quite down the line in the list, since the DVD of it I couldn’t get. In fact I am yet to put hand on it, but I could watch it on youtube, where an excellent quality of print is there. But in it, there was one of the rare occasions, when she was on screen and there was nothing going on in the movie. In addition to that, may be without intending, the scene outlined her figure. And that moment the word (I had read long back) struck me.Sanskrit had quite abundance of “Shringar Rasa” couplets describing women, one of that was (which homed in the brain, and stayed) describing the best of women (not in terms of look only) since the Susheel woman, as is called, has to have the looks but more importantly the ‘Sheel’ the habits, properties- the best of woman, meaning THE BEST
Stanau sukathinah yasya nitambe cha vishalata, Madhye Khsina bhavedy sah Nyagrodha Parimandala.
The woman who has hard breasts and large (wide) hips, with thin (narrow) in the middle (waist) is called Nyagrodha Parimandala.
Interestingly it doesn’t consider top heavy to be an optimum shape. And did she fit the bill to the dot ?
However I am digressing from the subject. The topic is on the Men in her life, and not on her, especially her figure. While replying to the post, the reply started becoming so large and confused that I thought to gather the thoughts and make a detailed one. (A sequel would gain me some brownie points?)
While doing homework on this, I found that names I have missed in Heer, Laila Majnu and Shabaab – she had legally wedded husbands, Wasti I think twice and Darpan in Heer. Also Sunil Dutt had been her sweetheart (though mistakenly) in Gauri. So now Sunil Dutt is undisputed leader. That increases the men in her life and I have updated that post.
In all the cases of course she wasn’t passionately involved (on screen) with the man.
Some were husbands, and that too not very good ones (like in Saraswatichandra, Heer, Laila Majnu, Shabaab, Manjil and quite a lot more),
Some were husbands with whom she had a normal Family Drama type life (Chhota Bhai, Mera Munna, almost all of her movies of 80s where she had a husband)
There were of course husbands, she was passionately in love with like Devi, Saudagar etc.
I am looking from the angle, where the role that she enacted, required passion, and while enacting the role, she could have formed an attachment, with one from the opposite gender. In some cases, like Chhalia, though Raj Kapoor wasn’t sweetheart, but there was always a chance of having a soft corner on him, the role too demanded that.
In Gauri, though Sanjeev was the hero, but her all love was for Sunil Dutt, whom she mistook to be her husband. Meherban I am not sure. Unlike Milan, or Khandan, here the role was much more subdued, on romance. But association was a long one, still on romantic angle I am not considering that. Similarly there are movies like Ek Baap Chhe Bete (very minor role), Maharaja, Yaadgar, Rishta Kagaz Ka, Saajan Bina Suhagan and Grahan where with the heroes, there were no sparks flowing, the romance aspect, were on the back ground, no sweet nothings. In those cases it would be more or less professional coworker attachment than a loving one. However Kasturi had major sparks, despite the subject, and is retained in the list, it is a beautiful love story in the backdrop of superstitions.
This is with my firm assumption that she was a natural and spontaneous actress, essaying the role as she understood, and probably living it while inside the studio. During that, if the story is of passionate love, there could be a possibility that after a few movies with same co-worker, she might develop some weakness towards him.
We have our count now greatly diminished, with only 47 movies and 50 exchange of hearts with 23 men.
While working with them was it a possible for her to be wooed in real life? Or maybe, after coming out of the set did she feel a bit vulnerable, and then after somehow completing the movie she refused to sign against the same star? Better take precaution and avoid, than be sorry. Or may be after working with a particular star she wanted further, whatever may be the reason, personal or professional, but either didn’t get a chance or she herself backed out of it, in the brain-heart-instinct war?
This is the question only she could have answered, and she did have secrets (for example the Mughal-e-Azam case, she never brought that out, in the interview to BBC, she had mentioned Shikwa, but not this one), which she took with her. She clearly wasn’t one to wash dirty linen, even of others, except once when she was probably forced to the extreme.
In absence of authentic fact I can only guess, may be the guess will be exactly opposite of the fact. For her affections, we have to first understand her, but how can we?
There are only a few things we know of her, she was
– Very affectionate and loving (as her mother said)
– Not very open in judging others – we all know of that.
