Bollywood has, over the years, witnessed some memorable roles played out by child artistes. While many of the li’l actors fade away from public memory after a point of time or decide to pursue a non-glamorous career, some return to the screen as they grow up. However, they don’t always enjoy the same amount of fame or adulation that they once did as kids when they begin their second innings in tinseltown. There are exceptions though, like Urmila Matondkar, who was seen in the 1983 film ‘Masoom’ as a nine-year-old and went on to be one of B’wood’s leading ladies in the ’90s.
© Provided by MiD-DAYA grown-up Omkar Kapoor
The focus on child actors is back with Omkar Kapoor set for his big screen outing as a grown-up in Luv Ranjan’s ‘Pyaar Ka Punchnama 2’.
© Mid-DayOmkar Kapoor as Anil Kapoor and Sridevi’s son (circled) in the 1997 film ‘Judaai’
He had featured in over a dozen films including the Shah Rukh Khan and Pooja Bhatt-starrer ‘Chaahat’ (1996), the Govinda-Karisma Kapoor comic caper ‘Hero No 1’ (1997) and Aamir Khan’s ‘Mela’ (2000). In his mid 20s now, Omkar plays the lead role in the sequel to the 2011 comedy film.
He still has vivid memories shooting with Anil Kapoor and Sridevi for Judaai (1997) in which he played their son. Omkar says, “Several scenes were shot at the airport and I was fascinated to see the security checks, the planes taking off and landing. So I used to wander off to watch the planes from the window.”
By the time he was in high school and found himself in the in-between stage, he decided to stop acting. He concentrated on his studies, but he was bitten by the acting bug. “While studying at NM College, I realised that all I wanted to do was act,” he adds.
As part of his preparations for his Bollywood career, he worked as an assistant for quite a few films including ‘Tees Maar Khan’ (2010) before he began auditioning for roles. His brother, Vikas Kapoor, incidentally, is a producer who made ‘Heroes’ (2008) with Sunny Deol and Salman Khan.
As Omkar gets ready to make his mark, hitlist takes a look at other child actors who returned to the scene…
© Provided by MiD-DAYHansika Motwani
She featured in TV shows like ‘Des Mein Niklla Hoga Chand’, ‘Shaka Laka Boom Boom’, ‘Son Pari’, ‘Karishma Kaa Karishma’ and ‘Kyunki… Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi’. She got a big break when she was seen as one of the child actors in the Hrithik Roshan-starrer ‘Koi… Mil Gaya’ (2003). Later, she made her debut as the leading lady in Himesh Reshammiya’s ‘Aap Ka Surroor’ (2007), but disappeared from the Bollywood scene soon after. Hansika, however, has made her mark down South.
© Provided by MiD-DAYShweta Basu Prasad
Among the top headline makers of 2014, the National Award winning child artiste (for the 2012 film ‘Makdee’) was dragged into a high-profile sex scandal. According to reports, Shweta was arrested by the Hyderabad police for her alleged involvement in a prostitution racket. She later blamed the media for cooking up false stories and ghost quoting her “admission of guilt”. She had turned to South Indian films after failing to find Bollywood offers after her role as Shreyas Talpade’s sister in much-acclaimed film ‘Iqbal’ (2005). Following last year’s controversy, filmmaker Hansal Mehta promised her a role in one of his projects, but there’s no recent update in this regard.
© Provided by MiD-DAYSana Saeed
Best remembered as little Anjali from Karan Johar’s ‘Kuch Kuch Hota Hai’ (1998), Sana was also seen in ‘Har Dil Jo Pyar Karega’ (2000) and ‘Badal’ (2000) as well as television shows such as ‘Babul Ka Aangann Chootey Na’ (2008) and ‘Lo Ho Gayi Pooja Iss Ghar Ki’ (2008). When she grew up, KJo cast her in a supporting role in his 2012 film ‘Student Of The Year’, but she is yet to find a toehold in Bollywood. Of late, she has been doing the rounds of dance reality shows like ‘Nach Baliye’ and ‘Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa’.
© Provided by MiD-DAYKunal Kemmu
The actor, whose recent release ‘Bhaag Johnny’ has proven to be a damp squib, had featured with Aamir Khan in ‘Raja Hindustani’ (1996) and ‘Hum Hain Rahi Pyar Ke’ (1993). He made his debut as a lead actor in ‘Kalyug’ (2005). He was also part of ‘Golmaal 3’ and ‘Go Goa Gone’ (2013) which found many takers. However, A-list projects elude him.
© Provided by MiD-DAYAftab Shivdasani
After making his Bollywood debut as a child actor in ‘Mr India’ (1987), Aftab appeared in films such as ‘Awwal Number’ (1990), ‘Shahenshah’ (1988), and ‘ChaalBaaz’ (1989). Ram Gopal Varma launched him in the lead role in ‘Mast’ (1999). Though he went on to do several films, it did not propel him to stardom. Of late, he has been seen in sex comedies.
© Provided by MiD-DAYJugal Hansraj
Filmmaker Shekhar Kapur cast the actor in his much-acclaimed 1983 film ‘Masoom’ alongside two other kids, Urmila Matondkar and ‘Aradhana’. He went on to play roles in ‘Karma’ (1986) and ‘Sultanat’ (1986). But his first film as a grown up, ‘Aa Gale Lag Jaa’ (1994), where he was cast opposite Urmila, didn’t do well. Then he starred in Mahesh Bhatt’s ‘Papa Kehte Hain’ (1996), which proved to be a dud. Post that, he got a big opportunity with Aditya Chopra’s ‘Mohabbatein’ (2000), in which he played one of the main leads. Jugal also did cameos or character roles in some films and took to direction with the animation film ‘Roadside Romeo’ (2008) and later ‘Pyaar Impossible’ (2010). Considered to be close to Aditya and Uday Chopra, he has given up on his acting aspirations and wants to concentrate on production and direction.
Among the biggest yesteryear kid actors was Master Raju, who won the National Award for Best Child Artiste for ‘Chitchor’ (1976) and is best remembered for films like Hrishikesh Mukherjee’s ‘Bawarchi’ (1972) and Gulzar’s ‘Kitaab’ (1977). He did scores of films in the 1970s as a kid. As an adult, he did not find success in Bollywood and turned to the small screen.
Junior Mehmood was another hugely popular child star of the ’70s and was seen in films like ‘Kati Patang’ (1971) and ‘Caravan’ (1971), but did not impress in his grown up avatar.