Showbiz

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Yesteryear stars return to Bollywood

Posted by jahanzaibmemon on January 1, 2008

There’s a comeback of sorts happening in recent times. Have you noticed it? Well, look around and you’ll see how yesteryears’ stars — Dharmendra, Vinod Khanna, Jeetendra, Feroz Khan — are all back in the limelight.

Garam Dharam, at 72, can give any of the younger men a run for their money. For quite a few years in between, Dharmendra was away from the limelight. But he’s back, not only making appearances at events, but also being choosy about the films he does. “I’m always excited to face the camera,” says the veteran star, who has four films in his kitty. “I still feel like the newcomer who caught the Frontier Mail to come to Bombay and become an actor,” he smiles.

Vinod Khanna, who recently took up Smriti Iraani’s TV show where he plays the central character, has some interesting film roles on hand as well. He calls this phase his “fourth innings” and is as excited about returning to filmdom as he was at the beginning of his career.
Unlike in Hollywood, where 60-plus actors like Michael Doughlas or Bruce Willis continue to go strong, in India barring Amitabh Bachchan, most top actors faded into oblivion. But now there’s hope with the multiplex culture setting in.

Trade analyst Taran Adarsh believes that with film-makers willing to experiment with different kinds of scripts, there’s plenty of scope for these stars. “Times have changed and there are scripts with powerful and interesting roles for different age groups. Just because they have aged doesn’t mean the magic is gone,” says Taran.

Another example is the flamboyant Feroz Khan, who was also a little low-key past year or two. Khan’s now back in a multi-starrer with an
interesting role. Apparently at the beginning of the film shoot, Khan got quite a welcome from his co-stars Nana Patekar and Anil Kapoor. They
surprised him by booking the grand suite in a five-star hotel in Dubai for him.

Jumping Jack Jeetendra, who kept a low-profile the past few years, returned on the scene this year as a judge in the reality dance show Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa II. Each time he danced on the show, the audiences were thrilled. He also regaled viewers with his down-to-earth demeanour. “Once, he was talking of how he’d struggled from being an extra in films to reaching stardom. That was really sweet,” says Nandini Jha, a fan of the actor.

Actor-filmmaker Manoj Kumar too suddenly was in the limelight recently when he protested against a scene in Shah Rukh Khan’s film Om Shanti Om. The original Bharat is set to make a few movies now.

Good to see the return of the veterans. Guess it’s time now for Kakaji aka yesteryear’s superstar Rajesh Khanna to rear his head up, too. Wow! We just heard he too is set to act in a TV show.

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