Megastar Amitabh Bachchan thanked his legion of fans on Monday as he completed 52 years in the film industry. Bachchan fondly remembered the day he signed his debut film, Saat Hindustani, in 1969. “Aaj hi ke din film industry mein pravesh kiya tha… Feb 15, 1969 .. 52 years !! aabhaar,” Bachchan tweeted in reply to a follower’s post that celebrated his over five-decade long journey in the movies.
aaj hi ke din film industry mein pravesh kiya tha .. Feb 15, 1969 .. 52 years !! aabhaar https://t.co/bEIWYWCmBc
— Amitabh Bachchan (@SrBachchan) February 15, 2021
Three years ago on the same date, Bachchan had first shared with fans that he signed Saat Hindustani the day he arrived in Mumbai. “49 years ago I came to the city of dreams and signed my first film .. “Saat Hindustani’ on Feb 15, 1969,” the Gulabo Sitabo actor had tweeted at the time. The 78-year-old actor also reflected on the landmark date in his blog post. Bachchan wrote that the date became special only because his fans, whom he calls “extended family”, remembered and celebrated it.
“As the night slips into the next day… it slips into the gap of 52 years of my commencement in the film world… a chapter that the very effective concerned and loving Ef remember and portray through their wishes and communications and artistic representations,” the actor wrote.
“It is most alluring to see and hear and read what they gift .. had they not it would have been just another day, one that was spent in the struggle of life.”
Saat Hindustani, written and directed by Khwaja Ahmed Abbas, was an action drama about seven Indians, who fight to liberate Goa from the Portuguese colonial rule. The primary cast also included Utpal Dutt, AK Hangal and Anwar Ali. Saat Hindustani released in November 1969, marking Bachchan’s arrival on the big screen.
After an acclaimed performance in Hrishikesh Mukherjee’s 1971 poignant drama Anand and a spate of unsuccessful films with Bombay to Goa (1972), Bachchan’s career took a U-turn only in 1973 with Prakash Mehra’s Zanjeer. The film was not only a huge box-office success but also established Bachchan’s image as an angry young man, one that holds a strong recall value even four decades later.
Bachchan remains Hindi film industry’s tallest figure, courtesy his impeccable body of work and his ability to reinvent according to the times. The actor dominated the film industry across genres till early ’90s. It was only when the three Khans- Shah Rukh, Aamir and Salman- began to rise with younger and contemporary stories that Bachchan finally faced competition and slowed down his work.
Reeling under successive failures, including shutting down of his production company ABCL, Bachchan’s career got a second life as he debuted on the small screen with the game show, Kaun Banega Crorepati, in 2000. The superstar hasn’t looked back since, as he continues to be relevant in both the movies and on television. In fact, he got three out of four National Awards during his second innings– Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Black (2005), R Balki-directed Paa (2009) and Piku (2015), directed by Shoojit Sircar.
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