Sunday, April 14, 2024

Film story of Bob Christo, the foreign villain of Hindi cinema: Came to India after seeing a picture of Parveen Babi, lost his wife, narrowly escaped death in a bomb blast

5 hours agoAuthor: Ifat Qureshi

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Bob Christo, the famous foreign villain of Hindi cinema. The personality who left a deep impression with his acting in about 200 films like Mr. India, Kaalia, Roop Ki Rani Choron Ka Raja, Qurbani. Dangerous Bob, who used to beat famous heroes like Amitabh Bachchan, Anil Kapoor in films, used to create hatred in the hearts of the audience with his acting, but the actual story of his coming into films is very filmy.

Growing up in Sydney, Australia, Bob wanted to embrace death after losing his wife in a road accident. For this he adopted the easiest way, which was to join the Vietnam Army amidst the war environment and work in the mines. One day his truck ran over a bomb, causing a massive explosion. Everyone thought that Bob, who was driving the truck, would not survive, but he came out of the truck alive amid the flames.

Once luck saved them, they risked their lives and planned to steal the ship of the Moroccan king. This plan also failed and fate brought them to India. Bob had left for Muscat from Sydney, but while waiting for the work permit, his eyes fell on Parveen Babi on a magazine cover. Bob stayed in India to take a look at Parveen and then settled here.

Today, on Bob Christo's 13th death anniversary, read his tragedy-filled film story of coming into films –

Bob Christou, born in Sydney, Australia in 1938, was a professional civil engineer of Greek and German descent. Along with his job, Bob became a part of amateur theatre, where he met a girl named Helga. While spending time together, both of them started liking each other and then got married. From this marriage the couple had 3 children, Doris, Monique and Nicole.

Bob Christo with wife Helga and three children.

Bob Christo with wife Helga and three children.

Bob was living a happy married life when one day his wife met with an accident while coming to the airport to pick him up. Helga dies in the accident, leaving Bob in shock. Unable to raise his children properly due to depression, he took the help of a friend and sent the children to USA. He started a trust, which covered the expenses of his children.

After the death of his wife Helga, Bob decided to die. There was a war going on in Vietnam between South-North Vietnam since 1955, in which a large number of people were being killed. Meanwhile, to embrace death, Bob also joined the Vietnam Army. He was in charge of the engineering unit, which had to work in dangerous mines.

One day Bob was passing through a mine with a truck, when a bomb exploded under his truck. Everyone thought that Bob would not survive, but luck favored him and he escaped. Despite being badly injured, Bob remained a part of the war, but the war ended in 1975. After leaving the army, Bob got a job in the set designing unit of Vietnam Cinema.

During filmmaking, Bob became friends with a person named Pat Kelly. One day Pat tells them that they are planning to steal a CIA spy ship in the possession of King Hassan of Morocco. If this plan is successful then both of them can become rich in one go. According to the report of Cinemaji, as soon as he heard this plan, Bob also became a part of it.

Both of them started doing recce to steal the ship. Both were looking for the right opportunity, but before that, Pat Kelly died in a plane crash. After Pat Kelly's death, Bob left that job and went to work for the then Prime Minister of South African Rhodesian (now Zimbabwe) I.A.N. Became part of the Rhodesian army.

Picture of Bob Christo, Amjad Khan and Kiran Kumar.

Picture of Bob Christo, Amjad Khan and Kiran Kumar.

After joining the army, Bob was a part of many dangerous missions. Sometimes he destroyed enemy ships during underwater missions, and sometimes captured Russian ships. This was also the period when apartheid was at its peak. One day Bob saw three soldiers of his army murder a civilian black man. This war of apartheid broke Bob from within and he immediately left the army job.

After leaving the army, Bob Christo got a job as an engineer in Muscat, Oman. Meanwhile, his eyes fell on Time magazine, on the cover of which was the picture of Parveen Babi, who was counted among the most beautiful actresses of that time. Parveen Babi was the first Indian actress to appear on the cover of American Time magazine.

As soon as he saw that one picture, Bob decided to meet Parveen. There was going to be a delay in getting the work permit for Bob, so he thought why not go to India and meet Parveen Babi till then. Bob's obsession with meeting Parveen Babi was such that without any identity or address, he came to a crowded city like Bombay to search for her.

Parveen Babi is the first Indian actress who got a place on the cover page of American Time magazine.

Parveen Babi is the first Indian actress who got a place on the cover page of American Time magazine.

One day after reaching Mumbai, Bob saw that shooting of a film was going on at Churchgate. When Bob arrived, he met documentary director Prem Kapoor. When Bob told her that he had come to India to meet Parveen Babi, she consoled him and said that one day he would definitely meet her.

One day Bob Veer was sitting in the tea house on Nariman Road when his eyes fell on unit cameraman Zubair Khan. He was telling someone that the next day was the auspicious time of the film Burning Train, whose heroine is Parveen Babi. Bob talked to him and things worked out.

