June 2010

Sohrab Modi (1897 – 1984)

By |June 13th, 2010|

The lion on the logo of his banner, Minerva Movietone, could well symbolize Sohrab Modi’s own personality. The Minerva lion’s stentorian roar was respectfully heeded for more than two decades.

Actor-filmmaker Sohrab Modi, made history even as he reinterpreted it for a modern audience. In […]

Pradeep Kumar

By |June 6th, 2010|

A noted Hindi and Bengali film actor, Pradeep Kumar is best remembered for his performances in Mughal period dramas. Born Sital Batabyal, Pradeep Kumar began his career in 1944 as an assistant to cameraman Dhiren Dey in Calcutta. It was after director Debaki Bose […]


By |June 6th, 2010|

From the scheming publisher in Pyaasa to the loyal friend in Chaudhvin Ka Chand to the decadent husband in Sahib Bibi Aur Ghulam, Rehman played characters of all shades. Born in 1923 in Lahore (now in Pakistan), Rehman moved to Jabalpur where he completed […]

Suchitra Sen

By |June 6th, 2010|

Suchitra Sen may not have become the legend that she is in Bengali cinema, but she brought to Hindi filmdom grace, subtlety, and understatement. Though she had an all-too-brief career in Hindi film industry, the few films that she acted in are all remembered […]

K.N. Singh

By |June 6th, 2010|

With his subtle, underplayed performances, Krishna Niranjan Singh gave the stereotypical villain of Hindi cinema a new dimension. He replaced histrionics with style and sophistication — the raise of an eyebrow and a piercing look were all Singh employed — and imparted to his […]

Uma Devi (Tun Tun)

By |June 6th, 2010|

Tun Tun. The name conjures up the image of a roly-poly, funny woman. She was christened thus by none other than Dilip Kumar. She was working with the thespian in her first film Babul which had Nargis in the romantic lead. And the impact […]

Amjad Khan

By |June 5th, 2010|

He had a will to kill, and malpractice had made him perfect. When Gabbar Singh’s beady eyes settled on his beaten-up henchmen and boomed `Kitney aadmi the?’ (How many men were they?), a palpable ripple of precognition ran through the audience. When he perversely […]


By |June 5th, 2010|

He was the scariest screen villain because he could look completely amoral. An ex-army man, Premnath’s energetic performance as a callous philanderer in brother-in-law, Raj Kapoor’s Barsaat (’49) made him a star. Charged by success, the teetotaller, vegetarian, non-smoker, was engulfed with “a desire […]

Smita Patil

By |June 5th, 2010|

An emotional Chernobyl who let every radioactive emotion reach out and scald the viewer, Smita was easily the most intense of our heroines. When she funnelled that dark, feral intensity into Bhumika or Mirch Masala, she was on par with the best in the […]

May 2010

Sharmila Tagore

By |May 30th, 2010|

Sharmila’s supreme achievement lies in her being that rare heroine who triumphantly criss-crossed image boundaries. From being Bengal’s most ogled export who stirred up both the hormones of a generation as well as a hornet’s nest when she dropped her clothes, she next shocked […]