As soon as the news of the veteran actor Dilip Kumar’s demise broke today, social media was flooded with people recounting the importance the thespian held in their personal and professional life. Even people who had never met or worked with him sang praises of him, such was the aura of the iconic actor.
Suresh Oberoi was one such actor who got to work with Dilip Sahab in two films, Vidhaata and Mazdoor. He even played Dilip Sahab’s son in the former. “I was one of the luckiest people to get to work with him. He was such a great man, and I did a two-scene role in Vidhaata just because I was getting to play Dilip Kumar sahab’s son. I am grateful to BR Chopra sahab who gave me the biggest break to play a villain opposite Dilip Kumar sahab after that in Mazdoor. What bigger break could one ask for,” he asks.
Oberoi idolised DIlip sahab but playing a villain opposite him never scared him. “Once the camera was on, we were just our characters so there was no apprehension as I would become a different person. But every morning when we arrived on set, I would touch his feet, and did the same if we met anywhere outside too,” he shares.
Dilip Sahab’s work has worked as a reference for almost all actors, and having worked with him, Oberoi got a lot of tips from him on acting in person as well. “He gave me a lot of tips but whenever on set me or the director would have any doubt on how the scene went, he would intervene saying, ‘It was fantastic Suresh, don’t worry. You don’t need a retake for that.’ It used to boost my confidence a lot as well,” he recalls.
Not only professionally, but personally too, Dilip sahab was an idol for Oberoi. “In personal life, what anyone could learn from him was the way he spoke and met with people, and how he always put his hand on my head to bless me whenever I touched his feet. I have received a lot of awards, but the biggest award I got was that when I did a scene during Mazdoor, he spoke to BR Chopra ji in Punjabi, ‘Kitho dhund ke le aaye ho yaar ye munde nu?’ He really liked my work and he hugged me after the scene on set. I had tears in my eyes and there cannot be a greater memory than that for me. Every morning he would write his scenes using his red pen in Urdu and then make me read it too. He was never stressed and it felt like home as if I was working with a big brother of mine,” he remembers emotionally.
Oberoi is also grateful to Dilip sahab’s wife Saira Banu. “They taught the world how a couple can live with so much love. The kind of respect I have for Saira ji is so much and I want to touch her feet too. She has taken care of not only him but their relationship too during sickness and in health. She played the role of a wife and then later of a mother, taking care of him all the time. This is possible only in the East. We can tell our kids to see them as an example,” he concludes.
Image Source: Instagram/oberoi_suresh/dilipkumarfc ,spotboye archives
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