Pran : The Man who gave the Bollywood villain a stylish makeover
By Sayak Karmakar
Feb 13, 2018
The baddies of Bollywood have always been classified as the guys who will be beaten up the hero at the end to take a sweet revenge of all the evil deeds did by the bad all along the movie. Typically in most of the olden Bollywood cinema or even the contemporary ones, the protagonists are displayed as Gods and the antagonists are shown as the evil dudes who are born to get beaten by the hero. However, these days the concept of anti-hero or the good bad guy has become really popular in Bollywood Cinema where the main protagonist movie is a bad guy or the villain with the swag a bad boy should possess. However, in the era’s of 60’s, 70’s and 80’s there was only one actor who mesmerized everyone with his cool swag bad flamboyant bad guy acting and it was no other than the legendary actor Pran.
On his 98th Birthday let us look at some of the fond memories of Pran which the Bollywood will always cherish-
The early days – Born in Delhi, Pran or Pran Krishan Sikand in his early days used to work in Lahore before making his debut in the Punjab Film Industry. Initially working as an assistant photographer, Pran would have never left Lahore if partition wouldn’t have taken place. According to sources, even in the early days, Pran had his cool swag and charisma with the outfits he wore and with the recommendation of the legendary poet Manto Pran received the life-changing call for Bollywood Cinema debut.
Since his debut in the 1940’s Pran has worked with 5 generation superstars of Bollywood starting from Dev Anand to Dilip Kumar, from Rajesh Khanna to Amitabh Bachchan and from Dharmendra to Shashi Kapoor. He had cordial and friendly relationships with all the co-stars and as quoted by one of his dear friends, the great Raj Kapoor, Pran was one of the finest actors of Bollywood cinema as he could indulge himself to any forms and tradition of acting.
Changing the definition of Villains in Bollywood – As discussed above, Pran was a natural born swagger. He had a style very much of his own. His cool iconic villainous role made him a superstar for generations. Well, girls went crazy when a villain character in a movie dressed in black suit used to smoke a stylish cigar. Such was the craze of Pran among the audience, that at one point of time for several years he was the highest paying actor in Bollywood, not even the Kapoor’s and the Bachchan’s could match to his paycheques as well as the stardom.
In the latter half of his career, Pran diverged himself to supporting roles. And guess what!!! He was successful in supporting genre also. Who will forget the supporting role of the iconic Pathan Sher of Zanjeer and his roles in roles in movies like Amar Akbar Anthony and Victoria 203? Well, all that can be said that whatever Pran touched turned to be Gold.
In a career spanning for over 50 years, Pran will always be remembered among the movie lovers as the man who had a dynamic charisma whose rugged gentleman look made the audience of every generation to follow his style of personality. Such was the charm of a villain.