The film, Avatar, directed by James Cameron, was one of the most successful Hollywood films ever made in recent times. To have had an Indian be a part of such a film would have been one cool feat, right? What if we told you that we almost did? Yes, our very own Hero No. 1, Govinda, just revealed that he was offered a part in the epic sci-fi drama. Not able to wrap your head around it? Yes, so are we. But it’s true, and he said it on the show, Aap Ki Adaalat, and seemed like he was very serious about it.
While discussing the high points in his career, the anchor of the show, Rajat Sharma, asked Govinda about how he turned down some really popular films like Taal and Devdas. He also revealed that Govinda declined the Hollywood film, Avatar! Ask why he declined the one opportunity to be on the global map as part of such a huge film, and he says he didn’t think director, James Cameron could complete the film before 7 years. He also added that he was the one who suggested the title of the film. (!!!!)
It was me who had given the title of the movie. I had told (James Cameron) that your film will run successfully in cinemas. I also added that your film will take at least seven years to complete. That infuriated him (laughs)
Further adding, he mentions that he didn’t think he was comfortable with playing the part of an extra-terrestrial being where he had to cover his body in paint:
I told him that the ‘avatar’ you want in the film is handicapped. Woh ishwar ka ansh hai aur apang hai…maine kaha ki yeh nahi hoga (He is an incarnation of God, and he is handicapped, I said this won’t happen). And you want me to shoot for some 410 days and colour my body during the shoot. So I apologized for declining and left. And as predicted by me, the film released 8 or 9 years later and was a super-hit.
Well, this is some crazy revelation, right? The development for Avatar began as early as 1994, and we all know what an absolute sensation Govinda was around that time with films like Raja Babu, Coolie No.1, Hero No. 1, Bade Miyaan Chote Miyaan among others. So, we don’t blame James for wanting to cast the Hero No.1 in his film!