Jeetendra

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Jeetendra
Jeetendra
Born
Ravi Kapoor

(1942-04-07) 7 April 1942 (age 81)
OccupationActor
Years active1959–2022
Spouse
(m. 1974)
Children
RelativesAbhishek Kapoor (nephew)

Jeetendra (born Ravi Kapoor /rævi/ RAV-ee; 7 April 1942) is an Indian actor who is known for his work in Hindi cinema. He also serves as the chairman of the Balaji Telefilms and Balaji Motion Pictures.

Early life[edit]

Jeetendra was born in a Punjabi Khatri family as Ravi Kapoor in Amritsar, Punjab, to Amarnath and Krishna Kapoor, whose business dealt with imitation jewellery, supplied to film industry. He attended St. Sebastian's Goan High School in Mumbai, Mumbai[1] with his friend Rajesh Khanna and then studied at Siddharth College in Mumbai. While supplying jewellery to V. Shantaram, he was cast as Sandhya's character's double in the 1959 movie Navrang after which his career never turned back.[2]

Career[edit]

1964–1969: Debut and breakthrough[edit]

Jeetendra began his career in 1964 playing the lead in V. Shantaram's Geet Gaya Patharon Ne alongside Rajshree. Despite heavy promotions and positive reviews, the film proved to be an unsuccessful venture domestically.[3]

He established himself with Ravikant Nagaich's spy thriller Farz in 1967.[4] A remake of Telugu film Gudachari 116 (1966), it emerged a superhit at the box office and made Jeetendra a star.[5]

The music of Farz composed by Laxmikant–Pyarelal was also very successful and included songs that remain popular till date like – "Mast Baharon Ka Main Aashiq", "Baar Baar Din Ye Aaye – Happy Birthday To You", both solos by Mohammed Rafi and "Hum To Tere Aashiq Hain", a duet by Mukesh and Lata Mangeshkar.[6]

Owing to his energetic dancing style in the film, he earned the sobriquet of "Jumping Jack".[7]

In 1968, he had three releases – Suhaag Raat, Aulad and Mere Huzoor. Both Suhaag Raat and Aulad failed to leave a mark, but Mere Huzoor did average business.[8]

In 1969, he had a hat-trick of hits with Jeene Ki Raah, Jigri Dost and Waris.[9]

1970–1979: Career slump and resurgence[edit]

With the rise of Superstar Rajesh Khanna in early 70s, many emerging stars went through a decline in their career.[10] Although Jeetendra too suffered from it, he never completely went out of the race.

Jeetendra began the new decade with Chander Vohra's Khilona which also starred Sanjeev Kumar and Mumtaz in the lead. It proved to be a superhit with Kumar, Mumtaz and Jeetendra receiving praise for their respective performance.[11][12]

He delivered another hit with T. R. Ramanna's Humjoli which was a remake of blockbuster Tamil film Panakkara Kudumbam (1964).[13]

Apart from these two films, all his other releases of 1970 like – Maa Aur Mamta, Himmat and Jawab underperformed at the box office.

He saw a bad phase from 1971 to 1973 as majority of his films underperformed during this period, with Nasir Hussain's crime thriller Caravan (1971) opposite Asha Parekh being the only exception.[14]

It was a superhit[15] domestically and an all-time blockbuster in overseas markets, especially China were it is counted along with the all-time greats – Awaara (1951) and Noorie (1979).[16][17]

Caravan also had a chartbuster soundtrack created by the then top composer R. D. Burman.[18] The music proved to be a cherry on the cake as most of the songs - "Chadti Jawani Meri Chaal Mastani", "Kitna Pyaar Wada Hai" and "Piya Tu Ab To Aja" emerged instant hits and played a major role in the mega success of film.[19][20]

During this phase, he also received praise for his portrayal of a kind-hearted tution teacher in Gulzar's light-hearted drama Parichay.[21]

The song "Musafir Hoon Yaroon" from Parichay was listed at #25 in the Binaca Geetmala annual list 1973 and is considered to be one of the most loved filmi songs of all time.[22]

In 1974, Jeetendra delivered a blockbuster with Bidaai.[23] The film ended his dry run at the box office and also emerged as one of the top 5 highest-grossing films of that year.

