He recently invited the team of A Wednesday [producers Anjum Rizvi and Shital Bhatia along with director Neeraj Pandey] and handed them over the Filmfare trophy that he had received for his work in (1973). This is in line with the tradition that Salim Khan started a few years back when he apparently handed over one of his trophies to Farhan Akhtar for his excellent directorial debut in Dil Chahta Hai.
Confirms Anjum Rizvi who was pleasantly surprised on receiving the call, "We were all so overwhelmed when Salim Khan saab told us that he wanted to hand us over an award for A Wednesday. He said that he wished to encourage new talent and this is the reason why he is picking up trophies from his own repertoire and passing them on as a baton year after year."
Given the fact that Salim Khan has written films like Seeta Aur Geeta, Zanjeer, Deewar, Trishul, Don, Kranti, Naam, Kaala Patthar, Shakti and Mr. India amongst many other hugely popular films in the 70s and 80s, industry can be rest assured that there would be many more trophies to be distributed amongst the new entrants.
One wonders though what took Salim Khan so long to acknowledge the might of A Wednesday? After all this powerful film starring Naseeruddin Shah, Anupam Kher and Jimmy Sheirgill in principal roles has already won dozens of awards and one would have expected the special recognition from Salim Khan to have happened much earlier.
"Khan saab came forward after the announcement of National Awards", says Rizvi in defence of the timeliness of this gesture, "Many felt that A Wednesday deserved much more recognition at the highest level. When that didn't quite happen, Khan saab felt that he had to do his own bit to make us all feel proud of the work that we did."
On a parting note, the elated producer says, "In any case, more than the trophy, what is of utmost importance is that someone of his stature felt so strongly about A Wednesday. In fact I remember telling him that just a pen of his, with which he has written so many classic films, would have been a good enough reward and recognition for us."
It may have been a year and a half since the release of A Wednesday and this much acclaimed commercial success may have exhausted its quota of awards and felicitations. However, the film fraternity is still not calling it quits. Continuing to hail this Neeraj Pandey directed film as a landmark effort; this time around it is none other than writer Salim Khan who has come forward in appreciation for the film.