It’s not a surprise that most actors spend money on the vanity vans which they use as their dressing rooms. These vans can be customised as per their requirement but there was a time when they used to be a luxury in Hindi cinema. At that time, director Manmohan Desai introduced the concept of vanity vans in Bollywood. This was revealed by Amitabh Bachchan in one of his blog posts. Big B, as he is popularly known, also added that the veteran filmmaker gifted him a vanity van.
The veteran actor wrote that during that time, getting a room was a luxury and people used to sleep on sets. But, Amitabh Bachchan added that Manmohan Desai had a back problem and needed to lie down as he travelled on sets. So the director built himself a vanity van where a bed and a television set could be accommodated. According to the actor, the filmmaker also presented him with a van within a few days. But, according to Big B, it was not like what actors have these days. “I put in a pull-out make-up tray with a mirror, to do my make up in there and desperately tried to fix a music system within,” he added.
Big B and Manmohan Desai’s collaboration was enjoyed by the audience in several films like Amar Akbar Anthony, Suhaag, Naseeb, etc. Among these films, Amar Akbar Anthony was loved by many viewers. Amitabh Bachchan also won Filmfare Award under the best actor category for this film.
But this partnership ended after the failure of the films Ganga Jamuna Saraswati and Toofan. The audience felt that the plot of both films was outdated and didn’t work with them. They opined that there was nothing in these films which could make them interesting to watch.
Amitabh Bachchan also didn’t find some of the scenes from these films correct. He was asked to replicate the dance performance of the late pop star Michael Jackson. Big B considers his performance a failure and shared it in a post on Instagram.
Manmohan Desai died on March 1, 1994. He fell off his residential building at Grant Road in Mumbai after two years of engagement with Nanda.