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Home / Bollywood / Rishi Kapoor was an effortless actor, a true gentleman: Poonam Dhillon

Rishi Kapoor was an effortless actor, a true gentleman: Poonam Dhillon

Actor Poonam Dhillon bids an emotional farewell to Rishi Kapoor, her friend of co-star of multiple films, who breathed his last on Thursday after battling cancer.

bollywood Updated: Apr 30, 2020 19:06 IST
Shreya Mukherjee
Shreya Mukherjee
Hindustan Times

Poonam Dhillon breaks into tears as she talks about her dear friend Rishi Kapoor’s demise, and wishes “the news isn’t true”. Kapoor, 67, breathed his last after a two-year-long battle with cancer on April 30.

“This is such a terrible time to have to go through this. Everybody is feeling so helpless...This is terribly sad. I can’t believe that Chintu (his nickname) is not there among us,” she chokes while talking.

Dhillon met him just two months ago. “Chintu had recovered and was so grateful to have beaten such a horrible disease. It’s going to very difficult to accept that he is gone. I knew him since I was an 18-year-old. We have been friends and I was close to his family. I had worked with him, Dabboo (Randhir Kapoor), Shammi uncle, Shashi ji (Shashi Kapoor). We shared a special relationship,” she adds.

Dhillon and Kapoor had collaborated in films such as Yeh Vaada Raha (1982), Tawaif (1985), Zamana (1985), Sitamgar (1985), Ek Chadar Maili Si (1986), Dosti Dushmani (1986), Amiri Garibi (1990) and Yeh Hai Jalwa (2002). In fact, they wanted to work again. “The other day I joked with him saying, ‘Kya baat hai aaj kal baat toh karte ho par kaam kab karenge?’ and he was like, ‘Haan yaar, chal ek saath ek film karte hai’,” she recounts a recent conversation.

The actor says Kapoor “looked fit and good” when she last met him. “It’s going to be very difficult to believe that he is gone. He was just an unassuming, effortless actor. He never needed any prep. His performance wasn’t theatrical or dramatic, he was a natural actor. That’s what I loved about him,” she adds.


Dhillon shared a “fun and warm” relationship with Kapoor and they would often joke with each other. “One of these days he was like, ‘PD (my friends call me by that name), tu mujhse dus saal chhoti hai, mujhe toh pata hi nahi hai’ and we laughed. He was straightforward and outspoken. I would pull his leg on whether he would open his heart on Twitter after a few drinks and he would laugh and say that those things came to him naturally,” she says.

Kapoor, she says was a gentleman, and that’s the reason why everyone loved and respected him.

“I learnt a lot from him. He was a good man. He would never misbehave with anyone. He expressed what he felt, which at times would sound wrong, but that’s that. He never made inappropriate comments. He was very dignified. He would rag, tease and bully at times, but would be for fun,” she recalls.

Calling him one of the “finest actors of our times”, she says it’s a “huge loss” for everyone. “It’s sad that on his last day, there was a restriction to pay our last tribute to this true gentleman,” she ends.

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