– Family person- she had mentioned she always regretted the breakdown of her parents.
– Sensitive and vulnerable – her movement to religion gives a hint of it.
– Seems to have strong maternal instincts (Chatura had mentioned that and the photographs with Mohnish hints that). These type of persons would not only cuddle and spoil, their objects, but would love to be cuddled and spoilt by them.
Now I am not sure whether I am entering Gossip zone? Most likely next part onwards would be- I think it is called Page-3 news, and also might call for proof! (even defamation suit? May be) But I would go by the gut instinct and look at her heroes.
For a pair to succeed and become a golden pair, there would be several factors that have to match.
The on screen chemistry is the main factor, but also we have to look at quite a few other factors, like How they look like together, do the audience accept them as a pair or it has some mismatch? How they are off screen? Given a chance would he/she jump at working with other? Would they recommend, the other’s name to the producers? Etc.
Heroes – From another world-
I would put Joy Mukherjee as prime candidate here. When they came together, he was past his prime (at least the body mass says so) though she was still adorable. So either on screen or off screen pairing in this stage would look very absurd. I don’t think they looked good as a pair on screen in this movie, though Joy is younger than Nutan (age wise), it really didn’t look like that. The on screen chemistry didn’t much exist. Secondly they movie was a mismatch. The role was of a very serious one, where the heroine, everyone could guess, would excel, but our hero was not made for the character thrust on him. So the character compatibility, at least on screen wasn’t there.
Also he was a part of her opposite camp (Sobhana- Tanuja faction of the family). His brother Deb was Tanuja’s husband, while the marriage lasted that is. So that takes care of the off screen relationship. When I say relationship, it need not be in wrong sense. Normal friendship, willing to have a blast together etc all would be treated as having a good off screen relation. So this pair is a no-no from all angles.
Some like Parikshit (Kasturi), Manish (Saraswatichandra), Sekhar (Aakhri Dao, Hamari Beti- likely as per casting) had quite torrid affair (on screen) but these type somehow, doesn’t go, either on or off screen with a girl like her.
Parikshit started a bit late in her career, and he was most of the time in brooding roles, not the thing which would put screen on fire, and the producers would like to repeat the pair. They did quite a few roles together, the domestic type, and looks to have a good compatibility. Parsikshit of course lacked the acting ability that his father had, or maybe we compare with his father and rank him even lower that where he is (When put by compared to a large stick, the normal stick looks tiny.)
On personal level, it was only a respect from his side, after all she was the heroine of his late father. So compatibility must have existed. The other parts are not too critical, since the romance was lost in the married couple. But they did succeed as oft repeated pair of self-sacrificing couple in movies.
Then we have heroes like Ashok Kumar, Balraj Sahni, Pradeep Kumar, Talat Mahmood and Bharat Bhushan– unless our Nutan had a massive Electra Syndrome, I don’t see these relationships going anywhere in heart matters. There is no doubt they had very good relation otherwise. But it was more of respect from her side, as one could make out in her interview when she talked of Balraj and Ashok. In fact when her era started, all these, may be due to the personal age, were in the evening of the romance, not anymore the blazing noon that would heat up the screen to fire.
She had been taught the nuances of the trade by Balraj, as had been mentioned by her mother. Similarly Ashok too had been elsewhere said to be guiding her. So there was a possibility of the other type of relationship – like in Seema – the guardian and the protege developing and turning into something sweet. But all of these were professional and gentlemen, so I assume that had even she have had the electra-syndrome, she would have been politely put to place. We must remember that at that time Ashok (whom she had later said she loved to work with) was supposed to be going sweet on her aunt, Nalini. With Ashok however she had been in several movies, non-romantic, later too, like say Anurag.
With all these she could have continued in cool, calm sweet roles, say Saudagar, Grahan, Kasturi type, provided we had producers then ready to do. And unfortunately they would have done some very sweet movies, the age notwithstanding. Nutan was graceful and beautiful even in the movies up to say 1980, when she wasn’t dyed, after that however we don’t know, but till around 1980s her facial skin was unblemished of age. The fatal disease after that must have started making home.
