Early Life of Mehmood
Mehmood was born on 29th September, 1932, in Bombay, British India, as the second of eight children to parents Latifunnisa Ali and Mumtaz Ali, who was himself a film and stage actor-cum-dancer and a huge star in the 40s and the 50s. Mumtaz Alis career slumped due to excessive alcohol consumption with his family suffering hardships. This led to the eldest son in the family, Mehmood work as a child artist and his sister Minoo Mumtaz work as a dancer in their fathers stage shows and later in movies.
Film Career of Mehmood as a Child Artiste
Mehmood worked as a child artist in the films of production house Bombay Talkies such as Kismet, released in the year 1943 and film Sanyasi of 1945, produced and directed by former actor, director and producer A. R. Kardar. He later also engaged in odd jobs, which included being a Table Tennis teacher to actress Meena Kumari and driver for director P. L. Santoshi, father of producer-director Rajkumar Santoshi.
Film Career of Mehmood as a Leading Actor
After getting married to his wife Madhu, sister of Meena Kumari, and becoming a father, Mehmood decided upon acting as a full time career to make a better living. He got a minor break of playing a killer in the film C.I.D., produced by Guru Dutt. He continued portraying minor roles, such as a peanut seller in the film Do Bigha Zamin and the protagonists brother in Pyaasa. He later went on to act in lead roles in Hindi films, but got noticed and earned appraisal for his comic roles, some of which were in Urdu accent of Hyderabad origin. He earned fame with Parvarish (1958), starring Raj Kapoor and Mala Sinha. He delivered several hit films like Sasural (1961), Dil Tera Diwana (1962), Ziddi (1964), Arzoo (1965), Love in Tokyo (1966), Patthar ke Sanam (1967) and Padosan (1968). Padosan left an indelible impression in the minds of the audience. The film starred Sunil Dutt, Saira Banu and Kishore Kumar. Mehmood was hilarious in his role of a South Indian music teacher who falls in love with his student Bindu, played by Saira Banu. By this time, Mehmood had established himself as one of the most natural comedians of Hindi cinema.
In the late 70s, Mehmoods popularity started declining as emerging comic actors Jagdeep, Asrani, Kader Khan and Paintal shot into prominence. In the 90s, he made a few movies that were either shelved or failed to make any impression. In 1994, he appeared as an actor in his last hit film Andaz Apna Apna by Rajkumar Santoshi, as the character Johnny of "Wah-Wah Productions".
Selected Filmography of Mehmood
In his illustrious career, Mehmood has worked in over 300 Hindi films, acting in most, producing 4 and directing 7, while also being the playback singer of many Hindi film songs. His selected films along with their years of release are highlighted hereunder.
Awards conferred upon Mehmood
Mehmood, regarded as one of the greatest comedians ever in Bollywood, holds the record of the maximum number of nominations in the Filmfare Award for Best Performance in a Comic Role, with a whooping 19 nominations. He won the award 4 times for his performances in films Pyar Kiye Jaa in 1967, Waaris in 1970, Paras in 1972 and Vardaan in 1975. He has the second most number of wins in the category, only behind veteran actor Anupam Kher who has won 5 times. He had also won the Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in the 1963 film Dil Tera Diwana.
Personal Life of Mehmood
Mehmood had an elder sister and six younger siblings. His sister, Minoo Mumtaz, is a former successful Hindi film character actress and dancer. His youngest brother, Anwar Ali, too is an actor and producer of films such as 1982s Khud-Daar and 1987s Kaash. One of his sons, Lucky Ali (birth name Maqsood Ali) is a popular singer and composer.
Mehmood passed away in his sleep on the 23rd of July, 2004, at 72, in Pennsylvania, United States. He had undergone a cardiac illness treatment there after suffering prolonged poor health.
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