Tag Archives: cinema

Remembering Shashi Kapoor on his 85th birth anniversary; not just a wonderful actor but human also

Shashi Kapoor, one of the most handsome faces of Indian cinema who has left an indelible mark with his acting and charm turns 85 on Saturday (today). Not just the Bollywood, but Shashi Kapoor earned immense love and adulation of the West with his numerous English films. Though the actor had predominantly attracted popularity with his cult Bollywood commercial films but he had also acted in a few serious and parallel films (to be discussed later in the story).

Kapoors had a strong affiliation with Kolkata and West Bengal ever since the days his father, Prithwiraj Kapoor, the doyen of Kapoor Khandan (as fondly called while referring to this iconic family also called the first cine family), began his career with the iconic New Theatres. In the due course of time, Shashi Kapoor, developed a fondness for Bengali cinema. Shashi Kappor shared a wonderful relationship with Great Master Satyajit Ray who had also penned a couple of scripts of Ivory films.


Kapoors since decades had been entertaining the masses – The journey began with Prithwiraj Kapoor fondly called ‘Papa Kapoor’ who passed on the legacy onto his sons Raj Kapoor, Shammi Kapoor and Shashi Kapoor. They had passed on the legacy of ‘Kapoor Khandan’ subsequently to the next generation of Kapoors.


I recall first watching Shashi Kapoor on TV as we in our childhood was not much exposed to films like today’s generation but we had a great companion (if I may call so) and that was the television which was the ultimate platform for entertainment and many of us I am sure will agree that our schooling to cinema (whatever we have learnt or developed within) had began with this iconic “idiot box’ in early 80’s. Watching this actor on Chitrahaar, Sunday cinema and so on…I recall hearing him during the Film Festival when he had shared so many personal memories about his family, brothers and the cine industry. It was during one such interview Shashi Kapoor had said for him, the ultimate romantic hero was elder brother Shammi Kapoor with his westernized looks and acting. He had also said that “now watching my acting on screen, I feel ashamed as they look so childish” a confession from a real actor who was whimsical of his characters and perhaps this why Shashi Kapoor did not stay obsessed with the cult Commercial Cinema but acted in many parallel cinema and few experimental cinema (a wave that took cinema by its stride during early 70’s and late 80’s).


Shashi Kapoor and English films especially in British and American films, under the iconic Merchant Ivory productions run by Ismail Merchant and James Ivory that had been his second family as their association had grown stronger. Shashi Kapoor acted in numerous films under the banner like The Householder (1963), Shakespeare Wallah (1965) (opposite his sister-in-law Felicity Kendal), Bombay Talkie (1970) and Heat and Dust (1982) in which he co-starred with his wife Jennifer Kendal, The Deceivers (1988) and Side Streets (1998). Apart from Ivory productions, he had acted in other British and American films like ‘Matter Of Innocence’ (1967)), ‘Siddhartha’ (1972), ‘Sammy and Rosie Get Laid’ (1987), and Muhafiz (1994). James Ivory directed Kapoor in the first Merchant Ivory production The Householder, then in Shakespeare-Wallah, Bombay Talkie and Heat and Dust while Ismail Merchant directed him in In Custody (1993).


It was during late 50’s Shashi Kapoor met English actress Jennifer Kendal in then Calcutta now Kolkata. in 1956 while both were working for their respective theatre groups. Shashi was both assistant stage manager as well as an actor for his father’s theatre group, Prithvi Theatre. Geoffrey Kendal’s Shakespearean group was also present at the same time in Calcutta and Jennifer was Geoffrey’s daughter. They fell in love and after facing initial opposition from the Kendals got married to Jenifer in July 1958. Both of them had acted in a number of films together. In 1984, Jenifer Kendal died due to cancer. Shashi Kapoor loved Jenifer immensely and did not re-marry.


Both of them were blessed with three children – Kunal Kapoor (who had acted in Vijeta), Karan Kapoor (he too had acted in a few films like Loha and Saltanat but he is most remember for his modelling with Bombay Dying in 80’s) and daughter Sanjna (she too has acted in a few films like Hero Hiralal. She took charge of the Prithvi Theatre which was established on 5 November 1978 in Mumbai. In the recent years, we have Karishma (Lolo) and Karina (Bebo), daughters of Randhir Kapoor (Raj Kapoor’s son) and Ranbir Kapoor, son of another Kapoor superstar Late Rishi Kapoor rising to the top of popularity in Bollywood. Ranbir unlike his father, who had predominantly acted in Bollywood flicks have already acted in numerous serious and good cinema.


