Monday, August 15, 2022
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#GoldenFrames: Nirupa Roy, the most loved mother of Indian Cinema – Times of India

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#GoldenFrames is a series that will bring to you every Friday a pictorial biography of Indian Cinema’s greatest legends…Read Less
Nirupa Roy had worked with some of the greatest names of Hindi cinema, and with more than 275 movies to her name. She was one of the leading actresses of her generation. She played one of those filmy moms who were bound to be helpless or seen praying for their children. Her roles had a more significant impact on the audience. Roy was often portrayed as the ‘queen of miseries’. In movies, either husband abandons her, or she gets separated from her family due to natural calamities, etc. Roy is the first actress to win the Filmfare Award for Supporting Actress in three movies—Munimji’ (1955), ‘Chhaya’ (1961) and ‘Shehnai’ (1964). She had a long and successful movie career, which included honours like the Filmfare Lifetime Achievement Award in 2004.
Nirupa Roy had worked with some of the greatest names of Hindi cinema, and with more than 275 movies to her name. She was one of the leading actresses of her generation. She played one of those filmy moms who were bound to be helpless or seen praying for their children. Her roles had a more significant impact on the audience. Roy was often portrayed as the ‘queen of miseries’. In movies, either husband abandons her, or she gets separated from her family due to natural calamities, etc. Roy is the first actress to win the Filmfare Award for Supporting Actress in three movies—Munimji’ (1955), ‘Chhaya’ (1961) and ‘Shehnai’ (1964). She had a long and successful movie career, which included honours like the Filmfare Lifetime Achievement Award in 2004.
Kokila Kishorechandra Balsara was born on January 4, 1931, in Gujarat’s Valsad. She was married to Kamal Roy at the age of fifteen and later moved to Mumbai. Apparently, her parents used to call cinema a “corrupting influence”.
Kokila Kishorechandra Balsara was born on January 4, 1931, in Gujarat’s Valsad. She was married to Kamal Roy at the age of fifteen and later moved to Mumbai. Apparently, her parents used to call cinema a “corrupting influence”.
In an interview with Filmfare in 1983, Roy said, “I hadn’t seen a film till I got married. My parents believed films were a corrupting influence. So only after coming to Bombay did I get to know what films were.”
In an interview with Filmfare in 1983, Roy said, “I hadn’t seen a film till I got married. My parents believed films were a corrupting influence. So only after coming to Bombay did I get to know what films were.”
Together, Roy and her husband Kamal Roy auditioned in response to an advertisement for actors in a Gujarati paper. Kamal Roy didn’t get the role but Nirupa was offered to be the heroine of the movie. Kamal Roy agreed on the spot, but it was later offered to another actress, Anjana. Roy ended up with a small role in the movie.
Together, Roy and her husband Kamal Roy auditioned in response to an advertisement for actors in a Gujarati paper. Kamal Roy didn’t get the role but Nirupa was offered to be the heroine of the movie. Kamal Roy agreed on the spot, but it was later offered to another actress, Anjana. Roy ended up with a small role in the movie.
The actress started her career with the Gujarati movie ‘Ranakdevi’ (1946). It was Vishnu Kumar Vyas, who advertised for new artists for his Gujarati movie, gave Roy her screen name ‘Nirupa.’
(Photo: Still from the movie ‘Ranakdevi’)
The actress started her career with the Gujarati movie ‘Ranakdevi’ (1946). It was Vishnu Kumar Vyas, who advertised for new artists for his Gujarati movie, gave Roy her screen name ‘Nirupa.’
(Photo: Still from the movie ‘Ranakdevi’)
She acted in her first Hindi movie ‘Amar Raj’ (1946). But it was her role as a housewife who wins back her husband in ‘Gunsundari’ (1948) that made her a star. Her role as Goddess Parvati in ‘Har Mahadev’ (1950) with actor Trilok Kapoor as Lord Shiv was so popular that people treated her like an actual goddess.
