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Thread: Sardars of the Silver Screen
07-30-2009, 04:11 PM #1
Sardars of the Silver Screen
This Friday's release love aaj kal has two special 'firsts' for Saif Ali Khan. It's the first film produced by Saif under his banner Illuminati Films and secondly it's the first time that the suave actor would be seen as a 'Sardar' in a Hindi film. Saif who would be seen in a double role in love aaj kal , plays Jai the uber-cool dude of the present era and Veer Singh a passionate sardar who would do anything for the love of his life. While this is a first time experience for Saif playing a sardar, many of Bollywood's top actors have donned the pagdi and portrayed the role of a sardar with elan. Bollywood Hungama takes a trip down memory lane and looks at some of the best on-screen sardars of Bollywood in recent times.
Sunny Deol's name figures first in this list for the Deadly Deol has effectively portrayed the role of a sardar in not one or two but three popular films namely Border, Gadar-Ek Prem Katha and Jo Bole So Nihaal. While his role as the bumbling cop Nihaal Singh in Jo Bole So Nihaal didn't find many takers and also created some unwanted controversy, his acts as the stern Major Kuldeep Singh in Border and as the immensely patriotic Sardar Tara Singh in Gadar- Ek Prem Katha received a thunderous applause from one and all.
Akshay Kumar may have starred in many films with a Punjabi flavor but he got a chance to portray a full-fledged sardar character for the first time in Vipul Shah's Singh Is Kinng. Akki played the bumbling village idiot 'Happy Singh' who in a twist of fate becomes the Kingpin of a Mafia gang. The makers had even designed a special designer pagdi embedded with diamonds for Akshay's character of Happy Singh. The character was loved by one and all and it surely made Akshay Kumar and Vipul Shah 'Happy' as they laughed all the way to the bank
Salman Khan may have done a variety of roles in his career but never in his wildest dreams would he have thought that one day he would be playing a 'Sardar' on screen. The unthinkable happened when Salman was cast as the Army Major Balkar Singh in Samir Karnik's multi-starrer Heroes. Sallu did portray the role with a lot of intensity, however, his trademark dialogue delivery with accent didn't really suit the character of a Sardar.
Big B is one actor who is always known to experiment with his looks in film after film. So when he was required to play a 'Sardar' in Anil Sharma's Ab Tumhare Hawale Watan Saathiyo, Big B left no stone unturned in getting into the skin of the character. The turban, the beard all looked just perfect on Big B as he played the role Major General Amarjeet Singh with elan. What's more he even did the bhangra with as much as ease as a true Punjabi would do. However, this was not the first time that Big B played a sardar. Few years back Amitabh even played a sardar in the forgettable flick Kohraam alongside Nana Patekar. That portrayal however is best forgotten
While most of the above actors portrayed fictional 'sardar' characters, Ajay Devgan had a tougher task at hand. He had to portray one of India's most well-known freedom fighters Bhagat Singh. The film in question was Raj Kumar Santoshi's The Legend of Bhagat Singh. Ajay delivered one of the finest performances of his career as the young Sikh Bhagat Singh who gave up everything for the sake of his nation's freedom. This was probably the most sensitive portrayal of a 'sardar' character in Bollywood and it rightly fetched Ajay the National Award for Best actor
Sanjay Dutt is best known for his portrayal of a bhai or a don in countless films but if one takes a closer look at his filmography, one realizes that even Sanju Baba has played a Sardar in a film. The film in question is a patriotic film Sarhad Paar (2007) which starred Sanju alongwith Tabu, Mahima Choudhary and Chandrachur Singh. Sanjay played the role of Ranjit Singh an army man who returns home after a long time. The film had Sanju sleepwalking through his role and given the fact the film was in the making for a long time, no one really bothered about when the film released and when it was removed from theatres.
Bade bhaiyya Sunny may have portrayed a sardar character effortlessly in quite a few films, however when kid brother Bobby tried the same playing the freedom fighter Bhagat Singh in 23rd March 1931- Shaheed, the impact and the result was not the same. While he may have got the look right, Bobby's portrayal of a sardar lacked the desired punch and with quite a few films on the life of 'Bhagat Singh' being released on the same day Bobby's film lost the race.
He is touted as the 'Next Big thing' in Bollywood and after an impressive debut in Saawariya and a cool performance in Bachna Ae Haseeno, Ranbir Kapoor is all set to try something completely different in his next film. Yes...Ranbir would be seen as a 'Sardar' in Yash Raj Films' forthcoming flick Rocket Singh- Salesman of the Year, directed by Shimit Amin. While not much is known about this movie, going by the looks of it one can safely say that this Punjabi munda does look like a pucca sardar in this get-up. Way to go Ranbir!
In case you are wondering that it's only the men folk in B-town who have portrayed a 'Sardar' in Hindi films, you couldn't be further from the truth. The latest person to don a pagdi and get into the character of a sardar is none other than Rani Mukerjee. The actress will be seen as a cricket obsessed girl who dresses up as a sardar to play the game in YRF's forthcoming flick Dil Bole Hadippa alongside Shahid Kapur. Whether the movie will click at the box office or no, one will have to wait and watch. However, we do give it to Rani for trying out something drastically different this time around.
Besides the above mentioned names, there are quite a few other actors too who have portrayed a sardar in Hindi films in recent times such as Kunal Kapoor (Bachna Ae Haseeno), Jackie Shroff , and Sohail Khan (in the forthcoming flick Kisaan).
We would like you to tell us who you think portrayed the sardar most effectively? Post your views in the comments section below.
07-30-2009, 08:16 PM #2