Being a true actor he showed guts and courage to criticize the typical Hindi cinema which had been showing things that had nothing to do with reality rather many impractical and abnormal things. It was this quest for good cinema Shashi Kapoor acted in films like – ‘Muhafiz’ (1994), ‘In Custody’ (1993), ‘Junoon’ (1978), ‘Utsav’ (1984) to name a few. Also he had produced many of these. He also produced 36 Chowringhee Lane (1981) directed by Aparna Sen. His wife Jenifer Kendal had done a wonderful acting in this film which revolves around a lonely Anglo lady residing in Kolkata who teaches conversation English in a reputed convent school in the city and subsequently gets cheated by her two ex-students whom she had trusted immensely. However, Aparna Sen bagged National Award for the film but Jenifer did not receive any award which had made him upset and he had shared his feelings in one of his interview on Doordarshan.

Shashi Kapoor had produced and directed a fantasy film titled Ajooba which was a Indo-Russian project and starred his frequent co-star Amitabh Bachchan and nephew Rishi Kapoor in the lead. The film however could not make money on the box-office.


It was this fondness for Shashi Kapoor, Great Master Satyajit Ray had taken him in Satyajit Ray Presents (directed by Sandip Ray for Doordarshan in 1985), “Kissa Kathmandu Ka” which was based on his Feluda adventure story – “Joto Kelenkari Kathmandu Te” and Shashi Kapoor played Feluda. As per the details of Feluda, Ray had always sketched him as a fitness freak and always slim and agile but Shashi Kapoor had put on weight and looked bulky. Still, Ray had casted him as Feluda in his production. This explains the relationship Shashi Kapoor shared with the Satyajit Ray.


He was not keeping well since long and had bid adieu to films in late 90’s with Side Streets being his last film. On 20 July 2012, Shashi Kapoor underwent a cataract surgery at Kokilaben Hospital in Mumbai. Shashi Kapoor was admitted in Kokilaben Hospital on December 3, 2017 reportedly for chest infection. On December 4, 2017, he breathed his last at around 5:30 pm. The famous lines from his film ‘Kala Parthar’ (1979), ‘ek rasta hai zindagi… jo tham gaye to kuch nahin…’ will be the most befitting lines to pay him tributes…

Nonsense Talk News pays its respects to this great actor and a wonderful man…

Remembering Irrfan Khan on his birthday

India lost one of its finest and promising actors Irrfan Khan. He was diagnosed with an endocrine tumor (a rare type of cancer). He went to London for treatment and had his surgery done. The condition deteriorated and he was admitted to Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital in Mumbai, Maharashtra. He died on April 29, 2020.

His death has shocked not only his admirers but even those who took a casual approach towards his acting that is Irrfan, many would not even notice him for his out-of-the-bottle look. His cult look was his advantage as he would bag those roles that many would not even think of doing. The man was an intense actor who tried to live that character for the period. No wonder why his acting career touched the peak. Irfan married his National School of Drama (NSD) sweetheart Sutapa Sikdar and both have two sons – Ayaan and Babil Khan.

Irrfan Khan was born on January 7, 1963, as Sahabzade Irrfan Ali Khan in Jaipur, to a Muslim family. Khan’s mother, the Begum, was from the Tonk Hakim family, and his father, the late Jagirdar, was from the Khajuriya village near the Tonk district and ran a tire business. He has two brothers, Imran Khan and Salman Khan, and one sister Rukhsana Begum.

He began his career with prominent serials on Doordarshan like ‘Chanakya’, ‘Bharat Ek Khoj’, ‘Sparsh’, ‘Sara Jahan Hamara’, ‘Banegi Apni Baat’. He became a popular face with his role in ‘Lal Ghaas Par Neele Ghonde’ where he played the role of iconic leader Lenin. It was translated by Uday Prakash based on a Russian play by Mikhail Shatrov. He had acted a few serials on Star Plus and other channels.

