Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Tito Tony Producer Duo Behind Amitabh Bachchan’s Movies

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Tito and Tony Juneja, the Sardar Brothers, were some of the regular producers of Amitabh Bachchan films.  

Born and brought up in Patiala, Punjab, Tito and Tony’s father was a liquor contractor.  The Juneja family had their base in Nagaland as they had a liquor warehouse over there. So they would often visit the North-East region. The elder one, Tito got into film distribution and eventually started producing Assamese Films, while the younger one, Tony would join him in film production during his summer holidays

For many, it was surprising and funny that two Punjabis were making Assamese films and they did not know the language well. Tito and Tony also made an Assamese film with Amitabh Bachchan, which could not be released due to some reasons.

His next goal was to appear in Hindi films. The two moved to Mumbai in the mid-70s and made their debut with Amitabh Bachchan, Rekha, and Prem Chopra in the film Do Anjaane (1976). Because he knew Mithun Chakraborty, a struggler from Calcutta, he also offered him a small role in the film.

When ‘Do Anjaane’ was planned, actresses like Sharmila Tagore and Mumtaz were offered lead roles, but Rekha was eventually signed. It was the first film in which Amitabh Bachchan and Rekha were paired. The two started looking at each other during the shooting of ‘Do Anjaane’. The film was a success and Amitabh and Rekha started doing more films together.

Tito & Tony Producer

Tito and Tony Producer

The duo started two more films with Amitabh Bachchan, Ram Balram (1980), and Mister. Natwarlal (1979).

It is learned that Jaya Bachchan had also requested Rekha’s removal from both the films. In fact, Zeenat Aman and Ranjita were considered for Natwarlal, but Rekha was signed at the last minute. While the media often talks about Amitabh-Rekha’s affair, the producer does not accept the couple who brought them together for the first time!

Tito and Tony both later made films like ‘Ram Tera Desh (1984)’, ‘Johny I Love You (1982)’ and even the last film of Amitabh Bachchan, ‘Insaniyat (1994)’ before his sabbatical from acting in the 90s.

Lastly, Tito’s Son Soni Juneja had produced a Hindi-Bengali Bilingual film called ‘Hum Kaun Hai? (2004)’ with Dharmendra, Amitabh Bachchan, Dimple Kapadia and Maushami Chatterji.  But ever since then, the Juneja family has stayed away from the world of films

Talking about Angry Young Man image and Amitabh Bachchan’s superstardom, names like Salim Javed, Manmohan Desai, Prakash Mehra, Yash Chopra, and Ramesh Sippy are often mentioned but never acknowledged Amitabh’s relationship with Tito and Tony. Gone.

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