November 24, 2021 11:16:04 am
Actor Dilip Kumar’s widow, Saira Banu, has written a remembrance on the sidelines of the ongoing International Film Festival of India (IFFI) in Goa. The late actor was honoured alongside Christopher Plummer, Jean-Paul Belmondo, Surekha Sikri, Puneeth Rajkumar and others, for his contributions to cinema. He died earlier this year, at the age of 98.
In her special article for The Times of India, she wrote about how the late actor carved his own path in the ‘fickle’ film industry, and helped establish some of its most important institutions, like Film City.
“Dilip Kumar’s greatest contribution is the change he brought about in histrionics at a time when actors were being applauded for their loud and theatrical acting,” she wrote, adding, “While his friend and colleague Raj Kapoor was closely following the great Charlie Chaplin and Dev Anand was looking up to Gregory Peck, there was no one to whom he could turn simply because he was determined to be his own teacher and mould himself in his own way. Little did he know then that he would be the icon to three generations of actors in the country.”
She continued, “He has clearly stated that he began his search for a ‘method’ in his own interpretation of characters long before Marlon Brando came up with method acting.”
Dilip Kumar was instrumental in the creation of not just Film City, but also the Nehru Centre. He also devoted his time and energy to the The National Association of the Blind and ‘initiated the setting up of the Film Industry Welfare Trust’.
Dilip Kumar and Saira Banu married in 1966. For his contributions to film, he was awarded with the Padma Bhushan in 1991 and the Padma Vibhushan in 2015, India’s third and second-highest civilian awards, respectively. He was also awarded the Dadasaheb Phalke Award—India’s highest accolade in the field of cinema–in 1994.
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