(Photo: Still from the movie ‘Gunsundari’)
She acted in her first Hindi movie ‘Amar Raj’ (1946). But it was her role as a housewife who wins back her husband in ‘Gunsundari’ (1948) that made her a star. Her role as Goddess Parvati in ‘Har Mahadev’ (1950) with actor Trilok Kapoor as Lord Shiv was so popular that people treated her like an actual goddess.
(Photo: Still from the movie ‘Gunsundari’)
Reportedly, people used to visit Nirupa’s home and wait in queues for hours, just to see her once. It is also said that many people used to touch her feet to show their immense respect towards her. Roy eventually played the characters of several Hindu goddesses such as Sita and Lakshmi and historical figures such as Meera Bai over the next few years.
Reportedly, people used to visit Nirupa’s home and wait in queues for hours, just to see her once. It is also said that many people used to touch her feet to show their immense respect towards her. Roy eventually played the characters of several Hindu goddesses such as Sita and Lakshmi and historical figures such as Meera Bai over the next few years.
Her role as a poor rural housewife in ‘Do Bigha Zamin’ (1953), alongside veteran Balraj Sahni, brought her much acclaim. She went on to star in several movies with actor Bharat Bhushan, including ‘Samrat Chandragupt’ (1958) and ‘Rani Rupmati’ (1959).
(Photo: Still from the movie ‘Do Bigha Zamin’)
Her role as a poor rural housewife in ‘Do Bigha Zamin’ (1953), alongside veteran Balraj Sahni, brought her much acclaim. She went on to star in several movies with actor Bharat Bhushan, including ‘Samrat Chandragupt’ (1958) and ‘Rani Rupmati’ (1959).
(Photo: Still from the movie ‘Do Bigha Zamin’)
Roy’s career progressed as she played the archetypal mother characters, referring to her on-screen goddess image. Her first role as a mother was in the movie ‘Munimji’ (1955) with Dev Anand, who was seven years older. She went on to play the role of a mother in numerous commercial movies since then. Roy’s popular movies in the next decade included one of the most landmark double role movies of all time — ‘Ram Aur Shyam’ (1967), featuring Dilip Kumar, who was the industry’s reigning star at the time.
(Photo: Still from the movie ‘Ram Aur Shyam’)
Roy’s career progressed as she played the archetypal mother characters, referring to her on-screen goddess image. Her first role as a mother was in the movie ‘Munimji’ (1955) with Dev Anand, who was seven years older. She went on to play the role of a mother in numerous commercial movies since then. Roy’s popular movies in the next decade included one of the most landmark double role movies of all time — ‘Ram Aur Shyam’ (1967), featuring Dilip Kumar, who was the industry’s reigning star at the time.
(Photo: Still from the movie ‘Ram Aur Shyam’)
However, the movie that made Roy India’s most famous mother was ‘Deewar’ (1975), starring Amitabh Bachchan as an anti-hero. Her dramatic turn as a widow torn between her elder son Vijay, a criminal and his younger sibling Ravi, a police officer, was memorable. Roy went to play Bachchan’s mother in movies such as ‘Amar Akbar Anthony’ (1977), ‘Mard’ (1985) and ‘Lal Badshah’ (1999). The dialogue ‘Mere paas Maa hain’ featuring Nirupa with Big B and Shashi Kapoor has earned a cult status and is even remembered today. It was also believed that she was actually related to Amitabh Bachchan.
(Photo: Still from the movie ‘Deewar’)
However, the movie that made Roy India’s most famous mother was ‘Deewar’ (1975), starring Amitabh Bachchan as an anti-hero. Her dramatic turn as a widow torn between her elder son Vijay, a criminal and his younger sibling Ravi, a police officer, was memorable. Roy went to play Bachchan’s mother in movies such as ‘Amar Akbar Anthony’ (1977), ‘Mard’ (1985) and ‘Lal Badshah’ (1999). The dialogue ‘Mere paas Maa hain’ featuring Nirupa with Big B and Shashi Kapoor has earned a cult status and is even remembered today. It was also believed that she was actually related to Amitabh Bachchan.
(Photo: Still from the movie ‘Deewar’)
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