SKJ Bollywood News

Jagdeep Gone, Why Was He Known Only For Soorma Bhopali? Javed Akhtar Who Wrote The Character , Speaks

The wonderful comic virtuoso Jagdeep is  gone,  the fifth blow to the  vulnerable Hindi  film industry  in three months  and a far less cruel  blow than losing Irrfan  Khan and  Rishi  Kapoor who were in their prime.

Jagdeep had a full life . At   81 he was  surrounded  by his loved ones. His innings as a comic actor was impressively long.  His role as  Soorma Bhopali in  Ramesh Sippy Sholay became  both the  milestone  and  the mill  stone of his career. Soorma Bhopali almost became  Jagdeep’s alias. Years after Sholay his character  in  Raj Kumar Santoshi’s  Andaz Apna Apna was named, don’t laugh,   Bankelal Bhopali.

Jagdeep who  came from Indore  to Mumbai when he  was 9 years  old and  slept on the streets  with his mother, also directed a film  called Soorma  Bhopali  in 1988. Though Jagdeep’s  well wishers  in the industry like Amitabh  Bachchan , Rekha and Dharmendra made  guest  appearances   in the  film, it flopped.

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 Javed Akhtar who co-wrote  the  unforgettable character  of Soorma Bhopani  for Jadgeep  in  Sholay  recalls Jadgeep as being  a  serious actor  initially, “Jagdeep Saab had first appeared on the screen as a winsome child artist in films like Do Bigha Zameen and Aar Paar . As a young man he played highly emotionally charged and dramatic roles in films like Bhabhi, Patang , Puran  Milan etc.Comedy was his second successful innings.”

    Speaking on the role that defines Jagdeep’s career  Javed Saab says, “Soorma Bhopali could not have been played by anybody other than him . He worked hard on the Bhopali accent and got it  word perfect. His comic timing was very good but I rue the fact that he wasn’t given an opportunity to do more emotional and dramatic roles too. Great talent sadly underused.”


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