He made his debut with Meera Nair’s controversial film Salaam Bombay (1988), though his role was edited at the least minute. He acted in numerous parallel films like Basu Chatterjee’s Kamla Ki Maut  (1989) where he featured opposite Roopa Ganguly.   In 1990, Irrfan worked with iconic filmmaker Tapan Sinha in his film ‘Ek Doctor Ki Maut’ having Pankaj Kapoor in the central role. He worked in a few more parallel cinemas. 

His role in Maqbool in 2004 opened new doors for him and after his stint in Rog (2005) there was no looking back for the actor but he always remained in touch with his first love, the stage. The biggest advantage and perhaps disadvantage was his cult looks. The out of the bottle looks made him special, those who would meet him would never feel like meeting a celebrity but the guy next door. Irrfan himself was aware of this would cherish this characteristic about his personality. His role in Mira Nair’s Namesake (2006) was appreciated by all.   

Irrfan had a big struggling life in films but with his dedication and zeal to achieve the peak, he became a world-famous name. Not just Bollywood but Irfan left his mark in Hollywood too.

Social media is abuzz with condolences pouring in from all quarters. Irrfan Khan had a short span of successful cine career but has left an indelible mark in the world of cinema. He will be always remembered for his impeccable acting and the cult expressions that would bring the characters alive he played on screen.   

Vikram Gokhale no more, actors yet to learn a lot from him; read more

Vikram Gokhale, a name that had simply mesmerized the cine lovers for over four-decades. he made his debut into cinema with Amitabh Bachchan starrer Parwana (1971). His balanced acting and subtle dialogue representation attracted each and everybody. Though, Vikarm Gokhale created a niche for himself with the Marathi stage but subsequently made his strong presence in the Hindi filmdom having numerous big banners to his credit. During 80s with the advent of tele-serials on Doordarshan, he became a household name, yet he created a special place for himself among his admirers. Personally, I simply fell in love with his acting ever since I saw him. I remember watching him for the first time in a Marathi film on Doordarshan in the regional film telecast on Sundays. However, his acting in Amol Palekar’s ‘kasturi’ was simply awesome.

In 2010, Gokhale received the National Award for Best Actor for his work in the Marathi film Anumati. He also forayed into direction with the Marathi film Aaghaat. Known for balanced acting, Gokhale was a director’s actor and would fit in any character or shade. Predominantly an actor who played positive shades but had also done negative characters.

Vikram Gokhale, who worked in numerous Hindi films including including Amitabh Bachchan’s Agneepath and Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam, starring Salman Khan and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan. His career spanning over a period of over 40 years, he also starred in several television serials.

Gokhale starred in films like Mission Mangal, Hichki, Aiyaari, Bang Bang!, De Dana Dan and Bhool Bhulaiyaa, among others in the recent years. He was last seen in the Marathi film ‘Godavari. He was seen in Nikamma, alongside Shilpa Shetty and Abhimanyu Dassani earlier this year.

His condition deteriorated since Friday late night. His wife Vrushali said, “He slipped into coma yesterday afternoon and post that, he has not responded to touch. He is on ventilator. Doctors will decide tomorrow morning what to do, depending on whether he’s improving, sinking or still not responding. He improved a bit but slipped again. He has had a host of issues, like in heart and kidney. At the moment, he has had a multi-organ failure.”   

Vikarm Gokhale is no more but he will be alive through his work. The social media has been abuzz ever since the news of his death has been flashed.

Amitabh Bachchan turns 80. A glace down memory lane at his charisma, career & nostalgia

This is a personal to the man who like all human-beings has both negative and positive sides of his personality. Well, in all perspective, he is the Superstar and would remain the ultimate in the Bollywood post 70s as none could overpower his charisma. His admirers call him by numerous names – ‘Star of the Millennium’, ‘Shahenshah of acting’, ‘Big B’, or as people in people in Bengal call him ‘guru’. Undoubtedly, the superstar, and he is none other than Amitabh Bachchan. The actor turns 80 on Tuesday (today).

During the late 70s, and 80s, people used to emulate the style statements from haircut to dress and even his mannerism. It was normal to watch young boys trying to ape his gait or style of gazing. Not to mention mimicking his voice and rhetoric of popular dialogues from his films.

