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Wednesday, February 28, 2024

My Name Is Khan Then vs Now: Shah Rukh Khan, Kajol to Adarsh Gourav; what actors are up to after 14 years

Karan Johar’s My Name Is Khan was released on February 12th, 2010, and met with positive critical and commercial success. The film stars Shah Rukh Khan, Kajol, Jimmy Shergill, and Adarsh Gaurav among others. It follows the story of Rizwan Khan who suffers from autism. His family faces discrimination in the United States in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks. After that, he goes on his journey to meet the President.

The film remains one of the most well-received films of KJo’s career and is used for scholarly studies around the depiction of Asperger syndrome and Islamophobia on celluloid. As it turns 14 years old, it is worth taking a closer look at its cast members and what they are up to after so many years.

My Name Is Khan: Then and Now

Shah Rukh Khan as Rizwan Khan

Picture courtesy: Instagram

Shah Rukh Khan plays the role of Rizwan Khan, an intelligent boy who suffers from asperger syndrome. We see his journey from his young days and teenage years till the time he grows up. Khan plays the role with sincerity and doesn’t resort to stereotypes or caricatures for a second. It remains one of the most well-received roles in SRK’s entire career and it was considered during the film’s release. Post its release, SRK’s stardom has only increased and he remains one of the top actors in Bollywood.

Kajol as Mandira Rathod Khan 

Picture courtesy: Instagram

Kajol plays the role of Mandira Rathod who has a son Sameer from her previous marriage. She meets and gradually falls in love with Rizwan and adopts his last name. The couple lives happily in the United States. Their peaceful lives are disrupted forever in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks. Kajol was already an established name in the industry. Since then, she has appeared in several successful films and also made her debut in the OTT space with a web series.

Adarsh Gourav as young Rizwan Khan

Picture courtesy: Instagram

Adarsh Gourav plays the role of a young Rizwan Khan in his teenage years. The character goes through bullying in school and faces many difficulties. Adarsh was in his school when he did the film. As an adult, he has gone on to become an acclaimed actor having done films and shows like The White Tiger, Kho Gaye Hum Kahan, and Guns & Gulaabs. 

Jimmy Shergill as Zakir Khan 

Picture courtesy: Instagram

Jimmy Shergill plays the supporting role of Zakir Khan in the film who is the brother of Rizwan. As a child, he was jealous of Rizwan’s intelligence and the attention he got from their mother. Eventually, he leaves his family and settles in the United States. Later on, he sponsors Rizwan to come and live with him after their mother’s demise. Shergill has, since the release of the film, starred in several interesting projects across different languages. He remains one of the most recognizable faces from the film. 

Apart from the above-mentioned names, My Name Is Khan also features several other interesting actors like Zarina Wahab (who played Rizwan’s mother Razia Khan), Pakistani actress Sonya Jehan (who played Hasina Khan), Sheetal Menon (who plays Radha), Arjun Mathur (Rajeev Burman), Kavin Dave (Inder Mohite), Sugandha Garg (Komal Bisht), Navneet Nishan (Rita Singh), Arif Zakaria (Faisal Rahman), Vinay Pathak (Jitesh Pandit), Parvin Dabas (Bobby Ahuja) and Sumit Raghavan. American actor Christopher B. Duncan also appears in the film as President Barack Obama. 

My Name Is Khan is a special film in a different way. It was refreshing to see Karan Johar do away with romantic flicks and take an unusual and risky route with this film. It was also refreshing to see SRK shed every bone of his stardom to get into the character of Rizwan. The film goes to the next level thanks to the performances of all its cast members.

The music of this film, composed by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, is another great thing about it. The soulful tracks complement the visuals and the journey of its characters. 

My Name Is Khan is a reminder that sometimes taking calculated risks to tell a risky story pays off. These are the stories that need to be told as they talk about hope despite the trying times one is going through.

It’s an essential watch for cinephiles and people who are into performance and character-driven stories. My Name Is Khan has one of the finest performances of SRK without a doubt which is a reason in itself to watch it.

Apart from these aspects, it also amazingly examines the issue of Islamophobia, and bullying and also raises awareness around Asperger syndrome. Over the years, the film has aged well and has found more viewership in the times of the internet. As it clocks 14 years, now is the right time to revisit it. Do give it a watch if you haven’t already. 

ALSO READ: Judwaa Then vs Now: Salman Khan, Karisma Kapoor to Rambha; what actors are up to after 27 years

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