Happy birthday Jeetendra! Interesting facts on 'Jumping Jack of Bollywood'Last updated on Apr 07, 2021, 02:25 pm
Jeetendra, who is fondly known as the 'Jumping Jack of Bollywood' for his prolific energy and dance moves, is one of the greatest performers of the film industry.
Other than his acting chops, his unique style and those white dancing shoes won over a lot of admirers.
As the living legend turns 79 today, here's a look at some interesting facts about him.
Didn't plan to enter showbiz, discovered while selling jewelry
Jeetendra, whose real name is Ravi Kapoor, had no deliberate plans of becoming an actor.
He was associated with his family business of imitation jewelry.
When he went to supply some to V. Shantaram, the noted filmmaker saw a spark in him.
Eventually, he rechristened him as Jeetendra. In 1964, he debuted in Shantaram's Geet Gaya Patharon Ne, co-starring another newcomer, Rajshree.
He released minimum 7 movies annually from 1977 to 1987
While his debut couldn't bring success, Jeetendra's first hit was Farz (1967).
After this, there was no looking back.
Jeetendra released seven or more movies every year from 1977 to 1987. This includes 12 releases in 1981, 14 in 1982, and 11 in 1986.
He established his dance style and fashion in songs like Naino Mein Sapna, Taki O Taki, and Dhal Gaya Din.
He acted in three films directed by Gulzar
Several blockbuster and notable films such as Caravan (1971), Gulzar directed ventures- Parichay (1972), Khushboo (1975), Kinara (1977), Dharam Veer (1977), Judaai (1980), Meri Aawaz Suno (1981), Himmatwala (1983), and Khudgarz (1987), among others, made Jeetendra the superstar that he is today.
'Sridevi and Jaya Prada were my bread and butter'
It's a rare thing to hear a hero crediting his leading ladies for his superstardom.
But, Jeetendra didn't hold back while calling Sridevi and Jaya Prada as his "bread and butter" in an interview.
He appeared opposite Sridevi in 16 films, of which 13 were hits.
With Jaya Prada, it was 24 times. Rekha and Hema Malini were some of his other frequent co-actors.
He had nearly tied the knot with Hema Malini
While he is happily married to his childhood sweetheart Shobha Kapoor for years now, Jeetendra had nearly tied the knot with Hema.
As per Hema's biography, her parents weren't happy with her dating already-married Dharmendra, and had convinced her to marry Jeetendra.
Their parents had even arranged a hush-hush wedding in Chennai.
But when Dharmendra learned about it, he gatecrashed the wedding with Shobha!