For his fans, 1982, was indeed a very bad year. Amitabh Bachchan fought with death after being badly injured in his intestine during the shooting of Mammohan Desia blockbuster, ‘Coolie’. The actor who is well known for trying difficult stunts out of sheer love for adventure was wrongly punched in the stomach by the villain in the film Puneet Issar. His intestine got ruptured and he was admitted to Breach Candy Hospital in Mumbai where he was clinically dead.

Amitabh Bachchan like others had a ups and downs in his life and career. It was due to financial problems he took to television and began compering for Kaun Banega Carorpati (KBC) that became a massive hit within no time and once again his style and cult was appreciated by all. People sat glued tor their television set to watch the show. For the Superstar, a lot many things had changed drastically after the success of KBC. Bachchan, who once even drifted apart from public interest or cause promotional films or documentaries, was seen almost endorsing anything and everything on the commercial platform.

In terms of selecting projects for films too changed immensely especially after the massive success of ‘Baghwan’ where he played the role of a father who faced neglect and insult from his three sons, all well settled in their lives. It’s about how the father teaches the sons a lesson and make them understand how it feels if parents are left alone or ignored at the fag end of their lives, when they need their children the most. Bachchan had sang songs in his voice after decades in the film ‘Baghwan’. After this Bachchan started playing character actor’s roles and did not hesitate to play father’s role of Akshay Kumar and many young actors. However, his films ‘Chini Kam’ with Taboo, ‘Paa’, ‘Pink’, ‘Pikoo’ to name a few were critically acclaimed from cine lovers and film critics. ‘Nishabd’ opposite 17-year old Jia Khan attracted both negetive and positive reactions especially for his bold scenes with Jia Khan in the film.

Summing up a mammoth personality like Amitabh Bachchan is not easy in few paragraphs. Those of us who have grown up in the era when Amitabh Bachchan was an icon who influenced many of us, if not the man in real for some but his screen image of being a saviour or the cult ‘angry young man’ image worked as an inspiration and influence.

Once again wishing Amitabh Bachchan a very Happy Birthday. I being an ardent admirer of his used to send him letters, cards and received replies along with autographed photographs part of collection. I have shared a few photographs from my scrapbook or collection.

I shall try to key-in a story on different aspects from his life, cine career, charisma, and his glamour.

Asha Parekh to get Dada Saheb Phalke Award

Asha Parekh, the actress with a big bun on her head, large eyelashes and eyes who had ruled the hearts of millions with her innocent looks and acting skills, would be conferred with Dadasaheb Phalke Award. This was officially announced on Tuesday, by the Union Minister for Minister of Information and Broadcasting, Anurag Thakur. She would be given the award for her contribution to cinema on September 30, 2022.

Parekh who reached the peak of her career in the 1960s and 1970s, started her career as a child actor and was cast by filmmaker Bimal Roy in Maa (1952) when she was 10. Apart from Hindi films, she had also acted in in Gujarati, Punjabi and Kannada films. She directed Gujarati serial Jyoti (1990) and produced shows such as Palash ke Phool, Baaje Payal, Kora Kagaz and Dal Mein Kaala.

It was during the late 70s and 80s, Parekh was seen doing a few character roles. In the later phase she took to the medium of television and started her own production company

Some her all time hits are:
Dil Deke Dekho (1959), Jab Pyar Kisi Se Hota Hai (1961), Phir Wohi Dil Laya Hoon (1963), Teesri Manzil (1966), Baharon Ke Sapne (1967), Pyar Ka Mausam (1969), and Caravan (1971). With Raj Khosla’s Do Badan (1966), Chirag (1969), Main Tulsi Tere Aangan Ki (1978) and Kati Patang.

The Dadasaheb Phalke Award is the highest honour in Indian cinema.

Visit my Facebook page on Satyajit Ray, link inside

Please visit and ‘like’ my page on Great Master #SatyajitRay https://m.facebook.com/tributetosatyajitray/

The page contains photographs of his house as it was immediately after his death Today, a lot has changed, many things including furniture.

The page not only contains materials from print, video, audio on the Great Master Satyajit Ray, but it also carries the photographs that I clicked at the residence of Satyajit Ray at 1/1, Bishop Lefroy Road, Kolkata. I am grateful to Babuda (Sandip Ray) fro allowing me to take photographs. I have tried to post them like documentary. Please have a look.