Rishi Kapoor on Vinod Khanna’s funeral: Stars wait for fashion parade at prayer meet

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Mumbai: Veteran actor Rishi Kapoor is angry, yet again. In a series of tweets, he has lashed out at the “so-called stars of this generation” for not turning up at Vinod Khanna’s funeral on April 27. Khanna died at the age of 70 in Mumbai, after succumbing to bladder cancer.
“I was angered, not disheartened,” Kapoor tells us, referring to the near-total absence of young actors at the funeral except Abhishek Bachchan and Randeep Hooda. “What does an actor work for? It’s his last journey and you can’t come to pay your respects to man who has worked in over 150 films and been there for over four decades, and even has worked with you? Sad that a respected senior actor was sent away by not actually having a lot of people with him wishing him adieu,” says Kapoor.
On whether he expects more people to turn up for Khanna’s prayer meet, Rishi retorts, “Yeah because that’s more of a fashion parade and you want to be in the comforts of air conditioned premises. Why were you not there for this [funeral] event?”
Despite the fact that Khanna earned immense love and adulation from his co-stars, Kapoor adds, “It’s heartbreaking that none of his leading ladies were there. Even many actors from my generation were not there. You just needed to give him respect for his contribution to cinema and love that he’s spread. No one is expecting you to make a dramatic entry at the funeral.”
On April 27 night, Kapoor posted a series of tweets.
Saying more about the sparse attendance at Vinod Khanna’s funeral, Rishi Kapoor points out that it wasn’t as if Khanna didn’t have any connection with the industry for a long time. Khanna’s last films are Dilwale (2015) and Ek Thi Rani Aishi Bhi (2017). “[Also] he has two kids—Rahul and Akhsaye—who are part of the industry and his other son, Sakshi, is joining films soon. There’s some human element that you want to share someone’s grief,” says Kapoor.
The 64-year-old shares that though he “was never overtly friendly with Vinod Khanna”, he had no reason to skip Khanna’s funeral. “My career has been sprinkled with films with him. I can’t say that I shared a great vibe with him, a great chemistry or anything of that sort. It was pure respect. I’ve directed his son Akshaye (in Aa Ab Laut Chalen, 1999) and I remember Vinod was so happy that I had taken his son for my film, and that’s the reason for my being there. He was my elder, my senior, my colleague, part of my fraternity and brotherhood. We are all part of one small family of actors who are contributing to cinema and spreading love.”
Among those who’ve shared screen space with Khanna in recent times are actors such as Shah Rukh Khan, Varun Dhawan, Salman Khan and Sonu Sood and none of them was there at the funeral. Did Kapoor have any particular names in mind while writing those tweets? He says, “I’m not naming any one person. I’m just saying that this generation — actors, filmmakers, producers — none of them came. I’ve seen this happen at Feroz Khan and Rajesh Khanna’s funeral also. It seems these actors have troubled this generation [so] that they don’t really care. I am compelled to think in this manner.”

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