Happy birthday Naseeruddin Shah! Revisiting some of his iconic roles
Naseeruddin Shah turned 72 on Wednesday! From his humble beginning in Barabanki, Uttar Pradesh to becoming one of the most beloved actors, Shah's journey in itself has been a wonder. Over the course of his vast cinematic journey, the seasoned actor has appeared in numerous films that are now considered iconic. On his birthday, we revisit some of the actor's most memorable roles.
Kundan Shah's 1983 dark satire film Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro still resonates with audiences even today. While the actor is known for portraying the role of Vinod, a struggling photographer, many would also remember him for the iconic Mahabharata scene. Interestingly, that particular scene was improvised by Shah and his co-actor Ravi Baswani. Even 39 years after its release, this still feels relevant today.
The 1983 classic Masoom co-starred Shabana Azmi and Urmila Matondkar as well. The film was a Hindi adaptation of author Erich Segal's bestseller Man, Woman and Child and revolved around the concept of infidelity. Shekhar Kapur spoke about Shah's acting in his film and said, "Naseer's performance was not just a performance. It was a state of being. He didn't act. He just was."
Iqbal helmed by Nagesh Kukunoor was a coming-of-age sports drama that put Shah in the shoes of a retired cricket coach who turns into an alcoholic after his career ends. He comes across a young boy, Iqbal (Shreyas Talpade), who was deaf and different from other kids—criteria that could write him off as a cricket player but Shah recognizes his talent and trains him.
Shah nailed his performance in A Wednesday as the man who fights back against terrorist organizations. One of his iconic dialogues from the film is: "I'm just a stupid common man...aam aadmi ki tarah jiyo, aam aadmi ki tarah bardaash karo aur aam aadmi ki tarah maro (Live like a common man, tolerate like a common man and die like a common man)."
Sparsh was another noteworthy film by the veteran actor. Shah starred along with Azmi and portrayed the role of a visually-impaired man who falls in love with a beautiful school principal (Azmi). The actor's performance tugged at the heartstrings of many with his subtlety while also bringing out different shades of his character Aniruddh in a memorable manner.