'It is not easy to be a hero for 25 years'
After Partner, Govinda hopes to churn out another hit in Life Partner, directed by writer-turned-director Rumi Jaffery. The film co-starring Fardeen Khan, Genelia D'Souza, Tusshar Kapoor, Prachi Desai and Amrita Rao sees Govinda playing a divorce lawyer.
Patcy N got to talk to him about Life Partner, and his long innings in Bollywood.
What are you trying to convey in your forthcoming film Life Partner?
The film is about how you should be with your life partner, how you should take care of your life partner and work things out together. It is also about the people you meet in your life, and how you should be careful with certain types of people.
I have worked with Rumi Jaffery in Saajan Chale Sasural, Coolie No 1, Hero No 1, Haseena Maan Jayegi, Bade Miyan Chote Miyan and now Life Partner. I have given hits with him. And I plan to give a hit with Life Partner too.
You had worked with Rumi Jaffery when he was a writer. But now you are working with him as a director. How was he in his new job?
He has done a fantastic job in this film. I would say the actors were excellent as well. Even Amrita Rao, who stars opposite me in the film, is very good. I am working with her for the first time in this film. She has tremendous confidence. I have seen the film and I think she has done a great job.
I think everything is good about this film because of the script's simplicity. It says very simply: aap pyar ko rishte ka naam dena chahte hai, par jab rishte ko pyaar dena bhool jaate hai toh rishte kharab hojate hai.
'We are promoting love in Life Partner'
How was it working with Fardeen Khan and Tusshar Kapoor, who are newer to the film industry than you?
Tusshar is son of Jeetubhai (Jeetendra). He is as loving as Jeetubhai and a very nice human being. Likewise, Fardeen is the son of Feroz Khan. He is very cultured and respectful. Both actors come from good families. I really liked working with them.
You play a divorce lawyer in this film. How much do you believe in divorce in real life?
My mother always said god loves those who love and hates those who hate. That's why you should concentrate on love. In this film too, we are promoting love. We are trying to tell people that love is important and you should take care of it. I feel you should spread love in society.
Image: Fardeen Khan, Genelia D'Souza, Govinda, Tusshar Kapoor, Prachi Desai in a scene from Life Partner
'I became a hero after a long struggle'
People say that in real life, you eloped with your wife Sunita. How true is that?
I married with the blessings of my mother. I did not have to elope. I never did anything without my mother's consent. If I ever made a mistake, I would ask for forgiveness from her. I would understand my mistake and rectify it. I have always listened to her and done everything according to her wish. I am what I am with my mother's blessings. It is not easy to be a hero for 25 years but still, I am doing well.
I became a hero after a long struggle and after a long time, saw good days. I wanted to give more time to my fame and my career. But my mother told me to leave everything to God, and get married. I did as she told me. After that, I gave many hits and got fame too.
Image: Fardeen Khan, Govinda, Tusshar Kapoor from the scene from Life Partner
'I was really tired of working'
How was this journey from the Virar ka chokra to this suave Govinda?
I have had a very accomplished journey, and really good success. I got to learn a lot. I am still learning. I think this is just a start and I have to learn a lot.
Films were your life when all of a sudden, you joined politics and left the movies. Did you not miss the arclights?
I was really tired of working. I had done a lot of films. I wanted to learn something new. But I never felt that I had gone away from the big screen. I was learning. I did not take a break because I was doing something all the time. But yes, there was a break from films. I think that gap was needed.
Image: Govinda in the scene from Life Partner
'Salman is the best person in the industry'
Were you ready for politics?
Politics is a big school. I learnt a lot. But I am still not ready for it. I have much to learn and until then, I should not try to rush into politics.
But when I was slow, people did not like my ways. But I think I was right and everything happened for the good.
Politics is not a hobby. It is a responsibility that your elders give you.
How was it working with Salman Khan, who gave you your comeback break?
I think Salman is the best person in the industry and his family is fabulous. They are all very sweet and nice. When I was in trouble, I called David Dhawan and told him that I wanted to make a comeback. I even called Rumi Jaffery and other friends.
David contacted Salman and Salman gave me work. Not only did he give me work but also a lot of love and respect. When you are insecure and in need of work, the environment that you work in matters a lot. I had debts and my friends stood by me and helped me out. That's why I am thankful to them.
Is you daughter being launched by Salman?
No. You can't put all the burden on him.
I have not thought how we will launch Narmada but I will do something good for her.
Image: Tusshar Kapoor, Govinda, Fardeen Khan in Life Partner