However this was the time, I don’t think she, or the heroes she worked with, had the say in the casting. May be that’s why she wanted to produce/ direct, which I am sure she would have, had she lived longer. But certain blame goes to her too. Why didn’t she think of it earlier, say in late seventies/ early eighties, with her in the lead, many male stars have done that starting from Sohrab Modi and Raj Kapoor, so it was nothing extraordinary or something to people would pointed at. In return, there would have been some good clean and enjoyable movies, which were hand countable post seventies, from the time the production control of Bollywood had been in the hands of South factory.
Prem Nath, Kaycee Mehra, I can’t comment since unfortunately both (Parbat and Chhabili) are off my radar. So the sparks on screen couldn’t be analysed. Of course Prem Nath had a diva at home (Bina Rai) and was going to become the man heroines avoided rather than fall in love. So either on or off screen attachments are just off the radar.
Heroes From the same Planet-
May be Nasir Khan, he looked quite gentleman and good looking. He was an eligible bachelor too (He married Begum Para in late fifties). Only problem was, when Nutan worked with him she was at the moment still a girl. And had there been any equation, it didn’t come out on screen. Since she wasn’t an accomplished actress at that time, one can simply rule everything out. And his continuous series of flops automatically made the pairing, with the flop girl, very unsavory for producers.
Kishore Kumar, in my opinion, with his type of antics, could be the best friend to get a girl, or a boy, out of the blues, but potential partner? I don’t think he was the material back then. Later, much later when he had calmed down a bit, he could become a more stable partner. At that moment, his pranks, well it could be entertaining, but may be only on screen, the girls would fall in love,
And if one goes by his elder brother, he wasn’t much different out of studio either. So if your lover have ditched you and you need a shoulder to cry on, they would go to say Nazir Hussain. But instead you want to get it off your head and be at least a bit normalized and fast, may be one should go to Kishore. Did Madhubala, when in deep blue, fall for that and decided to get hitched?
Similar must be the case of another but different type of boisterous person, Shammi Kapoor. His movies were very highly spaced out 1953, 1960 and 1967. Seven year itch in reverse- seven year love? But this too wasn’t going to go forward, in terms of hearts. Firstly he was a family friend (at least what the media says) with what looks as a more guardian attitude than equal. In both the movie periods he was highly safe, first time deeply in love with his wife, Geeta Bali, and second time going strong with his second love, star-crossed one, with Bina Ramani (at least as per her auto biography) on the rebound he might have married the Princess fan of his.
In the hiatus when he was supposed to be quite a terror, for women, there were no movies together. Why the childhood friends didn’t become sweethearts I don’t know. Most probably when Shammi decided that he has become of marriageable age, when Nutan was mentally as well as physically not only underage, but not even looking like, or may be just entering the teen age? So automatically she would be treated as a kid sister or a responsibility imposed by the neighborhood aunt (Shobhana) and the family (his)?
Shammi Kapoor’s the family friendship that has been mentioned, must be of this type and no further. The Nagina case (chaperoning the underage girl to an Adult movie) mentions that, but there is no mention of his ever coming forward to help Mohnish, while she was alive or after, which should be a natural action. So I assume that the case was something like above.
This pair didn’t have many movies together and not a single one put the box on fire. Not very strange since like Kishore, it was on screen compatibility problem at a later stage. Their styles didn’t match. Though she had shown that she could be a bubbly and fun loving girl (Dilli Ka Thug, Basant, Baarish) but that bubble was a separate kind, it was much less boisterous and sweet type and contradicted a bit with the ones shown by Kishore or Shammi, though surprisingly she could match the steps of the more complicated of them, Kishore, hence we shouldn’t underestimate the capabilities of a (not so) common (wo) man.
I don’t suppose that the producers/ directors would try to make a pair of them, or that off screen they would do something naughty, nor they would recommend each other for the roles, since the genre of the movies they worked in differed. So this was a relation that never existed, on or off screen.
The Shammi genre was later hijacked up to certain extent by Joy Mukherjee, and later, vulgarized by Jeetendra. Even Shashi Kapoor became a subdued version of Shammi. The style? Hero as the centre of the universe, he would chase, stalk the heroine, who would strangely fall in love with the eve-teasing and stalking man, instead of getting him arrested. It has to have lot of break dances (dances that would break anyone ‘s bones under normal circumstances) and running aimlessly around trees unable to find the heroine who is barely hiding behind those in glaring coloured clothes (at least whatever she had on her).
