11 years back Amitabh Bachchan and Govinda played 'Bade Miyan' and 'Chote Miyan' respectively in David Dhawan's BADE MIYAN CHOTE MIYAN . Now in the 21st century, Govinda has graduated to playing relatively senior roles and Riteish Deshmukh has been roped in as his junior co-star in the director's latest DO KNOT DISTURB. Naturally, one starts wondering of this is a dawn of a new era with the newest 'Bade Miyan Chote Miyan' in town.
'I have been asked this question so many times but really, for a long period of time I have chosen not to answer this question. Reason being that it is really embarrassing because even though Govinda can be a 'Bade Miyan', how can I call myself as a 'Chote Miyan' in the same vein? He is way too experienced that me. Yes, the script demanded that two people with a visible age difference come together and hence I was roped in', says Riteish.
It appears that he is taking a diplomatic stand considering the fact in the current generation; Riteish has been enjoying a great run when it comes to comedies.
'Honestly, I am not being diplomatic here', re-emphasizes Riteish, 'One should always realize as an actor that where do you actually stand. Only when you do that can you really grow as an actor. With all due respect to the 'Bade Miyan Chote Miyan' team of David Dhawan, Govinda and Vashu Bhagnani, it's nice that they thought of me filling in this space. I am still in a learning phase though.'
Talking about the learning curve, one can't take away the fact that Riteish has by far worked in more than a dozen odd comedies. Since he was working with David Dhawan for the first time in DO KNOT DISTURB, how was the exchange of ideas on the sets?
'First and foremost I just concentrated on understanding the scene from David. Of course whether it was Govinda, Lara, me or anyone else, suggestions would come naturally. Everyone did come up with his or her own bit and the atmosphere was such that we could walk up to David and have a discussion with him', says Riteish who is also being seen along with Govinda for the first time.
David Dhawan and Govinda have been a quintessential number one 'jodi' for more than 15 years now. Wasn't it actually difficult for him to make a space for himself amidst such an experienced director-actor combination? Didn't he worry that his role may get sidelined with a senior and experienced actor like Govinda around?
'I never faced any insecurity working with Govinda. There was no question of thinking if he had better lines than me or vice versa. We had to actually compliment each other. This pretty much talks about the character of the person as Govinda is so confident about his stuff. He is a great actor and never tried to steal the limelight', says Riteish in admiration of the actor who recently saw success coming his way in the form of LIFE PARTNER.
He admits though that working with Govinda was quite challenge since there is constant improvisation that happens even as the camera is rolling.
'I had to be constantly on my toes. The man is superb and on his sheer comic prowess, you never know how a scene could eventually turn out to be even better than the way it was written on paper', signs off Riteish.
A multi starrer that also includes Sushmita Sen, Lara Dutta, Sohail Khan, Ranvir Shorey and Rajpal Yadav, DO KNOT DISTURB with music by Nadeem-Shravan is a Vashu Bhagnani production and is releasing this Friday.