After scoring a decent success with another of Gulzar's film Khushboo in 1975, he gave two more blockbusters in 1976 with Nagin and Udhar Ka Sindur both opposite Reena Roy.[23]

Nagin and Udhar Ka Sindur were among the highest-grossing films of 1976.

1977 proved to be a massive one for Jeetendra as he had a historic blockbuster in Dharam Veer, a superhit in Apnapan and a hit in Dildaar.[24][25]

In 1978, he had two hits in Karmayogi, Dil Aur Deewaar and a blockbuster in Swarg Narak.[23]

Ths blockbuster run continued in 1979 with Rajkumar Kohli's horror thriller Jaani Dushman which was also one of the most profitable films of the year along with Noorie, Dada and Sargam.[23]

Before the end of year, he also delivered a hit in Anil Ganguly's drama Khandaan and an average grosser in T. Rama Rao's fantasy comedy Lok Parlok which was a remake of N. T. Rama Rao starrer Yamagola.[26]

With continuous flow of hits from 1974 to 1979, Jeetendra not only made a successful career comeback, but also became a huge star who was going to struck gold in the upcoming decade.[27][28]

1980–2005: Immense success and later career[edit]

Jeetendra reached his peak in the early 80s and enjoyed a strong innings throughout the decade.[29][30]

His first release of 1980 was J. Om Prakash's Aasha which proved to be a major commercial success, eventually emerging a blockbuster and his biggest solo hit till date.[31] One of its song – "Sheesha Ho Ya Dil Ho", a solo by Mangeshkar secured 4th position in Binaca Geetmala that year.

His next release was Ravi Chopra's big-budget action thriller The Burning Train in which he starred alongside Dharmendra, Vinod Khanna, Hema Malini, Parveen Babi and Neetu Singh.[32]

The film did average business at the time of release, but received praise for its well-choreographed action sequences as well as performances of the cast and attained cult status in later years.[33]

After having another moderate success in the form of Takkar, Jeetendra concluded the year by delivering three back to back hits with Jyoti Bane Jwala, Judaai and Maang Bharo Sajana.[34]

In 1981, Jeetendra delivered a blockbuster in Meri Aawaz Suno, a superhit in Ek Hi Bhool and two hits in Jyoti and Pyaasa Sawan.[35][36]

With his last few films doing extremely well at ticket counters, Jeetendra decided to produce and star in H. S. Rawail's romantic drama Deedar-E-Yaar (1982) under his home banner Tirupati Films. The film also starred Rekha, Rishi Kapoor and Tina Munim in the lead. Despite huge expectations, it proved to be a major box office flop with minimal recovery of the investment. After this unexpected debacle, Jeetendra made a solemn vow never to return into filmmaking again.[37]

The disastrous response to Deedar-E-Yaar didn't affected his other releases and he went on to deliver a superhit in Farz Aur Kanoon, two hits in Jeeo Aur Jeene Do, Samraat and a semi-hit in Dharam Kanta.[38][39]

1983 proved to be the best year of his career as he delivered many highly successful films and made a hit pair with the then newcomer Sridevi.[40]

His first release of the year Nishaan didn't do well, but his second release Himmatwala, a remake of Telugu film Ooruki Monagadu, emerged a massive blockbuster with its songs, including "Nainon Mein Sapna" and "Taki O Taki" becoming a rage.[23][41]

Himmatwala made Sridevi a big star and she went on to deliver many successful films with Jeetendra.[42]

His other notable releases of 1983 were – Arpan, Jaanidost, Mawaali and Justice Chaudhury.[43][44]

Both Mawaali and Justice Chaudhary performed very well at the box office and proved to be superhits while Arpan and Jaanidost also did good business and went on to become hits.[11]

1984 too was a solid year for Jeetendra as he delivered another blockbuster and highest grossing film of the year with Tohfa opposite Jaya Prada and Sridevi.[23]