So that takes out this whole contingent off her library.
Strangely, the producers failed to capitalise on her fun loving image to the hilt. There were episodes where she was allowed to show that aspect, but not a single out and out fun movie.
Heroes- same pole (or almost) –
A few of her heroes had a very good potential. When a girl looks for a mate, we know (at least per theory) the things that matter. I classify it into two parts – I don’t know whether psychologists do, but amateurs have the free hand and escape route “I am no expert and this is no research publication” what the Darwinian theory mandates (genetic selection) and then what the emotional need of the person mandates, companionship (I assume it goes to both genders)
- Darwin’s – Looks (handsome and well built), intelligent, differentiation (something different from others, in a better way), fame (or at least successful), leader of the pack (assertive), Decency (in looks, behaviour and track records) – this is required for the future security.
- Companion – sense of humour, empathy, self-confidence (which automatically comes with the Darwin properties), compatibility
Now let us look at the few of the other heroes that are left out (or rather the others were left out and these are the potential winners) Sunil Dutt, Rehman, Dev Anand, Raj Kapoor and Dharmender.
Now I have to think from a girl’s angle and that too of those demure sixties. And then I have to rank (at Nutan’s time and age) – assuming she hasn’t met Rajnish/ wanted to ditch Rajnish –
As I said, it is a girl’s prerogative to talk on this aspect. Very difficult to change the gender and think like them, and then move on to specific (her). As far as I am concerned, by his on screen antics, I simply fail to appreciate how he could reach the level he did. His Chaplinisque behaviour, was enjoyable, but when it is repetitive? In every movie? Didn’t it become a bore? Obviously box office doesn’t think so, hence it has to be my personal view.
I have a gut feeling, he has a quite large ego (which again is probably entirely wrong) and he lacked just a bit of empathy, how to treat others (especially women), though I don’t know his off screen attitude. His roles were completely self-centered, in the way his movies were completely woven around him, the other characters came and went as the story needed. It does happen once or twice, but it was in all his movies. Unfortunately for him, often the women stole his show.
Talking of his women, I am not very sure of his opinion about them. The typical conventional – house wife and show piece? I feel it was. In the beginning he might be a bit constrained. Definitely he can’t take liberties with heroines who were star by themselves, in fact a few were larger stars than him, like Nargis, Suraiyya, and later if not larger, still stars Nutan or Madhubala, who were ready to be glamorous, but within a certain limit.
His later movies show that, he had been going a bit above the set bar. His depiction of women, he might call that art, or reality, but was those necessary? Or he wanted to show the female body, and he took shelter of art or reality? His standing in the industry and the connections helped the movies clear the scissor, which is a known fact. He even managed to take liberties with Vyjayanthimala in Sangam. It was in fact was just the beginning of his innings in this field. I think once one succumbed, he assumed others too would follow suit? and they usually did too. We must note that though others were senior but Nutan was the same generation and age as Vyjayanthi. Despite all his looks of innocence, I believe he wasn’t too innocent even on sets, especially after watching the song sequence, of Anari, and the obvious discomfort Nutan felt. If that is the case it is obvious that there won’t be many movies between them, especially since he had got some younger, or at least pliant girls, to follow his ‘directions’ which were uncomfortable for Nutan. Some psychologist are going to mutter it as suppressed sexuality – or whatever Latin term they use for it, and no doubt he had a big chunk of it.
Nutan has normally kept away from close body contacts, even the hugs, she had to with her multitude of husbands, were a bit ‘from distant’. There had been only a few instances, I don’t know whether she had anything with any other, than Raj Kapoor, or if she had, the other actor might not be taking liberties, and hence it didn’t strike our eyes, since the scene went as planned without that micro-moment of discontinuity.
It is not that she hadn’t been seen, willing to be seduced, elsewhere,
But these looked natural, in that condition as any woman will behave in company of beloved. But with Raj, we had seen moments where her brain told that he is crossing the limit of decency and behaving in a way, more than what roles demanded. It is the difference, what Dev (or in fact others, say Nasir) did versus what Raj had been doing.