Bob, along with cameraman Zubair Khan, arrived at the time of the film Burning Train the next day. Everyone was waiting for Parveen on the set. As soon as Parveen arrived, there was a stir on the set, but as soon as Bob Christo saw her, he was shocked. Actually, most of the film stars come on the set without makeup and then get makeup done on the set as per the scene.

Similarly, when Bob saw Parveen for the first time, she was without makeup. Bob could not understand this. He immediately went to Parveen, stopped her and took out a magazine from his bag and tried to make eye contact once again. Bob was then having difficulty in recognizing Parveen. In such a situation, he pointed towards the magazine and said to Parveen Babi, this girl is Parveen, not you.

Parveen laughed after listening to Bob. Explaining to Bob, she said, I am in make-up and complete getup on the cover of the magazine. When I am not shooting, I am without makeup. Now before the auspicious time I will have to go for make-up.

Although the beginning of the first meeting was awkward, during this time both of them became friends. After becoming friends, Parveen got Bob a job in films. Bob entered films with the 1978 film Ajeeb Dastan. Sanjay Khan recognized his talent and gave him the role of villain in the 1980 film Abdullah. He got recognition as a villain and did about 200 films.

These include superhit films Qurbani (1980), Kaalia (1981), Nastik (1983), Mard (1985), Mr. India (1987), Roop Ki Rani Choron Ka Raja (1993), Gumrah (1993).

Bob Christo with Amitabh Bachchan in the poster of the film Mard.

Bob Christo with Amitabh Bachchan in the poster of the film Mard.

While working in films, Bob Christo became a close friend of Sanjay Khan. One day Sanjay Khan organized a party at his house, in which Bob Christo also attended. Prem Chopra, Shatrughan Sinha, Subhash Ghai were also present in that party. There was a fight between Sanjay Khan and Shatrughan Sinha under the influence of alcohol in the party.

The fight between the two escalated so much that a person in support of Shatrughan brought a knife from the kitchen to kill Sanjay. Bob intervened and snatched the knife from the man. The party ended here and Bob left with Sanjay to drop Ranjeet home and then returned to his home.

Next day at 5 am, Sanjay Khan called him and said, come to my house with a gun. When Bob reached Sanjay's house without asking any questions, he saw that bullets were being fired from the house of Ranjit who lived in the neighborhood towards Sanjay's house.

After some time, some attackers beat up his guard and opened fire at the house from the gate itself. Bob and Sanjay hid and called the police as soon as they got a chance. The next day, Subhash Ghai, who was among those who fired, had to go to jail in this case. Later, a meeting was held at Dilip Kumar's house, due to which the matter was hushed up. This incident was written by Bob Christo in his autobiography Flashback: My Life and Times in Bollywood and Beyond.

Sanjay Khan and Bob became close friends after working together in the 1980 film Abdullah. Once Sanjay Khan had to get 50 thousand dollars from Switzerland, but he could not go because he was busy. Sanjay had so much confidence in Bob that he asked him to go. Bob also left alone for the sake of his friend. When Sanjay told this to his friend Vidhu Vinod Chopra, he became very angry. He said, someone has been sent just like this for such a huge amount. See, he will run away as soon as he gets the money.

Amitabh Bachchan killing Bob Christo in a scene from the film Mard.

Amitabh Bachchan killing Bob Christo in a scene from the film Mard.

Vidhu made a bet of 100 pounds with Sanjay and said that he will not return. Sanjay was so confident that he also placed a bet of 500 pounds and said – Bob will definitely come. When Bob was about to return, he called Sanjay from London Airport. Sanjay told him that there was a condition of 500 pounds on his coming or not.

Sanjay told Bob to come to the lobby very late when the flight lands. This will make Vidhu feel that he has won the bet, but then he will come to know the truth. Bob did the same. When Bob came in front of Vidhu, he was shocked.

According to Lallantop's report, once Bob had gone to the studio to shoot a Tamil film. The studio was not empty so Bob stood outside waiting for his scene. As soon as his turn came, the director told his assistant to go and get Bob Christo. Kaan's assistant came out and started shouting Babu Krishna, Babu Krishna.

Bob was standing nearby, but he could not understand that the man shouting the name Babu Krishna was looking for him. When he did not stop shouting, Bob went and asked who he was calling. Then I realized that he was actually calling Bob Christo as Babu Krishna. He also clarified that in Tamil, Bob will also be called Babu. When the director came to know about this, he also laughed a lot.

Bob Cristo with Sanjay Dutt and Sridevi on the sets of the film Gumrah.

Bob Cristo with Sanjay Dutt and Sridevi on the sets of the film Gumrah.

Apart from 200 films, Bob Christo has also acted in TV shows like The Sword of Tipu Sultan and The Great Maratha. He was well liked as Ahmed Shah Abdali. In the year 2000, Bob Christo left Mumbai and settled in Bangalore, where he earned his living as a yoga instructor. With time people forgot Bob and he also left the industry for another one.

He died on 20 March 2011 in Bangalore at the age of 72. Bob left behind his second wife Nargis and son Sunil. Bob, who was a part of the industry for 2 decades, was never given any award for acting.

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