The mega success of Tohfa was followed by two hits in Maqsad co-starring Rajesh Khanna, Jaya Prada, Sridevi and Qaidi which also had Shatrughan Sinha, Hema Malini, Madhavi in the lead.[45]

In 1986, Jeetendra delivered a blockbuster in K. Bapayya's family drama Swarag Se Sunder which also had Mithun Chakraborty, Jaya Prada and Padmini Kolhapure in the lead.[23]

He also co-starred alongside Dilip Kumar in K. Raghavendra Rao's actioner Dharm Adhikari which did average business at the box office.[46]

After Dharm Adhikari, he reunited with K. Bapayya and T. Rama Rao for Ghar Sansar and Dosti Dushmani respectively.[47][48]

Both Ghar Sansar and Dosti Dushmani were commercially hit ventures.[49]

In 1987, he played the lead in Rakesh Roshan's directional debut Khudgarz.[50] The film proved to be a huge commercial success and established Roshan's career as a director.[51]

Apart from Khudgarz, he also delivered minor successes with Aulad, Jaan Hatheli Pe and Majaal.

Jeetendra remained strong in 1988 with hits in Tamacha and Mar Mitenge, but 1989 proved to be a dull one for him as almost all of his films, including multi-starrers Asmaan Se Ooncha, Aag Se Khelenge and Majboor flopped at the box office.[52]

His last major success came in 1990 with Raj N. Sippy's action drama Thanedaar which also starred Jaya Prada, Sanjay Dutt and Madhuri Dixit in the lead.[53]

Thanedaar received good response from critics as well as the audience and emerged a superhit with song "Tamma Tamma Loge" topping the musical chart that year.[54][55]

From 1991 to 2003, he acted in many films both as a lead as well as character artist, but none of them attained success, with few exceptions, such as Rang (1993) and Judge Mujrim (1997).[56][57]

Jeetendra's final Hindi film appearance was in Basit Khan's romantic drama Ho Jaata Hai Pyar (2005).[58]

The film received negative response from reviewers and flopped at the box office.[59]

Personal life[edit]

Jeetendra (right) with daughter Ekta (center) and son Tusshar (left) in 2016

Jeetendra had met his wife, Shobha, when she was only 14. She completed school, went to college, and was employed as an Air Hostess with British Airways. When Jeetendra was struggling between 1960–66 to establish himself as an actor, he was in a relationship with Shobha and she was his girlfriend until 1972. It was not until the release of Bidaai on 18 October 1974, that Jeetendra and Shobha decided to get married, which they did in a simple ceremony at Janki Kutir with only a few family members and friends present.[2] In her authorized biography, Hema Malini claimed that they almost got married, but she backed out.[60]

Jeetendra and Shobha have two children from their marriage. Elder of them, daughter Ekta Kapoor, runs Balaji Telefilms while their son Tusshar Kapoor is also an actor.[61] Jeetendra made a brief appearance in one of his daughter's produced films Kucch To Hai, a thriller movie released in 2003, where he appeared alongside his son Tusshar.

During the 6th November, 2021 episode of The Kapil Sharma Show, when Jeetendra and Ekta Kapoor were the guests, he related an incident from 1976. He was supposed to go to Madras (now Chennai) by flight on Karva Chauth. His flight got delayed and he went back home so that Shobha could perform the necessary rituals like viewing the Moon and break her fast. Shobha refused to let him go back to the airport. So Jeetendra called his make-up man and told him to come back home, and that they would leave the next day. Around 10:30 or 11:00 pm, he looked outside from his flat (on a high-rise in Pali Hill, Bandra) and saw a fireball hurtling toward the airport. Later, after a couple of hours, his phone rang incessantly with people calling to find out what happened. The flight that he was supposed to have taken had crashed. Shobha's prescient insistence that he should not go turned out to be a blessing. That flight was Indian Airlines Flight 171.[62]

Filmography[edit]

Awards and honours[edit]

References[edit]

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External links[edit]