Raj Kapoor (December 14, 1924 – June 1988) was a famous Indian actor and filmmaker. Kapoor became one of the biggest stars in Indian cinema in the 1950s and 60s. He is also considered to be one of the pioneers of Hindi cinema.
Kapoor made his film debut in 1944 with a small part in Kisan Kanya (1944). But it was Bombay Talkie (1949) that established him as an actor when he played a double role as twin brothers separated at birth, one good and one bad. The film is regarded as India’s first Hindi talkie movie ever made.
About Raj Kapoor
His birth name was Shrishti Nath Kapoor. Later he is known as Ranbir Raj Kapoor. He was born on December 14, 1924, to Prithvi Raj Kapoor and Lakhami Devi Kapoor. He had two siblings- Shashi Kapoor and Sharmila Tagore.
Raj Kapoor began his career with a role in the film Kisan Kanya (1944). The film was not successful but Raj became a star soon after that. He gained more popularity for his role in the 1949 movie Bombay Talkie, India’s first talkie. From then on he starred in hit movie after hit movie and soon became one of the biggest stars India had seen at that time.
Raj Kapoor’s movies portrayed Indian society as it really was, but critics called them films of urban middle-class dreams.
Life of Kapoor
He was born in 1924 to Prithvi Raj Kapoor and Lakhami Devi Kapoor. His father was a successful actor and his mother was a poet. He lived the rich lifestyle of an actor’s son. He attended St. Xavier’s High School, Bombay, but left school when he was 16 years old to concentrate on his acting career.
He starts studying at different schools in different cities. He first goes to Colonel Brown Cambridge School in Dera Doon. Then he attends St Xavier’s Collegiate School in Calcutta. Later he goes to Campion School in Bombay to complete his study.
His personal life
Raj Kapoor marries Krishna Malhotra. They have five children 3 sons and 2 daughters. Their son was Randhir Kapoor, Rishi Kapoor, and Rajiv Kapoor and their daughter was Ritu Nanda and Rima Jain. Out of them Randhir Kapoor and Rishi Kapoor become famous stars in Indian cinema. His grandson and granddaughter are also big superstars currently in Indian cinema. Their name is Karishma Kapoor, Kareena Kapoor, and Ranbir Kapoor.
He starts his career by acting in Kisan Kanya’s film. Soon Raj Kapoor’s career went up and he became one of the biggest stars of Indian Cinema at that time. He acts in different movies and dramas but his most known movie is Awara (1951). He played two men who were twins. They were opposite characters in the film, one was good and the other bad. The film became a hit after release because of its storyline and the acting skills of Raj Kapoor.
Debut as an actor
Raj Kapoor made his film appearance in Kisan Kanya. This film was not a great success and it is said that the reason behind its failure was the film language which was in the Awadhi dialect.
In 1948, he got his first film with Bombay Talkie, which turned out to be his breakout movie. He played two characters, one good, and the other bad.
His career as an actor
He continued to act through his early days as an actor till 1965. In 1952 he acted in the action movie Pyaasa (1952). He gained lots of fame with this movie. His acting was liked by all and he also won many awards for this movie. In the 1960s, his career started to slow down and he started making movies at a slower rate.
His directorial venture
He began his directing career in the 1960s. His first movie as a director was Aag (1970). The music in the movie was written by Shankar Jaikishan. He also acted in the film along with other artists like Rajendra Kumar and Mumtaz. It was a huge hit, and he directed another film in 1973 called Seeta Aur Geeta. The movie starred his sons Ranbir and Rishi Kapoor with him.
He is one of the most successful actors and directors in Indian Cinema. He inspired many young directors like Manmohan Desai to work in the field of cinema. Raj Kapoor was also one of the pioneers of Hindi Cinema and is also considered a great actor in Indian Cinema. He is still alive in the hearts of his fans through his movies which are still loved by everyone.
Kapoor died after suffering a heart attack on June 2, 1988, at the age of 66. He was laid to rest in the city of Mumbai where his family live. This great actor was considered a legend by all his fans and has been honored with many awards and honorary titles throughout the world.
Raj Kapoor received many other awards for his contribution to Indian cinema including the Padma Shri, India’s fourth-highest civilian honor in 1976, and the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award for classical dance in 1974. He was also awarded the prestigious Filmfare Lifetime Achievement Award in 1985.
Awards and honor
He won many awards for his work in the film industry. These are the awards he won for his work Filmfare Award for Best Actor (1953), Filmfare Best Director Award (1979)
He also received the Padma Shri award. He was awarded Isaneetsa Kalra Puraskar, which is given by the Government of India to eminent personalities in the field of cinema.
In 2007, the Indian government issued a postage stamp to commemorate his birth centenary.
Awards and achievements of his sons
Raj Kapoor’s two sons are also famous Hollywood actors. Therefore, his son Rishi Kapoor has a long career in films. However, he did many Hindi films, some English films, and a few Punjabi films as well. Rishi is known for his sense of humor and comic role in Hindi movies. While Rajiv Kapoor has not had that huge career as his brother but still he is a successful actor in Hindi cinema.