Subhash Ghai: I could see a child in him till the end

Updated: May 01, 2020, 09:08 IST | Agencies | Mumbai

Subhash Ghai would include Rishi Kapoor in one of the top five finest actors of India.

Subhash Ghai
Subhash Ghai

I came to know about his demise through Amitabh Bachchan's tweet. Then I called up his family, but there was no response. When I switched on the TV, I was shocked. I couldn't believe it. Earlier this year, we spoke about his new film and shooting. I asked him, 'Why do you work? You should take rest now. God has rung an alarm'. He said, 'You can rest, but I can't. In the last five years, you didn't make any film after Kaanchi. Make a new film, I am with you, everyone is with you'. It was like my dad scolding me whereas I had gone to scold him! I started laughing.

For me, he is always Chintu, a kid. I could see a child in him till the end of his life. Our relationship was not at a professional level. He was one of my dear friends. He was a simple soul, blunt, frank, honest. Agar galat baat pe lada toh woh phone karta (if he fought on wrong issues, he would call up) to apologise. I would always tell him he is a star with a loverboy face, so no one would give him roles of a mafia chief, a dada or a gay man. Later in life, he did those roles and shocked me. And said, 'Now you write a role for me'.

He knew that if he suited a character, I would cast him; otherwise, I wouldn't. We used to often meet at functions, share meals at each other's homes. Generally, after a film gets over, the actor forgets you and moves on. People used to be surprised thinking 'these two don't do films together but dosti bahut hai'.

I would include Rishi Kapoor in one of the top five finest actors of India. He belonged to a family that was always united. He struck a great balance between family and professional values. That was the best quality in Rishi Kapoor. That was the best quality of Rishi Kapoor. A child star has gone. An actor who remained a child star for 45 years (sic).

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