Ashutosh Gowariker remembers Lekh Tandon: I will always miss his gentleness and warmth
Ashutosh Gowariker pays tribute to Lekh Tandon, who acted in his 2004 film Swades
Veteran filmmaker and actor Lekh Tandon passed away on Sunday evening at his home in Powai. He was 88. The funeral will be held this evening. He started as an assistant director in the 1950s and in the early 1960s branched out as director with Professor (1962), which starred Shammi Kapoor.
Tandon is credited with discovering Shah Rukh Khan. He cast him in his TV serial Dil Dariya. He also directed TV serial Farmaan, which aired on Doordarshan in the early '90s. Tandon was seen as an actor in Swades (2004), Rang De Basanti (2006), Chennai Express (2013) and Chaarfutiya Chhokare (2014).
His directorial Amrapali (1966) which starred Vyjayanthimala and Sunil Dutt, was India's submission to the 39th Academy Awards for the Best Foreign Language Film. Says filmmaker Ashutosh Gowariker, "It was a privilege to work with Lekhji in Swades. He gave a sense of patriotic belief with his convincing portrayal of a freedom fighter.
Not only did I enjoy working with him, but also learnt 'lessons of life' through his cinematic experiences. The last I spoke to him was a year ago. After seeing Amrapali, I called him and congratulated him for the film. To which he said in his own inimitable style, a sweet 'thank you'. I will always miss his gentleness and warmth."
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