In accordance to Indian parameters a hero is virtuous and a larger than life character; he is able of singing, dancing, fighting, emoting, romancing, and having a good sense of humour and is blessed with rakish good looks. In these films they are instrumental in delivering poetic justice. However with time such a notion has undergone a colossal change. Instead of being a larger than life character the heroes are replaced by the Indian actors who are more bona fide, more convincing plausible as well as reflective. Such a transformation had been observed in the 1970s when Indian films were made with heroes who represented the common man. With time other changes seeped in. the hero was no longer the epitome of righteousness. 'To err is human' and he, too, is no longer invincible. Apart from playing the hero's role the Indian actors have experimented with several path breaking roles. While one actor has the courage to play the anti hero at the peak of his career, another Indian actor explored the comic genre.
When it comes to Regional Actors, the mention should be of Tamil Film Industry and the actors. One of the Tamil stars who even ventured into Bollywood Zone and won accolades due to his stormy performance would undoubtedly be Rajnikanth. He made his debut with the film Apoorva Raagangal in 1975 alongside Kamal Hassan. Hailed as one of the most bankable stars of Tamil film industry, Rajnikanth is still unmatchable today. This mega star has received the Padma Bhushan in the year 2000. The humility of the man makes him more popular amongst his fans. It is said that none of the films of Rajnikanth has ever flopped. Kamal Hassan is unarguably a big name of Bollywood and a Regional actor who began his career with K Balachander's film Apoorva Raagangal. From the very beginning of his career he experimented with his roles and was widely applauded for his performances. He is, probably, a rare actor who has won National Award 4 times. This Tamil actor has also acted in Malayalam, Kaannada, Telegu and Hindi films.
Telugu actors who revolutionised the Telegu silver screen of Bollywood are Chiranjeevi, Nagarjuna, etc. Chiranjeevi by the dint of his acting dexterity and proficiency crafted a genre of his own. His social dramas, action movies brought in a completely different era in Telugu cinema. His angry young man roles were runaway hits. He came into focus with the film Pranam Khareedu in 1978. Then he went onto act films such as Manavoori Pandavulu (1978), I Love You (1979), Subhalekha (1982), Intlo Ramayya Veedilo Krishnayya (1982), Khaidi (1982) and several others. He has been awarded Nandi and Filmfare awards several times. He is also the winner of Padma Bhushan in 2006.
Nagarjuna is another Telugu actor who is a known face on the south Indian silvers screen. His first movie was Vikram in 1986. His first big hit was Akhari Poratnaam with Sridevi. His Filmography includes Geethanjali, Shiva, Santosham, Ninne Pelladutha, Annamayya, Nenunnanu, Mass and others. He received the National Award in the Jury section for the film Annamayya. He is also the recipient of Film fare and Nandi awards.
Among most of the Marathi actors the names of Nana Patekar and Amol Palekar should be mentioned. While Amol Palekar is the most celebrated name of 'Middle of the Road' cinema Nana Patekar is well known for his histrionic skills and social and political films. In the mid 1970s Amol Palekar rose to the silver screen with Hindi films of Hrishikesh Mukherjee and Basu Chatterjee. He was the common man's hero. In Maratha films too he played similar roles. It has been around 17 years that Amol Palekar has stopped acting yet he is remembered even today for his immortal roles. Today the veteran actor is engaged with making Maratha films.
A new crop of Maratha actors has taken then silver screen by storm. Actors like Atul Kulkarni, Shreyas Talpade, Ajinkya Deo, Subodh Bhave, Tushar Dalvi and others have taken the responsibility to take Maratha film industry to new heights. Other Maratha actors include Sandeep Kulkarni, Raj Shekhar, Bharat Jadhav, Ankush Chaudhary, Siddharth Jadhav, Lokesh Gupte, Madhura Velankar, Nirmal Pande, Ashok Saraf and others.
Bengali Actors like Dhritimaan Chatterjee, Mithun Chakraborty, Rahul Bose, Ashok Kumar, Sabyasachi Chakraborty are the Bengali actors who have made a place for themselves in the National level Films or Bollywood. Most of Dhritiman Chatterjee's acting work has been seen in the India's "parallel", or independent, cinema with filmmakers like Satyajit Ray, Mrinal Sen and Aparna Sen among others. He is also a familiar name in English language films with well-known filmmakers such as Jane Campion. Dhritiman Chatterjee has received a number of acting awards in India and has also been in the Jury panel of the Indian National film Awards. Rahul Bose did his debut in acting career at the tender age of six; when he played the lead character Tom, the Piper's Son in his school play. He also performed on the Bombay stage as well as in foreign venues. One of the outstanding performances delivered was at the Leicester Haymarket in England where he starred in Tim Murari's The Square Circle. His first film was 'English, August' that became a cult favourite. He played the character of Agastya Sen. Other notable films by Rahul Bose include Kaizad Gustad's Bombay Boys and Split Wide Open. He also directed and acted in a play Everybody Says I Am Fine. Other outstanding films in the career of Rahul Bose are Mr. and Mrs. Iyer opposite Konkona Sen and multi starred comedy flick Jhankaar Beats. Rahul Bose is always seen in offbeat films with weighty characters.
Rahul Bose also did mainstream movies like Thakshak along side Tabu, Chameli with Kareena Kapoor, Pyaar Ke Side Effects (2006) and Maan Gaye Mughal-e-Azam with Mallika Sherawat, Shaurya (2008), Dil Kabaddi (2008) and Mumbai Matinee. He has also acted with Konkona with 15 Park Avenue. He was called "the superstar of Indian art house cinema" by Time magazine and "the Sean Penn of Oriental cinema" by Maxim. Bose has also acted in many Bengali movies like Kaalpurush (2008), The Japanese Wife, Anuranan and Antaheen. Along side these movies he acted in other two English art movies, Before the Rains and A Few Good Men.
Mithun Chakraaborty worked in his debut film with Mrinal Sen in 1976 named 'Mrigaya' which won him accolades and he got the National Film Award for Best Actor. After his debut he played some supporting roles in films such as Do Anjaane and Phool Khile Hain Gulshan Gulshan. After that he played the lead roles in early 1980s films such as Hum Paanch and Wardaat. The later one was a sequel to his early film Surakshaa. His breakthrough role finally came in the musical drama 'Disco Dancer' in 1982 which was a huge success. The next hit was Gunda and this film was followed by other musical films such as Kasam Paida Karne Wale Ki in 1984 and Dance Dance in 1987. All these films showcased him as a talented dancer. He starred in many successful romantic and family drama films during this period such as Mujhe Insaaf Chahiye in1983, Pyaar Jhukta Nahin in1985, Swarg Se Sunder, and Pyaar Ka Mandir. These films remain his most commercially successful films to date. Some of the other hit films of Mithun's career can be mentioned as Wanted, Boxer, Jagir, Jaal, Watan Ke Rakhwale, Commando, Waqt Ki Awaaz, Guru and Dushman. The actor ruled the industry for a decade.
In the late 1990s he took a break from acting and relocated to Ooty where he set up some businesses. He made a comeback to the mainstream Hindi film industry in 2005 with the films like Elaan, Lucky: No Time for Love, Chingari, Guru, My Name Is Anthony Gonsalves, Heroes and Golmaal 3 Oh My God etc.
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