When Dev is doing it, it is playful, pinching cheek, boxing ears, I assume no one really feels uncomfortable while the other person does that or just hold the face in his hand. It is only when the hand roves, it becomes suggestive and the girl is uncomfortable.
There is another interesting portion in the two sequences, Paying Guest and Manzil. In Paying guest, her face is moving forward willing to be kissed, which Dev interrupts and brings her in senses (the waking up from dream is exceptionally depicted here). In the second scene almost similar, she is though denying, wants to be taken into arms by the lover. The raw expectation and surrender she could depict here. Is it a feeling that she had gained due to her real life experience with her actual love, and hence could depict that so realistically? It further buttresses of her spontaneous acting and not the well rehearsed one. I don’t recall she had expressed it so well earlier. Both the cases are of abject surrender to her love, but the ways are different.
Coming back to Raj, only other episode as I recall where he got the chance, was in Dil Hi to Hai, after rescuing Nutan from drowning. I just felt she wasn’t very comfortable with his antics. In this case I am not though as sure as I was in Anari, just there was one moment, where it looked she caught her breath when his hand was caressing her neck. Of course this wasn’t too intimate, she had overcome that after that moment, and he didn’t stop the activity. However in this case I have seen in that she would not rest her head on his chest, and mumble there, basking in love as he caressed, but would move it, say look up at him and talk, is it to avoid the caress in addition? It won’t look unnatural and also avoid his activity? It might or might not be, since looking into his eyes and talking also is a natural action.
Anyway he had been in greener pastures, with the actresses who didn’t mind slight or even more than slight transgressions. I don’t feel she really loved working with him, and anyway as far as I am concerned, I don’t have that high regard of him, as others have, so no loss for me either.
He was an intense actor, in his younger days, till he spoiled himself like SmitaPatil did. He had almost all the qualities what could have attracted her. And he was her age too (1935). Interestingly their last two movies, one was a big hit (Dil Ne Phir Yaad Kiya) and the second too (Dulhan Ek Raat Ki) counted amongst hits. Obviously Hema wasn’t responsible (they were technically introduced in 1970 or so). This is one relationship I feel she might have avoided, not willing to risk her emotions. Of course there might be another, and more probable reason, like Shashi Kapoor, Dharmendra too had almost then moved on to a genre which wasn’t to Nutan’s liking.
Next in the merit list. Had all the qualities of Dharmender and also a a lot more of empathy and polish. This may be the reason she had done so many movies with him. Quite secure in the mind that there would be not a single indecent move from him. Any way Nargis must be watching closely. At least the rumours and his condition at Nargis’ demise shows how deeply attached he remained to her, till end. So he was the safest proposition, but unfortunately he seem to be aging a bit faster than her. Of course he was around 10 years older, but heroes act college going even when they are sixty with a wig.
This was, I feel her biggest threat. When he was at his prime, say Paying Guest, or Manzil, or Tere Ghar Ke Saamne, one could just see why he was the heart throb of every girl. He was a tease, he would love, he would chaperone, protect… and then he was a big star, off screen, when she was just graduating in Seema, he might have had around a dozen hits behind him. Baazi, Sazaa, Aaram, Jaal, Patita, Munimji (similar to her Aagosh, which didn’t do that well)… if she had been a virtual/actual fan of Dev Anand while he was a star and she was a wannabe, I won’t be surprised.
When she started with him, there was no Rajnish in horizon, how did she managed to overcome his charms ? Must be the broken heart (Suraiya) and then the marriage Kalpana (1954) helped him to keep off screen distance, and obviously she won’t involve with the newly married guy. By the time he was old (as married), she was a new wife and newer mother?
Also the movies (after first two) were widely spaced. And then I think both decided to part amicably despite the super hit Tere Ghar Ke Saamne. Dev is the only one I think would have affected their domestic life, may be of both and they parted before the sparks become fire. The chemistry between the two was sparkling, whether in Manzil or Tere Ghar Ke Saamne. And there was an added factor too, from Dev Anand’s side, to call it quitson screen (no more movies together), the heroine had a bad habit of hijacking his movies, even from his own home tarmac (Navketan).
The intense acting, which she excelled in and would have welcomed co-actors of similar type, has two names. However she theoretically couldn’t have had anything to do about any of them, one of them, sorry to put here, was Sanjeev Kumar.
