"When I die bring my body to my studio. It is quite possible that I may wake up and start shouting Action...Action," these words by Raj Kapoor clearly reflect his love and passion for cinema. Born on December 14, 1924, he is regarded as one of the greatest and most influential actors and filmmakers in the history of cinema.
Raj made his debut in the film industry at the age of ten with Inquilab. After 12 years of its release, he bagged his first big break opposite Madhubala in Neel Kamal. Later, with films like Aag, Barsaat, Awara, Shree 420, Anari, Sangam, Mera Naam Joker amongst others, Raj left a lasting impression.
He was honoured with many awards including the Padma Bhushan & Dadasaheb Phalke Award for his endless contribution to the Indian film industry.
On Raj's 94th birth anniversary today, we bring you excerpts from a rare Filmfare interview where Raj's father, the legendary actor Prithviraj Kapoor got candid about his son-
When Krishna Raj Kapoor was expecting a baby, Prithviraj told her it would be a boy. He wrote the name chosen by him for the boy on a slip of paper and put it under her pillow. The slip contained the name- Ranbirraj.
A Lovely Child With Blue Eyes & Ruddy Cheeks
Prithviraj recalled, "Raju was a juror at the film festival in Moscow. I was shooting for ‘Pardesi' and my wife was with me. Raj was being mobbed by Russian girls at the festival hall and when I extricated him at my wife's bidding and brought him to her, she again wiped his cheeks. This time the colour did come off - it was all lipstick"!"
A Popular Kid
"He was, what is the expression, the apple of everyone's eye. Even the tradesmen enjoyed making him dance. They wouldn't take money for some little thing he wanted from their shops," his father recalled.
Raj's Musical Talent Was Untold
"When he was quite young, Raj gave what could be his first major public performance, singing two songs from the film "Hamari Baat", at a variety show at the hill station of Murree, on the Frontier. This went down well and Raj was subsequently much in demand. His songs in "Deewar" were recorded but the discs probably never reached the market."