Remember the notorious song 'Sarakaiya Lo Khatiya Jada Lage' that Govinda 'performed' with Karisma Kapoor in Raja Babu 14 years ago. Govinda who's shooting a full-on desi bindaas< version of the 2005 comedy The 40 Year Old Virgin from June 1 in London, is pulling out all stops this time. "Yes, it is a sex comedy and I do play the title role. How will I play a 40 -year old Virgin? I'll just have to fake it, ha ha. I guess that's what acting is. I've never touched alcohol in my life. But I've played a drunkard. Till the age of 36 I had never eaten non-vegetarian food."
What interests Govinda in this project and would hopefully interest his hardcore fans is his return to a raunchy risque realm which many thought he had left behind. "Why should I leave it behind? I am what I am today because of those films with David Dhawan like Hero No.1 and Raja Babu. I am not ashamed of 'Sarkaiyo Lo'. At the time when it was filmed, I said sorry because it offended some people. But going by what's permissible on screen today, I'd say me and Karisma did nothing harmful."
In Mundhra's film, Govinda plays a commitment-phobic nerd who wants sex but no marriage. "It has earlier been touched on in Akshaye Khanna's character in Nikhil Advani's Salaam-e-Ishq. All of us want the perks of a relationship with the opposite sex including sex. But no youngster wants to be tied down with marriage."
Elaborates Govinda, "I sat down with my director Jagmohan Mundhra and discussed the script. I don't think the original material would've worked in our context. We've altered the subject to make it a comment on the young NRI generation in England which gets a liberal chance to mix with the fair sex of all nationalities. But when it comes to saying 'I Do' they all run the other way. In this way, I'll be putting across a social message through the raunchy laughter. I've always done that in my films."
The challenge for Govinda in Mundhra's project is to put across the message and comment on the atmosphere of sex-with-no-strings-attached without losing the balance. "Dekhiye sex is an integral part of the film. So it will be sexy. I feel nothing done in moderation is wrong. That's what we say in the film. Let's see how it goes. We hope to wrap up the principal shooting by June 19, and then I go straight to my new film for Vashu Bhagnani and David Dhawan. So I'm in London with my family for the next few months."
London is a city that relaxes Govinda. "And look at the irony. While a man like Jagmohan Mundhra whose last two films dealt with serious social issues, is taking me back to the 'Sarkayee Lo Khatiya' days, David's film will be a departure from what we've done so far."
Either way Govinda is happy. "I've never felt better. All my financial debts are cleared. I've lost loads of weight and I've four films ready for release."