How Bollywood actors have fared in their royal avatars

With Fawad Khan playing a prince in an upcoming film, we rate other actors who have played royalty on the big screen

Bollywood's obsession with royalty goes back decades. From Dilip Kumar's Prince Salim act in 'Mughal-e-Azam' to Hrithik Roshan's portrayal of Emperor Akbar, our screen heroes have effortlessly donned the royal avatar.

Fawad Khan
Fawad Khan plays a prince in the film, 'Khoobsurat'

The latest example is Fawad Khan, who essays the role of a prince in his debut Bollywood film, 'Khoobsurat', opposite Sonam Kapoor. hitlist takes a look at some regal performances in recent times.

Hrithik Roshan
Hrithik Roshan

as Jalaluddin Mohammed Akbar
Rating: 9/10
Film: 'Jodhaa Abkar' (2008)
Hrithik Roshan, who was famous until then largely for his Greek God looks and dancing prowess, proved his versatility with this period drama directed by Ashutosh Gowariker. The actor stepped into the shoes of Jalaluddin Mohammed Akbar and brought a vulnerability to the character, which not many expected in this opulent historical film. When it came to portraying Akbar the Great through his relationship with Jodhaa (Aishwarya Rai) and Hrithik did not disappoint the critics or the audiences.

Hrithik Roshan
Not many can forget Hrithik Roshan’s portrayal of Mughal emperor Akbar in Ashutosh Gowariker’s historical drama, 'Jodhaa Akbar' (2008). Not only did he look great in the regal garb, he also brought a certain veracity to his character

The scene where he gets up and dances with the Sufi musicians to Khwaja mere khwaja and the one where he reveals to his wife, Jodhaa, about being illiterate, are best remembered. All in all, it wouldn’t be wrong to say that Hrithik did justice to his role.

Jimmy Shergill
Jimmy Shergill

as Aditya Pratap Singh
Rating: 8/10
Film: 'Saheb Biwi Aur Gangster' (2011)
Jimmy Shergill played the role of Aditya Pratap Singh, a bankrupt Raja of a small town in North India who has an image and ancestral property to maintain. Struggling with his finances, he takes up the job of contract killing for his survival and also for a better grip over the boiling political situation. Jimmy did a great job portraying Aditya, who was willing to let go of his morals but not his lifestyle. Be it his scenes with Mahi Gill (Chhoti Rani) and his closest aide Deepraj Rana (Kanhaiya), the actor’s nuanced performance had the critics raving.

Manoj Bajpai
Manoj Bajpai

as Maharaja Vijayendra Singh
Rating: 7/10
Film: 'Zubeidaa' (2001)
Manoj Bajpai might not be your conventional prince but the actor did a good job playing Maharaja Vijayendra Singh of Fatehpur. A polo enthusiast and a romantic at heart, Vijayendra “Victor” is shown falling head over heels in love with Zubeidaa (Karisma Kapoor) and taking her as his second wife. The role of Vijayendra was a far cry from the intense, dark and brooding roles that Manoj had done earlier in films like Aks, Shool and Satya. Late Hanwant Singh, the Maharaja of Jodhpur, reportedly inspired the character. Manoj’s flamboyance in the romantic scenes and intensity in the moments of conflictbetween him and Zubeidaa made it an admirable performance.

Salman Khan
Salman Khan

as Veer Pratap Singh
Rating: 6/10
Film: 'Veer' (2009)
A little before Salman became the torchbearer of typical Bollywood masala fare, the superstar penned down the story of a Pindari warrior, Veer. The actor sported long locks, worked on his body and did combat sequences. The film tanked at the box office but Salman’s work was noticed. Till date, the film’s recall factor lies, among other things, in the melodious song, Surili ankhiyonwale.

Saif Ali Khan
Saif Ali Khan
as Prince Harshvardhan
Rating: 6/10
Film: 'Eklavya: The Royal Guard' (2007)
Scion of the Pataudi clan, Saif Ali Khan played the role of a contemporary era royal in 'Eklavya: The Royal Guard'. As the crown prince of Devigarh, Saif is a reluctant heir, who returns home after a long stint in London. The character is shown to struggle with frustration, anger and guilt, and Saif’s performance hardly wowed the critics, who weren’t kind to the film either.

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