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From 'Laila' to 'Dum Maaro Dum': 7 item numbers that went retro


Over the past decade, many films have used old Hindi hits in item numbers, often with improvised lyrics. A look at the popular ones.

Keyur Seta

'Laila Main Laila' – Raees (2017)
Sunny Leone's first item song as Laila was in Shootout At Wadala (2013). But that didn’t win her any accolades. On the contrary, it was criticized for being sleazy. But ‘Laila Main Laila’ from Raees has become a rage since its release on Wednesday and increased anticipation for the Shah Rukh Khan-starrer. 

Meet Pawni Pandey, the voice of Sunny Leone in 'Laila Main Laila'

'Dhanno' – Housefull (2010)
This is the only track in the list which wasn't originally an item number. Plus the original ‘Apni Toh Jaise Taise’ was picturized on Amitabh Bachchan, the superstar of the 1970s and 1980s. Therefore, this line in the cover version is mouthed by the male characters. But, being a typical item number, the song is picturized mainly on Jacqueline Fernandez. 

'Mehbooba Mehbooba' – Ram Gopal Varma Ki Aag (2007)
If a movie bombs at the box office, its songs often go unnoticed. In the case of Ram Gopal Varma Ki Aag, a remake of Sholay (1975), the film also became a laughing stock. Worse, the song wasn’t considered a worthy reprise of the original ‘Mehbooba Mehbooba’. So, it isn’t surprising that the song isn’t known much.

'Parda Parda' – Once Upon A Time In Mumbaai (2010)
The reason for ‘Parda Parda’ sinking without a trace is not clear. This one is easily the most underrated item number, featuring Gauhar Khan. The song is a foot-tapping version of RD Burman’s hit ‘Monica O My Darling’ picturized on Helen from Caravan (1971). 

'Yeh Mera Dil' – Don (2006)
This was another iconic Helen number to be remade. Kareena Kapoor Khan rose to the task of matching the stunning dancer with some confident moves and amazing looks. This song is the exception in this list since it has the exact same lyrics as the original.

'Haseeno Ka Deewana' – Kaabil (2017)
Hrithik Roshan’s Kaabil will be clashing with Shah Rukh Khan’s Raees at the box office. Interestingly, just like the SRK-starrer, Kaabil, too, has a remake of an old song as an item number – Amitabh Bachchan’s ‘Sara Zamana’. Urvashi Rautela is seen flaunting her body in the song, which also has the same setting as the original with light bulbs all over.

'Dum Maaro Dum' – Dum Maaro Dum (2011)
This was a rare item number which was also the title song of the film. This was Deepika Padukone’s second item number after ‘Love Mera Hit Hit’ from Billu (2009). The improvisation in the lyrics from the original was at an extreme level in this one. This was why the song also attracted criticism for being vulgar.