Gulzar is known to be very selective about the work he takes up as a lyricist. While every composer dreams to work with a lyricist of his stature, very few get this opportunity. Twelve years back, Pritam was not as big a name as he is today but he was still doing well and delivering hits in quick succession. In 2006, he got the opportunity to opportunity to score the music for Meghna Gulzar’s ‘Just Married’ (the film released the next year, in 2007). As it was Meghna’s film, the songs had to be written by Gulzar. ‘Just Married’ marked the first collaboration between Gulzar and Pritam and had a bevy of wonderful songs like “Ram Milaye Jodi”, “Gudgudee” and “Jaagte Raho”. Unfortunately, the film did not do well and the songs, despite being of high quality, failed to leave a mark.
Two years later, Pritam and Gulzar worked together again in Shah Rukh Khan’s home production ‘Billu’ which featured Irrfan and Lara Dutta in principal roles and Khan in a cameo. A rather unfortunate event while the music of the film was in the works. Gulzar had already written three songs “Marjaani”, “Billu Bhayankar” and “Khudaya Khair” for the film and was working on the fourth song which was supposed to feature Shah Rukh and Deepika. Shah Rukh suggested Gulzar to incorporate a few words or phrases which, he thought, were trendy and would work well for the song. Gulzar opposed to the usage of those words/phrases and walked out of the film altogether. That song, which went on to be called “Love Mera Hit Hit”, was finally written by Ashish Pandit and Mayur Puri. Other lyricists credited on the album were Sayeed Quadri and Neeraj Shridhar.
For some reason, the composer and the lyricist did not collaborate on any project after this incident. Now, after ten years, they share credits on Shonali Bose’s emotional drama ‘The Sky Is Pink’, featuring Priyanka Chopra, Farhan Akhtar, Zaira Wasim and Rohit Saraf. Here is hoping they continue to collaborate on more films, this time around more frequently.
In the year 1999, Gulzar writing the songs for the Sanjay Dutt – Urmila Matondkar starrer ‘Khoobsurat’. Jatin-Lalit were doing the music for the film and it was Gulzar’s first collaboration with them. Gulzar had written a couple of songs, including the title track for the film, when he decided to leave the film owing to creative differences with director Sanjay Chhel. Sanjay himself went on to write the remaining songs.