Shammi Kapoor’s son recalls quitting Bollywood on the eve of Bollywood debut, says his ‘Guruji’ told him to ‘leave the film industry’

Updated on Oct 21, 2020 02:34 PM IST

Aditya Raj Kapoor, the son of actors Shammi Kapoor and Geeta Bali, has recalled in a new interview how he quit the film industry on the eve of his acting debut, because his ‘Guruji’ told him to become a businessman.

Aditya Raj Kapoor returned to the world of films as a 52-year-old.
Aditya Raj Kapoor returned to the world of films as a 52-year-old.
Hindustan Times | By

Late actor Shammi Kapoor’s son, Aditya Raj Kapoor, has recalled the chain of events that compelled him to quit the film industry, on the eve of making a Bollywood debut with his home banner -- RK Films. He said that the death of his mother -- actor Geeta Bali -- left him scarred, and he decided to turn away from the career path that had been laid out for him.

In an interview, Aditya said that he took the advice of his ‘guruji’, whom he doesn’t identify, and never looked back, until circumstances forced him to return to the industry as a director.

“I was 17, I was a rebel without a cause and I was going to make my film debut,” he told SpotboyE. “Then I found my spiritual guru. And he told me those life-changing words - ‘Leave The Film Industry’.”

Aditya continued, “At that juncture when I was to be launched as a hero under the RK Banner right after Rishi (Kapoor) was launched in Bobby, I left. I was also assisting Raj Saab and preparing to be a film director. My father questioned my decision over and over again. But I was adamant. My Guruji instructed me to try my luck in entrepreneurship. He arranged for me to work with a shipping magnate Yogendra Madhav Lal, then Rajan Nanda. Then I started my own company. For 25 years I never looked at cinema. I stopped seeing films. The temptation to return to the industry never left me. Even after my Guruji’s death, I didn’t look back at the film industry. Only after I migrated to Dubai, did I return to movies.”

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He said that when he returned to Mumbai as a 52-year-old, his father was there, ready to take on the mentorship role he would have many decades earlier. “I became an actor...finally,” Aditya said. “My father watched every single shot of mine in promos, trailers, films. At the age of 76, he played the role of my career guide and mentor...a role he would’ve played when I was 19 had I not left the film industry. Now at my father’s funeral the entire Kapoor clan came together. The cycle was complete. My father allowed me to go wherever I wanted and do whatever I wished. Today I’ve allowed both my children the same freedom. My father wrote the manual for us to follow.”

Aditya has appeared in films such as Diwangi Ne Had Kar Di (2010), Isi Life Mein (2010), Say Yes to Love (2012) and Yamla Pagla Deewana 2 (2011). He also appeared in Ashutosh Gowariker’s series, Everest.

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