Bollywood character actors who stole the show
Notwithstanding her small role as the groom’s bua in 'Dum Laga Ke Haisha', Sheeba Chaddha made a huge impact. We look at some character actors ruled the screen despite limited reel time
While most actors compete for maximum screen presence, only a few get lucky. However, your local DVD librarian may not have pointed out is that an increasing number of character roles played by lesser known faces are keeping the audience glued to its seats. At some point or the other, we have all had instances when our hand is sunken in a bucket of popcorn and we are so overawed by a movie sequence that it doesn’t return to stuff our open mouth. When was the last time a minuscule role got magnified because of the actor’s sheer talent?
hitlist takes a look at some recent instances…
Film: Queen (2014)
Talent quotient: Like the popular ’90s game Mario, it takes an experienced person to make him jump the large gaps to move to the next level. In our industry, after a successful modelling career many opt for the next level — a film role. Lisa can be credited for accepting the challenge and taking the leap of faith after her earlier appearances did not get her the desired break that she accomplished by playing Vijayalakshmi in Queen. The model turned actress single-handedly manages to act as the force that brings about a positive change in the lead actress’ approach to life.
Film: Badlapur (2015)
Talent quotient: The entire cast of Sriram Raghavan’s film was aptly selected allowing a nuanced approach to the topic. In an interview, the actress revealed that in mainstream cinema she looks up to three women: Priyanka Chopra for her work in Mary Kom, Kangana Ranuat in Queen and Vidya Balan in Kahaani. If these three women are Radhika’s choice of progressive characterisation of Indian woman, we would say she achieved the same in one-fourth the screen time that her role models did.
Film: Talaash (2012)
Talent quotient: We cannot count him among the stars, but after we had him to our heart’s fill in Gangs of Wasseypur 2, seeing him in a smaller role in Talaash was kind of irksome. However, it is a sure thing that no one else would have been able to execute the role to such perfection. Remember his chutzpah, his expressions that aptly mirrored his circumstances and the desperation to turn over a new leaf after committing one last crime that got highlighted by the limping? That’s some real talent.
Saharsh Kumar Shukla
Film: Highway (2014)
Talent quotient: The canvas that Imtiaz Ali sets out to colour requires his actors to bring out the different shades to their characters. Goru played by Shukla is a character that is especially enjoyable to watch in the film. Although he is the most non-intimidating kidnapper one would ever imagine being abducted by, without too many dialogues and using the appropriate body language he entertains the audience through the otherwise sombre temperament that the film anchors upon.
Film: Dum Laga Ke Haisha (2015)
Talent quotient: The film is still running in cinemas so to offer nothing more than a flavour of this fine talent — without ruining the theatrical experience of those who are against piracy and have still not found the auspicious occasion to venture out — let’s prepare you for the bua. Chaddha plays a tyrannical, highly opinionated bua with conviction. She is not exactly the new stunt double for Farida Jalal, but offers a refreshing take on the “Jalalian” antics of womanhood.
Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub
Film: Raanjhanaa (2013)
Talent quotient: He was one among the struggling contingent of actors who has been hard to ignore. His role in the Sonam Kapoor and Dhanush-starrer gave him an opportunity to showcase his abilities that gave the film its North Indian flavour that was frankly lost at the hands of the lead pair for some part. Dhanush’s role required him to embody the personality traits of a lover who has gone astray and finally dies, but the degree of his steady downfall is only measured and exacted by the concerned friend Murari played by Ayyub.
Film: Baby (2015)
Talent quotient: Type Mikaal Zulfikaar on your online search engine and it will throw up suggestions of three dimensions to your search. If you do not want to opt just for ‘Mikaal Zulfikaar’, you can go for what others have already tried finding out: ‘Mikaal Zulfikaar mom’, ‘Mikaal Zulfikaar wife’ or ‘Mikaal Zulfikaar son’. Maybe, most people were all too eager to know where the talented actor gets his genes from, if he is already married and who gets the genes for keeps. Genes apart, Baby wouldn’t have been what it turned out to be had it not been for Mikaal’s able support to lead actor Akshay Kumar.