5 Actors Who Died Before Their Films Could be Made and What Happened After

·3-min read

There have been several high-profile films that were disrupted when their stars unexpectedly died before those movies could be finished. Karan Johar’s production Kalank was one of the most anticipated films of 2019, so when Sridevi tragically passed away in February 2018, it left a glaring hole in the period drama, in which the late legendary actress was supposed to play a significant role.

Here’s a list of actors who died after their films were announced and what happened next:

Rishi Kapoor

Rishi Kapoor was supposed to star along with Deepika Padukone in the Indian adaptation of the 2015 Hollywood film The Intern but the actor passed away in April last year following a two-year battle with cancer. Now, megastar Amitabh Bachchan has been roped in to replace Rishi Kapoor in the movie. The Intern also reunites Amitabh and Deepika after the 2015 critical hit Piku. Amit Sharma of Badhaai Ho fame will direct the film. Directed by Nancy Meyers, the original film revolves around a 70-year-old widower (Robert De Niro) who becomes a senior intern at an online fashion website, where he forms an unlikely friendship with the company’s workaholic CEO, played by Anne Hathaway.

Irrfan Khan

Irrfan Khan, who died on April 29 last year, was set to work on an Amazon series Gormint but he had to exit the project due to his health issues. Shoojit Sircar, who earlier directed him in the 2015 film Piku, had originally cast Irrfan in freedom fighter Udham Singh’s biopic but eventually decided to move ahead with a different actor due to the late actor’s deteriorating health. Shoojit is now making the movie with actor Vicky Kaushal in the lead.


After Sridevi died in February 2018, Madhuri Dixit Nene was offered the role of Bahaar Begum in Kalank. Sridevi’s daughter Janhvi Kapoor had announced the development and thanked Madhuri for being a part of the film. Madhuri had said that it was tough and emotional for her to play a role that was to be originally envisioned for Sridevi.

Sushant Singh Rajput

Days after Sushant Singh Rajput’s untimely demise on June 14 last year, filmmaker Rumy Jafry had revealed that the late actor was set to begin shooting for a romantic comedy, also starring Rhea Chakraborty.

“We were supposed to start shooting for our unnamed romantic comedy in May, but because of the lockdown, we had to keep the movie on hold. For the film, Sushant and I met very often in the past year. He would come home and spend time with my family. I would visit him too,” Rumi had told the Indian Express last year.

Filmmaker Anand Gandhi, known for his films such as Ship of Theseus and Tumbbad, had also revealed that he was considering Sushant Singh Rajput for the lead role in his new project Emergence, which is set in the post-pandemic world and has been in development for five years now.

Divya Bharti

Divya Bharti was one of the most popular actresses in the ‘90s. She had made her acting debut with the Telugu hit film ‘Bobbili’ which was released in 1990. Divya also starred in hit Bollywood films such as Deewana, Dil Hi To Hai and Shola Aur Shabnam. In 1993, Divya was signed on as a leading lady opposite Anil Kapoor in the film Laadla. However, the actress died halfway through the production. After her untimely death, Divya was replaced by Sridevi.

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