The Family

Anil Kapoor

Rated as one of the top ten heroes of Bollywood, Anil Kapoor, son of veteran producer, Surinder Kapoor, was born on December 24, 1959 in a middle-class family living at Chembur in Mumbai. The second child of his parents, Anil was known to be a shy and introvert child but that didn't deter him from getting the first break in his career at the age of seven when he played the young Shashi Kapoor in a film called "Tu Payal Main Geet". The film never got released, but the little Anil realized that this was what he enjoyed doing most. His childhood days are full of fond memories of watching 16 mm prints of films like "Kohinoor" (starring Dilip Kumar & Meena Kumari) and "Insaan Jaag Utha" (Sunil Dutt & Madhubala) on makeshift screens, erected during the Ganesh festivals. He and his two brothers, Boney and Sanjay, watched these films with awe and wonder. The film that really inspired him was Raj Kapoor's "Awara". The film strengthened his resolve to become a great actor like the legendary Raj Kapoor.

His college days at Xaviers, required him to take a train from Kurla to V.T. Station and walk to college from there. He made friends with Mazhar Khan, a fellow actor and a fellow dreamer. His efforts to seek admission in the Pune Film Institute did not pay off, since he failed in the written test. He then enrolled in Roshan Taneja's acting classes along with his friend, Mazhar Khan. He would change three buses to reach the class and get home late at night absolutely tired but completely satisfied with the way his life was shaping up. His modest upbringing in the Tilak Nagar chawl at Chembur did not stop him from pursuing his dream.

Anil took pride in the fact that his parents and family gave him something that most middle class people were often deprived of, OPPORTUNITY. He considered it his oyster, one that he could shape the way he wanted it to.

Having set his goal, he decided to hone his talent further as an actor. He learnt singing and dancing and read several biographies of luminaries like SOPHIA LOREN and LAURENCE OLIVIER. He even worked as an assistant producer and casting director with bade bhaiya Boney in HUM PAANCH and the other home productions.

Back in Mumbai, he bagged two films, M. S. Sathyu's KAHAN KAHAN SE GUZAR GAYA, an offbeat film and Saawan Kumar Tak's LAILA opposite Poonam Dhillon. His official big debut was however his first release, brother Boney' Kapoor's WOH SAAT DIN. His performance as the lovelorn singer / music director in the sensitively made film opposite Padmini Kolhapure, won him a lot of appreciation, besides the film proving to be a huge commercial success.

That was followed by Yash Chopra's MASHAAL, which fulfilled his childhood dream of working with veteran actor, Dilip Kumar. The premier of the film proved to be a turning point in his career when Subhash Ghai congratulated him and signed him for two of his films, MERI JUNG and KARMA. It was the beginning of stardom for him.

The day he signed the two films, he also fulfilled his promise of pledging marriage to his beloved, Sunita Bhambani, a leading print model, with whom he shared a great relationship in the formative years of his career. The two got married in a private ceremony attended only by family and close friends on the 19th of May 1984.

His career zoomed to great heights thereafter. While ANDAR BAHAR, MASHAAL and SHAKTI, did promising business at the box-office, his performance in Subhash Ghai's KARMA catapulted him further to stardom. Another film that proved to be eventful in his career was brother, Boney Kapoor's MR INDIA, which went on to consolidate his position as a great star and Boney Kapor's position as a big-time producer. The following year proved to be yet another turning point when he got acclaim for his performance in N. Chandra's TEZAAB and also won the Best Actor award for the year.

The awards continued with his memorable performances in films, be it BETA ('93), VIRASAT ('97) or the National Award for PUKAAR in 2001. The biggest award though according to him was when the three actors that he revered Dilip Kumar, Amitabh Bachchan and Mamootty, called him up after seeing PUKAR to him on his performance. Anil Kapoor worked with Sridevi and Madhuri Dixit in many films, a majority of which proved to be major hits at the box-office. Among them were MR INDIA, LAMHE and LAADLA with Sridevi and TEZAAB, RAM LAAKHAN, PARINDA, KISHEN KANHAIYA with Madhuri Dixit. 1942- A LOVE STORY had him in a very different role against Manisha Koirala. On the other hand, Yash Chopra's romantic film LAMHE saw him doing a character with two different shades. In BIWI NO. 1, he proved that he could excel in comedy too, while in HAMARA DIL AAPKE PAAS HAI, he played the character of a man who undergoes a change of values and pursues his wife, with whom he has a contractual marriage.

His new 'young' stud look in MUSAFIR with a short blond crew cut, rough stubble and a lean-mean body made him a new favorite among his fans. While Boney Kapoor's NO ENTRY, a comedy film with Salman Khan, Fardeen Khan, Bipasha Basu, Lara Dutt, Celina Jaitely and Esha Deol was big commercial hit of 2005 then Ram Gopal Verma's MY WIFE'S MURDER, an off-beat thriller also won him many critical acclaims. While 2006 saw the release of HUMKO DEEWANA KAR GAYE and DARNA ZAROORI HAI with average success then 2007 was inundated with two big hits like musical hit SALAAM-E-ISHQ and WELCOME as one of the blockbuster of the year. But the thing which gave Anil enormous gladness to feel proud was when he saw daughter Sonam Kapoor's launch in the film industry with SAAWARIYA. His did films like BLACK & WHITE, RACE, TASHAN, YUVVRAAJ, NO PROBLEM, TEZZ and Race with some very challenging roles and big banners.

He also starred as the devious game show host in one of his most vivid, precise performances for the Oscar-winning sensation SLUMDOG MILLIONARE which racked up ten Academy Awards including ones for Best Picture and Best Director. It also swept the BAFTA, British Academy of Film and Television Arts awards when it won seven prizes including the Best Music Score for Indian composer AR Rahman and the Best Film at the prestigious award function here.

After SLUMDOG MILLIONARE he starred in the eighth season of hit US TV show 24 as an Indian counter-terrorist cop. Now, Anil has also acquired the remake rights for the popular TV series for a whopping amount to create an Indian rendition.

His yet another international recognition came in the form of MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE - GHOST PROTOCOL where he played a villain. Other Hollywood project that he currently has in the pipeline include CITIES (co-starring Clive Owen and Orlando Bloom). While on Bollywood front he has Mr. INDIA - 2, NO ENTRY MEIN ENTRY a sequel to NO ENTRY and Sanjay Gupta's SHOOTOUT AT WADALA which are currently on. His lately released film RACE 2 garnered wide acclaim.

He donned the mantle of producer with Úlan for GANDHI MY FATHER directed by veteran theatre personality Feroz Abbas Khan. The next venture which he produced was a special one as it was a family affair. While Sonam Kapoor, his first daughter, starred in AISHA alongside Abhay Deol, his second daughter Rhea Kapoor looked after the production.

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