I was a superstar, why offer me a character role in ‘Devdas’: Govinda on rejecting the role of Chunni Lal in the film
Govinda enjoyed a massive fan following in the 90s. His films used to sell like hot cakes. Some of Govinda’s films like Dulhe Raja, Hero No 1, Coolie No.1, Saajan Chale Sasural, Haseena Maan Jayegi have become cult comedies. However, in his prolific career Govinda has also rejected many films that went on to become massive hits and gave a career boost to many actors in the industry. One of them was Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Devdas that had Shah Rukh Khan, Madhuri Dixit and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan in the lead.
Apparently, Govinda was offered the role of Chunni Lal in the film. However, Govinda refused the role as he did not want to do a supporting actor’s role. Talking about the role that eventually was lapped up by Jackie Shroff, Govinda said, “I asked Sanjay aapko mere mein Chunni Lal kaha dikhta hai? I was a superstar at that time. Mujh laga theek hai aap top ke director ho, aache baat hai, par aap mujh character role kyu de rahi hai. Maine kaha ek kaam karna, Shah Rukh se kaho ki woh mujh kahe. I can do the film for friendship but I won't do it otherwise.I won't do the film because you are a star or a top director. I love Shah Rukh a lot. We haven't done a film together but he is a very nice person."
Jackie Shroff as Chunni Lal in Devdas with Shah Rukh Khan
However, refusing Devdas did not hit Govinda’s film prospects at all as he had four releases in 2002, the year the film released. These films were Pyaar Diwana Hota Hai, Akhiyon Se Goli Maare, Waah! Tera Kya Kehna and Chalo Ishq Ladaaye.
(Source: India TV)