Shashi Kapoor receives DadaSaheb Phalke Award at Prithvi Theatre

NEW DELHI: A large number of personalities from Bollywood including many of the heroines who shared screen space stood in loud ovation as veteran actor-filmmaker Shashi Kapoor received the Dadasaheb Phalke Award for 2014 for contribution to development of cinema in his home town, Mumbai.

As Kapoor was not well enough to travel to Delhi when the National Film awards were presented by Pranab Mukherjee on 3 May, the actor received the highest national award for contribution to cinema at the Prithvi Theatre from Information and Broadcasting Minister Arun Jaitley.

The award consisting of a Swarn Kamal (Golden Lotus), a cash prize of Rs 10 lakhs, a citation and a shawl was given to the actor who came in on a wheel chair.

Describing him as the most versatile personality Indian cinema has produced, who worked in commercial and alternate cinema, Jaitley in his brief speech said he was an actor par excellence who competed with the very best during his times.

The Minister also credited him with bringing the Hindi cinema and Hollywood together.

He is the third personality from the Kapoor family to get the Phalke award after veteran director Prithviraj Kapoor and Raj Kapoor. He is the 46th Dada Saheb Phalke Award winner. 

The star studded event was attended by his long-time co-star Amitabh Bachchan, directors Shyam Benegal and Govind Nihalani, Asha Parekh, actress & MP Hema Malini, Rekha, veteran singer Asha Bhosale, lyricist Javed Akhtar who along with Salim had penned the dialogues of many of the films Kapoor acted in, Shabana Azmi, and Zeenat Aman. 

Family members present included Raj Kapoor’s widow Krishna Kapoor, Kareena Kapoor’s husband Saif Ali Khan, nephew Rishi with wife Neetu and son Ranbir, Shashi Kapoor’s children Kunal Kapoor and Sanjana Kapoor were also present. Ranbir started the show with a poem and Rishi compered the programme.

A poignant audio visual on Shashi Kapoor’s films and his work along with interviews of important film personalities was played at the occasion to a rousing applause from the elite film audience.

In a vote of thanks, Bachchan said that Shashi has been a caring and generous human being and it is very fitting that the function was held at Prithvi Theatre, which Shashi Kapoor himself had established.

Kapoor made his debut as a leading man in the 1961 film Dharamputra and in 1965 starred in a commercial hit Jab Jab Phul Khilen. He went on to appear in more than 150 Hindi films. He was a very popular actor in Bollywood during the 60s, 70s and until the mid-80s. 

Shashi Kapoor was one of India’s first actors to go international and star in many British and American films, including those of Merchant Ivory Productions such as The Householder (1963),Shakespeare Wallah (1965), Bombay Talkie (1970) and Heat and Dust (1982). He also starred in other British and American films such as Siddhartha (1972) and Muhafiz (1994). 

In 1978, Kapoor set up his production house Film Valas, which produced critically acclaimed films such as Junoon (1978), Kalyug (1981), 36 Chowringhee Lane (1981), Vijeta (1982) and Utsav (1984).

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