I was a reckless youngster: Rishi Kapoor

Talking about the pitfalls of early fame, the actor said that all the "success, money and adulation" at just 20 made him arrogant.

Addressing fans at a retrospective of his films at Nu Metro Montecasino in Johannesburg, Kapoor reflected on a range of issues in his career that started with a role as a 15-year-old in 'Mera Naam Joker', made by his father Raj Kapoor. But it was 'Bobby' that brought the real fame.

"Suddenly I had tons of money - obviously it corrupted my mind. I became arrogant. I was very abrupt. I was a real bad guy, not because I wanted to be a bad guy, and I was enjoying every moment of it," said the actor.

"But then I was under check. I realised that I had to settle down and start working, so that reality check came at the right time. Today a 20-year-old is much more knowledgeable, he knows what happens in the world around him," he added.

Kapoor, 58, was in South Africa as part of the six-week Shared History Festival of the Indian missions in the country that has seen Indian culture, cuisine and arts being showcased throughout the country.

Pushed for details of his "bad deeds", Kapoor preferred for them to remain secret. Kapoor said probably his father did not know what was happening with him
"My father never ever interfered in my career and rightly so, so perhaps he did not know what was happening. Similarly, I don't interfere in (my son Ranbhir's) career - I'm his father, not his secretary."

But Kapoor also commended his father for his bravery in casting two unknowns in 'Bobby' at a time when the family was in deep financial crisis.

"During 'Mera Naam Joker' we had our studio mortgaged, there was no money to complete the film we were in dire straits and he chose to take two absolute newcomers for this film but he was a filmmaker who knew exactly what he wanted. He made a blockbuster and a film that changed the times."

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