Rishi Kapoor and Randhir Kapoor is selling the legendary actor Raj Kapoor’s iconic RK studio with a heavy heart and emotional loss.
It has been confirmed by Rishi Kapoor and Radhir Kapoor that late Bollywood actor and producer Raj Kapoor’s RK Studio is up for sale after being severely damaged in a fire last year in September. Ever since Raj Kapoor’s demise at the age of 63 years around three decades ago, the Kapoor Khandaan has strived to maintain RK Studio but now they have taken an unanimous decision to sell the iconic piece of Bollywood.
Confirming the news and talking on behalf of the Kapoor Khandaan, Rishi Kapoor expressed that this decision has been taken by placing a stone on their hearts as they further could not ignore that the iconic studio was becoming an economic burden on them.
“Even before the fire, for years R. K. Studio had become a huge white elephant, toting up losses. The few bookings we would get from films, TV serials and ad shoots would expect free parking space, air-conditioning and discounts.”
Rishi Kapoor then spoke about how all the Kapoor had to take the ‘larger picture’ into account and come to a decision to sell the studio. However, they did not come to this heart wrenching decision lightly as they were planning on renovating the space with new modern technology.
“For a while, we did juggle with the idea of renovating the place with state-of-the-art technology. However, in reality it isn’t always possible for a phoenix to rise from the ashes. We Kapoors are very emotional lot but then…”
Kapoor also revealed that the few bookings they would get from films, TV serials and shoots would expect free parking space, air-conditioning and discounts from them, making it an unviable proposition.
Last year when fire broke out on the sets of Indian reality television show ‘Super Dancer 2’, it burned down years’ worth of memories and memorabilia. Beautiful costumes and jewellery worn by leading ladies from Nargis to Vyjayanthimala to Aishwarya Rai Bachchan. Clown mask featured in 1970’s ‘Mera Naam Joker’. The grand piano used while filming ‘Awara’ (1951) and ‘Bobby’ (1973)— all reduced to ashes.
However, few parts of the iconic studio like the administration building, canteen and R.K Cottage have survived.
When asked if son Ranbir Kapoor would be willing to preserve the studio, father Rishi Kapoor stated swiftly if his son has sufficient capital then he can buy the studio from them but it is highly unlikely after Sanjay Dutt’s biopic Sanju’s commercial success. Rishi Kapoor thinks that Ranbir Kapoor should concentrate on his filmy career.
An emotional Rishi Kapoor also told Mumbai Mirror, “We brothers are strongly bonded. But who knows about our children and grand-children? What if differences crop up in the next generation? The studio would only end up in litigation as so many industrial and textile estates have. There would be family differences and only lawyers would end up charging heavy sums of fee. Do you think my father would have liked to see his labour of love becoming the subject of courtroom proceedings?”
Randhir Kapoor told Quint, “Yes, it’s (RK Studio) up for sale. We have not decided on anything else. It’s not economically viable for us to set up a new studio. We had to dismantle the entire place after the fire. It’s, even more, an emotional loss than a monetary loss. We have lost the entire memorabilia of Raj Kapoor. Whatever Raj Kapoor had built has been burnt down. Everything is gone.”
Randhir also added, “With the state of the roads and traffic today, no actor comes to Chembur to shoot in this studio. They would rather go to Film City. So, with a very heavy heart, we have decided to let it go. My whole family is very sad, but there’s no other way.”
RK Studio was built by master showman Raj Kapoor nearly 70 years ago. The first movie made under the banner was Aag in 1948.