Ashok Kumar, fondly known as Dadamoni, was one of the most versatile and iconic actors of all times. Christened Kumudlal Ganguly, he was born in a traditional Bengali family in Bhagalpur. Ashok Kumar was a man with a magnetic aura and effervescent personality. His name Dadamoni meant jewel of an older brother.
Before becoming a well known actor, Ashok Kumar used to work as a lab assistant. His acting career started accidentally with ‘Jeevan Naiya'(1936). The original choice of actor and actress of the film – Najam-ul-Hussain and Devika Rani eloped. It was during this time that the director decided to rope in his good looking lab assistant to take the place of his male lead. Devika Rani came back later to resume shooting. But it was Achhut Kannya (1936) with Devika Rani which gave him much-awaited recognition and made people take notice of him.
Apart from being a fabulous actor, Ashok Kumar was also an excellent painter. But his painting skills never got the limelight it deserved. Apart from painting, he also used to practise homeopathy.
Ashok Kumar was honoured with the Dadasaheb Phalke Award in 1988 and the Padma Bhushan in 1998 for his contributions to Indian cinema. He was also awarded with the Filmfare Best Actor award for Rakhi in 1962. In 1969, he bagged the Best Actor award for Aashirwaad. He has also been awarded with the Star Screen Lifetime Achievement Award and Filmfare Lifetime Achievement Award.
In this documentary he takes through his journey in the Indian Film Industry in his own words. The actor from the Golden era shares his experiences and rare interviews associated with films. Some of his movies such as Achoot Kanya, Jhoola, Kismat, Meri Surat Teri Ankhein, Ashirwaad by S.K Films have been a super hit. Produced by Sambhu Munshi & Kartik Das.
He was one of the first anti-heroes of Indian Cinema with his role in the film Kismet (1943). This movie went on to create a record for the highest grossing film in India at the time of its release. He produced several films for Bombay Talkies during the final years of the company including the famous ‘Mahal’ in 1949 in which he co-starred with Madhubala. Watch the documentary to know more:
Video Courtesy: Vintage Sense