Amitabh Bachchan turns 75: How the veteran superstar established a strong south Indian base (FirstPost)

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“Unlike the rest of India, the south always had its home-grown superstars. Though Anand and Aradhana made Rajesh Khanna a household name in Tamil Nadu, it was Amitabh Bachchan who made his firm mark in South Indian cinema, with his brooding countenance and deep baritone in Zanjeer (also because MGR starred in its remake Sirthu Vaazha Vendum).

Tamil Nadu, in the mid-70s, had more room to accept a Hindi star because Kamal Haasan and Rajinikanth were just emerging actors then, Sivaji Ganesan had progressed to donning older roles and MGR had become the Chief Minister.

Initially, Tamilians identified an Amitabh Bachchan movie with its Tamil remake as Sivaji Ganesan acted in a few of them (Majboor became Naan Vaazhavaippean, Namak Haram became Unakkaaga Naan and Muqqadar ka Sikkander became Amara Kaviyam). By the ’80s they saw Bachchan as this action-star whose movies had Kishore Kumar belting out some great numbers.

A decade later, Big B had become India’s first superstar, where a film like Mard ran for more than a hundred days even in Chennai. It is important to note, however, even then the Bachchan moniker only came second to that of Rajnikanth, Kamal Haasan, Chiranjeevi, Mammooty and Mohanlal.

It is interesting to delve deeper on the south connect to Amitabh Bachchan’s career. His first successful solo-hero film Bombay to Goa was a remake of the Tamil original Madras to Pondicherry, both directed by S Ramanathan, thus establishing a strong south-Indian base to his illustrious career.”

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2 Responses to “Amitabh Bachchan turns 75: How the veteran superstar established a strong south Indian base (FirstPost)”

  1. Good to see a post on Big B’s 75th B’day being put up. Was wondering why the blog is so silent on such a milestone.

    It is a miracle to see him so active at this age and still doing so many movies. The other day Aamir was appreciating his resilience and stamina in an interview. Aamir himself has spent 3 decades as top star and has expressed his desire to retire when he loses his creativity. One wonders when that day would come; will he be active and relevant in his seventies? Big B is definitely setting a precedence.

    Ironically, when he is doing one film after another in his mid-seventies, Abhishek is without a single movie inspite of a bunch of rumors!

    Like

  2. I’m pleased that a piece was done on this subject though for more than one reason I don’t consider it entirely adequate.

    Like

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