At that time almost nobody and also quite young. Despite the capability, the movie they did, Saudagar, wasn’t one which went for long romance. It was quite a short one so that too would negate his influence. However immediately after this, he became big star. He was noticed in Anand but he became on upward journey through Zanjeer (same year as Saudagar 1973) and after that he became angry young man except a few here and there. The type of work Nutan was accustomed to didn’t fit the schemes. Alaap was a possibility, but by then it had gone to his heart-throb, Rekha. And compounded by the fact that Saudagar was a dud, so no one would anyway repeat the cast.
Despite all the facts pointing other way, very highly unlikely despite his camp’s assertion.
I believe our Nutan. She really can’t fall for him, at that time what were the pedigree he was having? Though he had been there for a few years then, but rarely in the role of the romantic hero. Even when we see these two movies they did together, there is really no romance.
In Devi, except maybe quarter of an hour and couple of song, it is marital- (un) bliss, and Gauri was more Sunil than Sanjeev.
I have a (most likely wrong) impression of him, the way he delivered dialogues, often through his teeth, there was a bit menacing quality. Somehow, I get an eerie feeling watching him act, especially when he isn’t in good terms with people. It could be wrong of course, but it is much more menacing than a threat of violence. It is not superficial ego of Dilip Kumar (I own everything, please be in attention when I am there, and be ready to please me), or a overpowering ego of Raaj Kumar (I am the best), it is something much more menacing. It is almost like, what Dilip did, may be without earlier threat, with his heroines, Sanjeev’s actions threatened that he was going to do it.
However it may well be his natural style, without the underlying feeling. Definitely one who has a characteristics way like this, it is difficult to fall for him. It is difficult to explain it. So I won’t try to. And , despite his act with Nutan, I don’t dislike him, I like his acting, of course he too, like Dilip, has a limited spectrum. But then most of the actors had their cocoon and not moved out of it. Even Nutan, despite her wide spectrum didn’t try becoming a siren !
Interestingly there was one mention (may be more) that she was ready to elope with him but Rajnish has threatened that she was welcome to go but Mohnish remains with him. To stop that, on his (or on someone else’s) advice, she had publicly slapped Sanjeev to kill the affair.
It looks the replica of another rumour spread wide and thick by a journalist friend of the male protagonist (i.e. his camp), about Kamini Kaushal. Fortunately for Kamini Kaushal, it was denied by both the protagonist, else we have a habit to go by the word of the male and suspect the woman. That gives us quite a bit of sadistic pleasure, to sling some mud at her (not limited to Nutan, it is for any one of that gender, especially the one we are jeaolous of).
On this there are certain interesting aspects.
First, she could go for divorce and remarry, why elope? Her family (Shobhana, Tanuja) were never happy of the Son/Brother in law, and definitely would have given her shelter while the divorce proceeding, if he insists, undergoes, else it could have remained a Motilal – Shobhana – Kumarsen type thing.
She was rich and powerful, at least not penniless, and she wasn’t scared of going to court for her rights, that she had already displayed.
Mohnish? Even a baby knows that the child’s custody right under Indian Civil Law, unlike in the other countries, is exclusively mothers till he/she is adult. This civil code, is the guide for any court and applicable for the Hindus, Christians (Except Muslims, who go by Sharia and don’t accept this). And when he is adult, it is his choice, and we can assume whom he would have.
Even more interesting and hence unexplainable? Didn’t Nutan know that herself? When all the sibling stayed with the mother, when her mother separated from Kumarsen? There were four siblings of which Kumarsen didn’t get even one here it is only one.
The only thing she would have lost was her ‘Devi’ image. But hasn’t that been already a bit tarnished when she fought with her mother and sister. Then the audience really didn’t care, only media went into all types of headlines, though agreed in this case, they might have. But it was already about 1970. She was then 35, and planning to become, even on screen, mother. How many more ‘Devi’ movies she did after that?
She would have had sufficient money (the farm etc were already there, if nothing else) the child, and the new partner (Sanjeev Kumar), whose career anyway won’t have been affected by her reputation, since it wasn’t there much at all. And also our audience always forgives the male actors for these transgressions. Didn’t they Dileep Kumar after the Asma episode? Then what stopped her to go for confrontation?
