2 hours agoAuthor: Ifat Qureshi
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Actor Jeetendra, popularly known as Jumping Jack in Hindi cinema, has turned 81 today. Jeetendra was born to Amarnath, an artificial jewelry supplier in Amritsar. His initial 20 years were spent in Goregaon Chawl, Mumbai, but a coincidence turned his life completely and he became a hero. At the behest of his father, he had gone to deliver jewelery to the sets of V. Shantaram’s film Navrang.
When it came to know that jumping into the fire dressed as a girl would fetch extra money, Jeetendra became a girl for the film. It was from here that Jeetendra and films got connected and he did some 200 films. Jitendra, who once lived in a chawl, is today the owner of a property worth 1512 crores. Sometimes Sanjeev Kumar’s heart was broken by his bullying and sometimes he troubled his best friend Prem Chopra.
Today, on the occasion of Jeetendra’s birthday, know some unheard stories related to his life-
They were so poor that when the fan was installed in the house, the whole chawl reached to see it.
Jeetendra’s real name is Ravi Kapoor. When Jeetendra was born on 7 April 1942, the mother was only 15 years old. The family had moved to Mumbai only about 20-25 days after Jeetendra’s birth. Jeetendra’s family was very poor, of lower middle class, who lived in Shyam Sadam Chawl, Goregaon. Jeetendra also spent 20 years of his life here. Such was the condition of poverty in Chawl that when a fan was installed in his house, all the people of Chawl reached his house in surprise.
How Jeetendra became a hero of jewelry supplier Chawl
Father Amarnath used to supply artificial jewelry used in films. Once he sent his son Jeetendra to supply jewelery on the sets of the film Navrang, which was made at Rajkamal Studios. Jeetendra gave the jewellery, but he was not allowed to come to the studio to watch the shooting.
On coming home, he complained to his uncle that he wanted to watch the shooting, but was chased away by them. The next day, when Jitendra reached with his uncle, V. Shantaram said, if you want to see the shooting, you will have to work too. Said you will be given the role of a prince.
Jeetendra’s happiness knew no bounds. Although he used to go to the set bumping into buses, but that day the joy of playing the role of Prince was such that he went in a taxi. When he reached the set, 200 princes like him were already sitting.
In fact, he got the job of extra in the song Tu Chuppi Hai Kahan in the film Navrang.
Similarly, Jeetendra started getting small jobs in Navrang. One day when Jeetendra reached the set, director V. Shantaram was standing there upset. For a scene, a body double was called to show the heroine jumping over the fire, but seeing the danger, the girl refused to do this stunt.
The film’s heroine Sandhya was V. Shantaram’s wife and he wanted her not to get hurt while doing this dangerous job. When no one agreed, Jeetendra expressed his desire to do this role. Jeetendra was dressed like actress Sandhya and made her body double. When that scene was completed with the help of Jeetendra, V. Shantaram was also very happy.
‘Locusts’ could not speak even after 25 retakes, angry director finalized the wrong scene
Jeetendra was also given a small dialogue in this film. Jeetendra had to say, Sardar..Sardar.. The enemy’s party is moving forward like locusts. Jeetendra was getting stuck every time at the word locusts. There were 25 retakes in no time and everyone on the set got upset. Director V. Shantaram was so annoyed by this that he finalized the dialogue with the wrong pronunciation.
V. Shantaram further cast Jeetendra in the lead role in the upcoming film Geet Gaya Pattharon Ne (1964). Jeetendra was next seen in the films Gunahon Ka Devta and Boond Jo Ban Gayi Moti.
Father came to see the first film, the theater was empty
In 1964, Jeetendra’s first film Geet Gaya Pattharon Ne was released. Jeetendra bought tickets for his parents. At that time he was living in Goregaon’s chawl and the theater was near the chawl. When both reached to see the film, they went to the gatekeeper and showed the ticket and asked, this is our ticket, where should we sit. Got the answer, the whole theater is lying empty, sit wherever you want. Hearing this, the father became enraged and shouted, “We will sit where we have the ticket.” The film did not run for the first few days, but after 10-15 days the crowd started arriving.
Didn’t have money to feed the girl so left her in the cinema hall and ran away
Jeetendra and Prem Chopra once lived nearby in Colaba. Both used to visit the offices of the producers to make a mark in the industry. Every day they used to get out of their vehicles at the same time and used to behave in front of each other as if they had a lot of work.
One day Prem Chopra left his arrogance and said to Jeetendra, listen, both of us leave at the same time every day and go round the offices together. Why don’t we leave the pretense and go with only one car, it will save our money too. Jeetendra, who was already in dire straits, liked this idea very much. Now it has been decided that only the one who will have the car will give the money for the whole day’s food.
