‘If I could redo anything in Sholay....’
Filmmaker Ramesh Sippy on the scene that haunts him in the film

There’s this one scene that was supposed to be entirely positive but it had a negative effect. Amitabh died and Dharmendra discovers that the coin Amitabh used to flip had two heads and suddenly realises the implication of that.

He got so carried away by the emotion of the moment that he threw the coin and shouted: Gabbar main aa raha hoon. The sound of the coin reverberated on the 70 mm screen in stereophonic sound. I saw the film in the theatre and saw people looking around as if the coin had fallen in the theatre and I heard a few titters.

This gave me the shivers; it was the death scene of his best friend and this was definitely not the response I had wanted from the audience. But the scene worked with audiences because it became a talking point. People talked about it tremendously. They tell each other, "You must go and hear that coin falling".

The truth is that Dharmendra was not supposed to throw the coin as per the script. But he got so charged that he did it and it looked good. And as it went well with the emotional moment I didn’t make changes. It got converted into a message for Gabbar too, a sort of warning note for him, so I let it remain. — MF