Planet Bollywood
Mainstream Heroes in villainous roles
- Pankaj Kumar Sinha           Let us know what you think about this feature article

The Indian Mainstream actors of the current generation are doing different kind of roles at an early stage of their career. They do not mind playing the antagonist in films. The actor should experiment with his roles and do all kind of cinema whether it is accepted well by audience or not. I always feel the hero is nothing without the villain. The villains add lot of spice and charm to the film. Dilip Kumar, Amitabh Bachchan and Sunny Deol would not have reached the heights they did if they did not have actors like Pran, Amjad Khan, Danny Denzonopa and Amrish Puri challenging them in their films as antagonists. They looked stronger to audience because of such strong villains. Without Ravana and Duryodhodhana, we would not have had epics like Ramayana and Mahabharata.

Now our mainstream heroes do not mind playing negative roles. They also understand that negative roles can be more interesting to play and there is a lot of fun there. The truth of life is that good boys are boring. Lot of our big heroes started their career as villain in films then moved to playing heroes. Vinod Khanna and Shatrughan Sinha started their career as villains in Hindi films and then shifted to leading roles. They met with a lot of success in negative roles and were later accepted as heroes. In south too, superstar Rajnikanth started his career doing negative roles. Amitabh Bachchan was more of an antagonist in blockbusters like Deewar and Trishul. We later saw him in negative roles in films like Aankhen and Aks also.

Shah Rukh Khan is one of the leading superstars today but he regularly takes up negative roles in his films and challenges himself as an actor. He was the antagonist in films like Baazigar, Darr, Anjaam, Ram Jaane, Duplicate, Don, Don 2 and Fan. His role of the jealous husband in 'Hum Tumhare Hain Sanam' had grey shades to it. Compared to other actors of his times, he did not mind doing negative roles. Ajay Devgn had done negative role in films Deewangee and Khakee. Aamir Khan has not played a typical villain but his characters in movies Earth, Fanaa and Dhoom 3 have had grey shades. The new generations of actors have been more comfortable in playing roles with grey shades or the ones which are out rightly negative.

Emraan Hashmi has made his career and has become a big star mostly doing roles with grey shades. The characters in his films have never been white. The roles have certain grey shades and weakness in him but still they are the hero in the film. Why do we want our heroes to be perfect without weaknesses? Today Emraan Hashmi is a brand in himself and his movies have done quite well at box office. His negative role of Shoaib in Once Upon a Time in Mumbai was one of the best villainous roles in Indian cinema and had some excellent dialogues in the film by him.

There is a rumour doing the rounds that Salman Khan is going to play a villain for the first time in his career of more than twenty five years. He has been chosen to play the antagonist in Dhoom 4 and Race 3. It will be really interesting to see him in villainous avatar. We saw him grey characters in Tere Naam and Kick but they were more of positive characters. Salman Khan has been one of the most understated actors of our country and quietly he keeps doing different genres of films and experimenting with roles but he still never gets due as an actor despite his success at box office at all genre of films. The villain roles at this of career will be icing on cake to his superstardom. The villain roles can be more interesting for mainstream heroes.


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