While coming together, both of them developed a deep friendship. One day both were going in Prem Chopra’s car that their eyes fell on two girls passing by the road. One girl was very beautiful, on whom both had their eyes, while both did not like the other girl. Both stopped the car and gave them lift.
Jeetendra cleverly made the beautiful girl sit with him on the back seat and made the other girl sit with Prem Chopra. Prem Chopra was so angry with Jeetendra that he started babbling in Tamil and abusing Jeetendra. When the girl asked what he was talking about, Jeetendra cleverly said that Prem likes the other girl sitting with him. Love and anger have become.
Now while going together, it became such a thing that both went to watch the film with the girls. That movie was Neela Akash. In conversation it was revealed that both the girls are Muslims and they are fasting in the month of Ramzan. The girls told both of them that they would do iftar with them. On hearing this, both were shocked and upset.
When the interval happened, Prem Chopra took Jeetendra to the edge and said, I do not have this much money. In response, Jeetendra said that I do not even have it. To avoid being insulted, both of them resolved that why don’t they get out of here. The same thing happened. Both of them ran away leaving the film in the interval itself without informing those girls.
When the film started flopping, all the tickets were bought due to the fear of dishonour.
The 1967 film Farz was the directorial debut of Ravikant Nagaich. Every hero had refused to take the risk of working with a new director, so Jeetendra, who had appeared in new films, was chosen as the hero of the film. When the film released, the theaters were empty.
Jeetendra was afraid that if the word spread that the film was a flop, his name would be tarnished in the market. Due to this fear, Jeetendra bought full tickets of many theaters by spending 5 thousand rupees. After some time suddenly the craze about the film increased among the people and all the shows started getting houseful. This proved to be a film that brought popularity to Jeetendra.
Trendsetter became from Farz film
Jeetendra got popularity from the 1967 film Farz. The film’s song Mast Baharon Ka Main Aashiq became a huge hit and the clothes and shoes he wore became a trend. After this, giving continuous hits, Jeetendra started being counted among the top heroes.
Used to introduce Prem Chopra to friends by calling him a rapist
Prem Chopra has played the role of villain in almost every film. There was a time when whenever he used to go somewhere with Jeetendra, he used to introduce him saying, meet him, Prem Chopra, official rapist of film industry. Jeetendra used to introduce Prem to such people even in big gatherings, due to which there was a lot of rift between them.
Arrived to give Sanjeev’s love letter to Hema, but wrote his name
Sanjeev Kumar, the popular actor of the 60s, was in one-sided love with Hema Malini, but at that time Hema and Dharmendra were in a relationship. Once when there was a rift between Hema-Dharmendra, Sanjeev wanted to express his love. Sanjeev wrote a love letter for Hema, but hesitatingly got the letter sent by Jeetendra’s hand. As soon as Jeetendra reached Hema’s house to deliver the letter, his mind changed. Jeetendra cleverly removed Sanjeev’s name from that letter and wrote his name.
Pandit had reached home to marry Hema Malini, girlfriend created ruckus as soon as she got the news
When Hema Malini’s family members came to know that Jeetendra wanted her, then the matter reached to marriage. Hema’s family did not like both Dharmendra and Sanjeev Kumar, in such a way Hema’s marriage was confirmed with Jeetendra. One day Jeetendra reached Hema’s house to get married with relatives and Pandit, but Dharmendra told this to his fiancee Shobha Kapoor. Shobha stopped the marriage after reaching Hema Malini’s house and created a lot of ruckus. At the same time, when Dharmendra threatened to commit suicide, Hema agreed to marry him.
Jeetendra had a love marriage with airhostess Shobha Kapoor in 1974. Before marriage, both were also in a relationship for many years. The two are said to have met years ago at Marine Drive, when Shobha was just 14 years old. Both of them became friends and started meeting often. The couple has two children, Ekta Kapoor and Tusshar Kapoor.
Wife’s stubbornness saved life on Karwachauth
It was a matter of 1975 when Shobha observed Karwachauth fast for Jeetendra’s long life. Jeetendra had to leave for the shoot on the same day. When the flight got delayed, Jeetendra came home to break Shobha’s fast. When it was time for the flight, Jeetendra was about to leave, but Shobha stubbornly stopped him at home.
Seeing the stubbornness of his wife, Jeetendra called back his make-up artist as well and said that he would leave the next day. After some time, Jeetendra’s eyes went towards the airport, which was visible from the Pali Hill area. They saw fire on that side. After some time, the news was received that the flight of Indian Airline by which he was about to leave, has crashed.