Thursday, August 2, 2007

Sanjay Dutt's defining roles


Sanjay Dutt has been in the news for his alleged underworld links. Oddly, his roles have also seen him portraying the anti-hero, albeit a loved one.

Naam (1986)

It all began with Naam for Dutt Jr.

The film that Sunil Dutt produced just for his actor-son. Ironically, the plot of the movie went on to define Baba's entire life. After ambition takes him to Dubai, many encounters with the law and skirmishes with the underworld, the lost little boy finally comes home.


Only, in real life, Sanjay Dutt's done with Dubai and underworld connections, but is yet to come home.

Khalnayak (1993)


Sanjay convincingly played Ballu Balram, an unrepentant villain in this film.

Also the release of this movie coincided with his arrest in connection with the 1993 Mumbai blasts. The resulting hype ensured that the movie became a hit. But, he came to be branded a khalnayak in real life too, and became inextricably linked to the case.


This was the last movie that saw Sanju as a lanky youth. His next movie came six years later, of which 16 months were spent in jail.

Vaastav (1999)


Out on bail, Vaastav was Sanjay's first attempt at re-building his career.

A gun 'n' gangster film, with Sanju as Raghunath, an underworld don's hitman. This movie portrayed Raghunath as slowly coming to realise the repercussions of being caught in the underworld trap. Much like Sanjay did in real life, too.


By this time, the trial and what it would do to his life was always on his mind, as he has confessed to close friends, many-a-time.

Munnabhai MBBS (2003)


Baba plays a Munnabhai gangster - but with a twist - he's a crime don with a heart of gold, working at trying to spread cheer and happiness in a hospital by cheating his way through a medical college.


This movie turned around Sanjay Dutt's career, it became an instant hit, and so did Sanjay.

Musafir (2004)


Sanjay is a drug lord in this one - and gangster roles were by now considered his forte, he once again plays a character poised on the edge of the dark side of human nature to perfection.


But, Sanjay in real life is seen visiting more temples, wearing more rings, putting on more weight, and of course, the huge red tilak on his forehead becomes a part of his persona, and his court hearings.

Lage Raho Munnabhai (2006)


The second of the Munnabhai series, this gangster now begins to see the spirit of Mahatma Gandhi and his Gandhigiri ways, stirred popular imagination and people began to connect the goofy character of Munna with the real Dutt. Stories of him being a nice guy. The gangster was sufficiently 'humanised'.


Sanjay Dutt had arrived, once again. And in the weirdest cases of real life imitating reel life, on 28 November, 2006 the TADA court acquitted Sanjay in all cases related to TADA, finding him guilty only under the Arms Act.

Sanjay's unfinished projects...

Aladin and the Mystery of the Lamp - Ramesh Sippy and Sujoy Ghosh (just announced)
Mr Fraud - Abbas-Mastan (release date November 9th)
Dus Kahaniyaan - Sanjay Gupta (release date October)
Mera Bharat Mahan - Vikas Kapoor (was still shooting)
Alibaug - Sanjay Gupta (was still shooting)
Happy New Year - Farah Khan (was just announced)
Munnabhai Chale Amerika - Raj Kumar Hirani (shooting was going on)

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