Arshad Warsi Marriage: Love At First Sight... For His Wife

The veteran actor Naseeruddin Shah once described Arshad Warsi the second best actor in Bollywood after Irrfan Khan. Such praise should come as no surpise, since Arshad Warsi is renowned both for his prowess in portraying intense roles as well as comical characters. Arshad started his career from scratch – beginning as a choreographer and eventually working his way up the ranks to become the fine actor he is today.

On the personal front, Arshad is married to the popular video jockey (VJ) Maria Goretti, with the two getting hitched in 1999 after nearly 10 years of friendship. It was indeed love at first sight… but only for Maria. Let’s take a closer look at the adorable tale of Arshad Warsi and Maria Goretti.

Arshad Warsi – Meeting Success With Hard Work

Arshad-Warsi

Arshad Warsi was born on 19th April 1968 in Mumbai, which is where he received his early education. When he was eight years, he got admission into a boarding school in Deolali, Maharashtra, attending which Arshad developed a keen interest in gymnastics. This would eventually manifest into a natural flair for dancing.

When Arshad was only 18 years old he lost his father to cancer. Financial straits meant he was compelled to quit his education, and he promptly started working to support his family. Sadly, his mother too passed away due to kidney failure a mere two months after his father’s death. Arshad and his brother moved to a small apartment thereafter, and Arshad eventually found work as a choreographer thanks to his dedication and hard work.

In 1996, he received a call from none other than Jaya Bachchan offering him a lead role in Amitabh Bachchan’s first production film, Tere Mere Sapne. He received an array of offers thereafter, and by 2002 he was signed on by Rajkumar Hirani for the cult classic Munna Bhai M.B.B.S. (2003). He was recommended for the film by the director Joy Augustine, who was the director of his first film Tere Mere Sapne. There was no turning back for Arshad after that, and since then he has played a wide gamut of characters right from the fiercely serious to the outright hilarious.

Maria Goretti – The Girl In His Dance Group

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By 1991, Arshad had made a name for himself as a reliable choreographer, and was therefore, invited to judge a Mumbai college dance festival. While he was impressed by the performances of all the participants, there was a girl named Maria Goretti that stood out from the rest. Her talent was brilliant, and at that moment Arshad knew that he had to make her a part of his dance troupe. Maria obliged, and soon she was the lead dancer in his group, and had even become a sort of assistant choreographer. It was a purely professional relationship as far as Arshad was concerned, but things were different in the mind of Maria.

“I just knew from the start that he was going to be the one.”
– Maria Goretti on her husband Arshad Warsi

Maria had an indomitable crush on the actor, right from the moment she first laid eyes on him. It was pretty surreal for her crush to ask her to be part of his troupe, and the fact that she was soon made assistant choreographer only added to her feelings. Her infatuation was a flaming one – soon noticed by the other members of the dance group, who promptly informed Arshad that she has fallen for him. While Arshad was amused, he did not totally believe it since Maria never candidly accepted the fact in front of him. Things continued this way but her attraction was soon becoming palpable, and this bugged Arshad.

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One time, in the early 1990s, Arshad’s dance troupe was commissioned for a performance at an event in Dubai. Since they were travelling together, they would also spend some time holidaying in each other’s company. On the trip, Arshad and team were relaxing together, and he decided the time was right to elicit the truth from Maria. He offered Maria half a glass of a drink, and after she gulped it, she blurted out every feeling she ever had for Arshad. It was sure a swell way to have the truth out. Guess that should not be a surprise since Arshad is well-known for his acute sense of humour and playful antics even in real life.

So Finally The Dating And Wedding

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Arshad and Maria were now finally in a formal relationship – an affiliation that went on for many years, even after Arshad made his way into Bollywood films and earned his fame. Maria went on to work as a model after her stint in her beau’s dance troupe. In 1998 the couple took a collective decision to get espoused, and the date they had in mind was Valentine’s Day the next year. And so, on 14th February 1999, the two were married.

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Their wedding ceremony was a simple one, with only close friends and family members invited. Since they belonged to different faiths, they had two ceremonies – a church wedding in the morning, and an Islamic nikah at a resort in the evening. For the church wedding, Maria wore a lovely white gown while Arshad was dressed in a black suit. For the evening’s nikah, Maria was decked up in a resplendent ghaghra choli, while Arshad looked dashing in a sherwani. Maria later candidly shared that having dual weddings was the biggest expense of their life. Despite that, the joy on the faces of the betrothed lovers reflected their inward feelings. After all, Maria had been looking forward to this day right from the moment she let her feelings be known!

“Our’s was a fun wedding. Arshad was constantly smiling when we were reciting our vows, which made me giggle too.”
– Maria Goretti about the wedding ceremony

A Decade And More But Still Awash In Love

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Post her marriage with Arshad, Maria went on to work as a VJ and that earned her substantial fame. The two years after his marriage was a slack period in Arshad’s career, and it was during those days Arshad stepped into the shoes of the home-maker, while his wife Maria became the breadwinner. He often credits his wife to be his ‘support system’ and honestly acknowledges his awe for her moral values.

“I have a support system in Maria. She is solid… It always amazes me that a person can be that correct. I love the way she looks after her parents and her family. I cannot find another woman like Maria.”
– Arshad Warsi on his wife Maria Goretti

No marriage is perfect, and even Arshad and Maria’s paradise was hit by rough weather when Arshad got so deeply engrossed in work (post Munna Bhai M.B.B.S.) that he almost forgot that he was married. He later shared in an interview that he got “swayed and over-involved” in his work, but sense soon came knocking back to his head.

The couple was blessed with a son, Zeke Warsi in 2004, and a daughter Zene Zoe Warsi in 2007. Their marriage is a successful one because the pair has based their relationship on friendship and mutual respect, despite hailing from different faiths. Now that is commendable, and perhaps how every marriage should function. Here is wishing the Warsi family the best for life’s pursuits, while also keenly looking forward to the next exemplary performance by the dashing Arshad Warsi.

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