Television tycoon Ekta Kapoor is known for her contempt for actors who leave Balaji to pursue a career in films. However, the truth is otherwise. She has promised to pray for the success of her protégé Rajiv Khandelwal's debut film Aamir when she visits Tirupati.
"The first week of June is very special for Ekta. It's her birthday on June 7 and Sarkar Raj, which releases along with my Aamir, is being distributed by her. So Ekta will be making a very special trip to Tirupati. I was very touched when she said she would pray for my film," Rajiv told IANS.
She has been the epitome of cooperation as far as furthering her proteges' career is concerned. When her blue-eyed girl Prachi Desai left Balaji to become Farhan Akhtar's screen queen in Rock On, Ekta was admittedly hurt. But she soon came to terms with the changing equations in Prachi's career.
She has apparently forgotten the sense of betrayal that assailed her when Rajiv walked out of her premium show Kahiin To Hoga at the peak of its popularity.
"I had no choice," said Rajiv recalling those days of his dominance on the home medium. "Television became mechanical and monotonous. I'd have become creatively stifled if I had continued.
"Yes, it has been financially difficult for me to wait for three years to move to the large screen. But finally it all seems worth it because even the film I've chosen as my debut is as far removed from television and from what other big-screen debutants do as possible. I'm sure Ekta will be proud of me when she sees the film."
Thought Ekta will pray for his success, she won't attend the premiere of Aamir on June 5, because as a rule she doesn't attend premieres.
So which film will Rajiv watch first? His own or the one where Ekta has financial stakes?
'Sarkar Raj, comes the prompt reply. "Not only for Ekta's sake but because I'm a huge fan of Mr. Amitabh Bachchan. I'd first see his film and then rush to catch my own."