Known for his quirky roles, Kamal Haasan's debut Hindi film, Ek Duje Ke Liye (1981) had memorable songs and a tragic end that left an impact. The film is a Hindi romantic tragedy movie directed by K. Balachander, starring Kamal Haasan and Rati Agnihotri in the main lead. It was a remake of the director's own Telugu movie Maro Charitra (1978). The film was labelled a blockbuster at the box office in 1981, earning a total of 100 million rupees. The duo received critical appreciation from one and all.
The actor won his first National Award for Sadma (1983) where he portrayed a teacher who falls in love with a girl suffering from amnesia. Surmai Ankhiyon Mein sounds haunting till date. The film was a remake of Mahendra's own 1982 Tamil film Moondram Pirai, which also starred Sridevi and Kamal Haasan. Sadma was widely acclaimed by critics for its direction, screenplay, music and performances. Though the film didn't perform well at box-office numbers, steadily it gained a lot of appreciation from movie lovers. In fact, now this film is considered as one of the cult movies.
Directed by Ramesh Sippy, Saagar (1984) is a love triangle that had Haasan playing the sacrificial lover. Kamal Hassan ultimately won the Best Actor award, his first and only award in that category for a Hindi film.
Pushpak (1987), a silent black comedy beautifully captured the common man's aspirations. It went on to become a cult film. Not only this, the film has received the National Film Award for Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment and Filmfare Award South for Best Film. The film was premiered at the International Film Festival of India, 1988 Cannes Film Festival in the International Critics' Week, and retrospectively at the Shanghai Film Festival and Whistling Woods International Institute.
Nayakan (1987) won Kamal Haasan the National Award for Best Actor. He essayed the role of don Velunayakan to perfection. It is loosely based on the real-life Bombay underworld don Varadarajan Mudaliar, which sympathetically depicts the struggle of South Indians living in the city of gold - Mumbai.
Appu Raja (1990) starred Kamal Haasan in a triple role, most notable amongst them being that of the dwarf clown. The audience witnessed Kamal Haasan in a triple role for the first time, as a mechanic, a circus clown who is a dwarf and a police officer, along with Gautami and Rupini playing lead roles.
Chachi 420 (1998) was the Indian version of Mrs Doubtfire with Kamal playing the title role in this laugh riot. It was the first film directed by Kamal Haasan who also starred in the film playing double roles. The film also starred Tabu, Amrish Puri, Om Puri, Johnny Walker, Paresh Rawal, Rajendranath Zutshi, Ayesha Jhulka, Nassar and Fatima Sana Shaikh in pivotal roles.
Directed by Haasan, Hey Ram (2000) depicted the murder of Mahatma Gandhi by Nathuram Godse. Hey Ram is an Indian alternate historical fiction-political thriller film which was simultaneously made in three different languages - Tamil, Hindi and also dubbed in Telugu. This film saw Shah Rukh Khan and Kamal Haasan for the first time on the silver screen together.
A science fiction film, Dashavatar (2008) featured Kamal Haasan in 10 different roles. The film's screenplay was also penned by the actor, which was also under production for a span of three years, making this one a unique film.
Vishwaroopam was an espionage thriller written, directed and co-produced by Kamal Haasan who also played the lead role. There were controversies regarding the film's plotline, which led to an official ban for 15 days in Tamil Nadu.
Kamal Haasan celebrates his 65th birthday today. On his special day, we take a look at the best performances of the Padma Shri recipient and three-time National Award-winning actor.
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