Filmmakers Aanand L Rai, Sujoy Ghosh and Anurag Kashyap shared the names of their favourite character actors.
With the release of Kaamyaab, starring Sanjay Mishra and Deepak Dobriyal, around the corner, many Bollywood filmmakers talked about their favourite character actors. They also shared the importance of a character actor in a movie.
Filmmaker Aanand L Rai, who has helmed films like Tanu Weds Manu, Tanu Weds Manu Returns and Zero, is in awe of actor Om Prakash in Chupke Chupke and Lalita Pawar in Shri 420. He shared, "Character actors even though not always in the main roles are responsible for setting the world of your story. Om Prakash in Chupke Chupke and Lalita Pawar in Shri 420 are all-time favourites. Deepak Dobriyal from Tanu weds Manu series is another one. The way he sketched Puppy for me was magical. He moved from humour to emotion then back to humour like the flow of water and that’s the beauty of character actors."
Raees director Rahul Dholakia is a fan of many Bollywood actors including Shah Rukh Khan and Sanjay Mishra. "For me, every actor should play a character. Be it, Shah Rukh Khan in Raees or Naseer playing Cyrus in Parzania, they all played a character. All good films have a great array of characters and artistes who we call character artistes. I loved watching Utpal Dutt, Om Prakash, Pran and then, became a huge fan of actors like Paresh Rawal, Om Ji, Johnny Bhai and even Sanjay Mishra. Honestly, for me, all actors are equally important as each one of them make the movie. I thought Sheeba was brilliant in Parzania and even in Raees as Shah Rukh’s mother. The list of actors I love is endless," he shared.
Sujoy Ghosh picked late actor Utpal Dutt as his favourite. He said, "Utpal Dutt is the most memorable character actor of all time. I so wanted to make him a part of a film of mine. Especially the scene when he gets caught wrongly in Golmaal and the way he says, ”Aap police Nahin foolish officer ho!”. Not just him but there have been phenomenal actors like Kader khan, Iftekar and Bob Christo."
Vikramaditya Motwane, who believes "character actors have the power to bring comic relief to story-telling", shared, "Some of my favourite character actors in Hindi cinema are Johnny Walker and Sudhir. Mister Appu from Udaan and the watchman from Trapped would be my other two favourites from my own films."
Gangs of Wasseypur fame Anurag Kashyap has actors Utpal Dutt and David in the list of his favourites. Dear Zindagi director Gauri Shinde has a long list of favourites. She said, "I would have a long list but to start with, there is Keshto Mukherjee. I still remember, as a small kid, how he made me laugh, and also Daisy Irani. Without the character actors, it will be like having Indian food without 'mirchi' or 'khatta'. Rajeev Ravindranath, Ashish Bhatia, Yashaswini Dayma are my favourite character actors from my movies."
Abhishek Chaubey, who was appreciated for his film 2019 film Sonchiriya, shared, “Iftekhar is my favourite character actor. What a personality! They do not make men like that anymore. If he was alive, I would have cast him. In the context of Hindi movies of my childhood, character actors made us comfortable. The leads might change, but the character actors remained constant no matter if you were watching a Bachchan film or a Navin Nischol film or a Mithun film. This familiarity made us at ease. If I were to pick from my own films, Rajesh Sharma who plays Kakkad in my first film Ishqiya would be my favourite. He is a superb actor who reminds you of the best of the character actors of a bygone era."
Kaamyaab, a Drishyam Films production presented by Shah Rukh Khan's Red Chillies Entertainment, features Sanjay Mishra as a successful character actor of the 80s who struggles to find a relevant role for his 500th film. The film is slated to release on March 6.