Behind Kader Khan's Prolific Career and Success was His Mother's Advice
Kader Khan was one of the rare artistes in the film industry who was highly regarded for both his spot-on comic timing and dramatic prowess.
Born in Kabul in 1937, Kader Khan made his acting debut in 1973 with Yash Chopra’s film Daag.
It's tough to come to terms with the death of someone like Kader Khan, who impacted us with his incredibly deep and powerful voice, improvisational acting skills and his ability to spark laughter in any situation. There was a time when no Hindi film could be without him. He starred in almost any and every movie that came out during the 80s and 90s and had been everything from a genial father, uncle and brother to a villainous goon.
He was one of the rare artistes in the industry who was highly regarded for his spot-on comic timing and be taken seriously as a drama actor. He could play an earnest father in Raja Babu and a principal villain in Parvarish with equal finesse. Apart from acting in over 300 films, Khan was talented enough to write his own dialogues, and daring enough to pull it off.
Easily one of the best dialogue writers in the world of Hindi cinema, Khan had a hand in the writing of many classic gems. Today, if Amitabh Bachchan is ‘The Amitabh Bachchan’ then it is in large part due to Khan’s brilliant ability to bake realism and drama into his dialogues. From ‘Apun bahut famous aadmi... bada bada paper mein apun ka chota chota photo chapta hai’ in Amar Akbar Anthony to ‘Aaj shaam che bajhe maut ke saath apna appointment hai’ in Agneepath, Khan had given the Hindi cinema some of its most memorable dialogues.
For Khan, success definitely didn't happen overnight. Even as he had been writing screenplays and dialogues since his college days, he decided to indulge in it only after his play ‘Local Train’ won the All India Best Play award.
“I also won the cash prize of Rs 1500 along with a trophy. Zindagi mein pehli baar maine itne paise ek saath dekhe,” recalled Khan in one of his interviews. Raised in Mumbai’s Kamathipura, which he termed in his interview as the dirtiest slum in the city, Khan was deprived of basic needs. The future was bleak for the late actor, whose parents divorced when he was too young.
“In my neighbourhood, kids would go to a factory so that they could earn a rupee or two. One day I thought I’d also join them. I was about to leave for the factory when suddenly my mother stopped me and said, ‘I know where you are going. You’re going with these kids to earn a few bucks. But trust me, this would not help you take you to places. If you really want that your family doesn’t raise in poverty then study as much as you can,’” said Khan recalling the advice from his mother which helped him a lot in his personal life.
Since then there was no looking back for Khan who went on to do a diploma in Civil engineering and later post-graduation in the same course. He soon started writing plays along with teaching in a college. The rest, they say, is history.
Khan might not be with us today but his legacy will continue to live on in the hearts of people.
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