Govinda and David Dhawan
He didn’t stand by me in bad times: Govinda on David Dhawan
They were the hit professional pair of the 1990s, but Govinda and David Dhawan were more. They developed a close friendship while collaborating on 17 films. However, things turned sour after their last outing, ‘Partner’ (2007). Govinda admits that he fell on hard times, and accuses David of turning his back on him. In an interview to Hitlist, Govinda claimed, “He worked all his life with me and Salman, and delivered many hits. He may respect me as an actor, but not as friend. I stood by him when he was down and out, but he didn't do the same.”
While Govinda was keen to team up with David again, the director, alleges the actor, ignored him. “He told my secretary that if there were a small role in a film, he may approach me. ‘Govinda asks a lot of unnecessary questions, I don’t wish to work with him,’ he said. I was taken aback.” Govinda added that his political stint also took a toll on their bond. “I think the pressure of my participation in politics was getting to him. Perhaps he felt that I would become a liability. Maybe it is his nature to be jealous of those who are more successful than him. That’s the nature of the industry,” he further said.
Varun Dhawan and Govinda
‘How can Varun Dhawan be like me?’
Govinda wonders why people keep trying to draw comparisons between him and young actor Varun Dhawan. Varun, due to his naughty and flirtatious portrayals in most of his films, is often called the new-age Govinda. However, Govinda thinks the comparison is a ‘fake one’. “Ranveer Singh and Varun Dhawan both have a body like Salman Khan. But they can’t say it. If they call themselves as Salman Khan, then they won't get films. They can’t afford to be against Khan. This is how the filmy world works," Govinda said at an event. “How can he (Varun) be like me? To become Govinda, he needs to be innocent, uneducated and a poor village boy. Varun is already a son of a director. In the last six years, he hasn't done more than two films with his father, whereas I did 17 films with his father (David Dhawan),” he added.
After a gap of 15 years, Govinda wants to be a superstar once again
Like South icons Rajinikanth and Mammootty, Govinda wants to stay a hero. He isn’t interested in doing character roles. His upcoming film, ‘Aa Gaya Hero’, which has also been produced by him, is a bid to reaffirm his position in Bollywood. He minces no words in saying he wants to be a superstar again. Govinda has just released the trailer of Aa Gaya Hero (slated to release next month). It has the feel of the ’90s, and Govinda can be seen in his typical style, donning psychedelic clothes and mouthing funny lines. “After almost 15 years, I’m returning as a hero, so the title had to be 'Aa Gaya Hero'. I was known as Hero No 1 (referring to his 1997 hit), that’s why this was apt.”
After Jodi No 1 (2001) and Chalo Ishq Ladaye (2002), Govinda went on to do films that did not create magic. He made a comeback with Partner (2007) alongside Salman Khan, but it did not put him back in the scheme of things. “It was a Salman Khan-starrer,” he says. To take things in his own hands, he went on to produce 'Aa Gaya Hero'. He is aware in the past decade, filmmaking process has changed drastically. “Today’s league of filmmakers wear half pants, but we need to model ourselves on the South industry. They know how to create heroes and maintain them,” he says. However, Govinda admits he is fearful. “I get scared thinking whether I’ll be accepted again. But I’ve always overcome my fears. I’ve faced a lot of turmoil, but managed to come out of it.”
Govinda with Salman Khan
'I knew I'd never work with Salman Khan again'
Considered one of the most underrated actors, Govinda's last two films, Kill Dil (2014) and Happy Ending (2014), bombed. "I have reconciled with it. I can only hope things will improve," he says. The current state is a surprise because the actor made a successful first comeback in 2007 with the hugely popular comedy film, ‘Partner’, where the comic timing shared with Salman Khan earned accolades. There may have been chatter about a sequel to the film, but Govinda says, "I knew I'd never work with Salman again. I don't think Partner 2 will ever happen." Broaching a subject that's tricky, Govinda discusses camps in Bollywood; powerful coteries led by the most influential actors and directors who decide who gets left out in the cold. Although admitting that he knew he wouldn't survive in Salman's camp for long, he adds, "At the same time, I am indebted to him for what he did for me."
Govinda and Karan Johar
Karan Johar says sorry to Govinda
Just a couple of days after Govinda expressed displeasure over not being invited to Karan Johar's chat show, the filmmaker apologised, saying it would be an honour to host the veteran actor on his purple couch. “There was talk of getting him on the show in between, but things did not happen then. We had thought about it. It would be an absolute honour and privilege to have him on the show. My apologies that he hasn't been (on the show) and he felt bad about it. There is no intention to hurt him. He is a terrific artiste and a great movie star. I will take a note and call him and I hope he accepts my invitation,” Karan said.