>Johnny Lever was born in a Telugu Christian family and was brought up in Mumbai in King’s Circle Dharavi Johnny studied in Andhra Telugu School till the seventh grade but couldnt study further because of financial problems in his family. After which he decided to leave school and started working at a very young age. He did all kinds of work, for example selling pens on the streets of Bombay in a special way of imitating Bollywood stars. He also danced on the songs of Bollywood stars Hence he developed a passion for mimicry and stand-up comedy,inspired by watching comedians like Johnny Walker Kishore Kumar and Mehmood in films and mimicry artists like Dinesh Hingoo on stage He then decided to be a mimicry artist. To seek guidance and help regarding mimicry he met his mentor Pratap Jani and mimicry artist Ram Kumar, who helped him and taught him the basics of mimicry.
Johny also used to work as an employee in Hindustan Lever’s factory in Mumbai with his father. While working he also used to entertain his co-workers in the factory by imitating Elvis Presley. At one of the functions at his factory he was asked to perform and show his talent. So impressed were his colleagues and officers of the factory by his performance that his union leader said that from now on we will call him “Johny Lever”.
After that, he started to perform in musical shows (orchestras) and after becoming famous there, he then joined the legendary music director duo Kalyanji-Anandji’s group He did a lot of shows and world tours with them one of his first big tours was with Amitabh Bachchan in 1982
Since he became an instant hit at orchestras and he wasnt being able to find time; there evolved another comedian who substituted him by the name of Johnny Fever. But his fame was shorlived as Raju Srivastav came to Mumbai during the same time and started filling gaps of Johnny Lever at orchestras
During this period he learned a lot from Kalyanji who according to Lever was also a great philosopher and a very humorous person, and also his mentor. At one of his shows Sunil Dutt noticed his talent and potential and offered him his first movie Dard Ka Rishta
In the 1980s he released his audio cassette of mimicry/comedy, Hansee Ke Hungame, which became a super hit not only in India but worldwide after which he became very famous and this took him to another level In early eighties he also did few commercials of Kachua chhap macchar agar batti which was directed by Shekhar Kapoor.
In 1986 he performed in a very big charity show called Hope 86 in front of the whole Hindi film industry as a filler The audience loved his performance and shouted once more. The whole film industry recognized his talent and producer Gul Anand offered him a film called Jalwa with Naseeruddin Shah. He is known as the king of comedy in Bollywood and known to have inspired many comedians and stand-up artists in India