At a time when the uncertain reigning Khan of Bollywood has started making temple rounds for his upcoming movie “Pathan”, Hindi cinema’s original Khan, the late legendary actor Dilip Kumar, drew house-full crowds at the nationwide celebrations of his 100th birth anniversary organised by a multiplex chain.
At the two-day “Dilip Kumar: Hero of Heroes” celebrations at PVR Cinemas, Dilip Kumar’s “Devdas” (1955) and “Shakti” (1982), where the thespian appeared as DCP Ashwini Kumar in the Amitabh Bachchan-led film, were the favourites of the cinegoers who thronged the cinemas.
During the festival, the films screened were the ones famously associated with the ‘Tragedy King’ who was also a pro at making comic turns. These included “Aan” (1952), “Devdas”, “Ram Aur Shyam’ (1967) and “Shakti”. They were screened in more than 30 cinemas across 20 cities in the country.
Sanjeev Kumar Bijli, Joint Managing Director, PVR Ltd, said: “The two-day film festival film on December 10-11 featuring four critically acclaimed movies generated appreciable response from Dilip Kumar fans primarily in West and Central India, followed by the North and East.”
Bijli shared that “more than 50 per cent of admits was generated from the city of Mumbai alone, being the hub of Bollywood.” The festival also saw appearances by the stars of the yesteryears, notably Dilip Kumar’s wife Saira Banu and Waheeda Rehman. Both were leading ladies of Dilip Kumar in their time.
“Among the movies, ‘Shakti’ and ‘Devdas’ were the favourites of fans,” Bijli said. “The opening day of the festival at PVR Juhu in Mumbai saw the presence of a galaxy of Bollywood celebrities, apart from Saira Banu and Waheeda Rehman. They included Javed Akhtar, Shabana Azmi, Ramesh Sippy, Subhash Ghai, Biswajit, R. Balki, Rohan Sippy, and the families of Bimal Roy and Mehboob Khan.”
Dilip Kumar, whose real name was Mohammed Yusuf Khan, had a career spanning more than five decades and he ruled the silver screen for as long as he was active.