There is only one most probable explanation, that there were none, it was a smoke without fire.
Just yesterday I was reading of another, the rumor between Amit Kumar And Leena Chandravarkar, after Kishore’s demise. In this case it seems the source of the rumor herself later came to Leena and apologised. But in the meanwhile what was her mental condition? She might be step, but still mother, linking her to her son? We have our rumour mongers and the gossipers who excel in it.
Heroes that never were
To look at the missing personalities of substance that ruled the roost during her reign, between fifties and seventies were,
OLD GEN : Ashok Kumar, Dev Anand, Dilip Kumar, Guru Dutt, Kishore Kumar, Pradeep Kumar, Prem Nath, Raj Kapoor, Rajendra Kumar,Shammi Kapoor, Sunil Dutt,
MID : Amitabh Bachhan, Biswajit, Dharmendra, Feroze Khan, Jeetendra, Joy Mukherjee, Manoj Kumar, Sanjay Khan, Sanjeev Kumar, Shashi Kapoor, Rajesh Khanna,
LATE (Early Seventies) :Randhir Kapoor, Rishi Kapoor, Shatrughan Sinha, Vinod Khanna – These are all kids and hence can be neglected.
Looking at the list the things become much clearer, she had worked with significant number of them. Of the very significant persons she could have but didn’t had the chance to play lady love were Biswajit, Dilip Kumar, Guru Dutt, Feroze Khan, Jeetendra, Joy Mukherjee, Manoj Kumar, Shashi Kapoor, Rajendra Kumar and Rajesh Khanna.
Of these whom she could have missed? She never came up with her version, and I couldn’t get anywhere a hint of her heart. So again guess? I will rather look in the way I would have liked her to act with actors, instead of she telling it, which I doubt she would ever had,
Dilip Kumar we know of, minus him, she could have been successfully chosen as other protagonist as Guru Dutt, Rajendra Kumar, Shashi Kapoor (early days), Manoj Kumar and Rajesh Khanna. This list more than makes it clear that she won’t have got a role against any one, and if given won’t have taken.
Guru Dutt – Home heroine. Maybe she could have got a chance after break-up, had he not taken the ultimate step. There were not many actress who could have acted in his kind of movies. And it would have been a masterpiece without doubt, no one doubts of the difference in abilities to the two relatively ‘plain’ looking divas of that time- (did they mean by ‘plain’ looks as one who doesn’t have the sizzling quality? I think so, else Nutan, plain?)
Rajendra Kumar, Rajesh Khanna– they really don’t need a heroine, and won’t take one who could dominate them on screen. Of course movies with them would have been welcome, however not having is no loss.
Manoj Kumar, Shashi Kapoor – missed out by producers, however not a major loss.
The one I miss most is Dev Anand, but then I think that was for the best,. The association was prabably already eating into his ego, and also I believe, his charm, not Sanjeev’s , could have created a real problem for Nutan. Other she would have had excellent association with was Dharmendra and Amitabh both in non-violent days were her type. Just think of the second Manzil (1979), with Moushami and replace her with Nutan (She would have fit that role, had it been done just three to four years earlier, say by mid seventies).
Of course there are other types of misses too—for example Basu Bhattacharya, lamented to the end of signing Waheeda and not taking Nutan for “Teesri Kasam” just becasuse “only if she could dance.” – may not be expert danceuse, but she could, she had a natural grace and flexibility, after all a dance is the artistic graceful movement of the body, which she had shown quite a few times, as in
If only he had followed his gut instincts..if Guru Dutt, Amiya, Bimal lived a few years more, If only Hrishikesh did a few more after Anari (I can never understand why he didn’t)
It isn’t the heroes in fact I miss. She didn’t need one, and proverbially she could act with a stone/ or a tree. No one would have found that. To be very honest, didn’t her heroes in quite a few movies had been just a bit more than a live mannequin?
We can only feel sorry, for ourselves, for an unmatched talent that remained forever only partially explored and exploited. She is anyway at peace wherever she is.
All the above are – and as will be in most of the posts, should I say work of fiction? Can’t, since there are names, however all are semi-logical interpretation, coloured/ biased by self opinion. Hence contradictable and I can not deny that right.