Tribute

‘The most handsome man the film industry has ever seen’: Tributes pour in for Shashi Kapoor

The screen icon, who has starred in such hits as ‘Jab Jab Phool Khile’, ‘Deewar’ and ‘Fakira’ died in Mumbai at the age of 79.

Legendary actor and producer Shashi Kapoor died on Monday in Mumbai at the age of 79. He had been suffering from various ailments for many years.

Kapoor was a second-generation actor. The son of theatre personality Prithviraj Kapoor and the brother of Raj and Shammi, Shashi Kapoor began his screen career as a child actor in such films as Sangram (1950) and Awara (1951).

Kapoor also acted in plays as a child and as a teenager before appearing in his first adult role in Yash Chopra’s Partition-themed Dharamputra in 1961. Over a 110 films would follow, both in Hindi and English.

Among the actor’s most-loved films was Jab Jab Phool Khile (1965), in which he plays a Kashmiri boatman who falls in love with an affluent tourist (Nanda). The Kapoor-Nanda pairing proved to be highly popular, sealing Kapoor’s reputation as a charming ladies’ man.

Play
Jab Jab Phool Khile (1965).

Apart from headlining movies such as the box office hit Fakira (1979), Kapoor proved to be an effective foil to Amitabh Bachchan’s smouldering Angry Young Man character in the 1970s. Kapoor and Bachchan appeared in many films in the decade and the following one, such as Trishul (1978), Suhaag (1979), Do Aur Do Paanch (1980) and Shaan (1980). Yet, it is Yash Chopra’s Deewar (1975), in which they played brothers on opposite sides of the law, that is most remembered.

Kapoor also appeared in English films, chiefly those by the Merchant-Ivory Productions. His collaboration with James Ivory and Ismail Merchant made him one of the earliest Indian crossover stars. These films included The Householder (1963), Shakespeare Wallah (1965), Siddhartha (1972) and Heat and Dust (1983). Shakespeare Wallah, also starring his sister-in-law Felicity Kendal and his in-laws Geoffrey Kendal and Laura Liddell, is currently being restored.

Play
Shakespeare Wallah (1960).

Kapoor’s stint as a producer led to the arthouse classics Junoon (1978), Kalyug (1981), Vijeta (1982) and Utsav (1984). In an interview with Canadian broadcaster Shushma Datt, Kapoor revealed that production was a life-long wish, which he fulfilled along with his wife Jennifer Kendal in 1977.

“Firstly, Jennifer and I wanted to start a company [production], through which I could work in great films,” Kapoor said in the interview. “We also wanted to start a theatre, where could make great plays, which also helps new actors to do good dramas. In 1978 we started working on my film Junoon and started the Prithvi Theatre too in the same year.”

In a statement, actor Shekhar Suman, who made his debut in Utsav, paid his tributes: “Saddest day of my life... Shashi Kapoor ji passed away. The man to whom I owe my entire career. I am grateful to him for all my professional achievements, for giving me my first and the biggest break as a lead in “Utsav” opposite Rekha... Shashi Kapoor was the most handsome man the film industry has ever seen. A ladies man, a gentleman, a great actor and a passionate producer.”

Play

Kapoor’s career received a setback after the death of his beloved wife in 1984. Battling depression and weight gain, the actor cut back his screen roles, and his most noteworthy films during this period were New Delhi Times (1986) and Sammy and Rosie Get Laid (1987), and Side Streets (1998).

We welcome your comments at letters@scroll.in.
Sponsored Content BY 

Advice from an ex-robber on how to keep your home safe

Tips on a more hands-on approach of keeping your house secure.

Home, a space that is entirely ours, holds together our entire world. Where our children grow-up, parents grow old and we collect a lifetime of memories, home is a feeling as much as it’s a place. So, what do you do when your home is eyed by miscreants who prowl the neighbourhood night and day, plotting to break in? Here are a few pre-emptive measures you can take to make your home safe from burglars:

1. Get inside the mind of a burglar

Before I break the lock of a home, first I bolt the doors of the neighbouring homes. So that, even if someone hears some noise, they can’t come to help.

— Som Pashar, committed nearly 100 robberies.

Burglars study the neighbourhood to keep a check on the ins and outs of residents and target homes that can be easily accessed. Understanding how the mind of a burglar works might give insights that can be used to ward off such danger. For instance, burglars judge a house by its front doors. A house with a sturdy door, secured by an alarm system or an intimidating lock, doesn’t end up on the burglar’s target list. Upgrade the locks on your doors to the latest technology to leave a strong impression.

Here are the videos of 3 reformed robbers talking about their modus operandi and what discouraged them from robbing a house, to give you some ideas on reinforcing your home.

Play
Play
Play

2. Survey your house from inside out to scout out weaknesses

Whether it’s a dodgy back door, a misaligned window in your parent’s room or the easily accessible balcony of your kid’s room, identify signs of weakness in your home and fix them. Any sign of neglect can give burglars the idea that the house can be easily robbed because of lax internal security.

3. Think like Kevin McCallister from Home Alone

You don’t need to plant intricate booby traps like the ones in the Home Alone movies, but try to stay one step ahead of thieves. Keep your car keys on your bed-stand in the night so that you can activate the car alarm in case of unwanted visitors. When out on a vacation, convince the burglars that the house is not empty by using smart light bulbs that can be remotely controlled and switched on at night. Make sure that your newspapers don’t pile up in front of the main-door (a clear indication that the house is empty).

4. Protect your home from the outside

Collaborate with your neighbours to increase the lighting around your house and on the street – a well-lit neighbourhood makes it difficult for burglars to get-away, deterring them from targeting the area. Make sure that the police verification of your hired help is done and that he/she is trustworthy.

While many of us take home security for granted, it’s important to be proactive to eliminate even the slight chance of a robbery. As the above videos show, robbers come up with ingenious ways to break in to homes. So, take their advice and invest in a good set of locks to protect your doors. Godrej Locks offer a range of innovative locks that are un-pickable and un-duplicable. To secure your house, see here.

The article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of Godrej Locks and not by the Scroll editorial team.