Dec 6: Belated Happy Birthday Shekhar Kapur: Celebrating His Pathbreaking Cinema!

Ridhima Sinha , 08 Dec 2011
Shekhar Kapur
Shekhar Kapur

Shekhar Kapur is one of the most talented actors and directors that India has ever produced. His work in Indian cinema and in Hollywood has been exemplary and his movies are critically acclaimed the world over. On the birthday of this gifted man, I’d love to relive some of his best work as a director and share with everyone my love for each of these beautiful stories and his ambitious forthcoming ventures.

1) Masoom

Masoom is really close to my heart ever since I was a kid. The emotions that children go through when their parents have a troubled marriage and especially the consequences of an extramarital affair were captured remarkably well. The movie had sensitive and heart-wrenching performances by Naseeruddin Shah and Shabani Azmi. And what made it really special was that Shekhar was able to push even the kids, Urmila Matondkar (she was so cute!) and Jugal Hansraj to deliver path-breaking performances.

2) Mr. India

I think a lot of people will agree with me when I say that Mr. India will always be our favorite superhero. This Anil Kapoor- Sridevi starrer was a super success and I still love watching it over and over again. From the super cute kids to Satish Kaushik as the cuddly Calendar we loved it all. And our philanthropic hero fighting Mogambo (the greatest villain ever) was mind-blowing. Mogambo Khush Hua!

3) Bandit Queen

Shekhar Kapur’s most controversial flick ever was about the true life story of Phoolan Devi. I was totally impressed Seema Biswas, her courage in accepting a role like this and her stellar performance as the female gangster. The movie was criticized, even banned for its bold content but it truly made us see the brilliance of his work.

Elizabeth And Elizabeth: The Golden Age

These would clearly rank first on the list of movies closest to his heart. Shekhar excelled in his direction of the tale of Queen Elizabeth‘s reign in England. This classic was nominated for seven Academy Awards. Cate Blanchett was a delight to watch in a breakthrough performance and the phenomenal success of the movie made the world sit up and take notice of Shekhar Kapur’s talent. The 2007 sequel to the movie was fab as well and it even won Cate Blanchett a nomination for Best Actress at the Oscars. What I particularly like about both movies is how intricately and sensibly Shekhar has dealt with the transformation of Elizabeth from a young, romantic girl to being a dominating Queen who ushered in the Golden Age in English history.

5) Paani and Mallory

Shekhar Kapur unveils the first look of Paani
Shekhar Kapur unveils the first look of Paani at Cannes

A film that has been in the pipeline for over five years, the story deals with the global water crisis. Rumors suggest that Hrithik Roshan will play the lead in the movie and there were also buzz that suggests that Shekhar had approached Kristen Stewart as his lady love. Ooh… Love the sound of that!

Shekhar Kapur & Julia Roberts will team up for Mallory
Shekhar Kapur & Julia Roberts will team up for Mallory

We wish that his ambitious project takes off and he can surprise us again with some more meaningful and socially relevant stories. His other forthcoming venture is a biopic of George Mallory, the famous mountaineer who disappeared a few hundred meters short of Mount Everest. The movie is being produced by Julia Roberts and it will be one challenging and exciting endeavor.

Shekhar Kapur
Shekhar Kapur

Shekhar Kapoor has been felicitated with the prestigious Padma Shri for his valuable contribution to cinema. His movies are gems we will always cherish and his body of work will continue to motivate me to follow my dreams. Team MissMalini wishes him a very happy birthday, good health and great success with all his future projects.

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