Bollywood Nostalgia

Mithun Chakraborty. Lonely. But not lost.

In the last interview, Mithun Chakraborty mused about his life, but for the second round of interview, we got down to specifics by asking him questions that everybody has been wanting to ask him. We must say that the superstar didn’t duck the probing into his personal life. And here’s how it went:

I made mistakes, but my wife had faith in me

“We are not husband and wife (Yogita) in the traditional sense of the term. I wouldn’t want to classify my relationship like that. I would like to say that we are very good friends. That is why I often say to my friends that I am a happily married bachelor.  I don’t boast that I have been faithful all the time. I don’t claim that I am a saint. I have had my flaws and I have made mistakes and my wife knows about it all. But she’s always had an unconditional trust in me. I knew that at the end of the day, no matter what, I will never leave my wife and children. My wife had faith in me and I have tremendous respect for her. I have four wonderful children (three sons and a daughter).  My wife has given them a great upbringing and I am very proud of it.”

My first hotel was built on a loan

“I have always believed in the proverb ‘Strike when the iron is hot’. I was considered a superstar at one point of time, and I knew that it would not last forever. What goes up has to come down someday. The thought of providing enough for my children started bothering me. I wanted to have a fixed source of income than depend on acting assignments, the number of which will vary according to the value as a film star. I realised that I need to have something that would be a source of income for my children too. So, I thought of opening a hotel. Now I am a little superstitious about Ooty because all the films that have been shot there have been hits. I consider the place lucky for me. So I decided that I should open a hotel in Ooty. Also, the loan amount that I managed to get was sufficient to open a hotel there. I didn’t want to get a huge loan that I wouldn’t have been able to repay. I didn’t want to default on my loan. I spoke to my wife and we agreed to open our business there. I started off with one hotel, and now I have three hotels there.  I have done my part of the job. It is now upto my children to take care of it or sell it off. But I have done what I had set out to do.”

Being famous is all about destiny and not hard work

Mithun in a still from Mrinal Sen's 'Mrigaya'

Mithun and Mamata Shankar in a rare still from Mrinal Sen’s ‘Mrigaya’

“I don’t believe in hard work or talent. You cannot be famous if you work very hard or if you are immensely talented. Neither will I say, it is going to bear you fruit. There are lots and lots of talented and hard working people in this industry who have not made it to the top, it is destiny. I still believe that I was destined to be famous and I was destined to be a star. Go and ask all the superstars in the industry whether they are where they are because of destiny, hard work or talent. I am sure you will get your answer. They are the chosen ones. All of us were chosen by destiny. There are many who work twice as hard and are thrice as talented, but destiny has been kinder to us. Even my children have their own destiny. They will do what destiny has chosen for them. Nobody can change his destiny.”

I love to ponder

“I sit and ponder a lot when I am alone. I never thought I would win so much adulation and love all over the world. What has happened to me is beyond my dreams. I don’t know if I deserved so much. It’s hard to digest that my life has been so kind to me and unkind to so many others. I sit and ponder about it when I am alone.”

Being a star was a lonely experience

Mithun in a still from Rohit Shetty's Golmaal

Mithun in a still from Rohit Shetty’s Golmaal

“I was under immense pressure when I was proclaimed a star in Bollywood. I suddenly felt that I was left without friends and everybody is out there to reach for my jugular. I was so scared. I was always scared of losing my star status. I was always scared of falling down and hurting myself. Everyday I made new enemies and every single day I lost touch with my real friends. My life as a Bollywood star was full of nightmares and less of friends and well-wishers. There was a point when I was all alone in the industry, and those days were very frightening. Amitabh Bachchan is my contemporary, but he has handled super-stardom with relative ease. I still cannot fathom how he did it. I was a lonely man as a Bollywood star. There I was with so much success and there was nobody I could share that with. I am glad that all those days are behind me.”

Some dreams are meant come true

“Things don’t happen if you dream about it, it happens because it just had to happen. I don’t believe in the theory that if you constantly aspire for something, the universe conspires to make it happen for you.”

I am still a lonely man

“I must admit that I am still a very lonely man, who has reached a deadend of a road where there’s no other way left to take. I may look like an extrovert in real life, but I am an introvert who likes to ponder a lot.  I like to be left alone a lot and I like spending time with my plants and my pets often than human beings.”

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2 replies »

  1. Thanks for the article! It changed my perspective of the star that is/was Mithun Chakraborty. Great Bollywood journalism! Did you guys talk in Bengali?


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