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Sixty not out

Friday, January 12, 2018
By Deepa Gahlot

According to information sent by the publicists of Kaalakaandi, releasing this week, it is Saif Ali Khan’s 60th film (give or take a couple).

The star, who was actually dropped from his first film Bekhudi (and replaced by Kamal Sadanah), he has come a long way. He may not have the kind of super-stardom of the other Khans that bring in the crowds on opening weekend, but he has done quite well for himself. His first film, was Yash Chopra’s Parampara (1993) and then it was relatively smooth sailing for the born-with-silver-spoon son of Sharmila Tagore and Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi. He has played some absurd roles and some nasty negative ones, without any dent in his image.

Still, since 60 is a landmark number, and he has been in the industry for nearly 25 years, a look at some of his best performances.

1)   Rangoon (2017): Vishal Bhardwaj’s film may not have worked at the box-office, but his performance as the suave film producer Rustom Billimoria, seemed to be tailor-made for him.

2)   Kurbaan (2009): In this Rensil D’Silva film, he played a terrorist, who deceived and tormented his wife (Kareena Kapoor, later to be his real-life spouse) so carry out his nefarious plans.

3)   Love Aaj Kal (2009): In Imtiaz Ali’s film, he starred opposite Deepika Padukone in a modern-day love story in which the career-driven couple is commitment-phobic till realization dawns that the one they are giving up is The One.

4)   Omkara (2006): This is arguably Saif Ali Khan’s best performance, as Iago/Langda Tyagi, in Vishal Bhardwaj’s adaptation of Othello. Because he played a rough, rural character against type, he won several awards and rave reviews for his portrayal.

5)   Being Cyrus (2005): In this almost forgotten little indie film by Homi Adajania, he played the eponymous character who gets involved in the shenanigans of a dysfunctional Parsi family.

6) Salaam Namaste (2005): Sidharth Anand’s romcom had him play an Australia based chef (he played a chef again later in the 2017 film titled Chef) man who freaks out when his live-in girlfriend (Preity Zinta) finds herself pregnant.

7)   Hum Tum (2004): Kunal Kohli’s film inspired by When Harry Met Sally, has him in the role of cartoonist who has a now on-now-off romance with Rhea (Rani Mukerji), till years later, he finally realizes that he loves her and wants to marry her.

8)    Ek Hasina Thi (2004): No other star could have played a part of a man so horrible and survived as a leading man—in this Sriram Raghavan film, he seduces and dupes an innocent young woman (Urmila Matondkar), and lets her take the rap for his crimes.

9)   Dil Chahta Hai (2001): In Farhan Akhtar’s much-admired film about the lives and loves of three urban men, he played the die-hard romantic but unlucky in love guy.

10)  Main Khiladi Tu Anari (1994):  One of his early films, in which he displayed his flair for comedy in the role of a film star who wants to break his loverboy image and do an action role by observing the macho cop (Akshay Kumar).

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