Bollywood Actors Who Chose To Sit Behind The Camera!

Shivaay which hits the big screen tomorrow is directed by Ajay Devgn and he’s in that rare club of actor-cum-directors in Bollywood who alongside their passion for acting, also cherish wearing the director’s hat

The trailer of Shivaay shows that Ajay Devgn hasn’t spared any effort in making the film look visually impressive. I haven’t seen U, Me aur Hum, which was Devgn’s directorial debut. But the general consensus is that Mr Devgn – I don’t know what he did with that harmless ‘a’ in his surname –has the makings of a formidable filmmaker. If Shivaay trailer is any indication, the action will be paisa vasool – upar all that snow stuff is the ‘icing’ on the cake!

Earlier this year, Sunny Deol returned to direction with Ghayal Returns. It was a decent watch and the action was pretty well executed. A bit of mellow drama would have been really nice. But that’s probably the Raj Santoshi influence. For Sunny Deol’s acting career could be divided into the pre and post Santoshi phases. In the pre Santoshi phase, he was subtle, brooding and spoke more with his eyes and fists. But once Santoshi came into his life, Sunny Deol also started exercising his vocal chords as much as his biceps. He’d shout and scream in every scene. Sometimes, a bad guy would get knocked down by his shouting even before he’s punched him! Interestingly, for all the action stuff, Sunny’s directorial debut was a love triangle called Dillagi – which had some great music by Shanker Ehsaan Loy.

It’s not just Deol and Devgn, another actor who’s also turned director this year is Konkona Sensharma. Her film A Death In The Gunj which featured at the Jio MAMI Film Festival recently has received some great response. And we will look forward to whatever Aamir Khan decides to direct next. Just goes to prove that actors can be good directors. Like in the past, one of my favourite films was Qurbani – directed by Feroz Khan. It’s a mystery what happened to the same Feroz Khan in the later years – particularly when one sees Prem Aggan, the kind of debut that son Fardeen Khan might even cringe to watch on TV. Ditto Manoj Kumar, whose earlier films like Purab Aur Paschim or Roti, Kapda aur Makaan and Kranti were hugely entertaining. But then came movies like Clerk, which went down in history as one of the most parodied films. Especially, the scene where Ashok Kumar’s heart attack is cured by two batteries from his transistor! It’s widely believed that it’s Manoj Kumar who suggested the “khaike paan banaraswala” in Don...

From Guru Dutt and Sohrab Modi to Raj Kapoor and Rakesh Roshan, Bollywood has seen several successful actor-cum-directors. Some of them got better with age – like Raj Kapoor, whose Ram Teri Ganga Maili was not just a huge hit but also a socially relevant story. Age is not always a bad thing in movies. One of the most revered directors in Hollywood today is Clint Eastwood, 86, who continues to surprise us with not just his prolific output but even with the range of his filmmaking – from Mystic River to Million Dollar Baby to American Sniper to Sully! It would be interesting to see who becomes our Desi Eastwood – Aamir, Ajay or…?


Thumbnail Image Source: Manav Manglani

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