Sanjay Kapoor saw success very late in his. Be it his first film as a lead hero “Prem”, his marriage to Maheep, having his own house or producing his film “Tevar”. But, his positive outlook and sensitivity kept him afloat amidst the downfalls of life. His high self-respect forbids him from asking favours from his well-earned brothers and friends.
Let’s have an introspective view on his life journey:
Surinder Kapoor, father of Boney, Anil and Sanjay Kapoor had a close association with the “Kapoor Khandaan” aka Raj Kapoor’s family.
In an interview, Sanjay spoke about his family’s relations with Raj Kapoor’s family.
We used to live in Chembur in a two-bedroom hall. We were so connected with the Kapoors that Dabboo (Randhir Kapoor) would joke that we are related via satellite. My mom and Krishna aunty were best of friends and Chimpu (Rajiv Kapoor) and I grew up together. My father, Surinder Kapoor, used to work for Shammi Kapoor and his first wife was my dad’s rakhi sister. She was the one who pushed my dad to make films and so, her picture used to come in the beginning in all his films. Even though my father had not given blockbusters, Raj Kapoor uncle used to respect him a lot due to the goodwill he enjoyed and his honesty. Chimpu had a car and would travel abroad, right from when he was a year old. But our parents brought us up in a way that we never had any complexes.
I remember Chimpu became an actor very quickly. Prior to his becoming an actor, when we went out together, if he paid the bill two times, I would pay it once. But we would go to ordinary places then that both of us could afford. But after he became a star, he started going to clubs where he would have whiskey and I, beer, and the bill would come to 2000. Then I could not afford it, so I would often avoid going out with him at night. We remained great friends. But I could not tell him why, but then, we started meeting for lunch as that is all that I could afford. My father had always taught us not to pile on.
Sanjay’s first film was released when he was 31.
Shekhar Kapur was initially supposed to direct ‘Prem’. But the problem with Shekhar is that he is a very lazy guy, which is why he has made such few films over 30 years. He never wanted to start it and that led to my frustration. We then decided on Satish Kaushik to direct it, who started the film in 1989, but then he also had to direct ‘Roop Ki Rani Choron Ka Raja’ in between, that finally released in 1993 and was a disaster. With that mind, he directed ‘Prem’ that finally released after 6 years of starting it in 2005. Again in ‘Prem’, I will tell you about my father. We had signed a singer Nalin Dave and we were all convinced that since it took 6 years to make the film, his voice was not sounding young enough for me any more and we should replace it with Udit Narayan’s. But my father did not change. He said, ‘Just like Sanjay has waited 6 years, Nalin has also waited 6 years. Now, it is their destiny.’ I was dating Tabu at that time initially, but by the end of it, we were not talking to each other.
It finally released when I was 31 and would joke and say, ‘I am the oldest newcomer.’ But this was destiny. ‘Prem’ did not work, but within 4 weeks, ‘Raja’ released with Madhuri Dixit and that became a blockbuster. Madhuri was such a big star at that time that I did not get the credit for it. It was also the time when Sri was with her mother, who was not well in the US and Boney was with her. Had Boney been here, things would have been very different for me as there was nobody to take care of things as far as I was concerned.
Sanjay shares a very “unique” bond with his elder brother Boney. In the same interview he spilled beans on his relationship with Boney.
Everyone would say that Boney was a manipulator, but the fact is that he has always done things without any harm to anybody. He chose and decided the price for both Anil and me. I had a bank account but till 12 years back, he managed all my money. In the beginning I did big shows and got a lot of money and he managed all of that. Lot of close friends would give me negative advice, but it did not matter to me.
Both Anil and I had blind faith in him. He is like a father figure, but he has gone through this phase where he would overspend on his films. He tends to get carried away. He is not a manipulator. Even when my father was lavish. Boney’s economics were wrong and so, he got into a role where his losses started. Because he was handling everything, it was affecting the whole family. It was not that he was using the money for his own benefit or anything, but it’s just that he was putting it into his films.
Between Anil and Boney, he is more attached to Boney.
Boney, as we have done films together and he has always shown more concern where my life is concerned.
Sanjay has gone through various ups and downs in life. He saw the lowest period in life when Anil Kapoor ditched him.
There was a period when I was not doing much as an actor and was trying to become a producer. I was wanting to do a film with Anil. I spent 3-4 years discussing everything with him and even going with the director he wanted, but at the last minute, he said No. I was totally taken aback that time. I just felt that even if he felt that the film would have been a flop, he should have still done it for me. In the same period, he did ‘Yuvvraaj’ and ‘Black and White’. I felt hurt as I had wasted so much time and gone with all his recommendations, including the director he wanted. Mentally, I was very low. I couldn’t believe that despite he being my brother, he had said No. Rajat Rawail managed Anil’s work and he told me, ‘Sanjay, when you meet Anil with the script, you take the advance cheque also.’
I found that very strange as he was my brother. I also felt hurt that Anil could even doubt that the money would not come. After that, there has never been a problem between Anil and me, but I never approached him again. Today at 52, I have finally turned producer with Arjun, who has been the closest kid to me in the family. I remember at the peak of my career, I got some money which I gave to a person to build a house on the beach for me. I later realised that the money I had got was not from a right person and I returned the money. My being positive has saved me. Whatever I am today is due to our parents, who I love the most in this world. And I do know that I get everything in my life, but I have always got it late.
We are proud of you Sanjay Kapoor!!