With his new film Avatar, Govinda is determined to take football to new heights, in the way that Shimit Amin’s Chak De shone the spotlight on hockey.
In fact, producer-director Pahlaj Nihalani intends to sell the film as football’s answer to Chak De. Plans to ‘do a Chak De’ on Avatar, with Govinda serving as the face of the game just as Shah Rukh had done for hockey in Shimit’s film are being worked out. Govinda has made it clear that in the film, he will promote football with a vengeance.
Though Govinda who isn’t really known for films that are anything other than masala entertainers, let alone have sport-related messages may seem like an unlikely choice for a film on football but the actor is very keen to do this right. Not only has the actor been spending time working on his physique to look the part of a football coach, he has also been honing his football skills.
Says Govinda, “The mind and the body are our temples. It’s up to us how much respect we give to these temples.” Govinda believes too much attention is given to cricket in our country. Once the film is ready, the actor plans to organise football benefit matches with his football-crazy colleagues in the film industry like Ranbir Kapoor and Vishal Bharadwaj.
“We neglect all games and sports except cricket. Hopefully my film will break that monopoly and motivate youngsters to try games other than cricket,” says Govinda. The actor says, “I was determined to get into shape. And I managed it. Now my daily routine has changed. I stopped eating dinner completely. I do yoga in the morning and then two hours at the gym. This routine will remain unchanged even after the film. My role as a sportsperson now stretches far beyond this film.”