Dharmendra on 100 and 200 crore clubs: I am still a man with small money

Dharmendra on 100 and 200 crore clubs: I am still a man with small money

He’s been a bonafide star of Hindi cinema for almost 58 years now, and the He-Man’s still got it. As we settle down to chat, Dharmendra asks for his make-up man, adjusts his hair, and knows which light he will look the best in. All this because he knows all eyes are on him when he’s present in a crowded room.
“It’s my passion,” he begins when you ask him how he’s managed to sustain himself for so many years. “I am in love with acting, it’s not my profession, it’s my beloved. Main ruth jaata hoon toh yeh mana leti hai, yeh ruth jaati hai toh main mana leta hoon. We have spent such a long time together, we never left each other. It will go on as long as it’s possible, and we will maintain this relationship throughout,” he says.
Sholay (1975), Dharamveer (1977), Jugnu (1973), Pratigya (1975) — these are some of the best known films of the actor. In his time, a film running in theatres for many weeks in a row was a bigger achievement, and the money it earned came second. However, today, it’s all about the 100 and 200 crore clubs. What does the veteran have to say about this?
“That I don’t like. I am still a man with thousands, small money. I know thousands and lakhs. Also, I don’t get excited about it. Just ho gaya yaar, bas. Sab kuchh paake bhi haasil-e-zindagi kuchh bhi nahi, humne dekhe hain ek se ek sikandar khaali haath jaate huye,” Dharmendra says.
He gets emotional when you ask him what keeps him going at the age of 82.
“I am still hungry for films, I still think I am a newcomer. Why? Because I want to live in the heart of people. When I go, people should feel hamara koi jaa raha hai. I am a human being, I want to stay connected to humanity. I want to give back to the place I am born in, as much as I can, through my films,” says Dharmendra, who was recently seen in the third instalment of the Yamla Pagla Deewana franchise, with sons Bobby and Sunny.
On how’s it working with them, he tells us, “I love working with my family, who doesn’t like it? It’s so nice, that you can make a film within yourselves, why to run here and there? I enjoy with apne log, and they too like it with me.” He’s happy that after his sons, now his grandson Karan Deol, is set to make his acting debut.
“I am happy for him. I pray for him that he does his best,” is all he says.