Actor-filmmaker Shashi Kapoor, who has starred in over 100 Hindi films and best known for his powerful portrayals in hits like “Namak Halaal”, “Deewar” and “Kabhie Kabhie”, was today chosen for the prestigious Dada Saheb Phalke award, the highest official recognition for film personalities in India.
The 77-year-old actor, who is wheelchair bound and has been ailing from kidney problems, is the third from his family to get the award, after father Prithvi Raj Kapoor and elder brother Raj Kapoor.
The award consists of a Swarn Kamal (Golden Lotus), a cash prize of Rs 10 lakhs and a shawl, an official announcement here said. The award is given on the basis of recommendations of a Committee of eminent persons set up by the Government for this purpose, the statement added.
A five member jury unanimously recommended the name of Kapoor, who has carved out an equally successful career in alternative international cinema and theatre, for the award.
He will be the 46th Dada Saheb Phalke Award winner. Born in 1938, Kapoor hit the spotlight from the age of
four acting in plays directed and produced by his father, while travelling with Prithvi Theatres. He started acting in films as a child in the late 1940s.
His best known performances as child artist were in “Aag” (1948) and “Awaara” (1951), where he played the younger version of the character played by Raj Kapoor. Shashi Kapoor also worked as assistant director in the 1950s.
Kapoor made his debut as a leading man in the 1961 film ‘Dharmputra’ and went on to appear in more than 116 films during 60s, 70s and until the mid 80s.
One of India’s first actors to go international, Kapoor starred in many British and American films, notably Merchant Ivory Productions run by Ismail Merchant and James Ivory, such as “The Householder” (1963), “Shakespeare Wallah” (1965), “Bombay Talkie” (1970) and “Heat and Dust” (1982).
He has also starred in other British and American films such as ‘Siddhartha’ (1972) and “Muhafiz’ (1994), the official statement said.
Kapoor’s nephew Rishi Kapoor congratulated him on twitter, saying, “Yes! Shashi Kapoor to get the prestigious Dada Saheb Phalke award for contribution to Indian Cinema. Well deserved uncle. God Bless!"